Saturday, March 17, 2012

What Better Way to Celebrate St Patty's Day than with a Boston Simulation?

With less than a month to go until Boston, I'm running out of long runs. Though it's hard to believe, after this weekend, I have just one more 20 miler to go! This morning my running group put together a Boston simulation 20 miler for those of use who'll be heading to Hopkinton on Patriot's Day. 

We met in Washington Heights, right by the GW Bridge, where you'll find Manhattan's biggest hills. Since most folks are running tomorrow's NYC Half, the run wasn't very well attended but that didn't matter to those of us who showed up. After a quick detour of the GW and back (why? just because) we started a quick descent to mimic Boston's initial downhill miles. 

Our simulation profile
The weather was almost perfect, sunny and in the mid-50s. We ran along Riverside Drive and into Riverside Park, making our way to the Hudson Greenway at 103rd street. Given how empty the path is during the winter, it was amazing to see so many people out running and biking! We kept the pace pretty light for the first part of the run, around 7:50, although occasionally we found ourselves going faster and had to dial it back. 

Once we got to 59th Street it was time to turn east towards Central Park and the Newton-simulating hills. At this point we began picking up the pace, weeving through the crowds at Columbus Circle and entering the packed park. Our route took us clockwise, up around the west side of the park for two laps of the Harlem Hills. At this point we were down to two runners. Unfortunately I did something to my achilles on Wednesday and it still hasn't recovered. At mile 16 I decided it was better to slow down for my ankle's sake but I still managed to finish the run with 20.9 miles. 

I'm going to take the next couple days off for the sake of my achilles but I'm feeling pretty confident for Boston. Next week I head to Boston for a "real simulation" so then we'll really see. I can't believe how fast this training cycle has flown by!
Today's Run: 20.9 at 7:39 pace.

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