Blame my low mileage on the Throgs Neck bridge

Today’s route

Today’s run (street): 4.25 miles
Yesterday’s run (street): 3.2 miles

It’s June and the weather’s getting better, but the traffic is getting worse. I had thoughts about leaving the office a little early a couple of days last week to get in late afternoon runs. My aim is to increase my weekly mileage. Due to the MTA’s brilliant plan to do concurrent construction on both the Whitestone and Throgs Neck bridges, my commute time is now averaging close to two hours each way. That got me home too late for running, showering and dinner before 8:00 PM. Lane closures are expected to happen throughout spring and summer until the work is completed. Fun!

So I’ll keep running three days a week (Fri, Sat and Sun) until I can figure out something else. I can always return to 4:00 AM runs, but so far my tired morning self has consistently outvoted my aspirational evening self. What I can do is work on increasing the length of my runs.

I generally don’t go into the office on Fridays, but it’s still a workday for me. Without my commute, I can usually get in a three mile run and be working by 7:30 AM. I suppose I can go out a little earlier, but that puts me on the road when recycling trucks and high school bus traffic is at its highest. I can run more on the sidewalk, but the hard concrete surface is wearying and the uneven sections are a serious tripping hazard.

Friday’s run went fine and I ended up pacing faster than I expected based on my perceived effort. This morning I considered other venues, including SIOR’s organized run around the extremely hilly SUNY OW campus. I elected to stay local and was later glad about that, especially when I saw they did almost 7 miles. Although my level of effort never got too high, I found today’s workout difficult. I would not have done well on the SUNY OW hills.

I hope they remember the roof

I did enjoy the overcast skies and 53° weather this morning. I never got my stride to feel right, so my performance was at the low end of the scale. Since I wasn’t going too fast, I was able to take the time to look around and monitor progress on all the new construction in the neighborhood. Last weekend I saw a lot with nothing but a foundation and today it was a house. Well at the least the framing was in place.

Tomorrow morning’s schedule starts early so I’m going to get out as quickly as I can and will probably stay local again to save time. I hear there’s a big party happening at SIOR’s in the afternoon and all the cool kids (plus me) are going.

Kenyans are faster than my commute

These cars were new when I started my commute

Today’s run (street): 3.4 miles

If you took every car on Long Island and laid them end to end, it would stretch all the way to my exit off the Long Island Expressway. That is the reality of my daily commute home. 35 miles in 150 minutes is an average of 14 MPH. An elite runner could run home faster. This is the reason I like Fridays, because working from home saves me one day of all that aggravation.

Last night it took 2 1/2 hours to get from my office to my house. I had every intention of doing a post-work elliptical session, but my night was getting short and I decided to forgo it. Today I had no excuses. I was pleased to see the below 70° temperature and feel the cool dry air when I stepped outside this morning. I felt good from the start and that continued throughout the run.

It’s getting close to fall, my favorite running season, and I’m wondering if I’m finally turning the corner on my lethargic performance. Little by little, I’ve increased my effort on my runs and have started to see incremental improvements to my pace. Today I focused on increasing cadence and a more dynamic leg motion.

The end result was a substantial improvement in my pace compared to a few weeks ago. As impressive as that sounds, I’m still over a minute per mile slower than I was last year. On the other hand, today’s pace was half a minute faster than last Sunday. This type of progress is very encouraging. If it continues, I might get fast enough to out run the Expressway traffic.

Echos of schedules past

Yesterday’s workout (elliptical): 25 minutes
Today’s run (treadmill): 25 minutes

It’s been a very busy week and my schedule has interfered with my ability to publish my posts. I’ve had to resort to using the Blogger app on my phone in between engagements. I’m not sure how this will work, but here goes!

I’ve been going into the city the last two days for some industry meetings. The early morning wake-ups and commuting on the train were great reminders of my former daily grind. On both days I added long walks between Penn Station and Columbus Circle on top of my morning workouts.  I’m hoping I’ve impressed the Fitbit enough to earn another I LIKE U.

Yesterday morning I had one more go on the elliptical. I’m still not loving its rickety build, but it does provide a decent workout. I woke up this morning with some hip pain and I’d hoped that it would pass when I started my run. It didn’t, and the pain continued throughout the day. The three additional miles I walked later in the morning probably didn’t help it.

My hip’s not bothering me too much at this point and I’m hoping to get back outside for a run tomorrow morning. I’m also hoping that the freezing temperatures and stiff winds are gone by then. I’m truly looking forward to a less intense day on Friday. How did I used to do this city thing five days a week?