Let’s start with a little roundup of interesting bits and bites from around the web before I dive into week 13 of marathon training.

    • 99U (Adobe’s creative online mag) shared 7 pieces of advice to help you approach your own work, pulling from the wisdom of some incredible creative minds, including this from Kurt Vonnegut,

“Practice any art, music, singing, dancing, acting, drawing, painting, sculpting, poetry, fiction, essays, reportage, no matter how well or badly, not to get money and fame, but to experience becoming, to find out what’s inside you, to make your soul grow.”

      • A cold cup of truth this week from ZenHabits in a recent post, “The Ideal vs. the Reality of Changing Your Life
      • NY-ers, Self magazine is teaming up with some great fitness brands and hosting group runs around the city through the end of October. It’s all free, check it out.
      • Outside Magazine published a “Go List” of 6 places to visit where the dollar is currently strong. (I love Outside Mag.)
      • Runs for Cookies is a new-to me blogger. She lost 125 pounds through some major lifestyle changes, but that’s not the only thing that makes her so incredibly interesting. She bares it all on her blog, and her honesty, transparency and good humor make it very easy to connect with her. Not sure where to start? I really liked this post.

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allongee

When a rep from the Philly-based allongée studio invited me to review their pop-up classes in New York, I was immediately into it. I vibed with their cool French name (which translates in English to “elongate”) and their gentle, warm, all lower-case, non-corporate website, oh and I love a barre-based workout. (See Pop Physique, Physique 57)

allongée hosts classes out of a studio space at Arts on Site  at 12 St. Marks Place. This is the same building that Yoga to the People hosts classes. allongée hopes to open a studio in NYC in the next year or so,

Coincidentally, when I first moved to NY, I looked at an apartment right next to the Arts on Site building. While the block has changed a bit since 2012, it’s still party central. According to the NY Post, “there are an astonishing 32 liquor licenses within 500 feet.” There doesn’t seem to be a count of the head shops. My mom captured the scene by saying, “You might accidentally get a tattoo if you live here.”

Anyway, the apartment had no real windows and cost 100 million human dollars plus broker fee, so I moved elsewhere.

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Good morning. I conquered a 16-mile run last weekend.  (The new longest run of my life.) Regular readers know, this is my first time training for a marathon. I knew the mental part of training would be hard, but I don’t think it’s possible to truly grapple with it until you’re in it.  The physical challenge is easy enough to predict. Of course running for hours is grueling. Running for 20 minutes teaches you that. But the mind stuff? That gets exponentially tougher with increased time/distance. (You know, for me at least.)

It was so easy to write down the distances to create a training plan. Super easy – fun even – to add them to my Google calendar and to map out routes on Strava. But the night before I was slated to run 16 miles, I was in a state of disbelief. My 15-mile run was TOUGH even though it was entirely flat. The idea that I was going to run 16-miles in the Berkshires with no bathrooms and tons of hills seemed, quite frankly, preposterous.

berkshire running

running from MA to NY (and back)

On Saturday, the morning of the run, I woke up with no desire to get out the door. But I did, of course, get out the door. I committed to running the first miles at a very slow pace and that was very necessary since the first 3+ miles were straight up hill. I stopped a ton those first 3 miles.

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I love marathon training. You know, overall. But at some point, during every run (or at least every run over 6 miles) I hate it. 

I think summer in the Mid-Atlantic is largely to blame. It’s really hot. It’s really humid. I rarely get to the ideal state of “running auto-pilot” because there is a persevering discomfort in sweating this g-damn much. I’m running slowly. (More slowly than I usually do.) I forget to bring things. My hair tie breaks.

But those things are temporary. My negative feelings dissipate when I click my Garmin off to end the run. By the time I’m back in my apartment (or better, grabbing a post-run iced coffee), I’m usually smiling and happy no matter how many curses I spat under my breath moments before.  So more than anything l love marathon training.

author photo for the jacket of my marathon training memoir titled "Fear and Loathing in Central Park"

A post shared by Nicole Haber (Cuckoolemon) (@colehaber) on

 

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This Sunday, I ran the Guido’s Gr8t Road Race in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

I signed up for this small town race in March, a testament to my neurosis that I felt the need to commit to a race that most definitely wouldn’t sell out (fewer than 90 people ran it) five months in advance. The first 75 sign ups were promised a tech-t, and I love a good race shirt. I was #3 to sign up. Awkward? 

Guido's Gr8t-T

Guido’s Gr8t-T

This 8-mile race was run by the Berkshire Running Center, a sneaker store in Pittsfield, Massachusetts that I’ve never been to.  It started and ended at Guido’s, at high-end supermarket that I love in Great Barrington, not too far from Matt’s parents’ house.
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