Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Finding new running routes

A few weeks/months ago, I wrote about how the wife and I bought a house and are moving out of NYC.  Well, that day came about 2 weeks ago and we are now living in our new house.  While there is plenty to get excited about, one thing that I am most freaked out about is now I have to find new running routes for all of my workouts.  Most people love to go and find new routes and explore, but I am the exception.

For over 11 years, Central Park in NYC has been my "home course".  I did the math and figured out that I have done over 2000 training runs there, 50 plus races, 2 marathon finishes in the park, a few triathlon/duathlon finishes in the park.  What this means is that I knew every step of that park and every way I could possibly train.  My training was dialed in for that day specifically and I knew exactly what I needed to do and how I can customize my route.  Now, I need to find new routes near our house.  Not exactly something I'm looking forward to.

I have been out on 5 runs since moving in to the house.  Not knowing the landscape, it has been a true try and find approach.  For example, my street is at the bottom of a hill, so that automatically means that every single run that I go on starts with a pretty decent uphill.  Bad for a warmup and first mile of a run and also not great for the finishing mile since it's all downhill.

Also, now I have to deal with streetlights, stop signs, cars, and pretty much what everybody has already figured out how to deal with over the years.  But this is all new to me.  Central Park is closed to traffic, has no lights that runners have to abide by and once you start, you don't have to stop unless you want to.  Now, I have to deal with all of this constantly.

Let me say that when on vacation or in new areas, I really do love to run and explore.  It's great to see a new place, see the views, get a feel of the culture.  But when I have to rely on all of these things for structured training, I think it's going to take a long time to get used to.  I said to the wife the other day that I just need to find my "go to" route.  Meaning the route that I can do whenever I need to get a run in, or if I need to judge my fitness.  Whether it be 5-6 miles, or 10 or whatever it is.  I need to have a fall back route that I can go to whenever I need it.  Because right now, it's just explore and find, and I'm not liking it.

It's funny what runners consider problems when compared to the other things going on in this world.

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