Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Getting Back on the Horse

4.5 miles (40 mins)

Hi all.  My apologies for the long sabbatical.  Life has been hectic lately and I've totally neglected this blog.  Yesterday I ventured out on an exploratory run through my favorite part of San Francisco: Russian Hill.  This is the area overlooking Alcatraz Island, the Golden Gate Bridge, North Beach and Coit Tower, and where the famous curves in Lombard Street lie.  I can't get enough of the neighborhood (filled with beautiful, yet non pretentious Edwardian homes with cozy cafes and wine bars tucked in every corner), so I took off on my run without a specific route in mind, but ready to meander through the streets of San Francisco.

I started at my apartment, ran north on the beautiful tree-lined Hyde St. At the intersection of Greenwich St. and Hyde, I came across a true find: a park with gardens and tennis courts completely open to the public, situated on the ridge of Russian Hill. It's very rare to find places in the city where you can see both the Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate bridge from 1 place...and you can at this location! I continued on my 'Out and Back', taking a right on Greenwich and headed east down Russian Hill and towards Telegraph Hill (where Coit Tower is situated).  At this point, I headed down towards the water and slowly made my way back towards Polk St. The run wasn't particularly long, but heading up and down those hills was certainly a workout!  

Next up: I'm moving to a new apartment in the historic Mission/Dolores neighborhood with my homegirls (Jess and Michaela). I'm definitely aiming to get some runs in that area and explore the neighborhood:)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Sunday - On a Hamster Wheel

5 miles (40 mins)
Upper body weights.

Was still sore from Saturday's run + lifting at the new gym.  Just took it easy yesterday and watched a House re-run while on the treadmill.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The GG Bridge and Back / Spandex

~9 miles
Upper body weights.
Core workout.

On Saturday morning, Jessica Kondrick (shout-out to Brown volleyball!!) and I went on a jog together down Jackson Street, down the Lion Street staircase, along the Marina, past Fort Point and back to our neighborhood.  I purposefully left my watch at home, so I don't know what our times were. We stopped a couple times to take in the scenery, but other than that, kept up a pretty even pace. The temp was ~65 degrees.

On the way back, I finally sucked it up and became a member at my local Crunch Fitness. (Up until now, I've been mooching off friends' guest passes..)  This particular Crunch fitness gym is pretty awesome. It's was a huge theater back in the day, which they've now converted to a sick, state-of-the-art workout facility.  It's the type of gym where everyone is wearing spandex and looks like they just stepped out of an Adidas catalog. This is no big deal for the former volleyball players (like Jess and Elvina) who are used to living in spandex, but I am still working on building up my spandex tolerance.  More info on that topic later.

Next up: Sunday - rest day
Monday: To the GG Bridge and back (hopefully)

Happy Hour - Friday, April 24th

61:20 (7.2 miles)

Drove down a little country road in Monterey County early Friday evening.  I had set out to get 6 or 7 miles in so once my odometer clicked over, I found a good place to pull over and park.  Did an easy out and back run in a quiet, green, secluded valley.  Temp was about 60 degrees.  Next up: I need to start getting in some intervals so I can increase my speed and drop my average mile time.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Out & Backs

46:05 (5.2 mi) morning (in Corral de Tierra)
41:12 (4.5mi) afternoon (very hilly - Fort Ord)

Morning: covered some easy rolling hills near the Markham Ranch/Corral de Tierra neighborhoods.  Beautiful, lush ranch land with cows, goats and plenty of bugs!  Heading out was easy, but I ran out of steam on the way back.

Afternoon: Tough, hilly run in Ft. Ord. Thought i'd gone farther than the 4.5 miles...  I'm shooting to consistently get my mile times under 9 minutes on 5+ mile runs.  I feel like some days it's easy, and on others its a struggle.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Pebble Beach

58:00 (6.3 miles)

Today was an amazing day for a run. I think Spring is turning into Summer, as the temp got up to 90 degrees on some parts of the Peninsula.  Pebble Beach (while the area is one of my all-time favorite neighborhoods to run in), is normally really foggy and pretty chilly. Today that wasn't the case and I loved it.

I ran a portion of 17 mile drive (for those of you that have been to the area before, it's a 17 mile scenic drive that wraps along the jagged coastline and through some beautiful, wooded neighborhoods around world-renowned golf courses).  I started at the Lone Cypress (check out the pic), and ran north, towards Spanish Bay and back.  There was some sort of wine festival going on in Pebble Beach, so many a tour bus passed me while I was on my run, but the other than that it was a quiet, warm day.  Just me and the sea otters.

With some of the hillier runs I've been doing, I've aggravated the tendon above my left heel and I can feel there's scar tissue that just won't go away.  For the past 2 weeks, I just figured I'd ignore it and the problem would solve itself, but clearly that's not the case.  I guess it's time to take a closer look and start proper stretching and ice/heat treatments.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Golden Gate Bridge & Back

119 mins (9 mi)

Let me start off today's post by stating that it's recently come to my attention that I may be living in the ghetto neighborhood of San Fran (also referred to as the Tenderloin).  This is a bit disconcerting since I specifically stayed clear of any places in the 'Loin when I did my apartment hunt a la Craigslist (shout-out to Jilane for all her tips and help when I was replying to roommate adds:) ).  I like to think of my quaint neighborhood as the "Lower Nob Hill" area. It's an awesome neighborhood in the heart of the city.  Yes, there is a half-way house across the street from me, but I ask you, what neighborhood doesn't have a friendly, local SRO facility?  I have also heard of my neighborhood referred to as the Tender Nob...an unappealing (albeit witty) hybrid name of the Tenderloin and Nob Hill neighborhoods.  Sigh.  Oh well.

Anyway, back to business.  Today I started my run at my apartment (at Polk & Sacramento St.) and headed out up Larkin St, past Ghiradeli Square, the Presidio and aimed straight for Fort Point (the brick building at the base of the bridge in the pic above), turning around just at the southern tip of the Golden Gate Bridge.  Honestly, when I started out, I had no intention of going as far as I did, but fortunately I got in a good rhythm and felt pretty loose the whole way.  Ironically my iPod crapped out on my within the first 20 mins out, which surprisingly turned the run into a much more enjoyable experience.  Definitely going to go sans iPod again in the future.

This is an exceptional run, a good portion of which is on a quiet gravel path that borders the Marina.  As you near the Golden Gate Bridge, the path becomes dotted with purple lupin bushes and bright orange poppy flowers.  It doesn't get much more California-esque than that!

All in all, a great run. Very thankful to be out in the Golden State :)