Grete’s Gallop 1/2 Marathon Recap

I did it!

I did it! This morning was the Grete’s Gallop 1/2 marathon in Central Park and the longest run I’ve done since the Boston Marathon in April. As most of you know, I’ve been dealing with a pretty serious hamstring injury since the winter and tried nearly everything (chiropractors, acupuncture, trigger point therapy, etc) to get some relief. For the past 6 weeks or so I’ve been able to run (mostly) without pain and have begun building mileage again. My hamstring (and IT band) still aren’t perfect, but they are getting better. Back in June I couldn’t even run 3 miles and now I can run a 1/2 marathon with minimal discomfort. I’m pretty sure this is something I’ll need to stay on top of (rest, foam rolling, yoga) for a long time, but at least I’m running again!

Today’s race was very important to me for several reasons: Grete’s Gallop was the first race I did once I moved to New York City in 2007, it was the race where Alma and I met (and became friends!) back in 2008, and this year it marks my return from injury. I finished today’s race in 1:54:35 which is 18 minutes slower that my 1/2 marathon PR (1:36:38), but I honestly couldn’t be happier. I am SO thankful to be running (and racing?) again and I know if I’m smart about training, I’ll regain my fitness someday soon.

But, let’s back track to my pre-run eats…

In the spirit of being economical (just bought a new macbook, ugh), I ate very inexpensively on Friday. Breakfast used up some more Nature’s Pride 12 grain bread topped with peanut butter, honey, and a sliced banana.

Banana and PB sandwich

Lunch was leftover brown rice, pinto beans, sauteed spinach & onion, and soy sauce.

Leftover rice & beans

I also made a lunch time visit to the Union Square Farmer’s Market to pick up some Autumn decorations (I plan on using the dried corn to make popcorn later on).

Autumn

There was so much gorgeous local produce – I wanted to buy it all!

Farmer's Market

Friday afternoon snack was a Stonyfield Farm yogurt with some dried cherries and peanut butter chips.

yogurt

I was craving comfort food for dinner, so I whipped up a bowl of oatmeal (quality carbs, mmmm).

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup water
  • chopped apple
  • chopped prunes
  • cinnamon
  • dash of brown sugar
  • A LOT of peanut butter (pre-run fueling!)

Stove top apple oats

I spent the rest of the evening baking up some goodies for tomorrow’s house-warming party and catching up on my favorite TV shows.

Saturday = 1/2 marathon day!

I was up by 6:30am and started the day with 1/2 cup of coffee. Pre-race breakfast was two slices of 12-grain bread topped with mashed banana and honey. With a tall glass of water!

About an hour before the race I had 1/2 luna bar and then I carried a power gel to have around the 8-mile mark.

Fuel

The race began promptly at 9am and my teammate Ani kept me company for the first 7 miles or so. I wanted to start off veryyyy conservatively, because I hadn’t run longer than 11 miles in many months. My first 6 mile lap around Central Park was right around 9:05/mile pace and then at the half way point I tried to pick it up a bit. I felt strong and controlled the entire 13 miles and my last 2 miles were around 7:30/mile pace. Yahoo! I was very, very happy to finish this 1/2 marathon in 1:54:35 (8:44/mile pace). Being injured and having to take a break from running was very difficult. I don’t think I will ever take running for granted again. Here’s hoping foam rolling, yoga, and careful training keep me pain free!

I chugged some Gatorade at the finish and then headed over to the post-race Norwegian festival for some food: 1/2 bagel and goat cheese spread

Bagel

DSCF4776

Big props to Alma – she had an amazing race today and ran a HUGE PR – 1:32:31!

Alma and Megan

After a MUCH needed shower (humidity does not do nice things to my hair…) I heated up some brown rice & beans and added some spicy hummus and a laughing cow cheese wedge. Lots of protein and quality carbs in this dish – I will try to eat some vegetables later today :-)

rice & beans

And finally – dessert! After I ran Grete’s in 2007 I had a special cookie from Levain Bakery. Today seemed like a good day to go back :-) These cookies are nearly 1/2 lb and are amazingly good, but they are probably only a “once in a great while” treat!

I had half of my dark chocolate-peanut butter chip cookie and have plans to devour the rest sometime this weekend:

dark-chocolate-peanut-butter-chip-broken-400px

Ok, I’m off to go clean and prepare for tonight’s house-warming PARTY!

Have a great weekend!

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26 Responses

  1. Huge congrats! Way to fuel and run!

  2. Congrats! That cookie looks like the perfect after race fuel!

  3. Congrats on the race! Levain bakery is amazing, but definitely a once in a while treat.

  4. Congratulations! Wish Jen and I could be there to see you run and hang out at your housewarming party!

    Take care!

    Jesse

  5. Congrats on your race! Levain Bakery cookies are the best post-race treat:)

    I unfortunately cannot make it to your housewarming party, but thank you so much for iniviting me! That’s so funny that you live literally right next to my school. I hope you have a great time and hopefully we will meet up some day soon!

  6. Congrats girl! coming back from injury and accomplishing your half is such an awesome feeling! so proud of you! :)

    http://saladdiva.wordpress.com

  7. Congrats on an awesome race today!! I LOVE the foam roller! It has helped me so much!!!

  8. Congrats on the race! You did awesome!

  9. CONGRATULATIONS!!!! So happy for you that you finished so strong and felt good throughout. Here’s hoping foam rolling, yoga and smart training help – that is what I am banking on for getting over my issues!
    Mad props to Alma for running like such a speed demon! You guys are fasties!!!

  10. Congrats on the race! So glad I found your blog. :)

    I noticed you had a music stand in your room – do you play an instrument?

  11. congrats on your run! those cookies look amazing btw.. :)

  12. congratz on the race! Definitely a huge accomplishment after your hamstring dealio! Take it eaze now and rest up so you can keep on runnin :)

  13. Hey…Congrats on your run and welcome back to racing! Cool post race treats too!

  14. Congrats on the race!! That cookie looks incredible!

  15. […] Megan, Runner’s Kitchen […]

  16. CONGRATULATIONS!!!! that is amazing megan – to know where you have been and to see how you ran today – that is so inspiring!

    enjoy your party girl!

  17. Congrats on your race! I am recovering from an IT band injury and training for a 1/2 next month! I haven’t had pain in awhile, but there is always that fear. Your accomplishment is inspiring though! And that cookie looks AMAZING!

  18. congratulations!!!! Sounds like it was a good race – you kept up such a great pace and I’m glad you didn’t really have any pain out there!

  19. congrats on the great race! you give me hope that i’ll eventually recover and be running again!

  20. congrats!! we survived despite the humidity :)

    that spread was delicious… and fyi i saw it on sale at whole foods at columbus circle!!

    awesome housewarming party. i’m looking forward to seeing the recipes posted for the cookies.

  21. WOW–that cookie looks INCREDIBLE!!!

  22. Congrats again on the race! It was SO great to chat in person Saturday night, so thank you so much for having me and Alex.

    Now fork over that cookie recipe. ;)

  23. Diana – I just posted a recap of Saturday’s party and I included the cookie recipe. Thanks again for stopping by! We should meet up for yummy food soon :-)

  24. Lindsey – the music stand belongs to my roommate Alma. She plays the french horn and violin (among other instruments) for Carnegie Hall and Julliard. Thanks for the race congratulations :-)

  25. […] I received photos from last Saturday’s half-marathon in my email inbox yesterday. I didn’t actually “race” last weekend (my right […]

  26. […] I received photos from last Saturday’s half-marathon in my email inbox yesterday. I didn’t actually “race” last weekend (my right […]

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