Friday Five 2.0: Summer Bucket List

It’s Friday so I’m linking up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other bloggers.

My topic today is: Summer Bucket List

I love the warm weather and I always have a list of things that I want to do. Not sure if they will happen but I hope many of them do.

1. Go Hiking

There a lots of nearby places to hike. I hope I can find the time.

2. Play Tennis

Again I travel so much for work that I rarely get a chance to play regularly. I hope to play on an occasional Tuesday with my friends.

3. Eat in an Outdoor Restaurant

I eat out often but it is rare that the weather is warm enough to eat outdoors.

4. Go to the Race Track

This has been a tradition with a former co-worker.  We have breakfast at the Saratoga Flat Track and watch the horses warming up and then we stay for the races.  If we win, we treat ourselves to dinner out as well.

5. Run a New Race

I race often. There re so many races in the summer that I enjoy but I always try to run a new one. Last year, it was the Whipple City 5k.

Happy Running! What’s on your summer bucket list?



Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series 5k #2 Recap

Image result for al goldstein summer speed series

Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series #1 – June 6, 2018 –  7:10 pm

If you follow my blog, you know that I often get sent to NYC for work.

Usually, I just try to squeeze in a run on the East River, Hudson River or in Central Park.

Well last year, I found a race!!!!

Apparently during the summer months on alternating Wednesdays at 7:10 pm, there is a cheap ($7.50 – if young up for the whole series,each race costs only $5) 5k in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. These races are organized by the Prospect Park Track Club. I ran one last July and had a great time.

I was excited that they were scheduled again this summer and the first two races coincided with my the dates that I would be working in NYC. I ran the 5k two weeks ago and signed up again for one tonight.

Here are some of the perks of these races:

  • Bag check
  • Bathrooms (real ones!)
  • Water before, during and after the race
  • Chip Timing
  • Marker at each mile
  • 5 year Age group awards ceremony after the race
  • Results immediately emailed to you
  • Free photos

So it seemed like a no brainer to run some of these races if I could. Unfortunately I won’t be in NYC for the next 5 races.

And coincidentally, it was Global Running Day. I had to run, right?

Again I had to work all day in Queens (getting up at 5:30 am and being on my feet until 4 pm). I would have to rush to take the subway, then the LIRR, walk to my hotel and change my clothes and then take a LONG subway ride to Brooklyn.

At least this time, I was familiar with the route and knew that I would make the race on time (unless there were snafus with the transportation.)

On the subway, there was young girl in running clothes. When I got off at the Prospect Park stop, she did not. Hmmmm

So I entered the park and followed the signs as I did last time.

I was pretty early and it wasn’t crowded at all.

I saw the runner from the train. Apparently the next subway stop would have been closer to the race start. I hope to remember that for next year.

As I mentioned in my last recap, it was strange to be at a race and not know a single person.

I just had a banana and some water, checked my bag and waited til it was time to head to the start line.

Eventually runners started arriving.  There were probably close to 650. It was around 60 degrees, breezy and even a little chilly. But actually perfect running weather.

I had a headache all day and was feeling exhausted. Sleeping in a hotel is not ideal and I had stayed out late the night before.

Still here I was running a 5k at 7:10 in the evening.

Soon it was time for everyone to walk down to the start.

Then we all lined up.  No corrals or pace signs.  Just everyone all together.  It didn’t matter because believe it or not, this small local race was chip-timed.

Below is the course map. Since I had just run the course two weeks ago, I knew about the big LONG hill during mile 1.


As I mentioned previously, there are usually runners of all ages who all look like “runners” and the finish times are incredibly fast. A little intimidating.

Happily it was not as warm as last time. And I was not worried about an injured foot. But I just ran a 5k this past weekend and this is a tough course and I didn’t want an injury. Still I would try to do my best and maybe even get a course PR.

I started running the first mile and I just felt like crap. I had to walk at .4 mile in and then again at .6. It didn’t help that it was an uphill that seemed to never end.

Mile 2 was better and I even skipped the water stop.

But I was crashing during mile 3.

I willed myself not to walk until the mile 3 marker. Then I did and gave up on the idea of a course PR.

I did not have enough energy to sprint and finish under 28 minutes.

I was a little dizzy and was thrilled when they handed out ice pops.

I walked back to bag check to get my jacket as it was dark and I was chilled.

They didn’t post the results this week. I did get an email with my time but I wasn’t sure if I won an award.

I finished #438…I told you they were speedy runners!

As I was waiting, I bumped into the guy that walked me to the subway last time. Again we both won and were in awe of how fast the finish times were.

Though it was very late by the time I got back to my hotel, I did enjoy my third Brooklyn 5k!! And I felt better after the race than before.

I plan to run these races again next year if my work dates match the race dates.

Race Splits
mile 1- 9:31
mile 2 – 8:43
mile 3 – 8:49
.14 – 8:31


So slower than my last 5k and not a course PR but faster than the last one on this course. That’s something.

I signed up for another 5k on June 12 (Brooklyn Ice Cream Social 5k).  It is not run by the Prospect Park Track Club (PPTC) as this one was but it may be exactly the same course. So I will have another shot at a course PR.

Since it’s Tuesday, I’m linking up with these wonderful ladies:

Erika @ MCM Mama Runs, Marcia @ Marcia’s Healthy Slice and Patty @ My no-guilt life for

Happy Running! Did you on Global Running Day? Do you try to improve your times on the same course?

Weekly Wrap for 6.4.18-6.10.18 – Back you know where and another 5k


Returned to my favorite city. Too bad it was not for a vacation.

  • Monday – Back in NYC for work with a travel snafu for the next 3 mos.  I arrive at Grand Central Sta. now and then have to get to Penn Sta. where my hotel is and vice versa on the way home on Friday. PITA.  It was raining when I left home. But not in NYC.  It was perfect running weather.  After set up in Queens and checking into my hotel, I decided to run along the Hudson River and end up in Greenwich Village to have dinner. Then I walked all the way back to my hotel. No problem getting in steps when in NYC.  My legs covered over 11 miles for the day.

3.5 miles with walking and photo stops

  • Tuesday – Tempted to run everyday when in NYC but decided that I best take a day off since I had a 5k scheduled for the next night. So I got some inexpensive tix to a Broadway show.

  • Wednesday Global Running Day. As I did two weeks ago, I signed up for a cheap 5k in Brooklyn (Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series 5k #2). I wasn’t feeling great and so the run was tough. But I felt better when it was over. (Isn’t that always the case?)

not a course PR but faster than 2 weeks ago and won my age group

  • Thursday – Last day to run in the city this week so of course, I did. I took the subway to Central Park and ran my usual path and a new one (the bridal path) and then walked home.

my legs weren’t feeling it but the scenery was worth the 3 mile struggle

  • Friday –  Rest day because I had to rush to catch my train to get home.
  • Saturday – Finally reunited with my running friends for a Saturday run ( we now call ourselves “sole sisters” instead  of “wineglass ladies.”) and brunch after.

1 mile solo and 7 with Chris & Sherry. (4 others just joined for brunch) We even got to cross the finish line of another race on our route lol

  • Sunday – Boating Sunday. But first I got in a short run to the grocery store in town (with a detour along the lake.)

the hubby was impatient so only got in 1.5 mi.

A perfect day to hang out on the lake with the hubby and friends.

This Coming Week

  • Monday – train to NYC, rest day
  • Tuesday   Brooklyn Ice Cream Social 5k
  • Wednesday – rest day, train home
  • Thursday3 miles, dinner with a former co-worker
  • Friday – rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday8 miles 
  • Sunday – rest day, boating? or maybe a 5K?

Please link up for the Weekly Wrap hosted by these wonderful bloggers Holly @ HoHoRuns and Wendy @ Taking the Long Way Home

Happy Running! How is your running going? What’s new with you? How did you celebrate Global Running Day?


2018 Workforce Team Challenge Recap

Thursday, May 17 6:25 pm

The CDPHP® Workforce Team Challenge is a 3.5-mile road race open to teams of employees from corporations, businesses, government agencies, educational institutions, not-for-profit corporations, and financial institutions. Participating companies, organizations, and agencies use the event as a platform to provide health and fitness opportunities in the workplace while promoting goodwill and camaraderie among their employees.

It takes place at the Empire State Plaza in Albany on a similar course to the old Freihofer course. It sells out early with a cap of 10,000 runners.

At my former job, I ran this race once (in 2011), the only year I convinced them to have a team.  It was fun so I signed up to be part of a team at my new job last year. We didn’t actually have enough runners for our own team so we partnered with UAlbany.

Last year, it was 98 degrees and HUMID but I enjoyed it and it was a good way to get to know others where I work

Anyway as I remembered the course from 6 years ago, the course starts with a steep uphill and then flattens out.  You run through the park which has rolling hills and then it ends with a steep downhill.

This year, the course was identical except reversed.  You entered the park where you used to exit and vice versa.

It is actually more of a run than a race.  With 10,000 participants and many walkers, you feel (at least I do) no pressure to do anything but finish.

Another issue is fueling. When and what do you eat for a race that starts at 6:25 pm?

So when I finished work at 4pm, I ate a scone and a banana and hoped that would be enough.

To avoid the crowds, I parked my car (where I used take yoga) and walked about 1.5 miles to the start.

The weather was better than last year – around 80 but still humid.

This year my team was more organized.  They had a tent with water and refreshments and you got your bib and team tee there.  I walked around for a while searching for the tent but finally located it.

I wore a purple tank because it was warm but added the purple team tee for a pre-race photo. But everyone else was racing in the team tee so I changed (even though it was too big, uncomfortable and too warm).

This year, the President of UAlbany came to the race, shook everyone’s hand and had registered to walk the race. Pretty impressive.

While waiting for the race to start, I chatted with those that I knew from work but met a runner who worked upstairs.  She hadn’t run in awhile and said that she was worried about finishing. I volunteered to run with her.  She said that she was slow.  I thought that this was perfect.  This way I wouldn’t try to race.

We eventually headed to the start.

With 10,000 runners and no corral system, the runners seemed to line up for miles.  We just pushed my way into the middle and then gradually moved up.

And waited in the crowd.

Last year Sawyer Fredericks (winner of The Voice and a local) sang the National Anthem. This year, we were too far back to even hear it.

Eventually, the race started.

Of course, it took awhile before we even moved.


last year’s start

The biggest problem with this race was that unless you were in the front and very fast, it was impossible to gain any speed.  There were walkers in the front who didn’t realize they shouldn’t be.  Then there were those who ran and then just stopped to walk.  The middle of the packers, like me, just weaved in and out, bumped into people saying “excuse me” though the entire race.

But then again except for a chosen group, it was not a “race.”  It was just a way to get out of the office and get some exercise with their co-workers.  Some businesses had 200-500 employees participating.

I think it’s a great thing. So I tried not to get annoyed or take it seriously. It helped that my new friend and I chatted the whole time.

Back to the race…

We started up a long uphill climb which flattened until we entered the park.

The course continued through the park with rolling hills – one or two being rather steep but we didn’t walk.

There was a water stop that you passed twice.  We ran up until the first stop and then I walked.  We walked again at the 2nd water stop.

Because we started out so slow and never ran fast, I never felt tired or out of breath.  A new concept for me.


photo from last year

Eventually, you headed toward that downhill finish.  I was tempted to sprint but I had run the whole race with my new friend and didn’t want to lose her.

When I saw the clock in the distance,, I said, let’s go and finish under 50 minutes.

And we did.  She hugged me and said that she couldn’t have done it without me.  I thanked her for the company. We made our way back to the tent and our co-workers. This year, they had a huge spread for us  – cheese, crackers, humus, salsa, chips, marinated veggies, fresh fruit, etc.

I was very impressed by the race organization again this year.  After you picked up water, you proceeded to a tent to get your time.

Then you continued on to get your race shirt, followed by another stop to a get bag with food. The lines moved very quickly.  There were lots of volunteers to make sure everything went smoothly.

I bumped into many running friends and we chatted as we walked around the Empire State Plaza.

Eventually, I made my way back to my co-workers and we made plans to meet at a bar downtown for beer and wings.

I, however, had to make the long walk back to my car…and I had to pack for my race weekend in Brooklyn so I decided to go home.

Runners/walkers were still heading toward the finish line.  Everyone looked happy and to be having a great time.

It made me smile but I quickened my step to get to my car since it was getting late.

The highlight of the evening was meeting new co-workers.  Getting in my last run before my half marathon was just gravy.

10 minutes slower than last year but more enjoyable

So no race splits to report. No course PR.  But I am glad to have participated in this race and I plan to run it again next year.

It’s Wednesday so I am joining up with Running on HappySuzlyfeCrazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs for the Coaches’ Corner linkup


Happy Running! Ever participate in a team race? Ever run with a slower runner so that you won’t run fast?

Freihofer Run for Women Race Recap

Image result for freihofer's run 2018

June 2, 2018 9:00am

This is the only race that I’ve run every year! This was my 11th time!!!!!

Freihofer's Run - Start

This year’s website – can you see me? Right center – Pink hat & top

My first FRW was in 2008 (my first year of running). At the time, it was the farthest I’d ever run:

FRW - 2008

Due to construction, they changed the course three years ago.

They say that this course is faster…less congested and has a less steep hill at the start and finish.


course map

I did run the new course the past three years and I liked it.


heading downhill to the finish line

As with this race every year, I never know what will happen… I could break my foot again (as I did in 2013) or could have a course PR as I did last year.

And this was also my fourth Freihofer Training Challenge.

does my green hat stand out much?!

Training is a loose term. I kinda just showed up on a few Monday runs (like 3) since I always seemed to be out of town for work, I only attended ONE of the Saturday runs since I was usually racing.

But I was excited to be part of it and support all the runners who would be finishing their FIRST 5k. And see my “advanced” buddies who would hopefully PR.

In past years, the day before I walked to Empire State Plaza concourse at lunch to go to the expo and pick up my race packet. They used to have a really nice expo with vendors and health-related. But the past two years, they have held it at a local college.  My hubby was nice enough to pick up my bib the day before the race.

yup, you get cookies and bread

Earlier in the week, they had predicted rain,  But no rain when I got up (for a change), temps around 70, breezy but very humid. I drove with my neighbor (who I recently discovered is a runner).  For convenience, I parked at a yoga place on race morning and walked to the start. I used to do this every year. However, with the new course, it was an even longer hike. Like 2 miles! I was nice to have company. We chatted away.

It was still strange to walk down Madison Avenue and not see the race banners and not see the giant poster on the bridge.

pics from 3 years ago…


The start was near a park across from the Capitol Building.  My neighbor and I parted ways. I set off in search of the Freihofer Training Challenge tent.


I chatted with many of my running friends and took quite a few pics.

runners form the Advanced group

I also bumped into many runners wearing Skirt Sports skirts.

and we didn’t even get everyone in the pic

Catching up with everyone made the time go by quickly and soon it was time to line up.



Although it was very crowded, there were fewer runners than when it was Madison Avenue but it did seem to be more than last year (new organizers and more advertising.).


Times Union photo 2016

Anyway, with the new start (on a wider street), it didn’t take as long to get moving and the first hill was longer but not as steep.

I started with Holly and Sue from my FTC Group. I lost Holly behind me and Sue (who is usually slower than both of us) surged ahead. I kept her in my sight but could never catch up to her. Right from the beginning, I had the feeling that my legs were moving but so slowly. I was also sneezing and sniffling (hopefully it’s allergies not a cold.)

When I got into the park and looked at my time, I was shocked at how slow it was. Usually mile 1 is my fastest.

I took this pic after the race

I continued to trudge along and couldn’t wait to walk at the first water stop around mile 1.25. (I was so thirsty.)

This course had you run around more of the park and it also seemed to avoid the bigger hills of the park.

I tried to pick up the pace for the second mile since the crowd had thinned out.  I told myself that I would not walk until the next water stop. That was around mile 2.5. At this point, I was starting to get some energy.

Finally we left the park and headed downhill to the finish. Not the steep downhill that we used to have with the old course, but at least it was downhill.

I tried to run fast but I had no energy left.  The humidity had really gotten to me. I walked briefly and then sprinted across the finish line. At least it was under 28 minutes.

I knew with 3 walks, it couldn’t come close to a PR (and I was not expecting one) but it was a decent time and faster than last year. I was happy!!

Apparently my friend Alyssa finished close together but we had no idea.

its funny how I have the same expression as the lady in front of me

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the race, you got a silver necklace after you crossed the finish line.

I grabbed a bagel and some chocolate milk. It was definitely less congested than when it was by the fountains on the Plaza. No long lines for food.


I ran into even more runners again that I knew. Every where I turned, there was someone famliar – from work, tennis, races, etc.  That’s what’s great about running a big local race.

The first time runners were so excited. That put a smile on my face.  I remembered why I love this race and it was never because of my awesome finish times.

I walked back to the Training Challenge Tent to get some more food and chatted with friends for awhile.


Many runners were excited about their PRs. I may not have run my fastest time but I still enjoyed myself.

You get what you put in. I did not do all the speed workouts so I can’t be disappointed. I also just ran a half marathon and I am no spring chicken. Plus my time was faster than the past two years (28:50, 27:52). So I was very pleased with that.


mile 1- 9:08
mile 2- 8:52
mile 3 – 8:35
.14 – 9:27??

Chip time – 27:37

There was computer set up so you could check your time and see if you won an age group award.

And 5 out of 80 my age group.  Even a PR wouldn’t have gotten me an award.

I hung out for a while watching the awards ceremony – the top 10 finishers and top 5 Masters.

Afterwards, I walked back to my car (uphill for 2 miles) to put away my stuff.  A bunch of my running friends were gong out to brunch and I was tempted.

But I have a 15K in a few weeks so I had planned to run another 3 miles. I really didn’t feel like it but I did it. I ran to where Alyssa and Jen were having brunch to say hi and then I retraced part of the course, made quite a few photo stops and took it nice and easy.

So FRW #11 is in the books (with a course PR!! ) The tradition is still alive! It was again a great local race with over 3,500 women running it. Can’t wait to run it again next year.

It’s Tuesday so I’m linking up with these wonderful ladies:

Erika @ MCM Mama Runs, Marcia @ Marcia’s Healthy Slice and Patty @ My no-guilt life for

Happy Running! How was your weekend? Did you race? If so, how did it go? Do you have a favorite race that you run every year?


Weekly Wrap for 5.28.18-6.3.18. Summer arrived.


Back on the road this week…driving this time and summer temps and another race, of course.

  • Monday – Memorial Day and a day off from work.  Normally we’d be at the lake but we were there for the past two days in less than ideal weather. I had a few opportunities to run with friends but I chose to run with Alyssa and some of her friends who were running a “monument run”.  One runner had mapped out a 10k course that went from war monument to war monument. I thought that was cool.  The only issue was that I wanted to run an easy pace.  Their pace was much faster than mine. It was hilly and I was dragging behind.  Alyssa nicely hung back with me and the other two runners stopped to walk when we got very far behind. Still it was fun and it’s good to push yourself (since solo I would have run much slower.) The funny thing is that the runner who organized this lives in my neighborhood. (small world) I could have a new running partner except that she runs 5-7 runs at 5:15 am (No thanks!)

6.2 to honor those that served our country.

The rest of the day was spent gardening (which was more strenuous and tiring than the run.)

  • Tuesday – Back at work. Instead of running, I went out to dinner and a movie with my BFF. A late celebration for my b-day. We saw Tully which was pretty meh but dinner was great as was the conversation.
  • Wednesday – Off to Rochester for work. After set up and checking into my hotel, I took off for a run. It was late and HOT but I got in some miles along the Erie Canal.

90 degrees at 7 pm? Say what? 3 sweaty miles…

  • Thursday – I had hoped to get in a short run before my long drive home but it was raining lightly and very HUMID.. I changed into my running clothes anyway.  I stopped at my favorite ice cream shop and found a new trail (last time I couldn’t run there because the bridge to the Erie Canal trail was under construction.) on the opposite side of the canal.  It was buggy and only high grass but it worth it for my savory reward.

2 miles probably didn’t justify that custard root beer float but who cares?

  • Friday –  Another rest day since I don’t usually run the day before a race.
  • Saturday – Race Day.  Freihofer Run for Women, my 11th time running it. I was hoping for a dry local race. And I got one. Unfortunately it was very humid but you can’t have everything. Again it was a great local race.. I loved seeing all my friends and sharing in the excitement of 3,000 women crossing the finish line. I even had a surprise course PR.

With a 15k in a few weeks, I dragged myself out for a few more miles (inside of going out to brunch).

Don’t worry, I went out to dinner later to celebrate and re-fuel.

  • Sunday – Boating Sunday. My preferred weekend activity.  Still it isn’t super warm and sunny but still a relaxing day with friends & the hubby.  No complaints.

This Coming Week

  • Monday – train to NYC, 4 miles
  • Tuesday rest day
  • Wednesday – PPTC Summer Series #2 5k (in Brooklyn)
  • Thursday3 miles
  • Friday – rest day, train home
  • Saturday7 – 8 miles
  • Sunday – rest day, boating? or maybe a 5K?

Please link up for the Weekly Wrap hosted by these wonderful bloggers Holly @ HoHoRuns and Wendy @ Taking the Long Way Home

Happy Running! How is your running going? What’s new with you? How did you celebrate Memorial Day? Please share.


Ultimate Coffee Date – June

It’s that time of the month…

It’s COFFEE ice cream, of course!!

to join up with Coco & Deborah for their ultimate coffee date.

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that I feel jinxed.  I’ve had to run THREE races in the rain in the past month.

Anyone else had to race in the rain lately?

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that it’s not all doom and gloom. The sun does shine during the week.  So if you run weekday races, you do run in sunshine and heat.

Do you ever race during the week?

Over coffee…

I’d tell that it’s been stressful since I returned form my Florida tennis vacation.  My arch started to ache and hurt after running.  All that Googling pointed to PF but I refused to give into it. So I ran a 5k anyway. And now, it no longer hurts. (And no, this kind of behavior is not recommended.)

I celebrated with a milkshake

Ever race despite pain and maybe being injured?

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that the only good to come out of my bucket list Brooklyn monsoon half is that I may have qualified for a race.  My first.

NYC Half Marathon qualifying times… March 2019


Age 65  and 2:11.23 finish time

Have you ever run a qualifying time for a race?

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that FOMO is setting in for 2019.

I thought I would go to Florida in March,as usual, visit my friends and of course, run a half marathon.

Now some local runner friends are tempting me with this:

Image result for key west half marathon 2019

Will I be able to resist??

Do you ever register for a race because your friends are twisting your arm?

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that I’m not a slow runner but I’m not a fast runner either.  Pace is relative, right?

On Memorial Day, I got asked to run with some runners that I didn’t know. They said that it would be an easy pace to view the war monuments.

I definitely found out what it feels like to be BOTPer. And I was huffing and puffing.  They were nice and stopped to walk several times so I could catch up for a few moments.

Do you ever run with runners who are faster than you and struggle to keep up?

Over coffee…

I’d tell you that today I am running a race for 11th time.  The Freihofer Run for Women is the only race that I run EVERY year.  I’m excited to see all the new runners complete their first 5k, elites such as Joan Samuelson and so many local runners that I know from running groups and races.

No goals for this one… just fun fun (like last year) and no rain, please.

Do you have a favorite race that you run every year?

Happy Running! Got anything to spill? Share it here!