Staten Island Triathlon Race Recap


Hi everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!! The weather was incredible all weekend in NYC – we finally are having the summer days that I dream of – sunny, warm days and cool, breezy nights. PERFECTION.

So, I signed up for a local sprint triathlon early last week. My intention was to race it if my body felt recovered, complete it if I wanted to, and skip it if my heart wasn’t in it.  I was {this} close to skipping it.  My oldest son and I went to his first minor league baseball game (the Staten Island Yankees) with my mom, dad, sister and her family. The stadium is on the northern edge of Staten Island which gives you these amazing views of NYC’s skyline – all while you are taking in a baseball game!

We had a blast. My son watched a bit of the game, walked around with me for a while, and enjoyed some baseball stadium food (fries, hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken fingers, ice cream).

There was an amazing fireworks display post-game followed by the opportunity for all the little ones to run the bases!

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    4th of July Racing + Sparkly Soul Giveaway WINNER!

    fourth of july

    Hi friends!

    There is a 5 mile race tomorrow morning and I’m on the fence if I should sign up!  It’s a local race in Staten Island and one that I’ve said for YEARS that I wanted to do.  My long bike ride is Friday, so Thursday is a semi-free day (supposed to do a short brick)…but my in-laws are in town and it’s a holiday…and I always feel a bit guilty about being gone for a few hours.  And although my legs feel really good after the half ironman this weekend, I know they aren’t as fresh as I would want them to be.  Decisions, decisions. What are your thoughts? Would you do the race?

    Are you racing tomorrow?!  


    The winner for the Sparkly Soul Giveaway is: DEANA!  Please email me at so we can get you your headbands ASAP.

    (Note: If winner does not contact me within one week, a follow-up winner will be selected)

    Hope you all have a wonderful and safe 4th of July!  

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      #BostonStrongSI Recap


      Good Morning, friends!  Yesterday evening was the #BostonStrongSI event held at Clove Lakes Park in Staten Island.  It was part of a wider, global event organized by my friend, Brian, from which over 120 cities across the world ran to show support to Boston and those affected.

      When I created the event for Staten Island, I had hopes that 25 runners would be interested to run.  I was blown away by the turnout yesterday.  There were probably close to 200 runners/walkers present.

      The amazing thing about yesterday was that all I did was create the event.  I picked the time and place and made a FB event page.  I invited a handful of local runners that I knew.  I contacted PowerBar (they sponsored us).  And that’s really it.

      Yesterday’s turnout was a result of our running community.  It was beautiful to witness.  Members of local running groups spread word within their group.  Someone contacted the local newspaper (article here).

      My friend, Patti, contacted the American Red Cross (they provided water and hot chocolate).

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        Behind the Scenes


        I received a phone call from one of my good friends at NYRR – she was someone I had met during the Foot Locker 5 Borough Challenge journey and have remained in close contact with her.  She wanted to know if I would be interested in being filmed for an On the Run episode – an online series created/produced by NYRR.  With the NYC Half being the first race run on the streets of NYC since Superstorm Sandy, NYRR was putting together some segments on those running the race who were affected by the storm.  She was aware that I had organized the Race for Recovery, she thought I would be a good fit.

        A couple of days after that initial conversation, I was told that WABC had learned of my story and were interested in airing the segment on their channel during the NYC Half coverage on Sunday.  My piece is scheduled to air at 7:16am on Sunday, March 17 on WABC.  (More information can be found here.)  As soon as I find out the link on the NYRR website and/or the WABC site, I will share it!

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          Race Report: Cold Feet 10k

          Cold Feet 10k

          Saturday morning was the Cold Feet 10k, a local trail race through the Greenbelt on Staten Island.  Even though I’ve lived on Staten Island a good part of my life, I always seem to forget how expansive the trail network is here – there’s over 2800 acres of trails, parks, and natural areas.  It’s amazing!

          It was the first trail race I’ve done since this 25k last year and only the second time I’ve been on the trails in over a year.  For a long time, I was only focused on big(ger) races – mostly those organized by NYRR.  I don’t really know why I was shying away from smaller races for so long – the last two I have run have been smaller (with under 200 runners) and I have LOVED them.

          I woke up to huge snowflakes falling outside.  Not exactly the weather conditions I was hoping for…but snow is 100x better than freezing rain.  With a 10am start time and the race only being about 15 minutes away, I was able to stay home until 9:15! No early wakeups or leaving in the dark. Score.

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            The Wind Against My Wings

            8:12 pace

            I’ll run in the heat, rain, cold, or snow with no very little complaining.  The one element that I despise and will avoid at all costs is the wind.  I hate it.  For me, there’s nothing as depressing as pushing yourself and feeling like you are barely moving.

            I always check wind speed before a run – and especially before a long run.  If the wind is anything close to 20 mph, I always choose the treadmill. The forecast for Saturday’s long run called for chilly temps (28) with winds sustained around 17-18 mph (and gusts up to 30 mph).  It was going to feel like 15 degrees with the windchill.

            If I were further along in my marathon training, I easily would have chosen the treadmill.  I’ve done distances up to 20 miles before on it.  But I felt that I wasn’t mentally prepared enough for 14 miles on the treadmill yet – I hadn’t run that distance since late spring (about 9 months) and was worried that I would wimp out and hit “stop” when I got tired the last few miles.  The only option was to run outside.

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              Race for Recovery 5k/10k

              Tunnel to Towers Foundation

              After watching my Facebook page fill with status updates and photos of my fellow Staten Islanders as well as friends in NYC helping those affected by Hurricane Sandy last week, I knew that I needed to find a way to help.  Logistically, it’s difficult for me to physically help – having an (almost) 2 year old and 7 week old (who doesn’t yet take the bottle) force me to stay home most of the time.

              This past weekend, I had the idea of starting a virtual race.  I emailed a bunch of running gear companies that I have had contact with in the past (and some I haven’t) as well as several friends who pulled some strings for me and several friends who have their own businesses.  The response has been overwhelming.  As of this morning, there are 40 prizes that can be won – worth over $2,500.

              All updates will be posted to this page.

              **NEW** For whoever donates (and/or collects on their own to donate here) the most amount of money, Runner’s World will award you with a Fantasy Day.  Details are below! 

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                More than Jersey Shore or Mob Wives

                One of my favorite pictures (Source: Reuters)

                Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me the last week.  As I’ve already expressed, my family is safe.  My house was left virtually untouched.  We were without power and heat for the better part of the week (both have been restored).  But it seems like nothing compared to what so many people along the east coast, my hometown of Staten Island, and members of my immediate family are currently dealing with.

                I have no intention of blogging for the time being.  It just doesn’t seem right to write about running, parenting, reviews right now – it all seems SO trivial given what people living right down the block from me are going through.

                This week has been a total blur for me.  For most of the week, we had no cell reception.  In some ways it was incredibly frustrating. I felt so disconnected and it was extremely hard to communicate with anyone – even members of my own family.  But not having access to the TV or internet or even facebook prevented me from seeing what had happened to my beautiful hometown.  And in some ways I am actually grateful for not having ANY idea how badly Staten Island was hit until days later.  I hadn’t seen what the harder hit areas of the island looked like until yesterday.

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                  Have you ever been in a running slump?

                  Still fairly clean after 1 mile

                  My son can better articulate what I was growing through

                  My late summer and early fall months were filled with dreams of winning the Foot Locker 5 Borough Challenge.  Visions of participating in and completing my first ultra. Excitement of racing again after giving birth to my son earlier in the year.  With all these fun, challenging events, it’s easy to see how I was able to happily log hundreds of miles, day after day.

                  But, after the highs of representing my borough [Staten Island] at the NYC Marathon and my first dabble with an ultra distance on November 19th, I found myself in a MAJOR slump Thanksgiving weekend.

                  I had no desire to run. NONE It wasn’t just a day here or there. I’ve dealt with minor hiccups in my training before.  No. This was much worse. This was a string of mornings where I literally could not pull myself out of bed to run even a few miles. And when I would force myself to dress and head out the door, I felt terrible and would return after a few, short miles.

                  What was going on with me?

                  It was a huge letdown to go from viewing an 8-mile run as “a short run” to being happy that I managed to run a very slow 3 or 4 miles.

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                    Staten Island Trail Festival 25k

                    Not too dirty yet!

                    If I had to sum up my experience participating in the inaugural Staten Island Trail Festival this weekend in a few words, it would be:

                    I.  Love.  Trail.  Running

                    I would never leave the trails if I could.  But  since I  also enjoy road racing, I can’t get on the trails as frequently as I would like.  I am known to be somewhat of a klutz and find that “hitting the trails” often has two meanings for me (Thanks, Doug for this!).  Therefore, I usually wait until after my racing season ends to get on the trails.

                    The night before the race, I received an email with the course description: The 50 K and 25 K are technical courses with exposed tree roots, rocks and lots of ups and downs.  There is approximately 2,300 feet of gain for the 25 K course. The trails, as of November 20, are in great shape. There are several street crossings, some of which will be monitored by volunteers. It will be the responsibility of each runner, however, to ensure a safe crossing.

                    The weather could not have been more perfect.  Although the forecast initially called for rain on Saturday, we were blessed with clear skies and a calm breeze.  The 25k and 50k runners started at 8am with temperatures hovering around 40 degrees.  I opted for shorts and my new Saucony Transition Sportop II with gloves and headband (with my Sparkly Soul headband underneath).

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                      Media Day

                      Today was such a fun, exciting day!  For almost 3 hours, my mom, my son, AJ, and I were able to experience what it (almost) feels like to be an elite runner or a VIP running the marathon during race week.

                      The other individuals participating in the Foot Locker 5 Borough Challenge (FL5BC) and I were invited to the NYC Media Center – a bustling hub of reporters, camera crews, and workers.  We were to meet with the media, take some photos, receive our race-day credentials, and go over last minute details for Sunday.

                      After a brief summary of this year’s FL5BC theme, the other 4 runners and I were introduced to members of the media and asked to discuss why we were selected to represent our respective borough. (Here are our stories)

                      Next, we were asked to do one-on-one interviews with any media outlet that may have wanted to ask us specific questions or take photos of us running.

                      While Mommy was being interviewed, AJ was having a blast exploring every inch of the tent!

                      After a few hours of interviews and running I was exhausted!!  I’m amazed that celebrities and/or elite athletes do this so often.

                      I was honored to finally meet Mary Wittenberg, the President and CEO of NYRR and the Race Manager for the NYC Marathon.  Talk about a dream job!!

                      Right before we walked out the door, we bumped into Bruce Beck, the weekday sports anchor for WNBC, and the reporter who will be interviewing the 5 runners after the marathon on Sunday.  Of course, we couldn’t pass up an opportunity for a photo!

                      Just a few outtakes from the day:

                        Foot Locker 5 Borough Challenge!!

                        I recently found out that I was chosen to represent Staten Island in the Foot Locker 5 Borough Challenge at the 2011 NYC Marathon.  Each year, 5 runners (one from each borough) are selected to participate in the challenge – they are to run the first half of the marathon together and then race against one another in the second half.

                        Each year the challenge has a different “theme”.  The theme of this year’s challenge  is overcoming challenges.  If you are interested in reading about the other 4 runners (who have amazing stories!), please go to:

                        I am so excited for this amazing opportunity.  Not only do we get VIP treatment at the start and finish and great clothes to wear during the marathon, but we actually get to start the marathon before all of the other runners!  I am already getting goosebumps when I think of  running across the Verrazano with just 4 other runners!