After a horrible 3.5 hour bus ride from Philly to NYC in the midst of road construction and a torrential downpour, I finally arrived at my weekend destination! On the schedule? Saturday: find my wedding dress! Sunday: get in a 16 mile run with my sister in the early AM before heading back home. Let's recap shall we?
I was very stressed out going into the whole wedding dress shopping thing. We had two appointments, one at Kleinfeld's, where my Mom got her dress back in '84, and the other at a place in NJ, 45 minutes outside of the city. I was worried I would find something at the first place, but then feel compelled to go to the second, and end up with too many choices. I am terrible at making decisions when I have too many options. In preparation of the appointments I had not only already printed 8-10 pictures of dresses I liked, but I also have a full written description of what I was looking for and what I was absolutely against!
|Going through my dress pictures/notes Saturday morning|
We stopped at the Union Square Farmer's Market on the way to our first appointment. My sister Caitlin picked up some fruit. I was holding my appetite. After all, I was about to start squeezing into wedding dresses!
|Caitlin at Union Square|
|Mom and I headed to our first appointment|
We started at Kleinfeld's bright and early at 9:30 am. My consultant, Lisa, was absolutely wonderful. If you've ever watched "Say Yes to the Dress" (which was being filmed in the background while we were there), then I can tell you that my experience was exactly like on the show. Lisa brought in things she'd knew I'd love, but she also brought in some things I might not have thought of. She really paid attention to my reactions to each dress and listened to what I was saying. After all was said and done, I ended up choosing a dress that I actually saw on a mannequin that had immediately caught my eye when we walked in. After I put it on, no other dress seemed to measure up to it. I put on the mannequin dress one last time after being torn between it and another. I already felt fantastic and knew it was the one, and then they put the veil on and the waterworks just started coming. I knew there was no need to go to the second bridal salon that we had an appointment for. My mind was made up. And then Lisa asked (just like on the show), "Kristin, is this your dress?" to which I replied, "Yes, this is my dress!" People were clapping and my mom, sister, and I were crying. Overall it was a wonderful, wonderful experience. And to add icing to the cake, I got to meet the designer, who was in the salon, and he made me a drawing of the dress and signed it for me! It was exactly the morning I'd dreamed it would be!
Having had the whole day blocked out for wedding dress shopping, and having finished up before 11:30 am, we all of a sudden had a ton of free time! We started with lunch.
|My lunch: greens with pear and fresh mozzarella|
|Caitlin mixed four sides for her lunch, all vegan|
|Post-lunch froyo with strawberries and sprinkles: a must have|
Having refueled our bodies, we decided to spend the rest of the day doing what we do best: shopping! After Bride Kristin had a great morning, Running Kristin had an equally awesome afternoon! The loot:
|I will be writing a full post later this week on shoes, which will include more information about these lovelies|
Since my sister works at Lululemon, we thought it only appropriate to go support her store and help her monthly commissions:
|A Lululemon victory!|
After we literally shopped-till-we-dropped, we decided we needed more fuel again, especially since Caitlin and I were prepping for a long run the next morning.
|Melt-in-your-mouth vegan spring rolls|
|Vegan carrot cake for my Mama's birthday this Friday!|
|I had no problem finishing off a dessert of my own: flourless chocolate torte with ginger ice cream|
And with that we finished an awesome, amazing, perfect day! I passed out almost as soon as we returned to my uncle's house in Brooklyn, sincerely wondering if I would have enough energy for our long run the next morning. I had acquired a number of blisters after just walking around all day Saturday, so I was skeptical about my feet holding up through 16 miles. Despite all of my concerns, however, THIS happened:
Yes, that clock does say 6:29, and no it is not PM. That is 6:29 am Sunday morning my friends! That's right, I actually got up and was dressed and ready to go by this time. While some of you may not appreciate the accomplishment of the fact that I was up this early, please understand that I have NEVER gotten up this early for a weekend long run. I've always WANTED to, but it's never actually worked out. 6:29 is a big deal!
|Caitlin and I pre-run, with a rising sun behind us!|
Our plan was to run 16 miles from Brooklyn, through Prospect Park, across the Brooklyn Bridge, up the Hudson River Greenway, and through Central Park almost one loop. We hoped to finish at 79th street near a restaurant Caitlin picked out for brunch. Though we spent part of our childhood growing up in Manhattan, it was long before I became a runner. Running through a city can show you so many amazing things you may have not seen before. I was excited for this run for that reason and also because I was really looking forward to running with Caitlin again, who was my inspiration to start running in the first place.
|Coming out of Prospect Park|
At about mile 4 we stopped at a Starbucks to use the restroom and Cailtin busted out a dance. A picture wasn't good enough however...
Headed across the Brooklyn Bridge
|Cailtin on the Hudson River Greenway|
|11 miles down, about to head into Central Park|
Before we left for our run Caitlin had mentioned that the restaurant she wanted to go to for brunch didn't open until 11 am, which was far too late for us since I had to head back to Philly and she needed to go to work. With brunch off the schedule there was no need for us to end our run at 79th street, so we decided to do a complete loop of the park and end up at the same place we entered, making our 16 miles become somewhere around 17.
During our 6 mile park loop we encountered the NYC Marathon Long Training Run. It's a 20 mile training run that you actually have to pay for, but you get a bib and official finish time as well as aid station support the whole way. We cheered on the runners as we ran the opposite direction of them the whole way around the park. It was so great to see so many runners out and about. I love my people!
|17+ miles DONE! And before 10 am!!!|
While we definitely felt cramped and tired after finishing, we certainly didn't feel like a bus hit us (which is how I felt last weekend). I attribute this to several reasons: 1. Running with someone makes the time fly and keeps you mind off of being tired. 2. It was a new course for me, so I wasn't bored with the scenery. 3. I was actually able to take down two servings of GU gel blocks! Number 3 is, I think, the major reason for my success with this run. I haven't been able to fuel up during a long run in awhile because of GI issues and/or fear of GI issues. Having those extra 200 calories in your system really makes a difference though! I didn't feel depleted at all during the whole run. In fact, I'm sure we could have gone another mile if we had wanted!
Final milage: 17.38 miles
Final time: 2:49:12
Average pace: 9:44 min/mile
May I point out that we ran farther than I did last weekend and more than 25 seconds per mile faster! It was a seriously enjoyable run! Actually I think it is the best long run I've ever had! And I also need to mention that the farthest Caitlin ran before this was 14 miles and that was back in March. My sister totally rocks!
After celebration hugs and some post-run stretching we headed to Whole Foods across the street to help fill the 1700 calorie gap we just created.
|Smoothies hit the spot|
|Even better if it's the size of my face|
|Enjoying bagels on the subway ride back to Brooklyn|
|Post-much needed shower|
What a great New York weekend!