Thursday, August 20, 2009

New Site Reveal

For quite some time, I've been working on moving Steph Runs The City to a new site, and it's finally ready to share with you all!

I've had a lot of help from some amazing designers, and I'm very excited about the new site!

You can keep reading at: will soon be directing to the new site as well.

I hope you will continue to follow me on my running journey as I train for the NYC Marathon in November!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Run for Central Park - 4 mile

hello! yes, i know, it's been a while. did you miss me?

i've been working on some updates to the blog, and i'm hoping to launch a new version of the site in the next few weeks. i'm really excited about it, and can't wait to share it. hence, i've been a little mia recently...

anyway, this saturday i ran the run for central park 4 mile race with team for kids! it was kind of fun to do the race with my team members. we met before hand to warm up and stretch, and then headed over to the corals together (although i had to make a beeline for the port-a-potties!). even though i've done lots of shorter races before, it was nice to have the support of the team- i can see how that will be really great for the upcoming half marathon, and definitely for the marathon.

it was a pretty hot morning, and VERY humid out, which i didn't notice so much until the race actually started. the 4 mile course was in central park, and started out on the east side of the park on an uphill, which was gradual but certainly noticeable! i started out pretty strong, but i think it was too fast. after about 2 minutes the heat hit me, and it was NOT fun!

i stuck with it, and the first two miles of the race i completed in just under 7:30 pace. after that i hit a wall and i was struggling - my pace slowed a lot! i think a lot of it was the heat. i grabbed a water cup at the second water station and kept running- i did what coach frank told us to do before the race- pinch the cup and aim for my mouth!

i kept at it, as we crossed over the 106th street transverse onto the west side of the park and into the hills! around mile 3 i saw coach glen on the sidelines. he ran the race too! he's FAST, and he finished the race and came back out to cheer and coach the rest of us! at that point i felt i was really struggling, so it was really nice to see him. he told me to just use my arms to work through the hills, which were almost over, and after that it would be downhill all the way.

at the third water station, i got a cup of water but this time i stopped to walk for a few seconds, and then started up again. i think it helped get me through the last leg of the race, although i really hated that i had to stop.

those hills seemed to go on for quite some time, but finally, FINALLY, i saw the turn onto the 72nd street transverse ahead! the finish line was so close! i sped up as much as i could in the end, and finally crossed the finish line!

my stats for the race were:

Overall Time: 31:31
Average Pace: 7:52

i slowed down kind of a lot in the middle there somewhere. at one point i looked down and my garmin said my pace was 8:15. i was hoping to keep it at 8 or under the whole race, and i actually was hoping to finish closer to 30 minutes.

but, all in all i was still pretty happy with my time! had it not been for the heat, i might have been able to go faster. still this was a pr for me for a 4 mile race :)

we got an update on the race from coach frank, and it turns out that i was the third team for kids female to finish, which i was pretty excited about! my friend and running buddy was the second and she finished the race in 30:15! go lindsey- you rock!

this week we have a long training run in queens- an 11 miler, and the following week we're doing our longest run yet- 14 miles- as part of the NYRR Long Training Run #2. it's nice because leading up to the marathon, new york road runners offers organized long training runs in hte park. they provide water along the course, and it gets you used to running in a group.

14 miles will be the longest i've ever run before!

finally, i want to let you all know about the fundraising happy hour lindsey and i are throwing to raise money for team for kids!

What: Steph and Lindsey's Awesome Happy Hour
When: Wednesday, August 5th, 2009
Where: Madhatter Saloon - 3rd Avenue between 26th and 27th Streets
Why: Help us fight childhood obesity and run the NYC Marathon!

The cost is $15 to attend. All participants will receive a wristband for discounted drinks all night, and a cupon for Miz Mooz shoes!

Join us for a raffle with fabulous prizes, like French Connection clothing, Dragon Bleu Vodka (the coolest new vodka!), gift certificates to Miz Mooz shoes and the Running Company, and a gift pack from Lululemon.

100% of proceeds will go to Team for Kids!

hope to see you there! if you have any thing you'd like to contribut to the raffle, let me know- we're still in search of a few more great prizes!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

slushie love

I decided to skip running class on tuesday night because i was feeling pretty tired and had a lot to do at home. i headed to the gym instead and made it a cross training day.

i did:
  • 2 easy miles on the treadmill at level 6.0 - 6.2
  • weight machines for legs
  • pushups and situps
  • free weight exercises for arms

it was nice to get a good weight workout in! i know i always get caught up in doing a lot of cardio, especially when i wasn't running as much and doing more cross training. but a good weight workout can be just as beneficial for building strength and athleticism. i know overall this will help me become a better, faster runner!

after the gym, i headed to the grocery store to pick up a few things, and cooekd up some pasta for dinner.

dinner consisted of:

  • whole wheat pasta
  • zucchini
  • corn
  • tomatoes
  • mushrooms
  • white kidney beans
  • garlic
  • olive oil

i sauteed the veggies and beans with garlic in some olive oil, cooked the pasta and mixed it all together. i topped it off with some lite mexican blended cheese, and hot sauce!

the dish was good, but i wish i had cooked the veggies in cooking spray instead of olive oil. since i ended up adding hot sauce to the dish, the flavors were a bit confusing. it was still a very satisfying meal!

for desert, the fiance made me a 'slushie.' he mixed frozen papaya, frozen strawberries, water, and a splash of orange peach mango juice in the magic bullet. yum! this was a great, refreshing summer desert. especially if you have a sweet tooth, like me.

unfortunately, after making this, the fiance realized the magic bullet was on the fritz, and was barely able to whip up another one for himself. it looks like it might be the end of our magic bullet :( i have to see if i can dig up the warranty for it- because we're kind of a little obsessed with the thing and it would be pretty bad not to have it anymore.

hopefully we can get a replacement soon! not sure how long i can live without the thing! i need my slushies!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

tuesday is my monday

i love it when my mondays are actually tuesdays! it's always hard to come back from a long weekend, especially after going out of town. but it's nice when you come back and it's already tuesday- it definitely makes the week go by much faster!

i have a lot to do this week, but i do feel refreshed after the weekend away. my friend and i are planning a fundraising happy hour to raise money for team for kids, so we have a lot of planning to do this week! if you're in the nyc area, stay tuned for more details about it!

it should be a great event, and we're hoping to have some fun prizes to give away!

although i did eat pretty well this weekend, it's always nice to get back into the routine of a healthy eating schedule.

i started my morning off with a nice yogurt bowl! i had 1 individual container of trader joe's organic 0% vanilla greek yogurt with sliced banana and strawberrt, and a small handful of kashi's autumn wheat cereal.

it was very refreshing and filling!

i also had half a cup of tea, and a bit later a small cup of coffee with a splash of skim (i ran out of almond milk and haven't had time to go to the store!) and 1 packet of stevia.

someone brought some israeli chocolate back from a trip, and i had a small piece mid-morning.

since my fridge is pretty bare, for lunch i brought an old classic- pb&j. i made it on 2 slices of trader joe's whole wheat bread, with tj's chunky unsalted peanut butter (about 2 tbsp), and 1 tsp of tj's reduced sugar strawberry jam.

on the side, i had a nectarine and some pumpernickel pretzel sticks.

i feel like i've been snacking way too much recently, and in effort to cut back, i'm trying to make my meals more complete and satisfying, so i stay full for longer.

so far so good- i may have a snack later this afternoo though before my running class! although it's supposed to rain AGAIN! they say scattered thunderstorms this afternoon, so we'll see how it holds up.

if it rains, i'll skip class and head to the gym for some cross training and weights.

hope everyone is having a good tuesday!

virginia is for runners

hello! yesterday i came back from a nice long weekend getaway to virginia. i was there visiting with some close friends from high school, and it was a fantastic trip.

i took the train from nyc down to richmond, which was super easy and relaxing.

i had a late lunch on the train, which was healthy and filling. i grabbed a box of mixed greens with roasted veggies, and hummus and 2 pita points, from a local cafe before getting on the train.

i also had a white peach honest tea. it was good- just a tad sweet, as the bottle said, although surpisingly there was still a good amount of sugar in the drink.

i also snacked on some trail mix during the train ride (not pictured).

for dinner, i had a whole wheat bagel with some peanut butter and a little bit of strawberry jelly.

i arrived in richmond late thursday night, and it was so nice to just hang out and catch up with my friend. on friday morning, we woke up early to go for a run- we did a nice and easy 5 mile run through some of the suburban neighborhoods in richmond's west end.

it was definitely a nice change of pace from city running - it was so quiet and relaxed, and people were so friendly and even said hello to us! that's certainly very different from running on the good ole streets of nyc.

also, i was finally able to get my garmin to work! i figured out how to set it to track a workout for a certain distance, to display the distance, and to display the pace after each mile. i think one of the problems i was having with it before was that in the city, it takes a little bit of time for the gps to kick in because of all of the buildings.

but in virginia, it's wide open spaces so i had no trouble at all! i also played around more with the bezel- it's definitely touch sensitive and i don't think i was really pressing it hard enough before.

anyway, it was nice to finally use and for us to be able to track our distance and pace on our run! i still want to figure out how to track the pace as i'm running in between miles, but i guess i just have to play around with it a little more.

my friend from richmond is running the nyc half with me in august, and it was great for us to be able to go on a run together- we've run some races together in the past, but since we live so far apart we never get to train together :(

i grabbed half of a kind bar before our run.

afterwards, we made smoothies with bananas, frozen berries, fage 0% yogurt, and a little bit of juice. very refreshing! i also had the other half of the kind bar.

then we sat and relaxed by the pool- it was fabulous!

for lunch, we came home and made quite a lovely spread. we had tuna salad, hummus, pita chips, a huge salad with peppers, tomatos, and cucumber, and some fruit. everything was great!

i ate a ton of the salad, some pita chips, hummus, and half of the tuna sandwich. for desert i snacked on the grapes.

after lunch we headed to the store to pick up some things for our trip to va beach on saturday. we went to trader joe's. it was definitely busy, but compared ot the one in nyc the aisles were wide open with lots of space for us to roam around with our cart- it was heavenly! i hate having to rush around and always squeeze past people when i go to the one in the city- it's always so stressful! this was a very delightful shopping experience.

we bought some snacks and wine, and the ingredients to make sangria!

afterwards, we headed over to target and i got some new workout gear. i love the C9 line they have- everything is really comfortable, and also relatively inexpensive, although it can add up quickly if you get a lot, which i usually do since i tend to hoard when i get the chance to go to target!

after hitting the strip malls of suburbia, we came home to relax for a bit before dinner. we watched bride wars, which was cute and funny. it wasn't the best movie ever, and the plot was a bit weak, but it was fun and perfect to watch on vacation. i especially enjoyed it since i'm planning a wedding too!

after the movie we got ready to go to dinner in downtown richmond. the neighborhood is called shocko bottom, and it's a cute area with cobblestone sidewalks and lots of restuarants and bars. we went to an italian tapas restaurant called eurpoa.

the atmosphere was great, and the sangria was yummy! unfortunately i forgot my camera, so there's no pics of the food :(

they brought out rosemary focacia bread to start- it was nice and soft, but the flavor was very slight, and i think it needed a tad more salt.

we ordered the spanish cheese plate as an appetizer, which was great! it came with 4 different types of cheeses, including manchego, which i love (i spent a semester in spain when i was in college!). i'm not sure exactly what the other cheeses were, but they were all delicious! it also came with some toasted bread and roasted red pepper.

it took a long time for our meals to arrive, and by the time they did we were stuffed from the cheese and bread!

we both ordered the shrimp and vegetable risotto. since i was already pretty full, i didn't eat much of mine, and to be honest it wasn't that great. the shrimp was actually really good, but the flavoring of the risotto was a bit off. again, i felt like it needed more salt, and they went way overboard with the pepper. some bites were extremely pepper-y. it was also pretty oily, and they topped it with shredded cheese, which i could have done without.

it was still ok. we both ate a little bit of ours, and saved the rest to take home as leftovers.

we skipped desert, because we had a treat waiting for us at home!

earlier, we stopped at an ice cream shop called maggie moo's, where they sell the best thing ever- ice cream cup cakes! i love ice cream and i love cupcakes, and this combines two of my favorite things- how can you go wrong?

you can't! they were unbelievable. i got the cake batter cupcake, which was yellow cake, cake batter ice cream, a caramel topping, and vanilla icing. totally amazing. the icing was more of whipped cream icing, but becuase it was frozen it was really good, and the caramel topping was actually in the center of the cake.

at first i couldn't taste the caramel, but then i got to the middle and it started oozing out- SO good!

my friend got the chocoalte marshmallow cupcake, which was chocolate cake, chocolate ice cream, fudge icing, and marshmallow topping. hers was also fantastic!

we headed to va beach early saturday morning- more on that later!

Monday, June 29, 2009

summer daze

well, it's been a few days since my last post, and in that time it seems summer has finally arrived

i have to say i'm definitely glad to see some sunshine mixed in with the rain, but i'm not too sure how i feel about the temps. still not horrible, but starting to get a little warm and stuffy in the apartment, which makes for some not so great nights of sleep :(

in any case, last week was great workout wise!

i followed my team for kids schedule completely and got in all of my runs! surprisingly, i feel great for doing so much running. my foot isn't bothering me so much, my muscles feel less tight, and i feel less sore in general.

i mentioned in my last post that i think using the stick really helped to loosen up my muscles. i've also been stretching a lot more before and after each run, and icing when i feel i need to.

all in all i'm feeling good, and hoping it stays that way!

this week i've also been doing all of my runs. since i'll be away for july 4th weekend, i'd like to get my "long run" out of the way during the week, so i'll be doing that tomorrow. it's only 7 miles, so not a terrible one to do on my own in the a.m. before work.

actually, this morning i was supposed to do 6.2 miles since I'm not going to team for kids today after work (i have to pack for my trip!). however, i'm having problems with my garmin
:( one of the main reasons i got it was to be able to better and more acurately track my distance (and pace) for times i am running on my own, and not in the park. so, i hadn't really planned out my route ahead of time, although i was running along the east river where i usually run on my own so i'm familiar with the area.

i ran for one hour, as an estimate, 30 minutes out, 30 minutes back. although i'm sure i was going faster than 10 minute miles, so i probably did more than 6.2 miles. however, when i checked this morning, it said i went 5.4 miles out! i know i didn't go that far, because out and back that would be close to 11 miles.

11 miles in 1:01:28, which was my time, would be sub 7 minute miles!! i was going fast, but not that fast! in any case, i'm guessing i probably did about 7 miles accidentally since i overestimated on the time. i 'm estimating i was running about an 8:45-9 minute per mile pace.

at an 8:45 pace, i would have finished 6.2 miles in a little over 52 minutes, and 7 miles at just over an hour, which is where i was.

so, technically i did my long run today. since the distance isn't that much longer, and i'm also not sure about my accuracy for mileage and pace, i'll probably run the same distance tomorrow.

today before my run, i had half of a kind, macadamia, almond and walnut bar.

afterwards, when i got to work i chowed down on some breakfast. i was pretty hungry, but not starving. this breakfast was filling and satisfying - kashi heart to heart cereal, 1 sliced banana, walnuts and almond milk.

the nuts really help keep me full- i rarely have a morning snack!

i also had an iced coffee!

for lunch, i had an egg salad sandwich, made with 2 eggs and 1 tbsp. miracle whip, on whole wheat bread with lettuce and 2 thick slices of tomato. yum! i love egss and egg salad, although the fiance HATES them! he gets made when i make eggs because he says it stinks up the whole apartment. but they're yummy, and a good source of protein.

i also had a pear.

tonight, i'm packing for my trip, and having dinner with the fiance since he's staying in ny for the weekend. i'm excited to head down to virginia to visit with 2 of my friends from high school. we're going to relax on the beach- i can't wait!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

interval madness

last tuesday was another crazy killer workout with my nyrr running class.

we did:

  • 2 x 2.4 miles @ 10k pace
  • .5 miles out and back to the location
    • that makes for a total of about 6 miles! 5 of which were crazy! it was kind of like doing 2 races back to back.

      this workout was pretty tough for me. it was hard, but it was good!


      • 1 slice trader joe's organic spelt bread
      • 1 morningstar farm tomato basil pizza veggie burger
      • sliced tomato
      • 1 slice yogurt cheese
      • some pizza sauce
      • strawberries on the side

      this pizza burger was delicious!


      • 1 kiwi

      • 1 cliff bar, eaten in 2 parts, before running class

      the cliff bar was a yummy peanut toffee flavor. it was good- i had it in the fridge all day so it was a little hard at first, and very sweet. i realized it had about 20g sugar- which is ridiculous, almost like a candy bar! still, it was filling and satisfying. maybe next time i'll check the ingredients and sugar content more closely though!


      • brown rice
      • kidney beans
      • broccoli & cauliflower
      • salsa
      • shredded cheese
      • veggie flax tortilla chips

      same delicious dinner as last night- i couldn't get enough, and i was craving it all the way home from class!

      no desert, i was pooped and after dinner i showered, iced, and tried out my new cool toy- "the stick." this thing was pretty awesome! it's kind of like a foam roller, but more of a massager really. it's a stick with rolling spindles that you use to massage your muscles. you can control the intensity based on how hard you press down.

      i thought it really helped! honestly since i've used it (and maybe because i've been stretching more) i've really felt a lot better in terms of the muscle tightness i was experiencing. i've also been icing more, and my foot has been feeling better as well! this makes me happy :)