Sunday, 4 October 2015

Running in New York - part 1

It was supposed to be about running in NY, so here it comes - my Sunday and Monday running trips.

On Sunday I was planning to do something really easy, as I was racing the day before. I’ve heard a lot about Prospect Park in Brooklyn, how amazing place that is, and how good for running. It’s about 4km away from where we’re staying, so not that far.
Running on the streets in the US is a bit tricky. They have a proper grid of streets, that are clearly designed for (surprise, surprise…) motor vehicles.
That means traffic lights at every junction, and lots of cars.
So running on the streets involves plenty of traffic lights stops. Maybe good for interval training, not so much for relaxed running.
Probably that’s why there are very few runners on the streets.
Everything changes once you get to the park. Hundreds of runners, what’s interesting - majority are women.
Prospect Park itself is really nice, indeed. It’s got a zoo and botanical garden inside. Lots of nice, small hills, dirt paths, and so on. 
Definitely worth visiting, and probably the best place for runners in that area.
I have only one, quite random, picture of it, and a picture of Brooklyn Museum, which is next to it.

We’ve spent rest of the day walking around NY, mostly on the east side of Manhattan (Chelsea, Meatpackers district). We’ve got to see the Intrepid - an aircraft carrier that serves as a museum. I’ve never seen an aircraft carrier before. It’s a bloody impressive vessel, really huge. And there were like 4 cruise ships next to it. Even bigger…

Next stop was a late lunch… That’s when I was introduced to the concept of “comfort food”. It’s nice, it’s delicious, it’s massive. And the feeling afterwards has nothing to do with comfort.
They should have warning signs in front of restaurants, saying that if you’re not suicidal, maybe you should go somewhere else.
We ate at around 5pm, I didn’t eat anything until 1pm next day. And I run 21km in the meantime…
Don’t get me wrong - they really know how to cook there, it’s just that when you're a greedy, always hungry runner, it is not a place for you. Greedy, always hungry runners, like myself, have this stupid idea, that there is no such amount of food, that couldn’t be eaten in one go, and then processed into some running.
So I had to rethink my approach. Clearly, there are things in the world that are more powerful than always-hungry runners. American chefs are among those.

When we were finally able to walk away from the restaurant, we decided to go for a walk to Central Park. The restaurant was actually very close to it, so we could plod there, even if the bags with leftover food that we were carrying, were making it somewhat harder.

Now, Central Park is a place for runners!
It’s absolutely awesome! Huge, green, natural, with amazing skyline all around it. And full of runners.
More on it next, now just a few pictures of it at dusk.

After that we made our way to a nice, small jazz bar in Harlem. Very nice atmosphere, reminds me a bit of my favourite place from my uni times - Kornet Jazz Bar in Krakow. Although, I have to admit, Kornet was the best place ever and nothing can match it.
I was still so full, I couldn’t force any beer down, had to go for whisky...

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