NBR: Tell us a little bit about how you came to be part of NBR. What was your first run? How long have you been involved?
AB: My first run with NBR was back in mid 2011 when I was a Dashing Whippet and we used to have monthly or bimonthly crossover track workouts. I moved to Williamsburg in late 2011 and then in April 2013 I met Raymund’s abs and Sean during a flip-cup tournament after the Whippets track meet and was like OK these guys are cool AND they live in my neighborhood, so I started showing up regularly to Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights right after.
NBR: How is marathon training going? Are there any specific workouts that are really moving things along for you? Tell the NBR world a good long run story.
AB: Marathon training has been going slow so far. I had an undiagnosed injury that sidelined me from early April to late July so I’m really just building up basic mileage right now. I had a reasonable but challenging goal in mind for November, but right now I have to just listen to my body. The good news is I feel healthy and have had a few solid tempo and track workouts. TNT and Thursday night track are my go-to's for getting faster (and growing more confident).
I’ve done 4 marathons: 3 following Hal Higdon plans and then the last one where I purposefully didn’t have a plan and just did T/W/Th and one of the weekend long runs with NBR each week. I really liked the Higdon plans when I followed them (especially when I was just starting to run) but I enjoyed not having a real plan last time. The NBR non-plan plan approximated the mileage of the Hal Higdon plan and I felt less stressed out if I needed to swap a workout. And it was in a way my most successful marathon. At least by far the most successful 25.7 miles of my life.
In terms of long runs, I’ve done exactly one and it was fantastic! I did the Summer Streets Narwhals run with Emily H, Brinda, & John (sorry, I don’t know which one!). It was one of those runs that made me appreciate NBR even more that I already do. 13.1 miles flew by because I was having so much fun talking with everyone and looking at PUPPIES FROLICKING IN WADING POOLS AT ASTOR PLACE. The run gave me the confidence to know that I can probably get marathon ready in time.
NBR: Which NBR runs are you attending regularly to train? Are there any NBR members who inspire you to train hard(er)?
AB: I lead Tuesday night and sometimes attend the Wednesday Night Form Run and Thursday Track (though if I miss track I always do the workout on the treadmill at work).
So many people in NBR inspire me for so many different reasons! One thing I want to be better about is being good to my body in more ways than just putting in miles. So, with that in mind, I’m inspired by Emily Hafner for her disciplined cross-training, my roommate Michelle Ho for tackling plyo on a regular basis, all the vegetarians out there who showed me it’s possible to be strong and not eat meat, and Vinnie’s Pizzeria for being there when I just don’t care and need as many calories as possible, stat.
NBR: What does it mean to be chosen by your peers for a coveted NBR Marathon Team Spot?
AB: I’m so honored to have been chosen and be given a second chance to make it through the entire marathon upright. Given my training so far, I’m not sure I’ll be able to hit any major time goals, so as long as I’m healthy to go the distance in November, I’d love to pay it forward by pacing someone on the team who’s around whatever speed I am then.
NBR: What do you plan on eating post-marathon? What about the night before?
AB: Night before: Pasta with tons of peanut butter and soy sauce on it (don’t knock it till you try it), with a salad.
NBR: What is your running spirit animal and why?