This weekend I spent not one but two days at the beach. No, I haven't come into millions of dollars and bought a house in the Hamptons, nor did any of my friends who have Jersey shore houses invite me out. I have simply discovered one of New York City's most obvious hidden treasures in the world: Rockaway Beach.
Now, everytime I've told someone that I'm going out to Rockaway Beach (even though I've only gone out 3 times so far this summer), they give me a look of shock and horror. Like "Seriously? You're swimming in the Rockaways?" I even had one guy ask me if I had stepped on any syringes. No. I did not step on any syringes in the Rockaways, and neither did any one of the small children running around playing in the water. It's actually a very nice beach and if you take 10 minutes and walk down away from where the subway lets out, it's quiet, not crowded and chock full of...
That's right. Surfers.
As much as I love running, I've kind of detoured into surfing. I sort of fell into it last summer, took a few lessons at the Jersey shore and LOVED it. Since then, I made no progress on the surf front until I went to Aruba in February. There, I met some SERIOUS surfers who, living on a Caribbean island surfed daily. They totally pushed me to start surfing back in New York, so last week I headed down to the fabled surf beach on the Rockaways and signed myself up for a lesson.
And fell in love. Not with a surfer dude (although I'm not ruling it out) but with the sport. I grew up on Lake Ontario, so I've loved the water ever since I was little. However, as I've gotten older, it's less and less fun to just go out and swim around in the water, especially by yourself. Surfing allows me to spend two hours in the water without even noticing that two hours has gone by. It's amazing.
So what has all this surfing done to my running? Well....nothing really except that I haven't been running. I really need to figure out some sort of balancing act between surfing on the weekends and running during the week because by the time I get home from the beach I can't handle staying awake for more than 2 or 3 hours. So, even though I have a marathon in a little over 2 months and I haven't run more than 6 miles since my marathon the first weekend in May, I still think I can do it. Anyway, at least I can chalk up my surfing experiences as "cross-training" and hopefully this won't turn into a surf blog (because right now all I'd have to post is "Today, I got up, rode a wave...then I fell")