To call my trip to the Big Apple a whirlwind might be the understatement of the day: I landed at LaGuardia at 7 p.m., sat on the tarmac for an hour, got into the city about 8:45 p.m. and left the city for LaGuardia a mere 16.5 hours later.
I was undeterred, though, and determined. I was going to see the city and make the most of my time there.
I left my hotel, which was right across the street from Radio City Music Hall with my walking shoes on. OK, they were TOMS.
I quickly found Rockefeller Plaza and enjoyed the lights and sounds of a city still bustling with activity at 9 o'clock Sunday night.
I peaked in store windows. Just peaked as (lucky for Mark) most of the retail establishments were closed for the evening.
I did stumble upon one place that was open.
The famed Magnolia Bakery.
As I was in the city to celebrate my weight loss, it might have been appropriate to bypass the cases of treats but I was in New York.
And there's just something about New York that screams, "Eat Me!" Maybe it's the Big Apple moniker?
I opted for a decaf iced coffee with Splenda and a Carrot Cake Cupcake.
The cupcake was good but not that good, and I almost stopped at just half. My emotions, just as shattered as my laptop (thanks, Delta), got the best of me, and I ate the whole damn thing.
I woke up Monday morning, groggy after a fitful night's sleep but with one thing on my mind: running in Central Park.
My runs last week were less than stellar but I promised myself that I would really take the time to enjoy the miles as they ticked away.
It was so invigorating to catch glimpses of the city through the trees and to be surrounded by athletes. The bonus was the inspirational messages that were no doubt written in chalk for a previous race but I used them as my own personal motivation. I logged just over 6.5 miles Monday morning, as I looped the outer edges of the park, and they were some of the best miles I've had in a while.
I walked more blocks than I anticipated back to the hotel, my sweaty body navigating between busy city dwellers, and felt at peace with my short time there.
Had I planned better, I think I would have taken public transportation down to Union Station for the farmers market but it was just as fun to watch people gawk at Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie knowing that soon (maybe) they'd be gawking at me.
What are your must-hit spots in New York?