YES! I made it. Stepped out of my hotel and onto 8th Ave this morning at 5:45 am. Why I can't start out this early back in Dallas is a mystery. OK, I did it once, when I had my longest marathon training run, but that was more so to beat the summer heat than anything else.
Anyway, it was still quiet outside, with a fair number of cars, but scarely anyone walking. I warmed up on the 10 blocks running up 8th Ave from 49th to 59th, which took me to the SW corner of Central Park. It was still dark, and I didn't see anyone running inside or outside the park at all. For a few seconds, I recalled what the concierge told me yesterday evening, when I asked what she thought of my idea to make a quick run to the park right then - with a look of shock and horror on her face, she said "you really don't want to run in there at night, I mean, like, really, you really don't want to run in there at night"! So now I'm thinking, maybe she wasn't being dramatic, maybe no one else is dumb enough to be here now but me (non-local).
But what the hey, I'm already here, so I started running on the outskirts of the park, and after about 1/2 mile I took one of the roads leading into the park. It's then that I started to see a few shadows running about, and the closer in I got, there were actually quite a few people running and a lesser number of people biking. I got on the loop and started to pick up a steady pace.
The road was clear, with ice piled up on the side, and snow still covering the grass. The air was almost a perfect temp for me, not painful to breathe, but cold enough that you felt it. It smelled refreshingly clean for New York, except for a couple of spots where you'd get a distinct whiff of eau de horse. It was great running inside in the stillness of the park, seeing the tops of buildings in the distance over the trees. I kept thinking too about how I really would like to do the NY Marathon one day. Some day.
I took the inside loop and felt good after one, so I went around again. It was light by the time I left the park near where I first entered, and I ran back down Broadway to 49th, and cut across to my hotel. I was out for 55 minutes, with a few short stops for traffic on the way up and back - I'm rounding it up to 6 miles. Good 'nuff for me! Quick shower, catch the subway downtown, pick up a Starbucks on the way to work, and I'm all set for the day!