New York Marathon Race Review

New York, I’m impressed. I wondered if anything would top Boston. The Boston Marathon was so special to me because it took so much work to get there. I worried that no marathon would top the happiness I felt running from Hopkinton to Boston. Yesterday I learned that I still get emotional crossing a marathon finish line. Even the eighth time around I get choked up. I also officially like New York again. Columbia made me associate New York with endless work, humid weather, and no time to play in one of the coolest cities in the world. If the New York Marathon didn’t go well, chances of me falling back in love with the city were low. But wow, the course, the crowds, the energy. I’m still on a high.

Here are Brent and I on the subway to our airbnb in Little Italy.img_2300
And here we are cabbing it to the expo on Saturday morning. Marathon expos are like a candy store to me. So much nerdy running stuff! Despite warnings that Saturday would be insane, we didn’t have to wait to pick up our bibs.
Rockin our bibs. Love this picture!

Not sure when I’ll be able to use these gloves in LA, but I had to get a pair of the 5 borough gloves at the expo.

After the expo we got more carbs at OatMeals. I had the Elvis with bananas, peanut butter, bacon and honey and a cashew fruit and date oatmeal. This marathoner needs her carbs. We also met the owner who said she was thinking of expanding to LA. Definitely a good idea.
After the expo we wandered Greenwich Village, my favorite part of New York.

I had to stop by Murray’s Cheese Shop.
After a few hours of wandering, and too much time on our feet we went back to relax before dinner. I worked on my playlist. Judge away. Dinner was at Lil Frankies with the infamous 2:44er Uncle Eddy and Aunt Donna. More carbs. The food was classic New York Italian. It was delicious, and that crust. Nothing beats New York crust. I think I’ll be OK not eating pasta for a while though.
The runners after the last supper.
  The Lowrys + Chenhalls  OK, now it’s race day. Ellen and I took a cab to the Staten Island Ferry.
And took the ferry across before hopping on a bus.
Ran into Emma, a friend of Christine Kelly’s who lives in London. Christine and I ran cross country together. Fun fact, her brother, James Kelly, is a CRAZY fast runner with a PR of 2:19. Spoiler alert, my new PR is exactly an hour slower than him. See you in a few hours, Manhattan!
The Ultimate Running Buddy.   Here we are after the cab, boat and shuttle at the starting line village in Staten Island. The bridge looks so big!
  Coffee, bagels, and gatorade. The calm before the storm.
We then had to part ways, and I had to go to my scary corral full of fast men that I somehow got placed in. The corrals have their own restrooms that I used twice in the span of 20 minutes. Yup, race nerves. My garmin also decided to freeze on me so I frantically asked people for help and was able to bring it back to life. Fun fact: Push weird combinations of buttons if your garmin isn’t working and it’ll reset.   We then walked up to the starting line as a corral. I was Wave 1 Corral B.
I made friends at the start line because I needed to take my mind off the fact I’d be running a marathon in a few minutes. Here I am with my fake smile!The race started at 9:50. It was such an honor to start with the elite men. Meb was just a few yards ahead of me! Here I am as I arrived in Manhattan, when the race really starts. After Santa Clarita’s crumble at mile 16, I always smile extra big when I reach mile 16 feeling good.

Stolen from instagram 🙂

Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 5.38.24 AMMeredith, my Columbia roomie, came out and cheered for me near Marcus Garvey park. I felt my unhappy piriformis muscle at mile three. It felt like it took extra energy to lift my left leg than my right. I felt it the whole way though but just kept thinking, one more mile..one more mile. If I can fix whatever is going on there, I’ll be unstoppable. It wasn’t bad enough to stop, but I was definitely feeling it.

Here I am with my finish line smile! Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 6.20.15 PM

Number 8 done, and a PR. We always want to run faster. The 3:19:01 annoyed me, but hey, you can’t be greedy. A PR is a PR, and they say you never PR in New York. Ellen and I proved them wrong. Ellen earned a PR with a 3:35:22. Incredible on such a challenging course. The second I finished the run I called my Papa to tell him all about the race. He tracked me the whole way and was the first person to tell me my official finish time. I then checked my tracker to see how Ellen was doing. I was a nervous wreck waiting for her to finish the race.

Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 8.32.46 PMReunited with the Brent, who I stopped to give a kiss to at mile 18!
Uncle Eddy was waiting for me at the Grand Seating at the finish line. He is such an inspiration to our family of runners. Anyone who sub 3s at their first marathon before the days of gu, hydration packs, and tech shirts is hardcore. After the race I wasn’t sure what I was in the mood for…then it hit me…I want something greasy….JOE’S PIZZA!
Check out my awesome hat hair.
I’m a data nerd, so here are some numbers from my journey through the city.   Second half splits. I really need to stop being super nervous and conservative at the beginning. Next race I’m putting myself out there a little more. I should NOT have been able to run a 6:23 at mile 26. Although it did feel pretty cool passing all the men. And mile 16 I lost reception. I was on the bottom part of the Queensboro bridge.
7:30 was the pace I was trained for. Too bad it didn’t translate to a 3:15 because I ran quite a bit more than a marathon yesterday. Should really consider that when I pick a race pace…Took just a few steps yesterday…

Reunited with Ellen and refueling with the best cookies in the world. Seriously. Best cookies in the WORLD with the best running buddy I could ask for!
Before jumping into the pros and cons of the race, I just want to say thank you to all the spectators. I saw my friend Celia from middle school and high school at mile 8, my incredibly supportive husband at 18 and 23, Meredith from grad school at 22, Anna at 23. It just meant so much to have them there. Alaina was texting me throughout the race, sending good luck vibes from Los Angeles, and my family was sending love via text throughout the race. Thank you so much. I run for me, so the fact that anyone else cares or is interested in supporting me means so much. Also, to those of you who I don’t know who cheered for me, thank you. I wish I could individually thank the volunteers who gave me water, each child I high fived (I’m kinda into high fiving at marathons), and I want to give a special thanks to the spectator who at mile 19 looked me in the eye and said, “You go girl!” as I ran in a sea of men twice my size. It gave me an incredible boost of energy, and I don’t think she even realized the impact it would have. Thank you New York.

PROs:

  • Best tracking iPhone app. Friends and family were not only getting splits every 5K, but there was a map showing me moving across the course.
  • Frank Sinatra playing at the start as you cross the Verrazano bridge.
  • Community support from all the neighborhoods we ran through.
  • Cleary marked of water stands.
  • The ROAR as you came off the bridge and ran into Manhattan.
  • Expo was organized with a huge variety of vendors.
  • Love the long-sleeve race shirts.
  • Amazing logistics. Everything from the ferry, to the shuttles, to people walking around with signs that say “Ask me questions!” to the finish line post-race bags and ponchos. Just so well organized.
  • Awesome, classic medal.
  • You like a celebrity with all the crowd support.
  • Big screens on First Avenue showing the elites running.

CONs:

  • Late start? I personally liked having time to digest my breakfast and get ready for the run.
  • Waiting around at Athletes’ Village.
  • Crowded. Hard to push the pace if you had a strict time goal.
  • Expensive. But I imagine it isn’t cheap to shut down the streets of NY.
  • Tough course. It’s hillier than I thought it would be. I’m usually very even paced, but I was all over the place.

I have to agree with what they say If you’re going to run one marathon in your life, run New York.

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6 thoughts on “New York Marathon Race Review

  1. What a great race recap! You are insanely fast!! I never even considered running NYC but your post is making me think it’s not as terrible as I imagined. Congrats on your PR! And great race pics – thanks for sharing! I love NYC food!!

      • I’ve run Bataan Memorial Death March Marathon, Marine Corps Marathon, and Disney World Marathon. Not sure if you’ve run any Florida marathons but they are basically parties where people happen to run. You’d clean up at Miami Marathon with your times! (I only run the half there)

  2. Pingback: Three Weeks to the New York City Marathon – CapitalRunnerGirl

  3. Pingback: Running These Days | The Restless Runner

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