- walk into corrals with lisa. there are port-a-potties in the corrals and i decide we should wait on the line and try to pee one more time before the race starts. it was after this that i decided that i was fully prepared to piss on myself if i had to pee during the marathon. i apologize if that just grossed you out. okay, no i’m not.
- once they open the corrals and the crowd starts walking forward to the start, everything just seems so surreal. lisa and i cut through people trying to get as close to the start as possible. someone sings god bless america and i cup my hands and say a silent prayer. next up? new york, new york. i cannot, for the life of me, not get choked up. i sing, everyone sings. it is one of the most magical moments i can imagine. does any other marathon have a start like this?
mile 1 (verrazano bridge):
- thank god i chose to wear the shorts! it is so unbelievably hot that i shed the two softball socks that were acting as arm warmers. it’s not even windy up here either. in 2009, i ran the first 2 miles with my hands on my head trying to keep my hat on.
mile 2 (verrazano bridge)
- the downhill and excitement is making me too fast. i keep repeating to myself “save it, save it.” also, my breathing is way off because i started the race all choked up from “new york, new york” and wasn’t breathing correctly. awesome, 2 miles in and i have a side cramp. i massage my cramp and work on my breathing until we get into brooklyn.
brooklyn (miles 2-13)
- absolutely unbelievable. brooklyn, you should be proud. the crowd support was incredible. the fans were loud and enthusiastic and i got choked up every time i thought about how much i love this city and how amazing new yorkers are (which was often, i spent most of brooklyn trying to suppress tears)
- I looked for Alison but missed her (again!)
- i laughed at the sign that said “you are the .1%” someone is witty and knows their facts! fyi, approximately .1% of the population has run a marathon.
queens (miles 14-15)
- why is queens always a blur to me? honestly, i cannot remember anything from this borough. i had a rough time with the pulaski bridge this year (the bridge connecting brooklyn to queens) and i feel like i spent all my time in queens thinking about getting myself over the queensboro bridge.
59th street bridge (miles 15-16)
- this bridge just sucks the life right out of you. now, as much as this bridge sucks and as much as i was struggling, i did not want to slow down and i MOST DEFINITELY did not want to walk. unfortunately, that was not the general consensus and i spent a lot of this bridge angrily going around walls of walkers. annoying.
- also, i ran next to a young girl for part of this bridge and listened as she spoke out loud to herself “i’m coming mom, don’t worry, i’m coming.” insert ang tears (again).
manhattan (miles 17-20)
- i get off the bridge, and suddenly, my left quad tightens up so badly that i legit feel like i cannot move my legs. wtf? well, left quad, you can suck it because i’m not walking. so yea, i ran and massaged/slapped my left quad simultaneously for about a quarter mile or so, trying to ease the tension that was building.
- i run along the left side of first avenue because i know thats where my family will be waiting. i can’t lie, i was extremely anxious to see them. 17+ miles with no familiar faces is rough.
- right after the poland spring sponge station, i see my parents, seth, john, and uncle peter! i wave frantically and blow a kiss, knowing that seeing them will hold me over until i get up to 116th street.
- after i pass the fam, i go back to massaging/slapping my quad. stupid quad! what is wrong with you?!
- at 116th, i run to the side to grab a gatorade from he-who-must-not-be-named. he passes me the gatorade and still running, i take a sip (which essentially means all the gatorade goes onto my shirt as opposed to in my mouth), and look up at him- “i’m hurt, but i will keel over before i slow down.” when i think back to those words, i’m super impressed with myself. who knew i had it in me?
- i see sunim before she sees me on 118th. she jumps in to run with me for a little bit and tells me that i look great. my response? “my quad hurts so f*cking bad!” well, at least i didn’t look like i was hurting!
bronx (miles 20-21)
- really loud this year. good job, bronx. also, mysterious quad tension kinda dissipates at this point. guess all my massaging/hitting worked. the whole time i was running through the bronx, all i could think about was just getting to the madison avenue bridge. i NEEDED to be in the last borough. i NEEDED to be over the last bridge.
manhattan (miles 21-26.2)
- harlem, you rock. seriously. and it’s not just because i live in you. absolutely fantastic crowd support once we got back into manhattan. i loves me some harlem.
- somewhere along madison avenue, i see asteria over on the side. she holds up her bag of magic and says “you want?” UHHH YES! SIGN ME UP! i took 2, with the instructions of chewing them really well and drinking water the next time i could. i love these things. they are magical tabs of glory. (don’t ask me what they are because i have no clue… i’m assuming they’re pure glycogen)
- before i saw asteria, my body was just giving out. i couldn’t go faster, everything was tight, everything hurt. this was my “wall” and asteria was exactly where i needed her. it’s amazing how quick those little tablets (that look, taste, and have the consistency of chalk) kick in. by the time i reached sunim on 118th and 5th, i felt good and i gave her the instructions- “tell my parents, 45 minutes.”
- right before mile 22, there was a giant jumbotron that was playing messages that friends/family could upload to the asics website. i stepped over a mat that would alert the system that i was in viewing distance of the jumbotron. i knew my mom had uploaded a few so i made sure to look up. i smiled. this is what i saw:
- it was after i saw sunim that i just set out to zone out. 5th avenue is one giant uphill and honestly, i just did not want to remember this part. i must have been completely in the zone because i didn’t even realize when he-who-must-not-be-named jumped in and ran with me for a little bit. i think at one point i turned to him and said “heyy, what are you doing here?” me = delirious.
- once we turned into central park, i sighed just a little. the absurd uphill was over and i could enjoy some downhills for a while. at mile 24 i looked down at my watch. i could PR. i could PR by a solid 9 or 10 minutes unless something awful happened and i needed to crawl the next two miles. i also had two lovely gentlemen jump in to run with me right around this point. thanks guys!
- i wanted to go faster, i really did. the entire second 13.1 i wanted to go faster but my body just couldn’t do it. HOWEVER, once i saw the 800m sign, it was like every pain just evaporated and suddenly i was speedy gonzales. i remember thinking to myself- “5 minutes. i can do anything for 5 more minutes.” it’s amazing how that happens.
- i gave it my all. i was leaving nothing on this course. an uphill .2 right after a 26 mile run? bring. it. on.
- i threw my hands up and just basked in it. 9 minute PR. badass.
- get my medal. i love being a pushy, little new yorker because i have no qualms about pushing in front of everyone. give me my medal damnit!
- also, i cut the photo line. woops!
- i grab a foil blanket and wrap myself up tight. i might be hot now but i know i’ve got about 3 minutes before my teeth are chattering.
- nyrr, good looks on the legit recovery bags this year.
- i had a lovely little volunteer help me walk over to cherry hill where i was able to get the bag that i checked (helloooo sweatpants!).
new york city, i love you. you are worth it. i’ll see you next year for a sub-4:30.
|walking/waddling to my family on 72nd and columbus.|