It is hard to believe that it has already been more than a week since the New York City Marathon. It is always amazing to me that you plan, train and think about a race for months, and it is over in a few hours. Post-marathon blues? Yes. Definitely.

Anyways. Like I mentioned before, I ran the New York City Marathon when we first moved to Brooklyn in 2010. It was a great way to say “hello” to the city. I wanted to run it again as soon as I finished. New York Road Runners has a great program where they offer local marathoners guaranteed entry if they run nine local races and volunteer at one throughout the year. I set my sights on 2013.

This was well before we came up with the idea to relocate to Austin, TX… so it was a happy accident that it ended up being my final “goodbye” to the city that I had called home. It just seemed like a good way to close that chapter in my life.

I had the crazy idea to run the Wineglass Marathon in early October, less than a month from the New York City Marathon. I knew at that point, that this race would be a fun race. And that it was.

 

We ventured to the expo the day before and I could not believe how sold out the Asics section was… unless you were an XS in everything, you were not finding any gear. Luckily Brooks had some awesome shirts that I couldn’t resist. (I love getting at least something beyond the race shirt from these bigger races.)

{it made a really comfy post-race moving shirt!}

It was a relaxing day — afterwards, we headed to Rattle N Hum for lunch and home to pack a bit more, before finally venturing to Chipotle. I was in bed by 10 p.m., ready to wake up at 5:20 a.m. the next morning.

{race day threads! these shorts from oiselle are my favs}

I elected to take the subway to the ferry and finally to the bus. I knew that with all that happened at Boston, security was going to be a little crazy. There were cops everywhere checking people’s bags, but it wasn’t insane until we got to the runner’s village. There were metal detectors set up and when we got off the bus, each of us had to be frisked with a metal detector from a cop. It was way more than I expected.

Even though I ate a bagel and a half that morning, another bagel sounded so good… and luckily they had them at the Runner’s Village. This is the one part of marathoning that I have yet to figure out — pre-race fueling. I haven’t perfected that morning breakfast yet. But this extra bagel seemed to do the trick.

Before I knew it, we were being shuffled to our corrals and it was almost time to start. Runners started throwing their gear on top of the buses, we listened to the national anthem and with a loud boom of the cannon, Frank Sinatra’s “New York New York” started to play. I started to sing it with the other thousands of runners, but had to stop. It was literally at this moment that it hit me that we were leaving New York. Forever.

A few minutes later, I was crossing the start line and we were racing. I knew that I would see C around mile 7 (just a few blocks from our apartment!) so when I started getting toasty, I was ready to peel off those arm warmers. I wasn’t sure how I would feel, given our recent trip to Sydney and lack of training leading up to the race. But I was feeling pretty great! I was on the shoulder of the 3:30 pace group and felt like I started hitting my stride around mile 5. I saw C, threw my arm warmers and continued on.

Around mile 10, my body started to yell at me a little bit… it was starting to get a little mad at me. Along with my gut, which meant a quick-ish port-a-potty stop (which equalled a three minute time loss because I chose the bathroom stop with one port-a-potty instead of the 12 up ahead *sigh*). I reminded myself to have fun and continued on, high-fiving as many people as I could.

Queensboro Bridge is tough because it’s quiet and feels like it’s a turning point in the course. Knowing that you have Manhattan around the corner is super refreshing… especially the loud wall of screaming that you hear when you make that final turn off the bridge. The streets were FULL through the 90s! I saw C again in the early 100s, followed by Ashley! Woo woo!

This gave me some extra steam, which I funneled into anger around 118th street, or mile 19-1/2. At this point, a volunteer was on the course telling all runners to stop running because some spectators had to cross to the other side. SERIOUSLY. Everyone was furious. This is the 14th marathon I’ve run, including some small ones, and I have never in my life heard of runners being asked to stop participating in their race because of spectators. If it was an emergency or something along those lines, I could totally understand. But it was some people who just wanted to be on the other side. #Ridiculous

The anger pushed me a little bit more and suddenly we were in the Bronx, which is one of my favorite parts of the course. They seriously have so much energy and passion up there! Loved all the cheering and signs.

Once we were back into Manhattan heading back to Central Park, I was just focusing on getting one step in front of the other… and seeing C once again. And of course, enjoying the beautiful fall leaves. In Central Park, I pushed a little harder and crossed the finish at 3:44.19. And got to enjoy one of those amazing little post-race ponchos.

{thank you, random strangers, for letting us use your sign}

 

This was definitely one of the toughest marathons I’ve run. Physically, I wasn’t ready for the challenge that was in front of me. I thought I was in better shape than I was (oops) and it hurt. It was even a bit of a mental challenge — after all, I had 26.2 miles to reminisce and think about my favorite experiences in the city. However, I would have done it exactly the same if given the chance. It was an incredible experience and an amazing memory to cherish for years to come.

 

Did you run NYC Marathon? What did you think? Link to your recap if you have one!



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