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Posts Tagged ‘New York City’

Well, folks. It’s over. I officially ran the ING New York City Marathon this past weekend. My review will come in a few parts, mostly because pictures are on three different cameras. I’ll review the expo, the race itself, and post-race happenings, which may or may not include me walking around NYC dressed as a small homeless person. You’ll just have to read to find out.

I’ll also give an update on how much money I raised for the CPSVP on my last post. I’m still collecting money so I can’t total it yet.

Let’s begin on Saturday. Matt and I met my parents on Staten Island early Saturday morning. In order to get a cheaper hotel room and limit my pre-race day stress, we opted to stay out of Manhattan and close to the start of the race.

Once we got settled, we head to the Staten Island ferry terminal to catch the free ferry over to Manhattan. The SI ferry was great. It cost nothing and offered great views of the city. On our way over I got a glimpse of the bridge that I was least looking forward to running over, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.

Yeah. Jennifer doesn’t like bridges. The smile above is fake.

After stressing over the bridge for about 10 minutes, my family and I walked to the front of the boat and were greeted by beautiful views of the Statue of Liberty and New York City.

After the ferry ride, we navigated our way to the expo hall.

The expo was okay. The room it was held in seemed really small for such a large race. However, while there was also a lack of freebies and small-sized shirts, the entire event was expertly run. There were no real long lines or angry runners; it felt like I was going through customs trying to get my bib and race packet.

We spent an unnecessary amount of time there for one reason: RYAN HALL! Yep. My family was gracious enough to hang around the super crowded expo hall so I could finally meet my elite running idol. He holds the American record at the Boston Marathon with 2:08:41 and he writes a blog that I read regularly.

Oh, what was that Ryan Hall? The secret to being awesome??

Sorry, can’t share the secret. But I will share that we shook hands, pictures were taken, and he signed a program for me. He’s such an inspirational runner that it was so great to see that he’s just as nice in person. Well worth the hour-long expo experience.

After the expo we ventured to Little Italy and ate some good ol’ New York style pizza, which was amazing. Even if the waitress did kind of yell at me for asking about vegetables on my pizza. Guess that’s not cool in the NYC?

When we got back to the hotel for the night, I laid out my race-day clothes and accessories so I could get up and go in the morning. I had a 6 am wake-up call and didn’t want to forget anything!

My next post will be about the marathon itself. I have to wait until I get pictures from Matt and my parents. Here’s a little sneak preview: the Verrazano Bridge wasn’t all that bad, the course was rolling hills the entire time, and I set a new marathon personal record for myself!

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Exciting!

Wednesday: 10 miles; 1:45:something

I had a nice and easy 10 mile run yesterday. It finally felt like October again with chilly temperatures. I have 5 miles scheduled for this evening after work.

Here are some exciting things that happened this past week:

  • I got new shoes that will carry me through the marathon.
  • Matt has successfully found a way to stalk me on Google Maps so he can track me during the race.
  • I received my bib number and starting line placement for race day! I’m in the second out of three waves, which means I’m not last!!
  • I’m running on the lower level of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, which is good since I’m scared of bridges and won’t be able to see how high I am.
  • I read that the bridge sways with 90,000 feet running across it since it’s a suspension bridge. Cue vomiting…now.
  • My official start time is 10:10 am. A little late as far as races go, but I’ll deal.
  • I found out Bobby Flay is running NYC this year. Add another celeb to the list I want to see. So far I have Edward Norton, Jared from Subway (for Erin!), and Bobby Flay.

I have a few product reviews I want to write about in the next few days. AudioFuel sent me more samples and I’ve yet to write them the review they deserve. Also, Erin and I ordered Sparkle Skirts for our 10k on Halloween weekend. I MUST review these skirts because they’re super cute and homemade.

Be happy…it’s almost the weekend!

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Dear Dave and Tim,

Hi. My name is Jennifer and I’m a runner. I’m currently training for the New York City Marathon in November. I’ve run multiple races in my past and I’ve done them all sans music. It’s been nice going at it alone with only the sound of my footsteps and angry cyclists around to carry me along, but things have changed. You two have sung your way into my running bubble…and I’m okay with that.

Now, I’ve run with music on the treadmill before. In fact, I have a running playlist on my iPod with random songs that I feel should motivate me to move by artists like Animal Collective and Britney Spears (don’t judge…blame spinning class). Those songs are full of energy, but I’m an acoustic guitar girl at heart. The techo beats bore me after a while. There’s nothing better than an artist and a guitar, even whilst running. I like music that I can concentrate on.

On Saturday I needed music to run again so, naturally before the Jackson Browne concert on Sunday, I set up my iPod to play Jackson’s (we’re on a first name basis too) new album with David Lindley, “Love Is Strange”. I cruised along for a bit and felt fine before mile 3 hit. A song ended. I stopped. I’m not sure what really happened, all I know is that my legs stopped moving and I contemplated going home. The 12 miles I had ahead of me seemed impossible. It was a real low moment. Why couldn’t I continue? Why was Jackson failing me?

So there I stood, by a tree a little over 2 miles from my house. Even the short run back home seemed daunting. But then I remembered the amazing 7 mile run I had on Thursday. Dave, I thought of you and Tim and “Live at Radio City”. I never thought of stopping during that run; I never thought of the hills I was cruising over.

After 5 minutes of contemplation, I apologized to Jackson (still feel kinda bad about this) and switched albums. I found “Live at Radio City” and “Bartender” started singing in my ears. I zipped my iPod back in my pocket, took a swig of water, and headed off into the distance my suburban neighborhood.

It was a match made in heaven, my running and your wonderous album, and I’m not exaggerating. When my Garmin hit 15 miles, your album ended (I also ran out of water…this could have been the perfect storm so I need to prepare for 16 this weekend).

Thank you, Dave and Tim, for unknowingly putting together the most perfect album. Not just for listening to, but for running to. Without you guys, Saturday’s run might have ended at 3.

Saturday: 15 miles; 2:40something

Sincerely,

Jennifer.

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workout: none; rest day

Today was going to be a Jillian Michaels DVD day, but my body said no. I woke up at 5 am with an awful sore throat, so I slapped Clocky quiet and devoured an extra hour of sleep. Ever since work in Orlando, our busy vacation, and bathroom remodeling (which Matt is mostly doing, but moral support and holding chalk string is hard!), I’ve been so tired and out of it. This morning I tried to get off the metro with an iTunes gift card. It took me two stalls and several attempts before I realized the problem. I want to take a day off work this week to just get myself together. phew.

In happier news, I booked a hotel room for New York! My parents helped me find a great rate just 7 miles from the start. For New York, I’d rather stay close to the start than close to the finish; I don’t mind the trip back to the hotel. I’m always a nervous wreck the morning of a race and I don’t want to deal with the hassle of finding transportation to the start so early in a foreign city.

It feels like my trip is two weeks now that I have everything planned. You wouldn’t guess that I have about 6 months and miles up on miles of training until I arrive in New York City. I’m excited! A new adventure is always fun. And training for a big race is always an adventure. I feel good about the NYC Marathon. I’m going into this race smarter and better prepared. yay!

Fun fact: I used to live on Long Island. We used to go into the city all the time, especially when family visited. I specifically remember two trips into the city: (1) when my dad got us lost trying to find a fish market and we ended up in the not-so-good part of town and (2) when we went to see the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade in the pouring rain with all my family from Massachusetts. I saw Kris Kross. Remember them?!

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