Location: New York, NY
Temperature: 52 degrees
Official Time: 4:15:56 (9:47 pace)
Garmin Time: 4:15:58 for 26.86 miles (9:31 pace)
Place in Age Group (25-29): 964/2818
Place in Gender: 5183/16928
Overall Place: 20701/46795
The Outfit - Epic, as always.
The Swag - Not only was the medal great (love the skyline) and the shirt actually something I would wear, as a member of Team Grassroot Soccer, I was given loads of great swag, including a team uniform furnished by Nike (tee, long sleeve top, capris and shoe laces), compression tights from 2XU, more SoyJoy bars and Muscle Milk than I will ever consume and of course, some Bengay for post-race recovery.
Meeting up with friends/bloggers/celebrities - As you know, Ethan Zohn is a co-founder of Grassroot Soccer and joined us on the marathon team.
But what you might not realize is that five other cast members from this season of the Amazing Race were on our team, as well as, former Survivors, Anthony Sullivan (of infomercial fame, he also made the name tag for my race shirt) and Aaron Scheidies, a 70.3 paratriathlon World Champion.
While in NYC, I was also able to catch up with Kim, my Nuun Platuun vanmate, Melody, Miss Zippy and Molly.The Course Support - I'm sure that if you know anything about the NYC Marathon, it's that the course support is awesome. And it is. There is never a moment when you are alone. Someone is always cheering for you. Pushing you. It is an amazing feeling and reason alone to run this race.
A new half PR - I raced the first 16 miles of this race perfectly. I was right where I wanted to be and when I crossed the mat at the half split, I set a new PR of 1:56:18. That right there, made my race for me. I felt great at that point and I know I can crush the half distance. But do I get to count this one?
No Wall - As much as my legs died over the last 8 miles or so, I never hit the wall. I didn't want someone to drag my body off the course. And I didn't want to stop. Some days you just don't have enough, I may have had legs of lead, but my head was strong.
Post-race logistics - Although the runners were funneled out of Central Park on what seemed like a mile long path, the finish line area was super organized. Every runner received a space blanket, medal and bag full of food. Easy and efficient.
Not Seeing my Mom - My mom doesn't live nearby, so she rarely gets to see me race. Fortunately, she does live close to NYC, so she and my aunt were able to come see me run. They were stationed near the 25 mile marker and although, I never saw them, they saw me. And knowing they were in the crowd (and that I would get to celebrate with them post-race) was awesome.
The Course - I loved this course and I hated this course. It is truly awesome to run through all five boroughs, but the bridges are KILLER and the last six miles are pretty much uphill at just enough of an incline to drain your legs. By mile 25, I was wishing for the downhill finish of the Richmond Marathon.
Crowds - The course was so congested with runners that I found myself doing a lot of weaving, right up until the finish. Due to this, I ran .66 longer than 26.2, a total bummer since I missed a PR by only 8 SECONDS.
8 seconds - Did I mention I missed a PR by 8 seconds? How about the fact that I lapped my watch at 26.2 and it read 4:09:16? Yeah, I'm a little bit bitter about that.
Weather - I know that 52 degrees and sunny sounds like perfect conditions to run in, but honestly, it was too hot for my liking. I would have much preferred 42 degrees, as I was crazy hot any time I wasn't in the shade, which was pretty much all the time.
The Queensboro Bridge - At mile 16, this is the steepest climb on the course. It was also the only time I recall there being any wind. It was brutal. I'd like to erase that bridge from my memory.