I don’t even know where to begin. I will definitely write a full recap of yesterday because there is SO much to say. I woke up this morning still in utter disbelief with how yesterday went down. It feels like a dream to finally break 3:10 – and not just break it but to crush it. To finally feel like everything came together (and the weather cooperated). And to negative split a marathon.
But I wanted to drop in and just say a huge thank you. Thank you for all of the good luck wishes, tracking and cheering from afar, cheers during the race, congratulatory messages and comments post-race. My heart is literally bursting with happiness and gratitude. I loved the NYC Marathon before yesterday but after yesterday’s race, it is, without question, my favorite race in the world. There is nothing like running through the streets of your hometown and seeing familiar face after familiar face and hearing your name called hundreds and hundreds of times. Whenever I started to think about how much pain I was in or question how I was going to keep moving forward, I moved myself along the edge of the course and let the spectators push me forward. The cheers, high-fives and smiles literally gave me the energy to keep going. THIS is why I love big marathons. THIS is what makes NYC so very special and why I’ll keep coming back despite the hills, wind and tough course.
I plan to get an update sometime over the next few days – but it likely will happen on my flight on Friday. My husband and I are headed to VEGAS for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Vegas Half marathon (aghh!). It’s the first time that we will be away together from the boys for more than one night since they were born. I’m so pumped for some time with my husband, friends and the chance to experience the Strip at Night!
So here’s a quick recap in the meantime:
With the exception of one stretch around mile 9 or 10, I felt really good over the first half. Felt like I was running pretty comfortably and had been reserved through that point. I had no concept of what my half time would be until around mile 12 and realized I was coming right where my coach, Mary, wanted me to be. But I was concerned with the upcoming Queensboro and how my body would respond after that big, long climb.
The Queensboro came and went – and my pace barely slowed. I was kind of in shock as it was happening – I saw tons of runners walking or slowing and I felt like I was speeding up. I felt STRONG.
The next few miles passed in a blur – I felt like I was soaring and I was ticking off sub-7 min miles despite a nasty headwind and having already run 16-17 miles.
Then we were into and out of the Bronx. And then things got really tough. It’s mile 21 of a marathon – I knew it would be tough. But wow. You forget how much pain you are really in that far into a marathon.
But then Mary was there. Standing on the side of the road. And she started running with me. For a mile she ran with me. Told me how proud she was. Told me how strong I looked. Gave me a huge pep talk. And then said to go run my race.
I was ready to fight.
Then it was the 5th Avenue hill. Focused on just one foot in front of the other. Made it to the top. So tired. But there was the entrance to the PARK! Oh my gosh. Almost mile 24. This is when I first realized I was going to PR. And run sub-3:10. But I had no concept of what my time could be. I just ran. All out. With every ounce of energy and strength I had left. I was so tired. In so much pain. But I was running a 7:00 min/mile. At mile 24 of the freaking NYC Marathon. I’m still in shock.
The next couple of miles were a blur of exhaustion, excitement, pain and utter disbelief. Made the right on Central Park South. Awful headwind. Dig. Fight. This is it. Made the right back into the park. Grandstand seating. My husband – crying with happiness for me. Hearing spectators scream my name. Push. Finish line. And then collapsed into my friend Jeannine’s arms who came to congratulate me.
Official splits from the race:
Yesterday was the best executed race – and best race of my life – without question. I woke up this morning 100% satisfied and content with how I raced yesterday. I literally would not change one thing.
Thank you, again, for following along through the ups and downs. I’m definitely going to ride this high and celebrate for as long as possible!!!
If you raced yesterday, I hope it was a wonderful, strong, happy race for you !!