This is the first in an installment of a 16 week blog series called “No Sleep Till Central Park” in which I will pay tribute to the great NYC Marathon, while sharing my insights on the course and chronicling my training, notably, my quest to finally break 4:30. The title “No Sleep Till Central Park” is a nod to the Beastie Boys tune “No Sleep Till Brooklyn”. RIP MCA. It also pays tribute to my Grandparents who grew up in Brooklyn right along the marathon course in Bay Ridge.
I have run the NYC Marathon twice, the first time in 2007 and the second in 2009. Both were PRs for me. Granted they were my 2nd and 3rd marathons. But still the 2009 time of 4:39:50 still stands as my marathon PR. It hangs on fridge as if it is taunting me. I have tried three times to break it, Chicago 2010, Philadelphia 2011 and London 2012. I came up short each time. I finished all races but sans the PR.
November 4, 2012 is my day of reckoning. I am returning to the course where the record was set. I will be on a level playing field. No excuses, although I realize an injury or severe weather will be an exception to this. Absent of those, this PR is going down!! As a Long Island native and former inhabitant of the island of Manhattan, I am returning to my old stomping ground. It is a course I know, a crowd I love and a city where anything is possible.
NYC is home to 8.2 million people. Conventions, conferences and even sessions at the United Nations can go on and 75% of the city will not notice. But when the Marathon comes to town, you can feel the vibe. The city gets a little more crowded and the water coolers at Duane Reade need to constantly be restocked. The runners are magnificent. Half the field is from outside the United States which makes it a diverse and eclectic group of runners. When I ran in 2009 a man ran with a humongous Eiffel Tour on his head. Crazy, but sort of cool.
The NYC Marathon is probably the best way to tour the city, if you can run 26.2 miles. You get to go through the five boroughs, run over five bridges and finish in the world famous Central Park. And you do this all with about two million people cheering you on. It is truly a unique experience and I feel very lucky to be experiencing this for my third time.
Over the next 16 weeks I will highlight sections of the course, give you some idea what to expect, and update you on my training. Feel free to comment and add your insight on the course or tell me about your training.
Thanks for following.