#ENDALZ, Race Planning

A week to go- two years in the making

Two years ago I was in New York City for training for work. I had just come off my first half marathon. Running a marathon had not crossed my mind. But, then I saw the City preparing for one of the largest marathons in the world. And a thought crept into my mind, maybe just maybe I should…could run the NYC Marathon. If you know me, once a thought has entered my brain, I’m going to research the heck out of it and do it. I hadn’t even been running for a year at this point and as I said, literally just finished running my first half marathon. Yet, during my run from my hotel to Central Park it became clear to me that I would run the New York City Marathon. Shortly, thereafter I learned that you could register to run by fundraising for various charities, including the Alzheimer’s Association. At the time my father was years into his battle with Alzheimer’s and the thought of fundraising and running for the Alzheimer’s Association gave my running new purpose. I quickly became acquainted with the woman who organized the charity race entries for the Alzheimer’s Association and marked my calendar for when I could register. This friends is how my quest to run the NYC Marathon began….in October of 2019. In March of 2020, March 8th to be specific I actually registered for the 2020 NYC Marathon. I was beyond excited, until like all other major races the marathon was canceled.

So here we are the end of October 2021, two years later and one week away from the 2021 New York City Marathon. God love my husband who has lived the ups and downs of the stress of this whole process- of registering, the sadness of the race being canceled, the questions of whether I would be able to run this year when the marathon was canceled in 2020. That’s not even going into the amount of marathon talk that has been going on over the last few months. Holy cow- what would normally be a twelve week training cycle has basically been 24 months. It is hard to believe that I’m eight days away from running the race that I have been mentally and physically preparing for the last two years. Many have asked “how are you doing?” The answer is simple- I know I’m physically ready. I know mentally I can go the distance. BUT, I know full well I’m going to be a bundle of emotions. The experience is going to be a tad bit different from my solo marathon around my neighborhood that I ran last Fall. I’m eager to take in all the sights, sounds and the full marathon experience in the greatest City in America. I’m excited for the boys to see a major marathon in action. I’m also totally nervous about all the logistic details. The getting to the bus, the start line and the waiting to start. My Type A mind is on overdrive trying to anticipate all the things I “might” need. I also know full well that I’ve put all of my dad dying energy into my running and preparing for this race. So I’m going to be an emotional mess as I cross the finish line. While he won’t be here to know that I did it, I’m certain he’s going to be watching me every step of the way, that he will be the wind at my back carrying me through five Burroughs and over 5 bridges.

You too can follow along using the TCS New York City Marathon App. My bib number is 19353. Mentally I have an A and a B goal. While the big goal is to finish the damn race. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t have a time goal floating around my head too. More importantly I want to take in and enjoy the entire experience. Never in my life did I think that I would run across the Verrazano Bridge?! Stay tuned for updates next week when I’ll compare my solo marathon from 2020 with the experience of running the largest post Covid marathon in NYC with 33,000 of my closest running friends.

Until next week Central Park!