TCS NYC Marathon Update!!!

Let’s do this

Quick highlights:

  • Due to a foot injury during Mile 17/18, I did not meet my goal of 4:45 😦
  • This was the first NYC marathon where I ran the entire length of the Queensboro Bridge. 
  • It was the perfect day for a marathon. The previous day and the following day were really nasty and rainy. 
  • My new jock strap was AMAZING; I had no groin chaffing. 
  • This year more people called me K.O.S instead of “kos” or “cos”, compared to previous years. 

Pre-Marathon:

I was a little fearful that I would be too jet-lagged to run 26.2 miles. Actually, y’all made me fearful of being jet-lagged. I spent a week in Madrid, came back to NYC on Friday (technically Saturday; I’ll get into that with my vacation update), ran a 5K race on Saturday, then the marathon on Sunday. 

The marathon expo

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I did not really spend too much time at the expo; I’m pretty much an in and out kind of guy when it comes to being around large crowds of people. Also, I cannot stand waiting longer than 30 minutes for anything. That said, I pretty much received my bib and shirt within 20 minutes. I will say that NYRR really has its shit together when it comes to the Marathon expo. . . I just wish that it was not so far west. 

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The marathon village

Somehow NYRR assigned me a VERY low number for my bib, which meant I was in the first wave of runners. There must be a way to change your bib/wave assignment. The first issue is that last corral in Wave 1 had a predicted finish time of 3:30. Clearly, I am not at that level of running. The second issue is that you have to check your bag with your assigned corral, which means an even longer walk to pick up your bag when you finish. 

img_3546Taking the ferry to Staten Island probably is one of my favorite parts of the marathon. I guess because I rarely go to Staten Island. For some reason, I was not as chatty with my fellow marathoners on the ferry as I have been in previous years. Perhaps, this attitude was due to listening to Lana del Ray’s first album.

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I feel kind of bad because I know that I spent most of the ferry ride rolling my eyes at people. Well . . . In my defense, a pair of women were a little too damn chipper (aka annoying) for 6:00 AM. 

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But, I did manage to smile . . . somewhat (in my PJs) in the start village. 

Ok, this pissed me off a little bit. At the marathon expo, I purchased all of my Gatorade Endurance Gu’s. What do you mean they were giving them out for FREE in the start village? I could have saved $7.  

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The marathon:

Mentally, I told myself that I would run the marathon like this: a 2-mile warm-up, followed by four 6-mile runs. For this marathon, I did not take as many photos as I have done in the past, because I was running kind of strong.  

2-Mile Warm up (Staten Island and Brooklyn)

Clearly, this is one of the best parts of the marathon. Everyone is stoked and ready to tackle running through the five boroughs of NYC. 

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Instead of running with the first wave, I decided to start in the last corral of the second wave. I probably should have started with the third wave. 

First 6-mile Run (Miles 2 – 8, Brooklyn)

I was kind of killing it during this “run”. Because of my crappy training and a week vacation of eating like a pig, drinking like a fish, and smoking like a chimney, I was basically aiming to run a sub 5-hour marathon. At this point of the marathon, I was running a 4:35ish marathon, without exerting too much energy. The Bay Ridge/Sunset Park portions of the marathon probably are the most energetic because of the freshness of the crowds. 

Second 6-mile Run (Miles 8 – 14, Brooklyn and Queens)

I was still running pretty strong. My music playlist really got me through this section, because the Hasidic section of Williamsburg is really quiet compared to the other neighborhoods. This portion of the marathon was more of a snoozefest for me. The halfway point is right around the Pulaski Bridge, which takes you into Queens. Although my Apple Watch said that I hit a 2:08 half-marathon, I knew that I was running pretty fast and had plenty of energy left in my tank. After looking at my race results, my time for the halfway mark was 2:13. Clearly, I was on track for a 4:45, maybe even a sub 4:45   marathon.  

I do not understand why my Apple Watch’s GPS is always off compared to the official results. I know running to the tangent of the course makes a difference. BUT, I was manually marking the 6-mile segments. In the end, it did not matter, because the watch’s battery died somewhere around mile 19. Something that has NEVER happened before. I think that I forgot to turn off the watch’s WiFi so it spent most of the marathon searching for a wireless connection. 

Third 6-mile Run (Miles 14-20, Queens, Manhattan, and the Bronx) 

It was during this part where the shit hit the fan, but that will come later. My beer club volunteered at the Mile 15 fluid station, and it was quite invigorating to see them. Mainly, to shut up the haters who are always like “how can you run a marathon when you drink and smoke so much?” Bitch, it’s because I have evil on my side. That said, it was nice to see a bunch of people that you know, right before the Queensboro Bridge, which is the hardest part of the marathon for me. I would have taken a picture with them, but I did not want to stop because I was making good time. Had I known that I was going to fuck up my foot later, I would have taken a couple of shots with them. 

I was so proud of myself for running the entire length of the Queensboro Bridge, which was a first for me. I even managed to put in a few fartleks on this bridge. 

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The second memorable part of this marathon was entering Manhattan . . . for the first time. The energy of the crowds really powered me through; maybe, it gave me too much power. Somewhere around miles 17 and 18, I felt I weird pain in my right foot. It felt like someone was stabbing my right foot every time it hit the ground. This was the first time that I walked during the marathon (aside from the selfies on the Verrazano Bridge). At first, I thought it was a passing pain, but it was clear that I would have to deal with this for the remaining 7-8 miles. Then, I was crushed. At this point, the following thoughts rushed through my head: 

  1.  Hell no to a 4:45 marathon (my original goal).
  2. You must be out of your fuckin’ mind for a 4:35 marathon.
  3. Bitch, you would be lucky to finish for a sub 5:00 marathon.

At that point, I started texting and curing out the marathon on Facebook. Although this part was a struggle, I did see the free beer folks, and they remembered me from last year. 

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Since I was in pain and did not give a fuck at that point, I had three “shots” of beer with them. That probably was a mistake. 

More shit hitting the fan (no pun intending). Something else happened to me for the first time during this marathon. I was really gassy (maybe it was the beer) around mile 18. I did not want to risk sharting all over myself. I could not find a porta potty to save my life; I eventually found one around Mile 22. I was quite annoyed with NYRR over this. Throughout this marathon, there were porta potties all over the place. Since upper Manhattan and the Bronx are not as “glamorous”, as the other sections of the marathon,  NYRR kind of dropped the ball with the lack of porta potties. 

The marathon photographers always manage to catch me bitching about the marathon on Facebook. 

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Last 6-mile Run (Miles 20 – 20.2, Bronx and Manhattan)

The only thing I remember in the Bronx was how much my foot was hurting, and thinking “where the hell is a goddamn porta potty?”. 

Ok, I finally found a portapotty around Mile 22. I opened the doors to two of them. Looking at all of the poop, piss, and used tampons/pads on and around the seats, made my asshole clinch like nobody’s business. Pretty much, I was like I rather shit on myself (or in some bushes in Central Park) than to put my ass cheeks anyway near this.  Basically, I was all about finishing this thing with the pain in my foot. 

Another cool thing about this section was running through my neighborhood (around Mile 22). I probably could have gone home to take my dump. Actually, that would not have worked, because I did not have my keys. 

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For some reason, running through my neighborhood gave me an extra boost of energy. I was walking/struggling and someone was like “I see you at the bar, and you better start running”. That’s all I needed . . . at least that part. 

This is getting long and I have to pee. 

Central Park was Central Park. Basically, you are done but you are not really done. It was a very pleasant surprise to see Cat ( *** ) in the Park. Although I was almost done, I still had to walk a bit so I could not sprint to the finish. Also, I always forget about that little hill right before the finish. It’s strange that I forgot about the hill because I ran the Abbott Dash to the Finish Line, which has the same finish as the marathon, the day before the damn marathon. 

Anywho, I completed it in 5:08 so I was a little disappointed with myself. Oh well, feet smell . . . I guess. Eh, at least I did way better than last year, so I guess Operation Redemption was not too much of a failure. 

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Outside of getting a medal, this was the second best part of finishing. 

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Taking off my shoes while walking to get my bag. I was like a woman who has been clubbing all night in heels and decides to walk around the city barefoot because her feet hurt. 

Now, the best part of finishing. This is especially for Runeatralph ( *** ).

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I actually had two cigarettes back to back. These Marlboros are from Spain, and I don’t think the Europeans put that much nicotine and tar in them. 

Post-marathon, I hit up Crunch gym to do some much-needed stretching and bathing. I have to say that there was minimal chaffing this time around; my new jock strap worked wonders. 

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Another marathon first:

Since this is the first time that I’ve ever lived near Central Park, I decided to get my medal engraved. In past years, it was not worth it to wake up early and drag my sore ass from Roosevelt Island or Brooklyn to wait in a line and get my medal engraved. This year, I think it helped that my body was still on Madrid time (6 hours ahead of NYC). – I woke up around 6:30 am (thinking it was much later)  the day after the marathon. 

Am I crazy to think this? NYC Marathon medal engraving used to be free, right? Had I known that it was going to be $25 dollars, my cheap ass would not have done it. Of course, I did not know NYRR charged for this service until after waiting about 40 minutes. At that point, I figure that I might as well do it. Did I just make up that engraving was free for previous marathons? 

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Oh lol, the BF came with me get the medal engraved. Here’s a sample of our conversation after getting my medal engraved. 

BF: Kwamicito, I’m going to buy you one of these finishing jackets. 

Me: Bah, all of this shit is going to be overpriced. 

BF: [Looking a the price tag] $250!!! What the fuck?

Me: Told you. 

BF: I’ll buy you booze. 

Me: Even better than the jacket. 

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BTW, I really LOVED the design of the finishing shirts. 

15 comments

  1. You went, you ran, you made it! Great job! Glad to hear the foot pain didn’t detract you from finishing. I ran with my two buddies last night who ran it as well and the one was wearing the finishing shirt… they’re definitely cool!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. glad to see you got right back on that horse this year Kwame! great recap. I think Ill try the smoking and drinking training program next time I run NYC – sounds a lot easier!

    Like

  3. Best review of New York I’ve read, keeping it real. Sorry your foot decided to randomly play up during the marathon. I love the idea of a beer club. we have an after work ‘Beer and Bants’ group which is pretty cool. It’s a shame we only meet up once every two weeks. Your portaloo description reminds me why I try to avoid them during races.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks!!! Your Beer and Bants group meets with the same frequency of my beer group. Correct me if I’m did you start a new job within in the last year? I feel like we were both complaining about job searching/interviewing and transition out of the laboratory.

      Like

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