Monday, August 06, 2007

NYC Half Marathon Race Report

Here is my NYC Half Marathon report. It was hot, hot, hot on Friday and Saturday, but it cooled down Saturday Night. Salome, son John & I got into the city about 3 PM on Friday. We stayed near central park on 57th Street & 6th Ave. We hit the Nike store which was nearby for the number pickup and of course gear shopping. Some nice shirts and hats. John & I did the Empire State Building while Salome shopped at Macy's. That night we got tickets to see "Avenue Q"---very funny.

Saturday morning we walked a bit in Central Park and walked within feet of Sting and his wife strolling in the park. Then, we took a tour of Lincoln Center. After that, John made me take him for a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. Very hot. I kept buying Gatorade from vendors to keep hydrated for Sunday's race. The subways were so hot, I joked that we could bake cookies just by holding cookie dough in our hands.

We did the Pasta feed which was at BB King's House of Blues on 42nd Street. Not too fancy, but its always nice to eat with other runners.

It was about 70 on Sunday Morning. The first 7 miles were in Central Park, so it kept it nice and cool. About 10,000 ran, so the first mile or two were congested and kept me from going out too fast. I picked it up in the 2nd 5K to come in at just over 50 minutes for the 10 mark. The run down 7th Avenue into Times Square was surreal. They had the race broadcast playing in Times Square, so you could see runners running in Times Square as you ran. Too cool for words. We turned west on 42nd Street and ran over to the West Side Highway. From there it was South to Battery Park. Fortunately, the course was mostly shaded from buildings in the early morning hours. I crossed the finish in 1:44:32. Salome, who was fighting a bit of a stomach virus, bonked about mile 11, but still finished in a respectable 2:24. It was neat sitting on benches in Battery Park recovering and looking out to the Statue of Liberty. Overall, a great experience that I can recommend if ever you want to do this race.

After we ate a brunch and showered, we took the studio tour of NBC Studios. Later, we did a museum visit at the MoMA. The new building is spectacular and I wanted John to see the collection of Impressionists, the Picasso's, and the Andy Warhol's. We ate at a Greek restaurant near our hotel and flew out at 9:30 PM.

All in all, a great time. Yes, August in NYC is a bit of a gamble, but I was glad we did it. Now, we are off the race circuit until mid September when we run the another half on Sept. 16th: The Philly Distance Classic. After that, we'll step up the distances for our training for Dublin.