My Favorite Quote:

"There is an inner beauty about a woman who believes in herself, who knows she is capable of anything that she puts her mind to. There is a beauty in the strength and determination of a woman who follows her own path, who isn't thrown off by obstacles along the way. There is a beauty about a woman whose confidence comes from experiences; who knows she can fall, pick herself up, and move on."

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Marathon #14: Pre-Race Thoughts

Saturday, October 31, 2015
After an unexpected injury two weeks before NYC last year, I was lucky to get a second chance at this race by being admitted into the lottery in March 2015.  I actually cried when I received the email saying that I was admitted.  I couldn't believe it.  It took me 4 years the first time to get in and then I got right back in the following year, with only 15% of U.S. applicants getting in.  Pretty cool.

I saw this as my second chance - a redo - to have a NYC race that I'd be proud of.  But a couple months after being admitted, I ran the Med City Marathon in May and realized that I was just "done" with running for awhile.  But, with a second chance at NYC I couldn't exactly stop and take the break that my soul was telling me I needed - so I pushed on and kept running, but without much heart.

As NYC approached, I was getting excited.  I love that city and this would be my 6th time there.  I was excited to see the only sights remaining on my bucket list and Coney Island was one of them.  I have always wanted to go there and finally I would get to.  We would also be in NYC on Halloween, which we thought would prove to be interesting!  Our hotel was in Times Square too, so we were right in with the crowd!

We flew in on Friday morning and spent the afternoon going to the expo and getting my packet.  As we entered the expo, I didn't have the excitement that I thought I would.  I had a feeling of dread.  I wasn't up for the 26.2 ahead of me and I knew it.  I just wouldn't admit it to myself, so I went through all the pre-race motions.  My heart just wasn't in it anymore.  What a journey I've been on for the past 5 years.  Maybe I just need a little down time, with no training, no feeling the need to HAVE to run, and just run when I feel like it.

Entrance to the Expo
Photo op with my bib!
Start line flag!

We left the expo center and headed out to the "Highline" which was an old elevated railroad that had been turned into a mile and a half walking path/park.  It was really pretty and ran through neighborhoods on the west side of the city.

The Highline

My feet were starting to hurt by now from traveling and being on them all day, but we still had one more thing to do before the day was done.  We wanted to see the finish line and opening ceremony parade for the marathon in Central Park.  There would be fireworks too, but we were too spent and headed back to the hotel after our tour of finish line.

Posing in front of the finish line.

Parade forming.
The French w/ a Baguette, so funny!
The USA!
Can't wait to see this sign on Sunday!

We headed back towards our hotel in Times Square, had dinner at the Olive Garden and then spent the rest of the evening with our feet up, watching HGTV in our hotel room - with no distractions!

On Saturday, we tried to keep off our feet so that I had something left for the race!  We took the subway to Coney Island, which was over an hour trip through Manhattan, over a bridge, and then through Brooklyn.  We walked on the beach, out on the pier, on the boardwalk, and then took a ride on the famous Wonder Wheel!

View of Brooklyn from the subway.
The beach and pier in the distance.
View from the pier.
Eric approaching the Wonder Wheel.

We headed back on the subway and remembered that it was Halloween as people in costumes started getting on the subway.  It was a little freaky to approach an underground subway station and look out and see a big guy in a skull mask and cape!  We headed back to Times Square and found a small Italian restaurant to carbo load in and then walked Times Square to see all the Halloween hoopla!

Pre-race meal!
Times Square on Halloween!

After seeing the interesting sights of the evening and battling the serious amount of people piling into Times Square for Halloween, we headed back to the hotel, watched some more HGTV and crashed for the big day ahead of us tomorrow.

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