Monday, November 07, 2011
I ran the ING New York City Marathon for the second time yesterday -- and it was amazing. Finishing 26.2 miles was more exciting and much harder than I remembered it to be. Luckily, Sunday was the perfect day for a race with clear, blue skies and temperatures in the low- to mid-50s. Plus, the nice weather meant that the crowds were robust along most of the course.
I'd trained by myself (without a team or a coach), and usually I would head out for my run without a real sense of how fast I was running: I was just getting in the miles at my own speed. A few weeks ago, I'd planned to run the Staten Island Half Marathon as a testing ground for my marathon pace, but shin pains made me decide to skip the race and go easy on my ailing legs. So, when I lined up at the start yesterday, I didn't really have a sense of how fast I would run.
In 2009 I'd finished my first marathon in 4:00:56, and in the back of my mind, I knew I wanted to break four hours, but I honestly didn't think I was ready to do it. However, when it came time to race, I gave it my all and found myself with a finishing time of 3:56:59. It was a lot of work, but I am thrilled to have broken the four-hour barrier -- even it might have been an easier afternoon if I'd kept the pace a little slower. I owe, many thanks to my husband for all his patience with my endless training and to all my friends who came out and cheered for me: Thank you!