I had tons of fun in the NYC leading up to the big day However, I came to New York to run a marathon. There are so many reasons to run the NYC Marathon. One of them is that it happens on the day we turn our clocks back an hour. So, you get an extra hour of sleep! Second, the race starts late for a marathon. So, you get to sleep in even without the time change. I don’t think I’ve ever had as much sleep on the night before a race than I had for the NYC Marathon. On the night before the race, I thought about sleeping an extra half hour from my original plan. But, I woke up at 5am without the alarm. I laid in bed for about 15 minutes before deciding to just get up and get ready. Before I knew it, I was ready to head out to the buses.
I spent a lot of time weighing the options about how to get to the start line. Originally, I had thought I wanted to take the bus. So, I booked the hotel that was both close to the New York Public Library (where the bus picks up) and as inexpensive as possible. When I looked at the map, I had no idea how close the Hotel St. James was in reality to the bus pick up. It was perfect. It took me around 10 minutes to walk to the line.
Yep. There was a long line to get on the buses. I’m so glad I left early. Although, I don’t think it all mattered too much what time your bus was going. Still, being in line facing Times Square was a pretty cool way to start Marathon day!
Eventually, I made it to the New York Public Library!
Even though the line was long, it went ball rather quickly. I had some fun chats with other runners from all over. Some, were like me, on their first NYC Marathon. Others, were vets and had lots of great advice. As I waited in line, my main focus was keeping everything light. I didn’t want to stress out over this race before it started. I think I did that too much with the LA Marathon and Chicago. Both times, I started off with the dry heaves. I didn’t want that this time around.
Once on the bus, it was all good times. I had a fun chat with my seat mate who last ran the NYC Marathon back in the 1990’s. He was hoping for a PR on this day. I told him how this was my last marathon for a while and my vague idea of a plan to get to Boston. It was awesome to get some of his advice for approaching this next phase!
Before I knew it, we had made it to Fort Wadsworth! Using the bus was easy peasy. It did take a little bit to get over the Verrizano Bridge. It was super fun to see the official start line as we passed by on the opposite side!
It was getting super real as I got off the bus. The Verrizano Bridge was off in the background. Soon, I’d be running over it!
After exiting the bus, we were off to the security check area. To be honest, it was much easier to get through security than I thought it would be.
Just past security, we arrived in the runner’s village!
Once in the village, I took some time to get a lay of the land. I really wanted to figure out where to get the famous Dunkin’ Doughnuts NYC Marathon beanies. As I had thought about getting one, I initially had no idea where I’d store it. But, by the time I got mine, I decided to just run in it.
I was also very interested in finding the therapy dogs that were mentioned in the pre-race information. I was super excited to find them!
When the lady with this dog saw me getting the selfie, she asked if I wanted her to take a picture for me. I said, “Absolutely!” I have no idea how much the therapy dogs helped keep me mellow before the start. But, it was really cool of the NYRR to have them for us.
The runner’s village was crowded as expected. I mean, there were a little more than 50,000 runners for this race. I made my way around the area to grab a couple Power Bars, some water, and Gator Aide to fuel up. I had a bagel with me as well. I found a nice spot to chow down on some food.
Then, it was off to the Port-A-Potties. Since I took the 6:30am bus and didn’t start until 11:00am, I had plenty of time to wade through the line.
After the Port-A-Potty stop, I went off to wait for my corral to open. I asked some of the volunteers when the corrals would open so I could make sure to hold on to my throw aways as long as I could. Eventually, with a slight drizzle, I ditched the throw aways and got into my corral. I’m kind of glad there was an off and on drizzle by the time we entered our corral because it allowed me to put on the poncho I brought with me before the race started…keeping me from having to waste race time putting it on.
I should mention here, that with each corral that would go off, there was a cannon shot. We all cheered for the runners who were starting their journey ahead of us. The vibe among us runners was so upbeat! I loved it! Before I knew it, I was on the Verrizano Bridge heading to start my NYC Marathon!
This seems like a good spot to take a break. Check back tomorrow as my NYC Marathon Journey continues.