Sunday, November 6, 2011

2011 New York City Marathon spectating - 5:35:24

My 3rd slowest marathon ever, but among the top 3 in terms of sheer enjoyment.  My big audacious goals for this race were to have fun, take lots of photos, and meet and talk to people along the way, which was probably the most difficult.  It certainly helped to have left the Garmin at home.

Here's a quick rundown of highlights that come to mind right away...
  • Briefly chatted up Mario Lopez and his 2 running partners if this was their first marathon without recognizing them. Didn't realize it until a half mile into Brooklyn when so many women were screaming his name.
  • Met an older gentleman whose fastest time was 2:25, but was now running in the 6hr range in his 70's
  • Ran for a while with the NYRR in-race videographer photographer, who I ended up giving a pair of my change socks because he was blistering
  • Walked with a friend from about miles 16-18 who just couldn't run anymore and decided to pull off the course.
  • The fandom throughout this marathon is utterly spectacular.  Best marathon strips have to be awarded to 1st Ave. Manhattan and Brooklyn's Greenpoint.  I give Brooklyn the edge.
  • I soaked in the atmosphere approaching the finish, and stood about 100m from the finish taking photos and congratulating people.  All the while, people were imploring, "DON'T STOP!  YOU'RE ALMOST THERE!"  I smiled at them and took their photo.  When I resumed, I couldn't help but have a huge grin on my face.  I resumed my run with a jump and a heel click to screaming cheers and high-fived everyone I could the rest of the way.  
  • No gels or gu on this marathon, and I don't miss it.
  • And lastly, jog/walking a marathon still hurts at the end of the distance, although not quite as much.
If there's any gripe about today, it's the same I've had year after year - why don't they let runners with no bags to pick up on 72?

Now to the photos.  I have to work tomorrow so I didn't get a chance to export a lot, so I'll continue tomorrow.  Here's a few for starters....

I've always caught the bus from midtown.  This was a first for me this year.
Goodbye Manhattan.  See you in a few.

 Mario Lopez and his running partner

One of my favorite shots today

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