2008 NYC Marathon - 3:09:25 / 7:13
3:07:43 at Long Island was nice....But a 3:09:25 at NYC is much sweeter. Although not a PR, i barely knicked the 3:10 BQ standards. I'm in for 2010 as well!
Met up with bro wongster (3:25) to catch the 5:30am bus. We got to the start pretty early and it was freezing cold!!! Two sweaters of insulation and a ghetto-style lo-rider didn't help much after standing out in the cold for more than 3 hours. But heck, it was expected like any other NYC marathons so no biggie. Also, the weather is a moot point. Yes it was cold; I just dealt with it. In addition, just like any other races, it wasn't necessary to forcast the weather. Why be all nervous about the weather? Rain, shine, sleet, wind, you still have to do your best and adapt to the conditions. Hence, no need to use the weather as an excuse. Crap happens.
Coming into the race, I had a goal time in mind. I wanted to prove to myself that I could still hit the sub 3:10 mark on a less terrain-friendlier course. There were times where I asked myself if I can execute a sub 3:10 on a different course than Long Island. All my friends uttered how crazy I was to think that way because the distance is the same. However, not to take away from Long Island, but just doing well on a more difficult course was more satisfying. Let alone, the ambiance, the relatives, the friends and I mean...it is NYC! As much as I was happy to PR at Long Island, now that I think about it, a 3:11 at Charlottesville was even more satisfying.
At the Hamptons, I made a big mistake to go head to head with another runner out of my league and as a result, I ended up screwing myself over. This time, I have to run my own race and depending on how I feel- run at my pace.
I was placed on Wave 1/BLUE/Corral E. Wave starts are not a perfect system based on "predicted" time. But the wave starts are the best system so far to control the bottleneck. I think I kept it real, conservative and honest with my time though.
As for my race strategy, I wanted to go hard but not too hard in the first half so I still have some left for the last few miles.
Final Time: 3:09:25 (BQ)
Age Grade: 66.0%
Half Marathon: 1:31:57
5K- 22.04 - 7.06
10K- 21.22 - 6.52
15K- 21.50 - 7.01
20K- 21.58 - 7.04
25K- 22.31 - 7.14
30K- 22.20 - 7.11
35K- 23.36 - 7.35
40K- 23.41 - 7.37
01: 7:43:65 - As usual, the first mile is always the slowest and most nerve-wrecking. Going up the incline on the Verrazanno, I was happy to hit a sub 8 for the first mile.
02: 6:42:65 - Went too fast, slowed down a bit
03: 6:54:23 - Comfortable pace, saw madlou (3:25) on my peripheral as another TRD passed me.
04: 6:54:16 - Comfortable pace, waved to the japanese tourists--- probably thought i was a jap. Seriously do all asians look alike? But damn they are loud--- I had an ipod on...yup Band of Horses, The National, Smiths, My Morning Jacket, Postal Service, Stereophonics, Franz, Dears, Chili Peppers, Blonde Redhead, Interpol, Margot, Doors, and Bjork...er...sorry i'm digressing.
05: 6:49:05 - Comfortable pace
06: 6:54:73 - Comfortable pace - Konichiwa and arigato to the japanese people--again
07: 6:53:28 - Comfortable pace, threw away the disposible gloves...got too wet
08: 6:59:65 - Finally found another familiar face, Cass (3:13)
09: 7:07:93 - Ran with her for a bit and took off after the half marathon mark.
10: 6:57:58 - As above and of course, for those who know me, I felt right at home in willyburg.
11: 7:08:95 - As above, not in panic mode.
12: 7:02:18 - As above
13: 7:02:99 - As above and waved holla and gl to Cass
Half Marathon: 1:31:57 - Happy to hit this mark, and felt I was on pace.
14: 7:12:03 - Slowed a bit but still at a comfortable pace. At the same time anticipating the Q-Boro bridge...Could mentally visualize the impending uphill..Damn!
15: 7:14:48 - Q-Boro Bridge, 'nuff said
16: 7:25:89 - Q-Boro Bridge...off pace, but not in panic mode. Because a couple of dogs and I did the bridge run and last ten miler with this bridge...I know I could get through this obstacle.
17: 7:02:34 - Could hear the roar from the crowd...this was one of the memorable miles. The crowd, the ambiance, the crunks...just awesome.
18: 7:16:26 - great to see ghetto, mulan, ruda (loved the sign btw) and rose (thanks for the GU). Tried to look for ro and jon but couldnt find them....
19: 7:18:54 - saw the dogs - couldn't make a stop for food or anything. I was starting to get shaky because I knew going up on Willis would be a bloody hell. Afterwards, best bud, Kieran (3:06 PR) tapped me on the shoulder and put on the nitro; as expected. I was like 'wtf'?? Should've punched him- haha
20: 7:27:49 - Saw this japanese tourist from afar in a stupid mouse uniform. I was telling myself, that if I finish this race, at least i know i didnt lose to this douchetard in a rodent costume (sorry that was mean...but sometimes you need something to get yourself going)
21: 7:33:69 - Another TRD'er Dima passed me, I felt that if i could see him from afar I should be ok.
22: 7:28:35 - Started to struggle and hold on to my pace in under 7:40s
23: 7:31:39 - Dreading the 5th avenue climb...Already calculating how much I need to run to get under the 3:10 mark. It is one of those times where your mind keeps telling to go on, but your legs are still trying to find an extra gear. It was difficult because I felt my goal time was already slipping away. I was now in panic mode.
24: 7:58:94 - Saw rose again and finally stopped for my parents. After a tough 2007, I was glad to seem them; especially my dad. At this point, I was really struggling because I was calculating the pace I needed to hit to reach my goal. But seeing my parents was most important as my dad *WHACKed* me on my back. Sometimes a little punch in the back or some physical abuse is essential to get my mind focused. I picked it up a bit as I needed to dig a little deeper and just go for it; this one is for you dad!
25: 7:34:20 - For some reason i felt better. Yes sandy, I heard you! Just entering the park and leaving for central park south was amazing because I could visualize the finish line from my last ten miler training run.
26: 7:37:92 - Yup a 7:37 was the fastest I could push at this point. I couldn't go any faster as i was seriously praying to get through this. I was in anguish and of course my hamstrings were screaming with pain and ready to fall off....great...just great moz.
.2: 1:35:53 - I hate those 400/300/200 meters to-go signs...tragic...seriously this was torture. Luckily from afar i could see that I may finish before 3:10 on the clock. Once i crossed the finished line, I was in disbelief and a bit delirious. But the feeling sunk in pretty quickly...hmmmm like 2-3 minutes later when i got the Mylar blanket?
After I got my medal, I reminisced the race; especially the last 4-5 miles. It was tough but I mentally gutted it out. Yes at mile 23-24, I almost gave up as I was cutting pretty close to my goal time and wasn't sure if I still have the strength to hang on under an 8 minute mile pace.
Now that I'm typing about this entry, I'm still stoke about this result. I'm still visualizing the race and yes there's still a lot improvements to be made. Maybe I should first start revamping to a leaner 2009 schedule :).
Overall, i know i could say this for every other race, but I'm most excited with this result. As much of a headcase as i am, i tried my best to stick to my pace and never mentally gave up. Most importantly, I gotta' thank the 'rents, the sigma-eps, great friends, great coach, the tourists, the suzukis, the crunks, the leprechauns, jontosh (3:06- cya in miami and boston dude!), rups (4:40), the willyburgers and the stupid rodent for pulling me through. Lastly, I would like to say that I finished the race with a 3:09 with my Ipod. Hence, for the anti-headphones, sit down and shut the eff up. Thanks!!!
As usual, NYRR has done an awesome job organizing this race and most importantly, there were TONS of porto-potties.
Next Up Philly!
Also, Kara Goucher should be synonymous with caliente.