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Start: 5:45am at Columbus Circle, Manhattan West

Temp: 69 °F

Today is Friday and I usually never ever run on Friday. Monday being another non-run day. However I am going to be out of town this weekend and the next weekend I am going to Colorado for two weeks for my 10-day Vipassana sit. So when I learnt that a few of my Galloway group members were running the 18-miler today, I decided to run with them and get this distance done in preparation for my NYC Marathon training.

It was tough waking up at 3:45am on a week-day as I was tired from work the previous day. Nevertheless I pushed myself out of the bed, got ready and jaunted to the train station for my journey to New York. By the time I reached the start point I was late due to the train. I called up the group leader who told me where they were and I said I would run and catch up with them. I did meet up with them on the Hudson River walkway. I will let the pictures tell rest of the story.

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I had written an earlier post mentioning how lucky I was to have made it to the 2010 NYC Marathon lottery. With just 3 months to go before the marathon, I want to keep my focus on the race and not get emotionally sidetracked by other issues. This marathon is special. For the first time, world record holder Haile Gebrselassie (2h:03m:59secs) is running this race. I may never get to see him during the race, but to be one amongst the participants is a pride in itself.

I ran 6.5 miles this morning and have also lost a bit of weight. I feel upbeat and hope to keep my training on track. Two of my running buddies with whom I initially started running in the 2008 Asha Marathon program are also running the NYC for the first time. I am excited and look forward to their company and running with them at the event.

Please wish me luck as I prepare for the marathon. Thanks!


Cheerful boy

Running long and hard is an ideal antidepressant, since it’s hard to run and feel sorry for yourself at the same time. Also, there are those hours of clear headedness that follow a long run.

– Monte Davis, runner


Pic: The concrete boardwalk at Long Branch, NJ which was part of the route

The New Jersey Full Marathon, which I finished on May 2 ‘10, was the most difficult marathon I have ever run, and I am glad I could finish it.

It is a scenic route in parts and is a two-loop and mostly flat course with an oceanfront start and finish. Running through Long Branch and the adjacent communities of Monmouth Beach and Oceanfront, the Atlantic Ocean provides a uniquely inspiring backdrop to strenuous physical effort – and makes your achievement feel powerful and momentous when you finish.

The runners numbered 10,000 people and the event consisted of full-marathon, half-marathon and team relays. I ran the full-marathon which was completed by 1386 people, of which 810 were men.

It was by no means an easy run, not just for me but for many others too. There was a large number of dropouts due to the surprisingly hot and searing 90s (F) heat that day. Several ended up requiring medical help on the route. Not even water sprayed with garden hoses on the runners by helpful house owners on the route provide much relief.

And disappointingly enough, there was no food after the race, just bananas which were just not enough.

Am glad I could complete this difficult run. More so, because I had practiced very little due to my India trip and a very cold winter in NY this past season which prevented me from running much outdoors.

Its two weeks since the marathon and I am not yet fully recovered. However, I plan to get back to training from this weekend for the NYC Marathon I am running this year.

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