Running 9.3 miles in a 27 degree snowstorm doesn’t sound like a whole lot of fun to many people, and I totally get that. However, as Roo and I crossed the finish line in 1 hour and 36 minutes, I couldn’t help but think to myself how freaking AWESOME the Ted Corbitt 15K was. Let me back up…
We jumped on the 7:16 train from Manhasset to the city dressed in strategic layers of lululemon, headbands, gloves, and NYC street cart pashminas that we planned on discarding once we started running. The snow was starting to fall while we waited on the platform, but the Facebook post from NYRR that morning said “Game on!” There was no turning back! We made some friends on the N train (the only other ones crazy enough to be wearing running gear), and we chatted the whole way to the starting line at Harlem. Turns out, they are in the same CSA as me! Small (long island) world. We rode the subway to 103rd Street, and we joined the other 5,000 people (yes, five THOUSAND showed up to run in the snow) at the starting line in Central Park. We just kept saying to each other “We’re not the only crazy ones. We’re not the only crazy ones.”
Miles 1-3 were easy breezy. The snow was starting to come down a little heavier, but it was so festive, no one seemed to mind. No joke, we spotted at least 3 Santas on the course. We weren’t too cold as we started out, just anxious to get through the 9.3 miles. We were still wearing the pashminas that we meant to ditch, and they ended up being HUGE lifesavers. Our necks and chins weren’t too exposed, and we kept them on the entire run. Not bad for $5 pashies!
Around mile 4, we got a huge surprise; Annie Martin! Thank goodness for my early morning Instagram, so Annie knew to look for some hot pink pants. Annie helped us through miles 4-6, and those ended up being our two fastest miles of the morning (9:30/9:40 min per mile). She chatted, we listened, she told us we were doing awesome, and we totally believed her. At mile 6, Annie peeled off to finish her own run at her own speed (the faster kind), but we were so appreciative of the boost she gave us when we needed it most!
Once we hit 6 miles, we mentally prepared ourselves for the final 5K that would bring us home. It was our second and last loop of the park. The snow was still coming down, but the pains here and there in our legs were more distracting than any of the weather conditions. We felt strong at mile 7, hit the mile marker at 8 (which was right after our last big hill), and headed on home to mile 9. Here are things that sometimes go under-appreciated in running races: THE CROWD. Now, there weren’t throngs of people in the park cheering us on, but there were more people than you would except. The NYRR volunteers were SO positive, and absolutely amazing to stand out there in the snow to make sure we stayed on course. Nothing makes you feel better than someone telling you how great you look when you are at the end of your rope! Can’t thank those folks enough.
Heading into the final 500 yards, the music was blasting and the crowd was pretty built up. I always find something in me to sprint at the end. We kicked it in hard and FINISHED our longest training run so far this year. I must admit, 10:19 pace is not too shabby for the weather conditions that we were in. We were absolutely pumped, and thoroughly enjoyed the frozen Gatorade slush at the finish line.
Thank you Erin Hozak, for meeting up with us after the race for coffee and bagels, Annie Martin for the mid-race company and support, and NYRR for the amazing volunteers that made the event such a fun morning. Marissa Hudson, I’m so proud of you!
* Marissa and I are training for the 2014 Boston Marathon as part of the Mass General Hospital Marathon team. We are raising money for the pediatric cancer center. Please consider making a donation to this wonderful cause. THANK YOU! *