On the first Sunday of November, the world comes together to run through New York City. New Yorkers in all five boroughs take to the streets to cheer on athletes from more than 125 countries. Yes, I’m referring to the NYC Marathon.
The city’s energy on Marathon Sunday is infectious. Many of the millions who live in or near NYC know someone who’s running, and with approximately 50,000 finishers, people from all over the globe know runners too.
The race begins on the Verrazano Bridge in Staten Island with Frank Sinatra’s “New York, NY” (how apropos) blasting in the background, then continues into Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, The Bronx, and finishes back in Manhattan at Tavern on the Green in Central Park.
This year was my Mike’s second year running it (he ran in 2014 too), and this time he ran as a member of Team Red, White and Blue (RWB). Transitioning from the military to civilian life is far from easy. RWB aims to bridge the gap between the military and civilians, enriching American veterans’ lives through physical and social activities in their communities, with hope that its members establish long-lasting friendships in the process.
This nonprofit organization believes that listening to and spending time with veterans is the most effective way to offer support. Mike was incredibly proud to run in his RWB t-shirt this year, and be part of a group dedicated to giving back to our veterans, who sacrifice so much for our freedom.
Before the start of the marathon, here’s Mike hanging out with his good friend and running mate Roberto, who’s an army veteran and a member of Team RWB. They have been doing weekly training runs together for months. (I know…they look super sexy in their Dunkin’ Donuts hats. DD hands them out to the runners to keep their heads warm. It’s chilly at 6 a.m.!)
And at the starting line…
Marathon Sunday is one of my favorite days of the year in New York. I think it’s a favorite day for a lot of people who live in NYC and visit the city. As you can see in these scenes from the NYC Marathon, it’s one of the most magical days. 🙂
Here’s a recap of the day…
I went across town to the East Side to try and catch a glimpse of Mike on First Avenue. I tracked him on the TCS NYC Marathon app, and it worked great. I knew about what time he’d reach my location.
Yay, Mikey! You were right on time! Here he is at Mile 17.5.
You can see how packed the streets were. If people weren’t out and about, they were hanging out on terraces or cheering out of their apartment windows. I might add, the crowd cheers for everyone, not only their friends and family. There are no strangers on Marathon Sunday.
After my Mike sighting on First Avenue, I made my way over to Fifth Avenue along Central Park. With only a few miles to go, the runners are noticeably exhausted by this point so some even resort to walking, but they have to keep going.
Some runners dress in costumes! I can’t imagine running 26 miles at all, but really, with that headpiece? Go Mexico!
Hooray for the NYPD! Both the NYPD and FDNY have teams that run the marathon.
Here comes Mike in his RWB shirt. I could tell he was struggling by this point, so I cheered louder! Notice the guy on the left holding a cup of beer. He was handing beer to the runners. Most passed him by, but a few runners took the cup and drank the beer! Funny.
Once on Fifth Avenue, the runners turn into Central Park at 90th Street or Engineer’s Gate and run through the park until the finish line.
Sunday was one of the prettiest marathon days I can remember. The weather was gorgeous and the temperature was in the 50s, ideal for running.
I walked around the Jackie Onassis Reservoir to make my way back to the Upper West Side, where I was meeting Mike after the race.
Marathoners were everywhere!
There’s my marathoner.
Enough running….it was time for a beer. And we were both starving. ( I worked up an appetite just thinking about running a marathon.)
We ended up at one of our favorite bars, the St. James Gate at 81st and Amsterdam, and stayed there until dark. Then, we hobbled our way back home to our apartment (actually, Mike hobbled –I walked).
‘Twas another fabulous NYC Marathon…
Have you ever run a marathon? What was your biggest challenge?
Congrats to all the runners. Everyone is a winner.