A huge thank you to all my sponsors and supporters as I completed the New York Marathon. As a spectacle and participation event it did not disappoint.
Here's my top ten list from the weekend:
1. Best cheering section: Lafayette Avenue in Brooklyn - wall to wall cheering, largely fueled by a well lubricated brunch crowd.
2. Best supporters: one group of family and friends set off fireworks and massive clouds of streamers as their runner came through mile 19 at 116th street in Spanish Harlem. That was pretty special and raised everyone’s spirits at a tough part of the race.
3. Biggest surprise: seeing my wife Lauren at Central Park South, about mile 25.5. I did not expect to see her until afterward, so it was a great boost for the last section into the finish line.
4. Hardest section: I developed stiffness in my left calf and hammy about mile 12, this had been bothering me in training, so it wasn’t a surprise. I had to find a new rhythm of jogging, walking and stretching that would get me to the finish line. It took a few miles to work that out, but I was going strong again by mile 15.
5. Best porta potties: I have never been to a mass participation event where there was no line! Thank you, New York City.
6. Most awesome security: as we crossed on the ferry from Manhattan to the start in Staten Island, we were accompanied by two coast guard patrol boats, bristling with machine guns. Very bad ass! The smiling officers of NYPD were out in force throughout the whole event and were giving us high fives.
7. Toughest mile: between miles 23 and 24 there is a steady grade upward into Central park. On the course guide it looked like a short steep hill, in fact it was a long slog. I wasn’t expecting that, and it drained the tank.
8. Best schwag: the post-race schwag was pretty amazing – an insulated poncho to wear as a superman cape, plus a bag of drinks and snacks and the race t -shirt.
9. Best way to a free glass of wine #1: wear your finisher medal to the restaurant after the race.
10. Best way to a free glass of wine #2: wear your finisher medal on the flight home. I don’t often say this: thank you United Airlines.