I completed my third TCS NYC Marathon on Sunday. I didn’t want to. I quit almost every single day of training. I told no one because honestly I didn’t even believe I could do it myself.
I ran outside maybe once during the pandemic. In March, I got my Peloton Tread but even then I still wasn’t taking running seriously. So how did I end up at the finish line of the greatest marathon in the world?
Glad you asked.
TCS NYC Marathon Lottery Results
Even though I haven’t been on the running “scene” since 2018, I still get New York Road Runner emails. When I got the marathon lottery open email, I signed up because why not. I’ve signed up 2-3 times before and NEVER got in.
The lottery comes and goes. I looked at my email midday and I didn’t get in and eventually I forgot about it. Fast forward to me logging into my NYRR account to see if there were any Brooklyn Half volunteer opportunities available and before I could click around, I get hit with a pop up that says CONGRATULATIONS ON BEING ACCEPTED INTO THE 2022 NYC MARATHON.
I’m sorry … what? I might have sat there with my mouth agape for 30 minutes. After the shock wore off I checked my email and apparently I got accepted into the lottery 8:33 pm that night and the email was in my promotions folder. I immediately put it on a shelf in my brain knowing that I could always defer to next year.
Deciding to Run The Marathon
I volunteered medal distribution at the Brooklyn Half and got that old feeling back. The runners were so inspirational and I realized immediately that I missed the pavement. I immediately went home and signed up for a 4 Mile Race and a 10k.
At this time, I was still extremely undecided — both of my marathons in 2015 and 2016 had years of consistent running leading up to it–this time I’d have a really clean slate and starting from scratch. It’s a big deal to go from nothing to 26.2 in a matter of months.
When July came around and it was finally time to choose whether or not I’d be training for 18 weeks, I choose to train–conditionally. If it got too hard I reserved the right to myself to quit.
Training In the Summer Heat
Two words: HATED IT. I realized that I was also re-learning all of the running rules that I had simply forgotten. I got chafed really badly several times, wore the wrong workout gear (hello? why did I wear too big winter tights in July?!), hydration mistakes, nutrition blunders, eating too little, leaving the house too late–so many DETAILS that had simply left my brain.
I did 15, 17 and finally I did 19 in Central Park and Harlem. My hardest day was a training run in the heat that was scheduled for 12 miles and I walked out of the park at 10.5. I was so zapped.
Getting to the start line
Once I completely the 19 miles 3 weeks prior to the race I decided to do it. I knew I’d be slow, I knew I’d walk a lot, but NYC is a marathon built for Back of The Packers.
The expo was fun, I bought a jacket and a singlet.
Running The Race
My race day outfit was simple, the shirt that I wore in 2016 and a pair of victoria secret tights that I have worn a million times. Getting to the start line took about 5 hours, between the train, the ferry, the disorganized bus lines, then the bus to the villages it was a LOT.
Finally the canon boomed and we were off. The weather was extremely hot a humid. It was a high of 74 degrees and when we started it was 70 degrees. HOT.
I took it easy in the beginning, but I was happy with my pace. It was a lot slower than previous years, and that was okay.
The Crowds at the NYC Marathon
I don’t have enough words to describe how amazing the crowds are. Wearing a singlet with your name on it is the cheat code for this race. Brooklyn was a huge long 10 mile party and I got so much motivation from Fort Greene and Williamsburg (bedford side) especially.
The real magic was in the crowds that stayed after dark to cheer us on. I just kept saying thank you thank you thank you to all of them because they were there when I needed them the most in the latter miles.
Crossing the finish line
I bawled buckets starting at Mile 25. I don’t even know where all the emotion came from but the tears were flowing. The more the people cheered the more I cried. I cried because I didn’t quit on myself even though I gave myself the option.
I cried because here I was doing this for a THIRD time. I cried because I was upright and not hurting badly like my first time around. I could even say that I ran a smart race with a consistent pace.
My favorite part?
In both of my previous marathons I hit that wall pretty badly in mile 20/21. I was able to still run/walk every mile to the end. That’s a BIG deal for me.
Would I run the TCS NYC Marathon again?
Maybe. Never say never.
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Hi! I’m Nellie. I am a busy mama of three, wife to my high school sweetheart who loves to cook, workout and stay organized! I love to share helpful printables, the best recipes and fitness tips for the modern mom. I strongly believe that every mom can feed their family well, take proper care of themselves and have fun along the way! Read my story.
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