Sorry for my recent silence! As I wrote in my last post, I have been in NYC this past week and am getting ready to head to London early Monday morning. I’ve been having an amazing time – it feels so great to be back in the city – but my schedule has been very intense!

I’m getting ready to head out the door once again – moving from the West Village to Williamsburg in a few minutes – but wanted to quickly update you on what I’ve been up to, and of course wish all the NYC marathon runners GOOD LUCK for tomorrow’s race! I will be spectating from around mile 11.5 from 10am. Very excited!

Here are some highlights from my NYC visit so far:

I arrived very late on Friday night – I happened to sit next to a lovely, interesting woman on the plane who lives outside of San Francisco and is a harpist. We chatted for hours and shared a cab into the city – I felt so lucky as I usually just hope to sit next to someone who doesn’t smell!

Due to the crazy snowstorm on Saturday, the NYRR 5 miler on Sunday morning was cancelled. I was disappointed but grateful for the extra sleep and enjoyed a chilled out run along the Hudson on the west side before having my first of many delicious NYC meals. Chilly but gorgeous day!

Halloween on Monday was AMAZING! I slept in and then spent most of the afternoon wandering all around Soho, Nolita and the LES, where I visited some of my favorite places (essentially, a food tour of the area, including a bagel with lox & cream cheese from Russ & Daughters that I had been looking forward to for the past year). On my way home, I stopped at Sephora on a whim and got my makeup done. I was dressing up as the black swan for a party later that night and couldn’t help myself when I saw some of the incredible makeup artists at work. My party was at 15th and 6th ave and I was coming from Spring and Greenwich, so I figured why walk or cab there when I could march in the Halloween parade?! Best night ever!

The next day, I explored my old stomping grounds – Hell’s Kitchen and around Columbus Circle – which of course meant that I went into Central Park to check out the fall foliage as well as the marathon finish line!

On Wednesday, I visited Yale to have lunch with some of my old professors (who wrote recommendations for my NYU application), to meet the beautiful baby of one of my Yale friends and of course to simply wander around and soak up the amazing atmosphere of Yale on a random, gorgeous fall day! As you can imagine, this made me very nostalgic.

       

Thursday I went to the marathon expo with my friend Elana, who is running on Sunday. Go Elana!! I didn’t buy as much as I feared I would, only a shirt for E and some arm sleeves and a massage stick for me. What I REALLY wanted was the official long sleeved t-shirt, not only because it looked great but because this year they have women’s sizes (last year they only had a medium unisex and I can pretty much wear it as a dress). I tried to talk my way into getting one, but even I couldn’t make it happen! Apparently they’re only for runners…

On Friday, I visited the NYU campus – between wandering around Yale and NYU, it made me SO excited to be a student again! I had a great meeting with the graduate advisor of the Nutrition program in the afternoon, which was very helpful and informative. He told me I should expect to hear back in early December – so soon! I feel confident about my application but I am obviously eagerly awaiting that letter, especially because if I get in, I will only have a month to move, find a place to live and get ready for an intensive first semester. I got a very positive vibe from the campus and really hope I am able to join the community. It feels like a great fit for me.

And that brings me to today! I was scheduled to run 10 miles this morning and hoped to do so in Central Park, but wasn’t sure if the loop would be somewhat blocked off given that tomorrow is marathon Sunday. Thankfully it wasn’t, and the atmosphere was ELECTRIC! Central Park during marathon week really is unique – a running mecca! I must confess, I kind of wish I were running tomorrow, not for a time, but just for fun. It is a very special race and I look forward to running it again soon!

Running the marathon course was so much fun – it gave me an opportunity to remember last year’s race while observing all the runners who are racing tomorrow. I couldn’t even count the number of different languages I heard during my run, and everyone was smiling and practically levitating with excitement. I started and finished at the marathon finish line – went against the race direction along the course and up to the top of the park and back down along the west side, and then went back the same way so that I could run the last miles of the course. I remembered how much I was hurting last year – and how I somehow cranked up my pace and accomplished my goal. Those downhills from mile 24 to 26 certainly helped!

Okay runners – I can’t help but offer my two cents as you rest up and prepare for your big day. As you all know but perhaps often forget (it’s so easy to get excited), DON’T START TOO FAST! It’s a tough course and you need to save yourself for those later miles, so keep a steady pace at least until the second half, but perhaps even until 20. Brooklyn is a huge party and I went a little overboard in my high-fiving and dancing during the first 8 miles, which I slightly regretted later in the race – have fun but conserve your energy.

When you enter the park, you get a nice gentle downhill after so much climbing, which will feel great. Then you turn a corner and you see it – MILE 24, you’re almost there! From here, there are a few uphills (including right at the end) but more importantly, some AMAZING downhills. Propel yourself down those downhills! This is what saved me last year – there’s no way I could have BQ’d had I not picked up the pace at 24 and used gravity to my advantage. On the ups, the crowds will carry you as will the thought of being so close to the finish – and hopefully you have done your hill training so your legs can help power you up. I can hardly remember anything past mile 25 but I do remember the energy of the crowds – it’s unbeatable. But most of all, enjoy every mile – NYC is an incredible marathon, every step of the way!

I will leave you with some visual inspiration – you will be right here SO SOON! Good luck runners!

        

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