Once upon a time, I enjoyed going to races. Then the 9+1 thing entered my life and now I’m all, “seriously? you want me to wake up?”
I’d been looking forward to this weekend for awhile. In theory, it was the end of the spring season and one last hurrah before I settled down for a summer dedicated to getting ready for the Marine Corps and a preview of what Dopey will be like in January. Yeah, that was the theoretical interpretation. I had every intention of doing both races, and in my usual fashion I didn’t look at the weather forecast because I blithely assumed that the weather would be fine.
In fact, the weekend before I had just been thinking about how I always had great weather for races. My great grandmother was so right about putting the jinx on yourself.
Friday I headed to the pre-party to pick up my number. I went during the day so it was pretty quiet. I got a shirt at the New Balance makeshift store but it looked like most of the stuff was sold out by the time I got there.
It was nice as far as race number pick ups go. It was warm and sunny so afterwards it was time to head to Spumoni Gardens for some pre-race pizza and ice. Originally the plan was to go after the race but the more I thought about it the more I just wanted to head home afterwards to gear up for the Superhero, in part because my costume was nowhere near done. Yes, I had slacked.
The most magical part of the trip, aside from the amazingly chic decor that I have always loved at Les jardins de Spumoni, was that they had the full ice menu available and I got the supersized pineapple/watermelon combo ice. It was… phenomenal.
Early to bed early to rise. I ended up going back to NJ for the night because I forgot a bunch of stuff so my parents said they’d drive me in Saturday morning. Of course, I lied and told them I started earlier than I was supposed to because they always think it takes them 45 minutes to get to New York and it doesn’t. And this time was no different. The ez pass was lost, my mother said to just drive through and they’d bill us, my father screamed that the ez pass police would pull him over… Despite spending the majority of their lives living in Brooklyn, neither one has ever figured out how to drive around the borough, prompting my mother to do her usual, “This is why I never got my license ’til I was 32 years old!” as they tried to figure out where the f#$k they were.
I got out of the car because they were making me crazy and I was incredibly late. I was on the wrong side of the park and had to run about three miles to get to the start, part of which was through Prospect Park and you know how people talk about how there’s a hill in Prospect Park? Yeah. I ran up the f@#king hill. I got to my corral with 5 minutes to spare before they collapsed corrals and pushed the second wave to the front. Instead of sending the corrals off 5-10 minutes apart, NYRR just divided us up into two starts 30 minutes apart. Ok, I guess that works too. While it had seemed like the sun might be coming out, by the time we started it was all clouds.
I had already run 3 miles and seen part of the course so I was nice and loose and limber and ready to go. I planned on doing a 10 minute mile to keep things easy since I knew Superhero was the more difficult course and that was coming up tomorrow. I was being so responsible! So proud of myself. I wasn’t bobbing and weaving, either. It could have been the reduced pace, the laid back attitude, or just that the course wasn’t that crowded but I found it more or less navigable compared to the Central Park races.
Prospect Park hills…. Eh, I’m not buying it. Yes, there’s an incline and some rolling but for the most part I found it to be relatively gradual and easy going compared to the Harlem Hills, which I hate with a passion and Panda Mountain. I now don’t even realize I’m doing cat hill when I do the Central Park races, it doesn’t even register.
After Prospect Park, it’s a straight shot down Ocean Parkway to Coney Island. A girl commented on how quiet Ocean Parkway was, no one was out on the sidewalks really, prompting the guy running with her to say, “Yeah, it’s Saturday morning in a Hasidic Jewish neighborhood.”
One young boy decided screw temple and started running alongside everyone in his suit. I wonder if this is why the 1/2 marathon is on a Saturday… There were people out cheering and one great lady handing out popsicles!I also received many compliments on my skirt, as usual.
The closer we got to Coney Island, the more it started to rain and the breeze picked up so I was ready to get to the finish. And according to the pictures I was getting zanier with each step…
We finished on the Boardwalk. It was really nice, except now it was getting increasing cold and the rain was starting to get a little heavier. In case you were wondering, my parents followed their usual race routine: wait it out in the nearest diner.
I enjoyed the Brooklyn 1/2–it was indeed, relatively speaking, flat and fast and I think it’s a contender for trying to go under 2 hours, especially since Ocean Parkway was a straight, wide open 5+ miles. The downside was that after being so late and running to the start, I was frazzled and cranky. Add to that the rain and the fact that post race my cell phone didn’t work so I couldn’t find my ride back to the NJ and I was freazing made me… Well, not happy at all. (apparently a lot of people were having trouble using their cell phones at Coney Island post-race.)
I left saying it was a one and done race, but I think I will re-attempt my back-to-back challenge next year and finally conquer this weekend, regardless of weather conditions. As to what happened with the Superhero…
Sloth was the sinful culprit but that sloth was the result of spending 9+ weekends doing races and having no break from it. That was insanity and I’m looking forward to completely finishing spring race season on June 8th at the Mini Marathon 10k: my 9th and final NY roadrunner race for the year after the Celebrate Israel run on June 2nd. Then it’s just gearing up for marathon training: a whole new frontier of bitching!