Insider Tips for the New York City Marathon #TSCNYCMARATHON

running-advice-bugIf you’re looking for my article on tips about the New York City Marathon that ran in US News Health, here it is:

Runners celebrate in the NYC Marathon

Runners celebrate in the NYC Marathon

Runners from around the world are about to converge on New York City for the TCS New York City Marathon, and they will all have something in common: They want to have the best experience possible. The marathon is huge, loud, packed with deep crowds and lined by some of the city’s most iconic sights. For the uninitiated, it is an inspiring – if a little bit overwhelming – experience. If you’re one of them, take heed of these tips and get the inside track:

1. Bundle up.

While the forecast looks good for this year’s race, the weather in New York City can be unpredictable. Some of my most intense memories of the New York City Marathon are of nearly freezing before the start in the staging area at Fort Wadsworth. Plan to spend hours out in the weather prior to the start with little to no shelter. There are a few tents, but for the most part, runners are out in the open and exposed to the wind and potentially cold temperatures. You may want to wear some old clothing, such as heavy cotton sweat pants and a sweatshirt, and then discard them at the start. In the past, race organizers have collected abandoned clothing and donated it to shelters. That way, you’re keeping yourself warm doing something good for the community at the same time.

2. Don’t be late.

Race organizers have devised an effective plan to get the thousands of runners out to the start, but it’s up to you to make sure that you’re on the correct ferry or bus. If you miss your ride, you may have a really difficult time getting to the start. I have heard stories of people thinking that they could “grab a later ferry,” only to find themselves out of luck. Every seat will be full, so stick to your assigned slot.

3. Bring only what you need.

Security will be tight this year at the New York City Marathon, as it has been at most major marathons over the past few years. If you’re thinking about bringing anything other than your running gear and energy supplies, you should check the prohibited items list on the marathon’s website. Keep in mind that sleeping bags and tents – which seem like appealing ways to stay warm at the start – aren’t allowed.

4. Understand the first few miles.

The start of the New York City Marathon is a massive undertaking that uses multiple waves and multiple corrals in each start. The course is actually split into three separate routes for the first few miles, with all of the courses eventually converging. What this means is that if you are trying to see or meet someone on the course, you need to understand that you might not be talking about the same “mile 5.” Also, keep in mind that there are separate color-coded mile markers on the course until mile 8, after which they all finally converge.
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David Letterman – Top Ten Thoughts from New York City Marathon

It isn’t everyday that a marathon running topic makes it onto the David Letterman Show. Here’s one from last month before the New York City Marathon in which none other than Meb Keflezighi presents the Top Ten list.

The Top Ten Thoughts While Running The New York City Marathon



Races — New York City Marathon — A Story of Shock and Awe

A Crowd Shot of the NYC Marathon at mile 22

running-advice-bugThe New York City Marathon is simply in a class of its own. The size and history and scope of it are so large as to leave one in awe. The 2010 race left us in shock as well.

With 45,000 runners, 2.5 million spectators and thousands of police, volunteers, media and sponsors — New York is just the biggest and baddest of them all. The crowds are overwhelming. And we’re not just talking about the crowds on the sides of the roadways. Runners are surrounded by a thick fog of other runners around them for nearly the entire distance of the race. As I stood watching the race at mile 22 this year, I couldn’t help but notice the traffic causing runners to pitch and dodge the other runners around them (and the spectators that fearlessly rushed across the streets between them as if playing a game of Frogger on steroids.)

It was another cold year and spectators were treated to chilly winds and the moving shade of tall buildings, blocking out the little warmth of the sun. The conditions were nearly perfect for the runners. Just a day later, sleet and rain would fall on Manhattan in the morning, so this day was a bit of luck for everyone involved in the race.

Race leaders Gebremariam and Mutai at mile 22

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Racing — Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein Joins NYC Marathon Line-up

running-advice-bugNEW YORK –Two-time U.S. Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein will return this year to the ING New York City Marathon, the race in which he made his marathon debut in 2006. The race will be his first marathon since London in April 2009.

Ritzenhein joins American Meb Keflezighi and Ethiopian World Record holder Haile Gebrselassie to the list of runners announced for this year’s New York City Marathon.

“Four years after making my debut in New York City, I’m ready to come back and restart my marathon career with a new appreciation for the event,” said Ritzenhein. “I’m older, stronger, and less naïve, but I have even more desire to come back and try to win this amazing race. Winning the ING New York City Marathon will not be easy, but I know I have a chance to do something incredible on November 7.”

Ritzenhein, 27, who is coached by three-time New York City Marathon winner Alberto Salazar, has been sidelined for much of this year with nagging injuries and a stress fracture in his right foot, but he is optimistic that he’ll be at full speed by race day.
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News — Haile Gebrselassie to Run 2010 ING New York City Marathon

running-advice-bugNew York, NY — Long-distance legend, multiple Olympic and World Championships gold medalist, and marathon world record-holder Haile Gebrselassie of Ethiopia will make his first career appearance at the ING New York City Marathon 2010 on November 7.

Widely considered the greatest distance runner of all time, Gebrselassie, 37, set the marathon world record in 2008 at the real,- Berlin Marathon with a time of 2:03:59. Gebrselassie has focused on road racing and the marathon since the 2004 Olympic Games, and he captured his first title in a World Marathon Majors race in Berlin in 2006. In addition to four straight wins in Berlin, he has also claimed marathon victories in Amsterdam (2005), Fukuoka, Japan (2006), and Dubai (2008, 2009, 2010).

The 1996 and 2000 Olympic 10,000-meter gold medalist has won 124 races, only four of which (Atlanta, Boston, Tempe, and New York) have been in the United States. He has now set 25 world records in his illustrious career with a total of 15 senior medals at the Olympic Games (2), World Outdoor Championships (7), World Indoor Championships (4), World Half-Marathon Championships (1), and World Cross Country Championships (1).
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Races — Keflezgihi and Tulu win 2009 ING New York Marathon

running-advice-bugThe 2009 ING New York Marathon, the world’s biggest marathon, was full of surprises and drama as it took to the streets of New York today. American distance running was the clear winner today as the US Marathon Championships showcased the best that American distance running has to offer — and it doesn’t get much better than it was today.

Runners cross the Verrazano Narrows Bridge

Runners cross the Verrazano Narrows Bridge

American Meb Keflezighi won the race in a new personal best 2:09:15, pulling away from the elite international field in the 23rd mile to win the race by 41 seconds. He becomes the first American runner to win the New York City Marathon since 1982. Ryan Hall finished fourth. Including Keflezighi and Hall, a total of 6 Americans finished in the top 10 for the first time 1979. Keflezighi was the winner of the Silver Medal in the Marathon at the Olympic Games in Athens in 2004.

In the women’s race, world record holder Paula Radcliffe felt a twinge in her knee at mile 11 and hung on with the field, but couldn’t keep up with the surging pace at mile 22. Derartu Tulu of Ethiopia went on to win the women’s race in 2:28:52. Radcliffe finished fourth.

Keflezighi pulled away from four-time Boston Marathon winner Robert Cheruiyot of Kenya in the 23rd mile and built a 41 seconds gap over the last 3 miles of the race.

NYC SpectatorA record 44,000 runners started the race today, which was run under cool conditions and light rain and winds early in the day. The rain let up near the start of the race and temperatures were in the mid-50s with cloudy skies throughout the day.

We’ll have more coverage coming soon as we compile our notes from the day.

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Broadcasts — 2009 New York City Marathon Television and Internet Coverage

running-advice-bugThe 2009 ING New York City Marathon is coming up Sunday morning November 1st, 2009. This should be one of the most exciting races of the year to watch, with Paula Radcliffe, Ryan Hall, and many others featured in the world’s largest marathon. If you’ve never watched the New York City Marathon, sit yourself down with some popcorn and get ready for some excitement. I find that the images from the start of the race are particularly inspiring as those 42,000 runners take off over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge.

Here is all of the information that you’ll need to watch the race, depending upon where you live and how you want to watch the race.

Global Internet Coverage
On Sunday, November 1, catch all the action live, on, from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m eastern time. Coverage includes main race, pro men’s, and pro women’s feeds. After the race, the broadcast will be available as an archive for viewing on-demand.

There will also be companion coverage on New York Nonstop, NBC Local Media’s new digital channel, and on

Local Television Coverage — WNBC 4 New York
The race will be broadcast live exclusively on WNBC 4 New York for five hours. The WNBC 4 New York broadcast will begin at 9:00 a.m. local time with the pre-race warm up and will follow the race through the five boroughs, across the bridges and over to the finish line until 2:00 p.m. A two-hour highlight show will follow on NBC Sports. Check local listings for details.

Television Highlights Show
NBC Sports will broadcast a two-hour highlight show nationwide, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. on November 1. Check your local listings for details.

The two-hour highlight show will also be broadcast in nearly 125 countries worldwide. Check your local listings for details.

Check back here for coverage of the race at Running Advice and News!

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News — Samuelson returns to run New York City Marathon

running-advice-bugNEW YORK –1984 Olympic Women’s Marathon Champion Joan Benoit Samuelson will return to New York to run the New York City Marathon for her fifth time, according to a statement from the New York Marathon that came 25 years after winning her gold medal in Los Angeles. The New York City Marathon will be held this year on November 1st, 2009.

“Joanie was the all-American girl winning at home and it was a moment that is indelibly etched in our memories,” said New York Road Runners president and CEO Mary Wittenberg. “Her participation in the 40th running of the ING New York City Marathon adds a golden glow to the festivities planned.”

For a great clip with classic video from Joan Benoit Samuelson’s 1984 Olympic run, watch the video below.

YouTube Preview Image

Samuelson, 52, of Freeport, ME, will be competing in her fifth New York City Marathon having finished the 2001 event in 2 hours, 42 minutes, 56 seconds — the second fastest time in the 40+ division that year. Samuelson also competed in 1988 (third, 2:32:40), 1991 (sixth, 2:33:48), and 1998 (first master at age 41, 2:41:06). A two-time Boston Marathon winner and a former marathon world-record holder, Samuelson continues to compete; she plans to run the CIGNA Falmouth Road Race this weekend.

“Realizing that the 25th anniversary of my Olympic run coincides with the 40th edition of the ING New York City Marathon stirred my desire to run,” said Samuelson. “This will be more than a jog down memory lane. This is the incentive I needed to get out there one more time.”
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Races: Two runners die after 2008 ING New York City Marathon

The New York Road Runners has confirmed that two runners have died of heart related conditions after this weekend’s New York City Marathon. Two other runners had hear attacks, but were revived by emergency medical services and transported to local hospitals.

The New York Times reported Tuesday:

“One of the runners was Carlos Jose Gomes, 58, of Brazil. He fell unconscious shortly after completing the race in 4 hours 12 minutes 15 seconds. A resident of São Paulo, Gomes was pronounced dead at Lenox Hill Hospital at 5:21 p.m. An autopsy Monday revealed that he had a pre-existing heart condition and died of a heart attack, said Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman for the chief medical examiner’s office.

The Road Runners did not release details of the second fatality. But The Staten Island Advance reported that Joseph Marotta, 66, of Tompkinsville died, apparently of a heart attack, hours after finishing his fourth New York City Marathon. He walked the course in 9:16:46.”

The deaths of the two runners caused considerable stir in the media and the Internet, as people questioned whether marathon running is a sport too risky for the masses. The incidence of deaths in marathons is very low, although it does appear to occur most often in very large marathons, in part, due to the wider audience that they attact and the larger populations of runners involved.
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Selected photos: New York Marathon 2008 Race Course

New York Marathon 2008

Originally uploaded by Coach Joe English

This is a selection of my best photos from the ING New York City Marathon 2008 race course.

There are two previous posts with selections from the start village and starting line.

For a slide show on Flickr, click here.

All photos (C) 2008, Joe English, Running Advice and News


Running Advice and News