2014 TCS New York City Marathon: free race-week events!

  I will be updating constantly, recheck often or every morning! Plus, send me your tips!!

Monday, October 20th

  • INSPIRE YOU: MIZUNO TAKES OVER SEXY PACE: October 20, 2014 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm. New York Running Company-Columbus Circle. Get marathon ready with Mizuno! Riley and Co. will be in for a demo run with the all-new Mizuno Inspires at Monday night’s legendary Sexy Pace run. Shoes will be available for demo from 6:00pm on. The run will be an easy 3-4 miles at a conversational pace. More information

Sunday, October 26th

  • LAST 10 MILES RUN – 8am at the Upper West Side store Scout the last 10 miles of the marathon course with JackRabbit’s group run. They’ll have pacers for runners ranging between 8 and 11 min/mi. JackRabbit will provide free gels, sports drink, and post-run bagel buffet.

  • NYC Marathon Strategy Panel: 10:30am – Panel discussion at Jack Rabbit Sports on West 72nd Street. This session is a must-do for anyone running the big race on November 2, previewing the TCS NYC Marathon experience, and providing strategy tips from a some great panelists. You’ll leave with all your logistical questions answered and a well prepared plan that leaves you with just the simple task of executing the 26.2 of running. This event is presented by the Dashing Whippets Running Team and is open to Whippets members and non-members free of charge. RSVP at Eventbrite.com – ‘Marathon Strategy

Wednesday, October 29th

  • HOKA ONE ONE & RUNNER’S WORLD NYC SHAKEOUT RUN – October 29, 2014 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm, New York Running Company-Columbus Circle. Join Hoka One One and Runner’s World for a marathon shakeout run with the legendary Bart Yasso! We will head out for 3.5 mile run in Central Park at 6:10. When we return runners will be treated to a Q and A with Bart and some terrific giveaways from NYRC and Hoka One One. WE will also be hosting a drawing where 3 lucky runners will even score a brand new pair of Hokas. Put this event on your calendar and get the marathon weekend started right. More information

Saturday, November 1st

  • PRE-MARATHON PARTY: 10am-6pm. Come get pumped for the marathon at Jack Rabbit’s Union Square‘s pre-party presented by Saucony & Zico! We’ll have a live DJ all day, a photo booth, graffiti artist, and giveaways every 26.2 minutes.

Sunday, November 2nd

  • BAG DROP/POST-RACE MEET-UP: JackRabbit is hosting a FREE bag drop and post-race reunion area at  the Upper West Side location, just a short walk from the finish line. Runners can drop their bags at either the Upper West or Brooklyn stores from Thursday 10/30 through Saturday 11/1. After the race, stop by to get your bag, meet up with friends and family, and celebrate your accomplishment. They’ll have refreshments and bathrooms available. Register for bag drop @ jackrabbitsports.com – no RSVP necessary to join the party.

Monday, November 3rd

  • MARATHON MONDAY FINISHER CELEBRATION PRESENTED BY ASICS – November 3, 2014 @ 9:00 am – 4:15 pm – New York Running Company-Columbus Circle. While Marathon Sunday is arguably the best day in NYC all year, we’d like to make a case for Marathon Monday: a day to celebrate your 26.2 mile journey. Join us on Monday, November 3, for an epic party that includes FREE finisher medal engraving from Crown Trophy, massage therapy from the good folks at Body and Soul Restorations, and limited edition marathon giveaways from Asics. More information


Make sure you also check the Run The City dealsinfo here. For example:

  • Urban Athletics – Offer: 30% off all full priced merchandise
  • IceBreaker- Offer: 20% off regular-priced merchandise and a FREE pair of running socks with a purchase of more than $100
  • Paragon Sports – Offer: 20% off one full-priced item in store from 10/26 to 11/03, excluding GPS watches and Go-Pro cameras
  • Super Runners Shop – 25% off Surefoot Custom Insoles, 15% off all apparel, running shoes, and accessories
  • many many more (including also restaurant offers too!)

more updated daily so bookmark this post and keep checking here every day!

I’ve compiled this listing off official emails I’ve received or brand/athletes/stores’s facebooks or twitter. Please review the event before making any plans: don’t blame me if any of these get cancelled, or switched, or anything. Have fun!

Guess my Finish at the 2014 NYC Marathon and win a prize

Just like we did before every single race I’ve done in the last two years (link to last one, and the NYC Half guess) it’s time to place your bets again… There is always someone who hits it right in the head! (always unbelievable! look at this one: guesses here, winner here)


Pick a finish time and write in the comments below. Whoever gets closer, wins, If there’s two identical times, the first poster wins! Make sure if you include seconds in there too, and post before Saturday November 1st at 7 pm EST. 

As usual, there’s gonna be PRIZES… you can 2 pick from these:

  • a clip-on running metronome
  • a  brooks flat vapur water bottle
  • a Garmin FR70 watch
  • BodyGlide minis (set of 5)
  • SLS3 Compression race sleeves, white, S/M
  • Craft Compression socks, white, M
  • Zensah Compression socks, black M
  • Injinji socks, Lightweight ultra thin performance, mini crew, gray, M
  • TCKSports socks, Topo and Talus, grayishs, size M
  • a NYC Marathon rain (knee-length, orange and white) poncho

Ok, the data…


Grete’s Great Gallop on October 5th in 1:44. Staten Island Half on October 12th in 1:43.


My PR is from Berlin 2012: 3:27:44, the last marathon I did was Boston 2014 in 3:49 and NYCM 2013 in 3:49.

Running Calculators!

 the jackdaniels calculator says the SI half 1:43:39 gives me a 3:36 marathon
the macmillan calculator says the SI half 1:43:39 gives me a 3:38 marathon
the  runnersworld calculator says the SI half 1:43:39 gives me a 3:36 marathon

I’d add a few minutes to those as those estimates are for a flat marathon.

My guess:

No PR this year! I am guessing between 3:39 (my A Goal and a course PR) and a 3:46, because I did NYCM last year in 3:49 and I am in a bit better shape this year.

GO ON! Place your bets below!!! Good luck to us!!

Prizes shipped only within the US, but you can have me send it to someone in the US.  / Comments with guesses will only count if they are posted here (not on facebook, not on runnersworld.com, HERE) before Saturday Nov 1st 7 pm EST.  / If there are two guesses with the exact same time, the first one wins.

Race Report: 2014 Staten Island Half

How convenient is it to run a half marathon the week before another half marathon? You’ll know exactly how to pace it!!!! Well, that part I had covered. I had crushed and burned at the Grete’s Great Gallop the week before so I knew

- I had to start a bit slower and save it

- my final avg pace of 8:01 could turn into something a bit faster if I had some grip over the first 5-7 miles.

I had still had the same cold I had the week before, so I wasn’t sure my performance would be any better. On the other hand, the course is a bit flatter… It was easy to plan though. I’d go out easier than last week: 8:15s or around there and at 7 miles, on the turnaround, I’d start pushing it.


nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (1)

Well, I’ve never been one of those people who had issues with the ferry or anything. Yesterday, I did. there was a 7 am ferry, a 7:30 ferry, and an 8:00 ferry. The race would start at 8:30 half a mile from the ferry terminal, so the 8 am ferry was out, it’d leave us in SI at 8:30! So, we got there at 7:23 to board the 7:30 boat. We line up, everyone starts going into the boat, and at 7:35 they close the doors. WTF??? “the boat is moving, are you on the boat??” texted Blaise from the boat. NO!!!!! Crap. They left without us. “It’s not that crowded in the front of the boat”, great! now I am going to make it late to the start, have to wave around like a maniac, UGH, flashbacks to a week ago missing connections when coming back from the honeymoon. The Staten Island turned into JFK and LGA and all my worst possible scenarios. I hate travelling.

Luckily, all the drama in my head, and poor Juan’s ears, dissipated when another boat decked at 7:46 and we quickly left! We made it to Staten Island at 8:15 so we hushed to the corral, undressed and in 5 we were moving. No time to get cold waiting!!!! YEY. #win


Well, the course is pretty flat. there’s about 3 hills but they’re little (smaller than Cat Hill) and one nasty bump at the end I didn’t appreciate. Still, quite an easy course and I liked it. There were enough spectators to distract us, a few bands and DJs and quite some action…

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (15)


Ugh. At Mile 5.5 (or something) I saw a runner (a man, around 55 years old)  lying on the floor, with a police car and he was getting chest compressions. I was so shocked I almost stopped on my tracks. I barely kept running. About 15 or 20 minutes later, after the turnaround, my mile 8 or something, I saw they were putting him on a stretcher so made me feel a little better. I felt so stooopid running when someone’s live was at risk, i really wanted to stop. You always hear about those races fatalities but it was shocking to see it happening. It took me a while to shake it off. What was I supposed to do? but also, how do you get that out of your head??


Well, it was tough to relax. An 8 pace which should have been easy, was not. My breathing was still shallow and I was coughing and had som fun mucus that wouldn’t let me breathe. LET ME BREATH! Anyway, I tried as best as I could to relax and it wasn’t working. Then I tried to just slow down. It was tough to relax knowing last week i was toast at mile 10. What if the same thing happened??? UGH. Eventually by Mile 8 or 9I started relaxing and feeling normal… by Mile 11 I was able to push a bit harder and finished in an ALL OUT sprint, which was quite exhilarating!

2014-10-12 13.59.25

If you look up there, I didn’t start as slow as I wanted to… even with the little bump on the first mile. Miles 5 and 10 are way slow, but looking at the course profile I can see why! Look at Mile 5 highlighted int his next image:

2014-10-12 14.01.55

And look at mile 10, see:

2014-10-12 14.01.47

I guess that’s why I slowed down. I really don’t remember the hills being that bad, other than the one on mile 10, but with my chest filled up with stuff the whole race was a hard-breathing hill… what a great workout though, right?


So, the finish line was at the Staten Island Yankees Stadium. A new finish so I had no idea what to expect. this is what it looked like, from Juan’s pictures. He was waiting there the whole time.

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (2) nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (3)

The last half a mile I passed a lot of people. A LOT. I had some nasty speed sprint fever and I burned it down. Then we turn onto the stradiums entrance, which was EPIC, and oh crap, we’re running on fake grass: ugh. Way to slow my sprint down :-( Still a great finish line… as epic as Brooklyn I’d say!


I then bent down holding my knees and coughed for 10 minutes straight. SO GLAMOROUS, I know.

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (10)

because 4 cups of Gatorade are not enough

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures staten island half medal

heavy heavy staten island half medal



WOW, that finish escalated quickly!! the sun was nice, w could sit in the grass, I saw many team-mates in a minute and we were all happy just laying around. So much for being tired or layering back up so I couldn’t turn the cold into enterofluebolaenza. Nah, I’ll just hang out here.

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (5)

why is he eating my apple?? WHY? oh, being married and sacrifice and all that smush

nyrr 2014 staten island half running pictures (9)

Stats Time!

Finish time: 1:43:39 (a minute faster than last week’s 1:44:53). Average Pace: 7:55

Previous PR: 1:37:35. From: March, 2013

Age Grading: 65.26%

Overall Place: 1614 of 9518

Gender Place: 271 of 4466

Age Place: 39 of 742

Official NYRR Staten Island Half race results and pictures

Soon Juan andBlaise and I headed for the ferry, got back on the Island, had brunch and run some 5 miles more. I turned Sunday into a double. the second run was NOT pretty. Actually, you can barely call it a run, but I didn’t stop once and had an avg 9:47 pace so I am counting it. This cold has annoyed me to no end this week.

Well, so… now I have the NYC Marathon in 3 weeks and I am not sure of my goal, as I HAVE NO IDEA what the hell I could have raced if I wasn’t sick… so my NYC marathon prediction guess will be interesting… ;-) let the gambling begin:

Get “the terrible and wonderful reasons why I run long distances” by the Oatmeal

OMG, thanks Juan for preordering this book when it was announced!! We got it last week but he wanted both of us to read it together… Yesterday night, we were supposed to go to the 92Y for a talk with Brandon from Humans of New York (the most amazing site if you don’t know it!) and we picked up our tickets as people were LEAVING… we decided to head home and sit together and read the book. We did it out loud (who does that??), laughed a lot, and in an hour we were done! Just like a loop of the park!

A lot of his comics are online, here, so click and get ready to chuckle. If you don’t feel like chuckling… well, then… just relax and enjoy it. I say it makes a great gift!!!!


IMG_5024 IMG_5023 IMG_5022

It has this series at the end (that’s why that last picture has a #4 on it) on how to get started on running, so I think this book could work well for your family/friends even if they’re not runners… wink, wink.

Race Report: Grete’s Great Gallop

I did not run a step on my honeymoon, so there went a whole week. Then, when I got back I run on Wednesday and then… I didn’t feel so good. By Friday, I was shivering, feeling feverish, my chest was tight and my throat was hurting. Booohooo. I had soup and tea and honey and all the crap people do when they’re fending some bug and felt better by Sunday so I decided I’d take a crack at the Gallop. Even if I didn’t win, it’d be a good excuse to get out of the apartment and get a decent run on.

Basics about the Gallop: it’s two loops of Central Park, not the easiest/fastest but close to home and I know the course well. Piece of cake!

It was sunny out but around 47 degrees, brrrrrrr, so early in October for such cold!

gretes gallop pictures results (1)

Nothing to do while waiting for the race to start……..

The husband stayed with me by the corral so I could be warm until the last possible second. When the national anthem was done, I threw all layers, pants and jacket over the corral and went. I felt okish. Slow, sleepy and with a tight chest, but the legs seemed fine. I had a racing singlets and short tights, but kept a long sleeve shirt and gloves for at least the first mini-loop, as I knew I’d see him again and didn’t want to get cold and risk my health.

I started out easy and soon I noticed I was running at a decent clip. Mile 1 was 8:06. I thought it was fast but I kept telling myself I had done 8:16 in the Tune Up (3 loops of the park!!!) so I had to believe that I could sustain in. We’ll see. By Mile 1.5 I saw Juan again and dropped my long-sleeve!

gretes gallop pictures results (3) gretes gallop pictures results (2) gretes gallop pictures results (5) gretes gallop pictures results (4)

Kept the gloves! I also had shuffled for a bit with a team mate I didn’t know, Young. Poor thing, we run together 100 meters and he was already laughing at all the shoutouts and attention I kept getting. He laughed that he wasn’t famous and we talked about how we both felt. One had some sort of bug and one had a hangover. That makes for some interesting miles…  I told him I thought I’d do between 1:45 and 1:50 and to drop me when he felt like it but I think the hangover caught up with him soon as I seemed to lose him. Mile 2 was 8:08 and then the interesting part happened: going into Harlem Hill (which you know is a lot harder in this direction, clockwise) I run a 7:41 and a 7:54. Who knows. Heading back on the east side was a 7:51 and it seemed like I had this down. I remember feeling well and strong and hoping I felt the same way on the second loop. It did seem fast, but really, I had no idea what I had with me that day!

When I get off Harlem Hill, closing in on mile 6, I see Juan again and there goes the gloves! Now I am free to run as naked as I possibly can! Mile 6 was 7:58.

gretes gallop pictures results (6) gretes gallop pictures results (8) gretes gallop pictures results (7)


Then I decided it was time to fuel. I didn’t want to stop but I thought I HAD to. I had a gel, sipped some water, and started running back up again. Mile 7 was 7:44 and then things started to unravel.

gretes gallop pictures results (11) gretes gallop pictures results (9) gretes gallop pictures results (10)

Not just because my husband loves that BURST button on his phone but because the gel didn’t sit well with me, for some odd reason. I don’t usually have issues with them. Who knows. My stomach got tight, my chest got tight. I remember trying to figure out why I was running IN PLACE and I knew both things were an issue. My stomach was turning and I felt like I couldn’t breathe anymore. My pace felt like I was doing 11 minute miles. In a second, I had no energy left and I just wanted to be done, there was no kick, nothing. Mile 8 was a struggle at 8:20. I do remember I felt well for a bit and thought I had it back and I’d feel better: mile 9 was 7:44. But no. Once I was on mile 10, I was done. I tried to kick, there was no way. The last 3 miles were a drag and there’s nothing I could do about it.

Mile 10: 8:28 / Mile 11: 8:15 / Mile 12: 8:19 / Mile 13: 8:15 / And the last bit was at 7:04 pace.

But really, the last miles were awful. Though you wouldn’t be able to tell, right?

gretes gallop pictures results (13) gretes gallop pictures results (12)

Here’s all the laps, see how bad it went?

gg laps

You could argue that I started fast. I don’t think I did. I don’t usually start fast and I think if my stomach wouldn’t have played a trick on my, that’s a pace I could have held up. who knows though?

Stats Time!

Finish time: 1:44:53. Average Pace: 8:01

Previous PR: 1:37:35. From: March, 2013

Age Grading: 64.49%

Overall Place: 1205 of 5973

Gender Place: 281 of 2950

Age Place: 48 of 445

- NYRR Grete’s Great Gallop (13.1) race results

I finished ok, Young and Russell caught with me, there were some pictures, the one below appeared in the NYRR Photo Gallery


Soon I had found Juan (with my warm clothes!!!) and Patricia who run a 1:36… well, I am so far from that. So glad she still lets me run with her!!

There were some race pictures I will be buying soon. Sharing here but I don’t know that it’s common to get so many good pictures!

nyrr gretes gallop pictures results  (5) nyrr gretes gallop pictures results  (4) nyrr gretes gallop pictures results  (3) nyrr gretes gallop pictures results  (2) nyrr gretes gallop pictures results  (1)

Well, so… now I have the Staten Island half this next Sunday. It’s 4 days away and I haven’t run since Sunday, and my chest is still a mess.. what to do, what to do?????

Running in St Croix

A year after we got married we decided it was time for the honeymoon. Seriously, who waits so long for the best part?? That’s another sign that there is something wrong with me… but isn’t delayed gratification a constant for some runners? Isn’t it?

delayedI’ve heard it is, so I’ll just chuck it to being a runner… I guess.

So, we did some research figured St. Croix was easier as it’s still the US, no need for visa for my foreign hot candy husband, same time zone, no need to change money, or voltage adapters, and a straight flight to the Caribbean. So Easy. Well, that should have been a sign ;-( Nothing is ever that easy.

There was no running in St Croix. I did searches before I left all over the web. I couldn’t find any routes or anything, weird, right? I checked forums, people said not to run on the streets as it was dangerous (there were no sidewalks in most places) and I looked on those apps like Mapmyrun or Strava to see where people run, and all I saw was people running just a couple of miles on the streets, nothing to se,e and cars quite close. There is a running store, Stamina Sports and I read that I could check with the staff there where to run. I went over, the store only opens a couple of days, it was closed then. Just like pretty much everything else in St Croix. I did manage to talk to some people in the crossfit place next door and told me they run in “Judith’s fancy”, a beach with some sort of park a bunch of miles away, that you couldn’t get to without a car or by bus. Too much work for me. Seems like I had brought my sneakers for nothing, I quickly gave up.

St Croix was like a ghost town. I am not kidding, there were only 3 places to eat and they were crappy (once, true story, we had to wait 65 minutes for a burger). The downtown looked so sad, it was even a bit scary to walk. And I come from a 3rd world country, I know scary, this was beyond that. I was so shocked. This is what downtown and the boardwalk looked like:

st croix pictures empty (2) st croix pictures empty (3) st croix city views (1) st croix city views (2) st croix pictures empty (1)

Where the hell is everyone???????????? And that is the only nice part in the city.

On top of that, our hotel, Colony Cove Beach Resort, was a hot hot mess, we even came back one night to a wide OPEN front door one day, not just unlocked: OPEN. It sucked royally. you don’t even want more gross details ( you do? like an open condom wrapper by the bed? it was purple) I promise you. So seriously infuriating and disgusting.

Anyway, after spending a few hours in the town, we were a little flabbergasted, and scared. We ended up spending a lot of money in taxis to get out of the way to the nice beaches, however far they were. There was no running, and a week off was fine with me. All the running I did was this:

st croix running (1)

st croix running (3) running in st croix

and that was just to get pictures when we had nothing to do at the beach… shot like these:

st croix jumping (2) st croix jumping (3)

st croix jumping (1)

What else can you do in a beach, really?

So once we figured where to escape, all I did, for 5 days, was THIS:

St Croix entertainment things to do (6) St Croix entertainment things to do (11) St Croix entertainment things to do (3) St Croix entertainment things to do (4) St Croix entertainment things to do (2) St Croix entertainment things to do (5) St Croix entertainment things to do (1)

I spent many hours pointing at things, mostly under the water. Seriously, SNORKELING. I had never snorkeled before. Well, I did put that thing over my eyes and over my mouth, saw some fish in Mexico, and got bored quickly. This was different. Juan had bought a space mask for the water (which ended up being the talk of the town, even though it was a quite slurred talk as everyone in St Croix was drunk or baked!) which covered my whole face. Well, he bought it for himself but once I put it on… it was mask at first sight! I couldn’t let go of it, I could breathe normally and talk and just float around for hours. Itwassomuchfunyouguys!!!!

Check it!

st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (12) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (13) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (14) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (15) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (16) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (1) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (2) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (3) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (4) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (5) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (6) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (7) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (8) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (9) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (10) st croix bucks island snorkeling caribbean sea adventures (11)

The snorkeling was soooooo soooooo much fun…

The nicest one and only thing I can recommend about St Croix is the trip to Bucks Island, the beach is AMAZING and the snorkeling is ridiculous. Those pictures up there where I am jumping like an idiot are from Bucks Island, plus these:

bucks island caribbean sea adventures snorkeling (1) bucks island caribbean sea adventures snorkeling (2) bucks island caribbean sea adventures snorkeling (3)

There is nothing there other than snorkeing and trees!!! We went with Caribbean Sea Adventures, a few times, and Miles (how could he not be the coolest with that name?) was on top of it all and pretty much saved our whole trip. Those tours were definitely worth the trip! And the snorkeling… was fabo! Until I saw the barracuda and the sharks. I feaked the efffff out and jumped back on the boat screaming!



And, if that wasn’t enough, we made a little 2 minute video of the fish we saw while snorkeling!

Iam running tshirt giveaway winner!

And the winner of the Giveaway: the coolest running tshirts!, as selected by the random thing where I just a button, is…


Congrats Kristen!! I’ll be connecting you and Matt so you can let him know what you want from the store!!

For everybody else, here is a 20% discount code you can use: RUNNINGANDTHECITY

—-Comment happily: you won’t be asked to create an account!