Tag Archives: #AirbnbBKHalf

Race Recap – Brooklyn Half Marathon, May 16, 2015

The post-race "party" at MCU park.

The post-race “party” at MCU park.

Although it felt like at least 40,000 runners, only a record-breaking 26,482 runners finished the Brooklyn Half Marathon last Saturday, the most finishers of any Brooklyn Half in the past and any half marathon in the US this year.  The best thing about the Brooklyn Half Marathon was the medal.  This doesn’t mean there weren’t other good things about the race, it’s just that the last time I ran the Brooklyn Half (in 2009, when it was still part of the NYRR “Grand Prix”), they didn’t give medals at all, and now they give really nice ones that are fancier than some full marathon medals I have.

Such a nice medal on such a nice apple.

Such a nice medal on such a nice apple.

 

The biggest lie about the Brooklyn Half Marathon was that they would close the corrals 20 minutes before the official start time.  I was in wave 1 that started at 7:00.  I positioned myself at the back of the crowd because I didn’t want tons of people running past me (both annoying to me and inconsiderate to them), but I ended up getting passed by a bunch of people anyway because they never seemed to close the corral.  I crossed the start at 7:20 and people were still just waltzing in from the subway.  It was annoying that I was basically penalized for following NYRR’s instructions, leaving my apartment at 5:30 am and waiting around in the corral when I could have left my apartment ten minutes before 7 and still crossed the start at the same time.  It was especially annoying because they should have just had those people start in the second wave.  Of course, I got passed by a lot of people in the second wave, too, but that’s just because I’m such a slow runner.  😛

The start of the Brooklyn Half Marathon is somewhere up there, to the left.

The start of the Brooklyn Half Marathon is somewhere up there, to the left.

 

As you might already know, the course starts near the Brooklyn Museum, does a loop through Prospect Park, then dumps out onto Ocean Parkway and finishes on the boardwalk in Coney Island.  The only hills are in the park, and they’re mild compared to the hills in Central Park.  It was overcast at the start but started lightly raining around mile 5 for me, then turned into a heavy downpour for several minutes.  It was the hardest rain I’ve ever encountered during a race (harder than the rain I faced in Vermont and much harder than the light drizzle in Portland) but luckily it was warm, the rain eventually stopped, and I only had to run another 8 miles instead of 21.

It always looks like some natural disaster happened at the finish line of a race.

It always looks like some natural disaster happened at the finish line of a race.

 

Overall, the race was harder than I expected, as I had both foot and knee pain especially after mile 10.  And while it was my Personal Worst for a half marathon (slower even than my first half marathon ever), I finished faster than I expected at a little under 2:30, and was pretty thrilled with my time at this point.

It's always olde tymey in Coney Island!

It’s always olde tymey in Coney Island!

 

The post-race “party” was very crowded with long lines for beer and/or hot dogs (neither of which were free, btw), and I was hungry (they only gave us an apple and bag of pretzels at the finish) and wet and cold and tired, so I left the stadium to head to the subway home.  Luckily I passed a large open storefront selling corn dogs & pop ($7) which I scarfed down with delight (lots of breading on the corn dog but it was delicious), then I got a caramel apple dipped in multi-colored sprinkles to take home ($4).  The ride home on the N train took most of my lifetime, but I managed to hold it together before collapsing at home and doing nothing the rest of the weekend.

It was hard to pick just one.

It was hard to pick just one.

Did you see a bajillion Facebook posts about the Brooklyn Half this weekend?  What did you think of the Mad Men finale?  Would you like to buy the world a Coke?  A corn dog?  Share in the comments!

Brooklyn Half “Pre-Party” Packet Pickup

Brooklyn Half Pre-Party lawn - surprisingly spongy!

Brooklyn Half Pre-Party lawn – surprisingly spongy!

The Airbnb Brooklyn Half Marathon is this Saturday and I went to get my bib this afternoon at the “Pre-Party” in Brooklyn Bridge Park.  Just a note for those coming from some of the major subway stops nearby (e.g. 2/3 at Clark, A/C at High, N/R at Court) – you can’t just walk directly to the water like I tried – you have to find an access point like at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge.  So I ended up walking a lot more than I anticipated, but luckily it was a beautiful day and I got ice cream.

You can't get there from here...

You can’t get there from here…

You *can* get there from here.

You *can* get there from here.

I also got my race shirt “graffitied” by artists from Klughaus, a contemporary art gallery in New York.  I might have to break my only strong race superstition and wear the shirt to the race itself!  If I end up with a DNF or an injury, I will blame the shirt.

My shirt getting graffitied!

My shirt getting graffitied!

A very nice Airbnb employee rushed over to help me hold the shirt down in the wind (so that's his hand).

A very nice Airbnb employee rushed over to help me hold the shirt down in the wind (so that’s his hand).

 

Speaking of injury, my knee pain has been flaring up again since getting back into more regular running.  It makes me so angry that when I try to be responsible and actually train, I get sidelined by injury, which makes me unable to train, so then I churn out less-than-mediocre marathon after approaching-pathetic marathon.  I feel trapped at the back-of-the-pack at this point.  I just want to be a midpacker!!  I’m going to try to keep training as well as I can, and do foam rolling and strengthening and be better about massage, but I also feel like I can only do so much and then it comes down to luck.  Or genetics.  Same thing?

I missed the bands (which only play at night) but had amazing views of the city.

I missed the bands (which only play at night) but had amazing views of the city.

It's on beautiful days like this that I can't believe I live here.

It’s on beautiful days like this that I can’t believe I live here.

 

I’m excited about the Brooklyn Half, though, assuming my knee holds up.  What a joy to only run 13 miles!  An Airbnb employee also said there would be hot dogs and beer for free at the finish.  Could that possibly be true?!  Perhaps Mary Wittenberg’s swan song?

 

Will I see you at the Brooklyn Half this weekend?  Want to meet me at the finish for corn dogs, cotton candy, skee ball, and the Cyclone?  Will you be watching the Mad Men series finale this Sunday?  Share in the comments!