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Jane Rosales

NYC Runs Hot Chocolate   (2014)

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So I've now ran this race twice - once two years ago (the 5K) and last week the 10K. I love NYC Runs because they always provide an awesome race experience.

Roosevelt Island is a random island that really isn't part of any of the 5 boroughs physically. It's a small island in between Manhattan and Queens and running around it is about 4 miles.

Packet pick up was done at JackRabbit Sports the Friday before the race but I ended up picking up just that morning. Because the 5k started at 9:30am and the 10K at 10am, my sister and I rolled in after 9:30am. We picked up our bibs and race swag (a large mug with a mini logo of the race). The mugs looked like the company screwed up - the logo was really small. Two years ago they had these amazing large green mugs that I still use to this day.

Had I known that they don't start the race until every 5K runner finishes, I would have slept in for another half hour. The 10K didn't start until 10:20am. At that point, I was freezing. It was around 30 degrees when we started. The course consists of two laps the island. The start and finish were right by the tram station and because there was construction of the lower southern half of the island they changed the course just days before the race.

The island isn't much to look at although the mini lighthouse at mile 1-2/4-5 is cute. What is awesome is the views of the Manhattan skyline and the river along all sides of the island. The Queens side of the island is all industrial and not pretty to look at.

I think I counted 2 water stops along the race (or really four because of the 2 loops). My highlight of this race is that one it's cheaper than NYRR races by a lot and the food is better. I paid $30 for the race but I could have paid a lot less if I signed up 2 months ago. The bagel spread is amazing and from Terrace Bagels (real authentic NYC bagels unlike the stuff NYRR gets), lots of fruit to grab like grapes and apples and the hot chocolate was AMAZING. For the bagels, they had the standard cream cheeses and butters.

Overall, it's a holiday favorite with great food. NYC Runs hosts different "hot chocolate runs" in different areas of the city during the winter including Brooklyn and Riverside Park. But because this one is so close to the holidays, it's probably the most festive one (I wore my crazy Christmas compression socks).

Danielle Nardi

TCS New York City Marathon   (2014)

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The New York City Marathon is definitely a bucket list item for all runners! While the logistics of actually getting to the start on Staten Island and running a race with over 50,000 people can definitely be overwhelming, the experience or running the largest marathon in the world was well worth it!

Definitely be sure to include some hills in your training since there are many bridges throughout the course (especially in the second half!) bringing you in and out of the different boroughs! The spectator support can't be beat though - there was yelling, cheering, signs, tissues, pretzels and all sorts of snacks along the way!

I unfortunately also had the opportunity to experience the medical tent at the finish line and I have to say all of the volunteers were very helpful, well organized and professional - while I'd avoid the medical tents if you can, they were great when I needed them at the end of the race!

My biggest tip in being ready for all the logistics that come with this race would be to make sure to read all of the e-mails that you get from NYRR leading up to the race, they are filled with important and valuable information! Also, be sure to dress warm and bring lots of layers for while you are waiting for the start on Staten Island!

You can read me entire New York City Marathon recap here...http://liverungrow.com/2014/11/11/race-recap-tcs-new-york-city-marathon/

Barry McBadgerson

TCS New York City Marathon   (2014)

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What can I say about this race that you haven't read somewhere else? I was really looking forward to this race for a number of reasons: it is the 4th of the 6 world Marathon Majors that I have done and also it was the last marathon of 5 I did this year (so now I can rest and recover until 2015!).

Pros
- Race management is spectacular, with over 50,000 people running they do an awesome job.
- Lots of well stocked aid stations along the route.
- The course itself is not hilly, the biggest hill and toughest part of the whole race was the first 2 miles. Part of the reason was the 20+ mph wind and I was in a wave on the top deck of the bridge.
- The finish is well organized so when you are done you go get your bag (if you had one) or you got a poncho and left.
- The expo had lots of different vendors and it was easy to pick up your bib.

Cons (there are not many but these are things I noticed)
- The baseball hats they had with the marathon logo were made by Asics and they were so odd shaped I didn't buy one. Not many people did, in fact I didn't notice many people wearing them during the race which you usually see.
- With this many people be prepared for lots of breaches of running etiquette. People would stop in the middle of the road to walk instead of getting over, lots of people throwing cups that were half full all over with no concern for others and people not really aware of how to pass someone without bumping into them.

Overall this was a great experience and I am glad to finally get in and run it. The registration fee is expensive but to me it was worth it.

Christine Guenther

TCS New York City Marathon   (2011)

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I know people get on NYRR for the 2012 debacle with Hurricane Sandy, but leave that aside. I ran NYC in 2011 and it was an incredible experience. Yes, it starts in Statin Island, but it's painless to get there via Ferry and Shuttle Buses. You also have the first 2-3 miles to get your groove on running over into Brooklyn and you're welcomed with crowds that never thin out. It's a whole lot of party from there!! The fans are out there and it's a whole bunch of culture to boot. Plenty of aid stations along the way. Expect to have some hills in NYC (which you don't realize when you're casually walking around) and you hit all 5 boroughs. Central Park is rough at the end on the legs, so be warned

Expo: good size, lots of vendors and a huge amount of people to visit

Erin Mink Garvey

TCS New York City Marathon   (2013)

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The NYC Marathon is the largest in the world--over 50,000 finishers in 2013 alone--and it's a well-oiled machine. All of the pre-race communications are thorough and meticulous, and the race itself is just out of this world. Never have I run a marathon before, even the other majors I've run (Chicago, Boston), where I was constantly surrounded by other runners in somewhat close proximity to me the entire race. The marathon was an absolute blast, thanks in no small part to the absolutely incredible support from all the residents in all 5 boroughs that you run through, and while there is a TON of fanfare that goes into NYC--like the high registration costs, the lottery, the shuttles/ferries out to Staten Island, and all of the stuff in Central Park once you actually finish the race--it's worth it. The course is challenging for sure, with the constant ascents and descents, but do your due diligence, pace intelligently, and train on hills, with some good ascents and descents, and you'll rock it. Run NYC at least once because seriously, it's worth it.

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