The NYC Marathon: the backstory / why I signed up to run 26.2 miles

Welcome to part 1 of my NYC marathon series: the backstory! Marathon training was such a huge part of my life for the past few months, and I honestly miss it! Now that the marathon is over, I want to relive it all with you! I hope you enjoy this series. Of course, leave questions below!

  1. The backstory of how/why I signed up to run 26.2 miles
  2. The 4 ways to qualify for the NYC marathon
  3. Training for the marathon
  4. Marathon day





Those of you who follow me on instagram know that I recently completed the NYC marathon. This was my second marathon and such a different experience from the first.

I trained and ran by first marathon in medical school. To prepare, I read a the Runner's World Big Book of Marathon and Half Marathon Training and followed a generic running plan. I didn't really pay much attention to hydration, fueling, or pacing. My goal was just to finish. Training was time intensive, but overall not terrible. However, the day of the actual marathon was horrific. I completed the marathon in 4 hours and 20 minutes which is pretty good time, but I felt awful for the last 8 miles and ran/walked the last 4 miles. Although I was proud of myself for completing the marathon, I did not feel good about it and I stopped running.

Despite how horrible of an experience it was, or maybe because it was such a horrible experience, there was always a part of me that knew I would run another marathon. (welcome to my life)

Fast forward to intern year, when I log on to facebook to see my soon to be coresident Kumar completing the 2016 NYC marathon DURING INTERN YEAR. I immediately message him about my interest in running the marathon. He was completing intern year at the time in Chicago (yes, he trained for and ran a marathon during intern year!), and I was completing intern year in Alabama. We agreed that long runs would be a great way to learn the city and stay in shape in the very expensive city. It would be both of our first times living in NYC and sounded like a great bonding experience.

Well, when it came time to sign up for the lottery... I chickened out. Kumar didn't.

Kumar was accepted through the lottery to run the marathon. I of course was there on race day to cheer him on, but I felt a wee bit of guilt and a whole lot of envy that I wasn't also running. NYtimes claimed that it was the "perfect marathon weather." The crowds roared. It seemed magical.

Well, not only did I cheer on Kumar and a couple more of my coworkers, I also cheered on a cute guy I'd met a couple of weeks before.

I'd pretty much forgotten about the fact that I'd run a marathon until the night I met him and overheard myself saying "oh yeah.. I run marathons too.. " hahahahahahah. We became really good friends over the next couple of weeks and I went with him to pick up his marathon race bib the day before the marathon. I confessed how I had totally bailed on Kumar and my desire to run the marathon but that I was intimidated and let's face it, a huge flake. I had no faith that I could do what it took to qualify for the marathon. He simply responded "We can do it together. It'll be fun!"

I probably should have realized he really liked me, but I was mostly excited to have someone to hold me accountable for the bullshit goals I make. haha. I said "okay!" and I went for my first run that Monday....

next: Part 2 qualifying for the NYC marathon