Race number 1 (or race number 42 of 2006) was the Emerald Nuts Midnight Run. The party started at 10, but the race started on the stroke of midnight, so you decide. It was a fun run, so it doesn’t count towards my 2008 marathon qualifying races.
Goals: to have fun and take some pictures and run well.
I got there at about 10:45. The party was in full swing and there was a much bigger crowd this year. Probably because it was in the mid-40s, I think. The announcer claimed there were over 5000 runners and there were loads of friends and family partying, too. I picked up my New Year’s tiara and glow sticks and headed over to the costume party contest. I couldn’t really see anything, but there are pictures on the New York Road Runner website: http://www.nyrrc.org/race/2006/photosa61231.html. I dropped my bag and headed over to the start and stretched. By some miracle, Ernesto found me – he hadn’t been sure about running, but decided at the last minute that he might as well. So, we lined up, counted down, watched fireworks and then took off. This was a fun run, so no chips, but I used my watch to keep track of my splits. The first mile took us up past the 72nd Street Transverse and up Cat Hill along the East Drive. It was very crowded and the mile went fairly slowly. But, I reminded myself that I wasn’t being timed, so it didn’t matter. The second mile took us to all the way up to the 102nd Street Transverse and went by much quicker. I’d decided before the race that I was going to stop on the Transverse to take some pictures of the Champagne stop. Ernesto waited for me and we took off again after a bit of a drink (mine was champagne, but I think it was non-alcoholic). That stop cost us quite a bit of time, so our 3rd mile was even slower than the first. When we hit the 3rd mile marker, I started trash-talking, warning Ernesto that I was going to take off in the final mile and that, if he could keep up, we’d sprint as soon as we hit the 72nd Street Transverse. I did everything I said I would and Ernesto very kindly held back so that we could cross the finish line together. It was especially nice of him, because I really gave it my all! We hung out a bit after the finish, grabbing bagels and packages of Emerald Nuts Trail Mix (I took away loads of each – the volunteers told us to!) and then I headed home to try to get some sleep before having to get up early to take a train to LI.
Unofficial stats: my net time was 38:02 for a 9:31 pace. My mile splits from my watch were: 10:14, 9:02, 10:42 and 8:07.
Celebratory treats: Well, it was 1 am, so I had my treats the next day. I went to my parents’ house on Long Island and had the traditional New Year’s Day meal of black-eyed peas with rice and ham hocks. MMM Plus, a Cherry Vanilla Dr Pepper and yummy Christmas cookies.
Next up: The Fred LeBow Classic 5-miler on January 7th and the Manhattan Half Marathon on January 21st.
Pictures are available at http://new.photos.yahoo.com/album?c=mytripsandraces&aid=576460762381922672&pid=&wtok=PqA6guSCip7QlQJobuQNGQ--&ts=1167696951&.src=ph (view the slideshow for the commentary).