Posts Tagged ‘New York City Marathon’

Runner’s loss

April 19, 2011

The world lost one of it’s greatest female athletes today.

Elite Norweigan runner Grete Waitz lost her six year battle with cancer this morning.  She was 57.

Waitz was a legend in the running world, having won the New York City Marathon a record nine times.  That’s more than any other woman…or man.

She also won a silver medal in the first ever Women’s Marathon event in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.

She’ll undoubtedly be missed.

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12 days of sporty gifts — Day 6 — The gift to top all gifts

December 18, 2010

If you’re really looking to impress that sporty person on your gift list, look no further than the Garmin Forerunner 310xt.

At it’s core, the Forerunner 310xt is a heart rate monitor.  But oh is it so much more than that!

Garmin, as I’m sure you’re well aware is known for it’s GPS navigators.  And they’ve packed that GPS technology into the Forerunner.

No more mapping outdoor running or biking routes.  All you have to do is get outside and go, the Forerunner takes care of the rest, tracking your mileage as you travel.  Not only can you use it to track your runs and rides, but it’s also waterproof which means open water swimming practices are now completely accurate to the foot or meter.  (You can set it to standard or metric distance measurements means you can forget about converting that 10k into miles).  Also, you can set the Forerunner to beep or vibrate at whatever distance interval you prefer making it easy to be track and also (and this is huge for cyclists) allowing you to  keep your eyes on the road!

The battery life on this thing is long, lasting upwards of 20 hours on one charge which means you don’t have to worry about it dying during the middle of one of your long workouts or training sessions.

My absolute favorite feature is the virtual pacer.  Set it to the miles/km per hour you want to keep up with and the Forerunner will beep or vibrate to let you know if you’re keeping up.  I used the pacer during my last triathlon and it helped me turn in my best time ever.  It’s like having a trainer there with you yelling at you to pick it up.

Another noteworthy feature is the back to start map option which means you’ll never get lost.  If you get so into a run that you lose track of where you’re going and how to get back home, simply select “Back to Start” and the Forerunner will guide you back home via the way you came. — Awesome, right?

In the few months Garmin let me test out the Forerunner, I really only came up with one con.  The thing is huge…about the size of wearing two wristwatches next to each other.  That also means it’s a little heavier than most heart rate monitor watches, but the extra weight is hardly noticeable.

But you don’t have to take my word for it.  Check out this review from a marathoner friend of mine who used the Forerunner in the final months of his training for this year’s New York City Marathon.

One run with the Forerunner was all I needed to erase any concerns I had and convert me forever. It was supposed to be a post rest 4 miler, a brush up after two weeks of pool running, but quickly turned into a 6 miler. What impressed me right off the bat were the vibrating mileage alerts. Set at a beep every half mile, the alerts made the run feel quicker and broken in down into segments, so as opposed to a 6 mile run it was more like 12 half mile runs rolled into one. The real luxury of the Garmin turned out to be the heart monitor. I never knew what my heart rate was, let alone even cared, and felt any monitor was just another tool to bog a runner down. Yeah….I was wrong. The addition of a heart monitor in the final month of training, including three 14 plus milers, was invaluable. It felt like that 3 digit heart rate was a tiny digital coach. When my rate went to high, I knew I needed to slow down. When it dipped to low, I knew I could speed up. I was now running at my goal pace and removed any post run questioning, such as did I push too hard? Did I go to slow?

 An obvious attribute is the GPS. I don’t even need to spend much time here and can sum it up with one sentence. No more logging on to ‘Google Maps’ or ‘Map My Run’ and trying to remember what street I turned down when figuring out my day’s mileage.

As race day approached, I became more reliant on the Garmin and started to realize how foolish I was for questioning anyone who spent money on one. On race day, I wish I had spent it years ago. I didn’t try do anything different from my training runs, but as mile 21 approached and the inevitable wall loomed, I caught myself staring at it every few steps. Looking back on the race, I don’t even think I was staring at my pace, but my heart monitor and became lost in it, an ultimate distraction. And in a sport that can be full of external distractions, it really helped me focus.

 I finished 2 minutes under my goal pace.

 It’s been a month of running without the Garmin and its back to Google maps and choppy paces because I can’t target my heart rate on my own. You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.

 I’ll end with one quick note, the watch does not feel as big as it looks. I always thought people with Garmin’s looked like Inspector Gadgets niece, Penny. It fits like an Ironman and after a few miles you forget it’s even on your wrist.”

So as my friend alludes to, the Garmin Forerunner 310xt carries a weighty price tag, retailing for around $399.  But trust me, the athlete on your list will remember the gift for years to come.

Only 6 shopping days left until Christmas!

12 days of sporty gift ideas

December 13, 2010

There are only 12 shopping days left ’til Christmas and if you have an athlete on your gift list, fear not.  Between now and the big day I’ll have 12 great ideas for the active person(s) in your life.

Seeing as it’s still early, you can still get away with ordering a gift online and having it delivered in time for December 25th.  With that in mind, why not gift some branded athletic gear for the next big race on that athlete’s schedule?

Whether she’s training for the New York City triathlon, a marathon or an Ironman, the race is bound to have T-shirts, sweatshirts, bike jerseys, hats and other accessories stamped with the race logo. 

My favorites tend to be the ones that have “In Training” stamped on them (like this one).  I’m also a big fan of the NYC Marathon gloves that list the names of the five boroughs on the fingertips.

I’ll also let you in on a little secret.  These clothes are something we’d love to buy for ourselves, but often don’t because we have too many other things to pay for like entry fees, sneakers and extra tire tubes. 

Here are links to some of the biggest online race stores:

New York City ING Marathon

Nautica New York City Triathlon

Ironman Gifts

Still looking for that perfect gift?  Don’t worry…I’ll bring you another idea tomorrow.

Where to watch the NYC Marathon

November 2, 2010

This weekend the biggest and probably most well-known marathon takes place in New York City.  Tens of thousands of runners will lace-up their sneakers and pound out 26.2 grueling miles through the five boroughs on Sunday, November 7th.  Obviously, it’s too late to run in the race yourself, but it’s not too late to take part in another way…cheering those runners on!

By far the best place to watch and encourage the runners is along First Avenue in Manhattan.  Not only is the location convenient for most people to get to, but the restaurants/bars that line that stretch of the route go all out to make sure everybody has fun.  And here’s something I’ve learned from experience:  if you can, try to get yourself over to the east side of First Avenue.  The crowds tend to be less dense on that side, ensuring no one will be stepping on your toes or screaming right into your ear.  (If you do this, make sure you do it early, crossing the street will be near impossible once the race really starts.)

The NYC Marathon Route -- all 26.2 miles of it

Here are more places where you can root your favorite runner on (see map for complete route):

Brooklyn — the Brooklyn Academy of Music (mile 8)

Queens — Just past the Pulaski Bridge (mile 14 — halfway point!)

Bronx — 138th street (mile 20 — where most runners will hit the wall and need all the support they can get!)

Manhattan — First Ave from 59th – 128th Streets (miles 16-19)

                            Fifth Avenue from 138th – 86th Streets (mile 21-23)

                            Central Park South (mile 25 — best place to watch the elite races come to an end)

Good luck to all those taking part!  You’re all already winners in my book!

Making the NYC Marathon run smoothly

October 20, 2010

The New York City Marathon is just a few weeks away and while it’s too late to actually run the race, there’s still time to help run it.

That’s because the New York Road Runners Club is still taking applications for race day volunteers.

Assignments include staffing the The ING New York City Marathon Health and Fitness Expo at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in the days leading up to the race, giving out water to runners along the 26.2 mile course and even handing out medals at the finish line in Central Park.

If you ‘re interested in making Sunday November 7th run smooth, head here to become a volunteer.

And who knows, maybe you’ll be inspired by the millions of runners and decide to enter the race next year.  And don’t worry, you’ll have time to decide.  The lottery for next year’s race isn’t until sometime in April 2011.