Sonntag, 29. Dezember 2013

NK - Elversberg - Schüren - Scheidt - IGB - Spiesen - NK

NK - Elversberg - Schüren - Scheidt - IGB - Spiesen - NK von joaum bei Garmin Connect – Details

Päh! Die letzte MTB-Tour des Jahres war richtig eklig. Ein paar Mal hab ich mich verfahren, zweimal "geplackt" und dann hat's auch noch von Minute zu Minute mehr geschifft. So wurden aus den geplanten 50 km nur knapp 35, weil ich einfach irgendwann genug hatte. Ich weiß schon, warum ich nicht so gern MTB fahre. Aber morgen, mit einem Tag Abstand, sehe ich das wahrscheinlich schon wieder anders und sag mir: "War doch 'ne ganz schöne Tour..." ;-)

Sonntag, 22. Dezember 2013

Kirkeler Waldrunde mit Siebenfichten und Wolfsfelsen

Kirkeler Waldrunde mit Siebenfichten und Wolfsfelsen von joaum bei Garmin Connect – Details

Die Gruppe blickt ehrfürchtig auf den
Wolfsfelsen bei Lautzkirchen
Bei echtem "Namurwetter", wie der Sportkamerad Peter Jung meinte, fuhren wir mit einer Siebenergruppe durch den Kirkeler Wald. Kurz vor Niederwürzbach setzten Jan-Robin und ich uns ab und "überließen die anderen ihrem Schicksal". Schöne Runde!

Samstag, 21. Dezember 2013

Mein Sportjahr 2013

Drei Lauf-Bestzeiten (5, 10, 21,1 km), mein schönster Triathlon, gigantische Raderlebnisse und zum Abschluß der NYC-Marathon - danke, 2013, auch wenn's teilweise schwer war!

Nachdem ich aus mehreren Gründen, also genau gesagt einer Mischung aus Ermüdung, Verletzungen und bronchialen Super-GAUs seit dem New-York-Marathon fast überhaupt keinen Sport mehr gemacht habe, stellt sich jetzt langsam eine Besserung ein. Morgen will ich mit ein paar meiner Sportkameraden mal wieder eine schöne ausgedehnte MTB- bzw. Crosstour machen.

Eigentlich ist das normal: Nach einem Marathon ist der Körper muskulär, orthopädisch und immunologisch erst mal angeschlagen. Bei mir war das diesesmal heftiger als gewohnt, bzw. es kam auch einiges zusammen. Und jünger werd' ich ja schließlich auch nicht. Laufen ist sowieso erstmal gar nicht drin, meine linke Plantarfaszie braucht auf absehbare Zeit mal Ruhe. Aber es "juckt" schon wieder, und ich freu mich sehr auf die Tour morgen. Zeit für einen Jahresrückblick.

Mein Plan für das Sportjahr 2013 war von Beginn an, in den ersten acht Monaten den Schwerpunkt aufs Radfahren zu legen, dort auch die Grundlagenausdauer zu optimieren und erst gegen Ende des Jahres hin mit einem konzentrierten Zehn-Wochen-Plan nach Steffny meinen Saisonhöhepunkt, den New-York-City-Marathon, vorzubereiten.

Im Januar ging's langsam los, fast drei Wochen war ich bronchitisbedingt ziemlich eingeschränkt - mein übliches Winterleiden, das mich, soviel sei vorweggenommen, auch in diesem Winter plagt. Ich schleppte mich zwar mehr oder weniger regelmäßig in den Aktiv Gesundheitspark, um was für die Muskulatur zu tun, aber das war mehr Qual als Spaß.

Wenig Lauftraining, wenn, dann auf dem Band, gelegentlich ein wenig Mountainbike, dann etwas mehr Crosslauf, eine Rennradausfahrt mit dem Trainingslager der RF Homburg bei Sonnenschein und knackiger Kälte - so ging's in den zweiten Monat des Jahres und in die Vorbereitung auf meinen ersten Wettkampf, den Ferraro-Gutsweiherlauf am 24. Februar. Den lief ich relativ verhalten und kraftsparend, auch wegen der extrem niedrigen Temperaturen und der doch recht wenigen Vorbereitungskilometer - da war der Platz 21 (5. M40) in 42:42 echt in Ordnung.

Seit Beginn der Fastenzeit hatte ich meine Ernährung umgestellt und auf Fleisch gleichwarmer Tiere und Alkohol ganz, auf Süßigkeiten weitestgehend verzichtet - das tat mir richtig gut.

Beim Crossduathlon Zweibrücken
Als nächstes hatte ich den Zweibrücker Crossduathlon auf meinem Wettkampfkalender markiert - den wollte ich eigentlich schon 2012 laufen, hatte das aber verpeilt. Zur Vorbereitung lief ich meist morgens meine Runde über Spiesen (Hüttenstraße) und Heinitz (oberes Weiherbachtal), einen Trainings-Halbmarathon auf der Strecke der LTF Marpingen und fuhr ein-zweimal mit dem Rad "aus" (einmal Strasse, einmal MTB). Auch eingedenk meiner muskulären Probleme und zweier Erkkältungen genügte mir das, obwohl es eigentlich nicht viel für einen solch anspruchsvollen Wettkampf ist. Auch von daher war ich mit dem Ergebnis recht zufrieden - im Jedermann-Rennen gewann ich die Altersklasse M40 und wurde insgesamt Achter.

Das sollte für eine gewisse Zeit aber mein letzter Wettkampf gewesen sein - ich wollte den nun beginnenden Frühling weidlich mit ganz viel Rennradkilometern auskosten, weil ja die zweite Vier-Tages-Tour nach Mantes-La-Ville anstand und ich mir für den Sommerurlaub einige Alpenpässe vorgenommen hatte. So kamen im April und Mai immerhin in 50 Stunden 16 Ausfahrten mit insgesamt 1324 km und ca. 17.000 hm zusammen, immer schön durchmischt mit einigen Läufen und Einheiten im Studio. Die Form war gut, ich fühlte mich prächtig, und die Tour nach Mantes-La-Ville war auch wieder ein richtig tolles Ding. Wir fuhren in vier Etappen über Neunkirchen, Esch-sur-Alzette, Warmeriville und Fontenai-Trèsigny nach Mantes-La-Ville - 590 km in knapp unter 23 Stunden Netto, also mit einem Schnitt von 25,7 km/h - für so eine Altherrentruppe nicht schlecht (unsere einzige Frau musste leider nach einem Tag erkältet aufgeben)...

Direkt danach ging's vor allem ins Wasser - ab Anfang Juni wurde ordentlich Schwimmtraining eingebaut, um beim dritten Neunkircher Triathlon nicht - wie bei den ersten beiden Auflagen - schon völlig blau aus dem Wasser zu kommen. Die zweieinhalb Wochen bis dahin nutzte ich trainingsmäßig recht intensiv und abwechselungsreich. Das Ergebnis war entsprechend. Persönlicher Streckenrekord und vor allem: Endlich mal ein guter Schwimmwettkampf, nicht unbedingt schnell, aber sehr ökonomisch, so daß ich beim Radfahren und Laufen keine Probleme bekam, sondern sogar richtig Gas geben konnte. Am Ende sprang mit 1:07:13,0 eine richtig gute Bestzeit heraus, ich wurde bei den "Jedermännern" Dreizehnter insgesamt und belegte in meiner Altersklasse "Senioren 1" den zweiten Platz.

In den Wochen danach blieb ich bei abwechslungsreichem Training, zum einen hatte ich Spaß am Schwimmen gefunden und das Wetter war auch dazu geeignet, zum anderen hatte ich die Radtouren in den Ferien im Blick - und ein neues Ziel, eine "Flause", die mir der Peter Jung in den Kopf gesetzt hatte, nämlich den "Cinglé du Mont Ventoux". Doch dazu später mehr. Zunächst mal sollte Mitte Juli beim Firmenlauf in Dillingen die Bestzeit über 5 km fallen, die ich seit 1989 mit mir herumschleppte.

Das gelang - wenn auch knapp. 18:21 ist nun mal 2 sec. schneller als 18:23, und außerdem ist die Strecke in Dillingen sowieso ca. 200 m länger als 5 km. Da würd ich drauf wetten ;-).

In den Wochen danach ließ ich es relativ locker angehen, sammelte eher Kilometer bzw. Bahnen, statt auf Tempo zu trainieren. Dabei waren auch schöne Fahrten mit zumindest halbwegs dienstlichem Hintergrund, wie z.B. die Begleitung der Fairplay-Tour der Großregion von Kirkel durch Neunkirchen nach Ottweiler oder die Tour de jumelage Hangard - Enchenberg als Freundschaftsgeste an die Partnergemeinde des Neunkircher Stadtteils im Bitcher Land. Als letzter Test vor den Alpenetappen fuhr ich noch eine längere Tour in die Eifel.

Ende Juli ging's dann in den Urlaub. Zunächst campten wir eine Woche am Lac d'Annecy, und ich unternahm wunderschöne Radtouren bei ausschließlichem Kaiserwetter, u.a. Doussard - Cormet de Roselend - Col du Petit St. Bernard, eine Rundfahrt um den Lac d'Annecy und zum krönenden Abschluß die Königsetappe über St. Jean de Maurienne - Col du Télégraphe - Col du Galibier - La Grave. Bei den beiden großen Touren zu Beginn und am Ende begleitete mich zumindest teilweise auch mein Sohnemann. Das hat richtig Spaß gemacht!

Nach der Weiterreise in die Provence traten dann die ersten gesundheitlichen Probleme der Saison auf: Die Plantarfasziitis, die mich weiterhin beschäftigen sollte, bemerkte ich nach zwei eigentlich lockeren Läufen rund um Cabannes erstmals. Ich führe sie auf das Tragen von Flip-Flops während des Sommers zurück - in jedem Fall behinderte sie mich zunächst nur beim Laufen, beim Radfahren merkte ich nichts, und da ich ohnehin im wesentlichen Rad fuhr, vergaß ich die schnell abklingenden Beschwerden auch rasch.

Ca. 4 km vor der dritten Gipfelankunft
beim Cinglé du Mont Ventoux
Ich fuhr eine schöne Rundfahrt durch den Luberon (Cabannes - Col du Pointu - Auribeau - Col de l'Aire Deï Masco - Cabannes), zwei Tage später noch eine kleine Tour mit Jan-Robin und dann - am 06.08.13 - lieferte ich mein rennradtechnisches Meisterstück ab, auf das ich heute noch mächtig stolz bin: Den Cinglé du Mont Ventoux - dreimal an einem Tag den Mont Ventoux hinauf. Zum Abschluß des Urlaubs noch einen schönen Ausritt durch die Alpilles, und der Radurlaub war perfekt abgeschlossen.

Nach unserer Rückkehr hatte ich noch 14 Tage Zeit bis zum Beginn der Marathonvorbereitung, ich lief in der Zeit nur einmal, und das beschwerdefrei, ansonsten wurde noch etwas Rad gefahren.

Ab dem 27.08. wurde es dann ernst - und auch schon beim ersten Training (5*2 km im Marathontempo) traten die Beschwerden an der linken Fußsohle wieder auf. Ich ließ mich mit einer leichten Cortisoninjektion behandeln, und die sprach auch super an. Ich konnte beschwerdefrei trainieren und sogar noch einen Wettkampf einstreuen - den Staffelpart als Läufer beim Kommunentriathlon in Sankt Wendel.

Die Vorbereitung lief problemlos. Ich hielt mich fast zu 100% an Steffnys Vorgaben für einen Sub3-Marathon, verschärfte allerdings die Anforderungen leicht, um Reserven in Richtung 2:55 zu bekommen. Die beiden 10er, jeweils in Saarbrücken (einmal beim Hochwald-Gourmet-Halbmarathon, einmal beim Westspangenlauf) klappten prima, beim zweiten verbesserte ich sogar meine Bestzeit über 10 km, wenn auch nur um wenige Sekunden.

Ich musste den Plan aufgrund dienstlicher Termine auch ein bisschen durcheinander würfeln - den zweiten 10er wollte ich ursprünglich in Saarlouis laufen, das klappte aber nicht, und so schob ich auch den Halbmarathon etwas nach hinten und lief im Bottwartal - aber sehr erfolgreich, mit deutlicher neuer Bestzeit (38 Sekunden schneller als vorher, 19. Gesamtrang, Zweiter M40).

Ich war eigentlich bester Dinge, bis 10 Tage vor New York meine Beschwerden an der Plantarfaszie plötzlich wieder auftraten - bei meinem letzten ernsten Intervalltraining kurz vor dem Ende. Das machte mich sehr unsicher, ich suchte gleich ärztlichen Rat und entschied mich für eine zweite, aber definitiv letzte Injektion. Wäre dies ein Marathon vor der Haustür gewesen, hätte ich abgesagt, aber New York - nein, das ging nun wirklich nicht.

Auch diesmal half die Spritze - wenn auch nicht so gut wie beim ersten Mal. Aber den letzten langen Lauf in London eine Woche vor New York bekam ich gut hin, und obwohl ich die Verletzung spürte, behinderte sie mich nicht - ich lief aber auch nie mit voller Geschwindigkeit über einen längeren Zeitraum. Restunsicherheit blieb, und wie sich zeigen sollte, auch nicht zu Unrecht.

400m vorm Ziel im Central Park
Dann kam der Höhepunkt der Saison - der New York City Marathon, den ich bereits 2012 starten wollte (aber wegen Sandy nicht konnte) und nun endlich - trotz starker Schmerzen und beeinträchtigt durch die Plantarfasziitis - in 2:59:33 finishte.

Den Preis war's zwar wert, aber heftig war's trotzdem - die Plantarfasziitis quält mich heute noch (auch wenn's jetzt besser wird), und auch ansonsten war ich in den Wochen danach total groggy, auch meine Bronchien machten schlapp (das ist bei mir im Dezember/Januar aber eigentlich normal und wird mit dem Frühjahr wieder besser), und durch die Schonhaltung beim Lauf in New York war auch mein "Gestell" ziemlich verrenkt.

Aber langsam geht's aufwärts. Erstmal ist noch Laufpause angesagt, die wird auch noch mindestens vier Monate anhalten. In der Zeit mach ich auch mal was für meine Rücken- und Rumpfmuskulatur.

Außerdem freu ich mich schon wieder auf's Radfahren und Schwimmen, beidem werde ich zu Beginn des Sportjahres 2014 erhöhte Aufmerksamkeit schenken.


Die Bilanz:

Schwimmen: 8 Einheiten, 10,3 km
Laufen: 119 Einheiten, 1.426 km
Radfahren: 58 Einheiten, 4.127 km
Krafttraining: 34 Einheiten

Es war alles in allem ein sehr schönes, erfolgreiches und erfüllendes Sportjahr für mich. Das schönste war es dabei, mit vielen Freunden zusammenzukommen, sei es im Training, beim Wettkampf oder auch mal beim Zuschauen von Veranstaltungen, wo man selbst nicht startet. Der gegenseitige Respekt und die Hochachtung gerade vor den Leistungen der anderen ist es, was den Ausdauersport ausmacht. Auf ein Neues in 2014!





Samstag, 23. November 2013

Niederwürzbacher Weiher - Kirkeler Burg

Niederwürzbacher Weiher - Kirkeler Burg von joaum bei Garmin Connect – Details

Erste Radtour seit langem - und nach nunmehr fast drei Wochen Sportpause (abgesehen von einer halben Stunde Schwimmen) die erste längere körperliche Betätigung seit dem New-York-Marathon

Das obere Frohnsbach- bzw. Geißbachtal
zwischen Rohrbach und Niederwürzbach
                                                                                                                    
Daher nahm ich's auch leicht und genoß den Glashütter Weiher, das Geißbachtal und den schönen Ausblick auf die Kirkeler Burg, insgesamt ein 17er-Schnitt, das war o.k.!

Am Anfang der Tour hatte ich noch recht große Probleme, vor allem bronchial, aber das wurde besser, je länger die Fahrt ging. Mein Orthopäde meinte: Marathonläufer seien auch anfälliger für Infekte. Die monatelange Überbelastung durch das extreme Laufpensum schwäche das Immunsystem. Das Training wirke da zwar noch suppressiv - aber der Lauf als starke Belastung wirke dann wie ein "Trigger". Komme man danach "runter", brächen sich die unterdrückten Infekte ihre Bahn - was ja auch so schlecht nicht sei, weil dann das Immunsystem (endlich) seine Arbeit tun könne.

Das daran was Wahres sein könnte, merke ich jetzt nach dem NYC-Marathon wie schon letztes Jahr nach dem Berlin-Marathon mit anschließender (verlängerter und letztlich ja fruchtloser) Vorbereitung auf den New-York-Marathon 2012: Danach war ich auch zwei - drei Wochen völlig platt. Der Körper nimmt sich sein Recht (der Saarländer würde sogar sagen, er holt es sich) - und das ist auch gut so.

"Lauta Schmaddl!" würde Graf Drakeli wohl sagen...
Zwischen dem Glashütter Weiher und der L 119 (Kaiserstraße) war die Piste ein einziger Sumpf. Das führte dann natürlich zu nassen Füßen, die so gegen Ende der Fahrt hin auch leichte Taubheitsgefühle entwickelt haben.

Es war nur ein leichter Verfahrer dabei: Im Wald hinter Niederwürzbach, oberhalb des Kirkelertalbaches, gabelte sich die Route in drei Wege.
Ich nahm erst den mittleren, aber der hätte mich irgendwann wieder über den Bergkamm ins Geißbachtal geführt, und ich wollte ja ins Kirkeler Bachtal (nicht zu verwechseln mit dem Kirkelertalbachtal, aus dem ich ja gerade gekommen war ;-)). Aber der Fehler war schnell bemerkt und korrigiert.

Gegen Ende der Tour kam sogar noch die Sonne raus! Da hätte ich glatt weiterfahren können. Aber 38 km durchs Gelände reichen auch erst mal. Richtig schön war's.

Donnerstag, 14. November 2013

Sechs Monate Laufpause - mindestens...

Tja, das hab ich jetzt davon. Trotz Plantarfasciitis eine Marathonvorbereitung absolviert, trotz Schmerzen nach 5 km dann den Marathon durchgelaufen. Jetzt meint mein Orthopäde, es sei sinnvoll, für ein halbes bis ein Jahr aufs Laufen zu verzichten, um die Faszie ausheilen zu lassen bzw. die Bildung einer Verknöcherung, auch "Fersensporn" genannt (falls ich die nicht ohnehin schon habe) zu verhindern.

Nun denn. Eigentlich kam ich ja ohnehin vom Radfahren aufs Laufen, also geht’s ab demnächst "back to the roots". Außerdem wird in Zukunft mehr geschwommen und Krafttraining gemacht. Abwechselung tut gut. Und wenn alles klar geht, kann ich mich dann Ende nächsten Jahres in Ruhe auf den Boston-Marathon 2015 vorbereiten.

Hätte das sein müssen? Die Antwort lautet eindeutig "Ja". Was ich in New York erlebt habe, möchte ich auf keinen Fall missen!

Mittwoch, 13. November 2013

No Pain, No Gain - My first NYC Marathon and the fight to finish in under three hours

Diesen Blog gibt's hier auch auf Deutsch

NYC-Marathon 2013 @ Garmin Connect – Details

Start spreading the news, I'm leaving today
I want to be a part of it - New York, New York
These vagabond shoes are longing to stray
Right through the very heart of it - New York, New York

Frank Sinatra



The ING NYC Marathon 2013 was by far the hardest, most challenging and the cruelest that I have run in my not-so-glorious career as a long distance runner.

But it will stay with me as the most satisfying and most fascinating one - maybe for the exact same reasons. The following blog contains what I experienced before, during and after the race, but also tries to give hints and little help (watch out for the italic!), if one or the other reader is motivated to try to run it. I can just encourage you to do so. It is a great thing to compete in the most-sought-after race through the five borrows of the city that never sleeps (this year's race was run by 50.304 finishers and 50.740 starters, a new record). There's nothing like it!

I had been in NYC already last year. The Bonn Marathon in spring 2012 had to be cancelled due to a torn muscle in the back of my right thigh, und four weeks prior to NYC I had run in Berlin, under three hours for the first time ever. New York was supposed to be just a joyride and the coronation of my running season in 2012 .

That was in 2012...
After two weeks of regeneration and two following weeks of light training I was "ready to run", when the marathon was canceled due to Sandy. That was the right thing to do, even if the process was a bit questionable.

"Or was this all about filling all the hotel spots?", many people wondered, even locals. Whatever - I was determined to choose the option "guaranteed entry in 2013", had paid the fee (again!) and dedicated a 10-week-preparation exclusively for this run - my first and only marathon in 2013 (funny fact: I wanted to run more than one marathon per year multiple times, but it never worked out: Frankfurt 2009 was my first one (in October), 2010 I ran at Sankt Wendel in May, wanted to start in Berlin, but broke my collarbone cycling, after that I had problems with my Achilles heel and tore up my ACL skiing, so no running until May, consequently in 2011 I started only in Berlin, and in 2012 there was that aforementioned thigh thing and after the Berlin marathon came Sandy...).

I got into the city on Wednesday already, together with my 12-year-old daughter Annabelle and was lucky to be hosted by my very good friend Vera at her apartment on the Upper West Side. Vera cared for me like you won't believe, so far that she got up at 4:15 a.m. on marathon morning in order to prepare a good and hearty breakfast. More about that later.

Vera even helped me pick up my race BIB ;-)
In the days leading up to "Marathon Sunday" I did exactly what you're supposed to do: train just a bit and take it easy (Thursday 8 k along the Hudson river shore, Saturday just 30 minutes twice around the Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis Reservoir in Central Park), eat good, load up on carbohydrates on Saturday, do just a little sightseeing, and rest, then rest some more. Even if you want so see a lot in this great city, don't run around, use the subway. If you're in town for a week or so, take the "7-Day Unlimited MAT Metro Card" for $30: That gives you access to the subway and the MAT buses (without the express buses , and you save big with more than three fares a day, which you always have, and more.

One highlight was a cruise with my friends from Saarland Ralf Niedermeier, the event whiz from Niedermeierplus and Cliff Hämmerle, the celebrity chef from  Blieskastel - and also with Herbert Steffny, the former European champion and third-place-finisher in the NYC Marathon 1984 (the heat battle). Herbert runs one of the most famous run and fitness camps in Germany.

I'm a big fan of his, my first marathon that was really perfect (Berlin in 2012) I had prepared using his plan. Herbert gave some important hints that really helped me in the race. As in "eating": I didn't know that they start handing out food at mile 18 because water and Gatorade are already handed out beginning mile 3 and then every mile. But eating 8 miles prior to the finish line -when should one digest that? I took his advice to heart and packed two fruit bars I gulped down at mile 9 and 14, and at mile 18 I grabbed two Gatorade gels, while I had drunk almost every mile from the third mile on. So that all worked out perfectly.

He also warned about the bad street surface, which was correct, especially towards the end in Brooklyn and very much so in Queens. So I was conscious and could prevent falling down. But I don't want to go to far right now, I enjoyed the "acclimation period" and had a good time.

With Cliff Hämmerle (left) and Ralf
Niedermeier (middle) at Pier 83
The only cloud in the sky, albeit a dark one, was my plantar fasciitis. That is an often painful inflammatory process of the plantar fascia.
The plantar fascia is the thick connective tissue (fascia) which supports the arch on the bottom (plantar side) of the foot. It runs from the tuberosity of the calcaneus (heel bone) forward to the heads of the metatarsal bones (the bone between each toe and the bones of the mid foot).

My left foot had given me fits when I started my 10-week-training already. The reason was probably wearing those flip-flop-shoes in South France during our summer holidays, which is a cardinal sin as far as your podologic duties are concerned. At least that's what my orthopedic specialist and my orthopedic shoemaker told me.

After treatment (one cortisone shot) it disappeared and didn't flare up again - that is, until 9 days prior to the race. The last big intervall in 2*5k marathon speed brought back the symptoms - and forcefully.

That really got to me. Longer runs with less speed didn't bother me at all, but as soon as I put the "pedal to the metal" in training and went race speed, it hurt pretty bad. But I didn't want to give up, and also not make compromises: I had invested 60 runs, 72 hours and 840 km almost exactly following Steffny's ten-week-plan for a Sub-3-marathon - and that was just the running units, I also did some cycling and worked out with weightlifting and back-strengthening exercises.

Since logging in at Berlin 2012 in 2:56:47 I consider myself a Sub-3-runner. Back then, I was willing to concede that NYC was my second marathon in four weeks and wouldn't have minded to just enjoy it and finish above three hours simply due to the fatigue that would have been normal, but this time I had set myself a goal for my only marathon of the year and wanted to achieve that. So I got a second cortisone shot on Tuesday before leaving for New York and hoped for the best. Well, once you do that, it almost always comes worse...

Race day!

Sunday morning, 4:15 a.m.: My iPhone wanted to wake me up, but I was already awake anyway. Early, I know, but if you run this marathon you have to consider that in order to get to the start in Staten Island, you've got some ground to cover. As I said before, Vera treated me to a warm oat-meal-breakfast with lots of milk, fruit, nuts and whatever else your body is able to transform into lasting energy. Also coffee and orange juice, and she also handed me bars, fruit and drinks to cover the 4.5 hours until the starting time - great!

And much better than a cold, dry, packed breakfast that lots of runners living in hotels would have to be content with, as I overheard in the subway and later on the ferry.

The course:

Ted Corbitt helped plan the deceptively hilly course of the New York City Marathon. The initial course of 1970 consisted in repeated racing around Central Park. Nowadays the course covers all five boroughs of New York City. It begins on Staten Island near the approach to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. The bridge, which normally carries only vehicular traffic, is closed for the event. Runners use both sides of the upper level of the bridge and the westbound side of the lower level. In the opening minutes of the race, the bridge is filled with runners, creating a dramatic spectacle that is closely associated with the event.

After descending the bridge, the course winds through Brooklyn, mostly along Fourth Avenue and Bedford Avenue, for approximately the next 11 miles (18 km). Runners pass through a variety of neighborhoods, including: Bay Ridge, Sunset Park, Park Slope, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Williamsburg, and Greenpoint.
At 13.1 miles (21.1 km), runners cross the Pulaski Bridge, marking the halfway point of the race and the entrance into Long Island City, Queens. After about 2.5 miles (4.0 km) in Queens, runners cross the East River via the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan. It is at this point in the race when many runners begin to tire, as the climb up the bridge is considered one of the most difficult points in the marathon.

Reaching Manhattan after about 16 miles (26 km), the race proceeds north on First Avenue, then crosses briefly into The Bronx via the Willis Avenue Bridge for a mile before returning back into Manhattan via the Madison Avenue Bridge. It then proceeds south through Harlem down Fifth Avenue and into Central Park. At the southern end of the park, the race proceeds across Central Park South, where thousands of spectators cheer runners on during the last mile. At Columbus Circle, the race re-enters the park and finishes outside the Tavern on the Green.

The time limit for this course is 8½ hours from the 10:10 a.m. start. In 2008, the race initiated a corral system. Women were given a head start and the balance of the runners began in three staggered starts. The official times are those recorded by a computer chip worn on the back of the race number, which calculates when a runner crosses the start and when he/she crosses the finish, known as "net", as opposed to "gun", time. Runners also pass timing mats at 5 km intervals along the course and  notifications can be received by people following runners during the race to see how the runners are doing. In addition, while the distance is the same, there are different courses taken through Bay Ridge and up Fourth Avenue in Brooklyn until the course reaches Lafayette Avenue in Brooklyn at Mile 8.

Although the marathon publicity material uses miles, the timing mats are at 5 km intervals to accommodate the publishing of splits and also enabling potential world records for 20 km, 30 km and other sub-marathon distances to be recorded. (Source: Wikipedia)

race profile: 390m up, 384m down over five bridges into Central Park

The weather: It was not as cold as forecast, no ground frost, but only 44F and very windy, from North no less, which meant head wind during most of the predominantly northbound race. Great!

I left Vera's home at 5:15 a.m., took the red line to South Ferry (at "my" stop Broadway/79th I already saw the first runners, running shoes and plastic bags being the dominant signs).

Thank you for the picture, Camilla!
I arrived around 6:00 a.m., and went straight onto the ferry (hint for tourists: It's free, since Staten Island lacks a subway connection to Manhattan or Brooklyn. If you want to save the money for a cruise but still enjoy the skyline from on board, just take the ferry to Staten Island, leave it, get on board again, then ride it back).

The ferry station was filled with runners and I met and talked to a lot of nice people. Like Camilla Love McGraw, who shot a nice picture, which you see to the right.

Staten Island - Windy start in the "forgotten borough"


It was 6:45 a.m. when we arrived in Staten Island after a 25-minute-ride. A little less than half a mile walking, then we hopped the buses who transferred us to Fort Wadsworth, where the starting villages were located. There, another little walk, security check, you can kill time that way too. At 7:50 a.m. I had reached my orange starting village where we were treated to caps by Dunkin' Donuts (that was good, since I forgot mine at home), and of course (Dunkin') Donuts, coffee, tea, Power bars, beverages of all kind. So if you plan to run and want to bring your own bars, save the money. There's plenty for free.

To the left, Fort Wadsworth with the three starting villages,
to the right the ramp with the green (left), my orange (middle)
and the blue corral (right, back). The green corral had to run
the first 2 miles on the lower level of the bridge and missed out
on the spectacular panoramic view of Manhattan.
At 8:20 a.m. the "pre-corrals" opened for the "Wave 1" participants, we had to have our BIB's checked and were allowed to enter. At 8:55 a.m. they closed, and shortly thereafter we walked towards the starting corrals. Having arrived there, I considered myself lucky wearing old training gear and an old sweater that Vera gave me. The wind was blowing and it was pretty darn chilly here close to the shore. I took pity on some runners that were either badly advised or inexperienced wearing nothing but their running gear. They were outside for at least an hour already and it was another 40 minutes until the start cannon would fire. They were shivering like you won't believe. You can lose a marathon before it starts like that.

To me, the best baggage option to chose is "No baggage". Just wear old stuff that you don't need anymore and bring your plastic bag with something to eat and drink until you enter the corral, and maybe old gloves and an old cap, in case it gets just too cold out there. Then leave the bag and worry not, you can leave Central Park after the race and just forget about everything else. Another tip to kill time: I copied 60 pages out of the book I was reading at the time...

Starting and running up the Verrazano-Narrows-Bridge is the
first of a lot of highlights during the  NYC Marathon
The first start were the hand bikers and disabled persons, then at 9:10 a.m. the women elite field started. I caught a glimpse of the German Sabrina Mockenhaupt ("Mocki"), she finished with a spectacular 7th place, catching the long co-leading Tigist Tufa Dimisse just after Columbus Circle. Right after that, mayor Bloomberg was about to speak when my neighbor shouted: "Please don't cancel it!" That drew a big laugh from the crowd. Other than that, we killed time until the start by getting to know each other. It was very interesting: There was a 60-year-old Army veteran, a tiny 30-year-old dancer from Milwaukee, and an Italian guy my age who took photos of us as a group to send it to his mom ("Smile for my mama!"). Nobody bought that I actually am a mayor ("Politicians are fat, man! Look at you!" - "Well, your president isn't fat either!" - "You're right, son. Good luck!"). We had a really good time and were looking forward to the start.

"Ready - Set - Go!"


A children's choir sang the "Star Spangled Banner" (that sent chills even down my not-so-american spine and united us all as runners) and at 9:43 a.m. it all started. A thundering canon went off, and I tip-toed, about 100 yards behind the elite runners, direction starting line, which I passed about 45 sec. later, already in running stride. I started my Garmin, and off I went. I found a groove pretty fast, and it went up the Verrazano-Narrows-Bridge to conquer the first 60m height-difference. That worked out pretty good, just some "roadblocks" (slow runners) that I could pass rather easily, and I stayed a couple of seconds off my pace anyway due to the incline.

The view from the bridge's top towards Manhattan Island was breathtaking. The foot felt good, I was running in good stride, everything perfect! Even the sun had come out, and the Manhattan skyline was twinkling in the sun. On the other hand, the wind was blowing forcefully from the north, right into our faces. You can't have everything...

Brooklyn - "In unity, there is strength!"


The seemingly never-ending  4th Avenue in Brooklyn, with
the just-conquered Verrazano Bridge in the background
Running down, I caught up the lost seconds from the uphill part, and off we went into Brooklyn. Starting at Mile 2, we saw the first spectators:

Good vibes, lots of people cheering us on, and I ran easily 4:08/km even with the head wind, pulse well below 150 bpm. Much better than I anticipated, I thought to have 150+ going that fast.

I even toyed with the idea of eyeing the 2:56:47, my personal best from Berlin last year, as my new goal, perhaps even running toward a 2:55 time. Though Herbert Steffny had issued this warning to me: "Remember, even if you're in good shape, New York is not one of those flat German marathons!", but after my test runs in preparation, especially the 1:22:45 from the half-marathon a fortnight ago in Bottwartal, a difficult run with lots of ups and downs, even in a hard rain, I felt able to do that. Feeling well, I decided to go for it and just continue that 4:08/km pace - let's see what happens, I thought, full of optimism.

So, everything smoothly? You bet - not. Just after passing the 3-mile-marker, my plantar fasciitis resurfaced. And very much so. Until then, I had logged a 20:40 for the first 5k, even 10 seconds faster than my most optimistic pace of 4:10/km, and in doing so I had to restrain myself already, because my legs wanted to go even faster. Suddenly I had a feeling as if somebody had put a knife into my foot and twisted it joyfully, my toes cramped up. I started to run kind of "unround" trying to change my foot setting so I could control the pain or lessen it a little, but to almost no avail, and if, then only for seconds. Damn!

Right then I thought about opting out, I was about to cry. Sure, in moments like this you start to think all kinds of negative thoughts: "If that already hurts this much after 5 km and you still have to run 37,2 km, how can you do that, when the pain is probably going to get worse?" "Stay away, negative thoughts", I thought and blocked them out. Then a saw a sign: "Your mother didn't raise you to quit!" Good and well, I figured, but such a sign after not even a quarter of the whole way? Let alone, had I asked my mother right now, she probably would have urged me to stop right away! I grinned, and that helped me to refocus: "Go on, go on!"

I made a decision: The foot could hurt as much as it wanted to - giving up would prove to be more painful, and linger, too. "Failure is not an option!", as Gene Kranz, the Apollo Flight Director, used to say.

I kinda tried to self-hypnotize myself. "It doesn't hurt, it just feels kinda weird!", things like that. I also tried to get out of the "hurt trap" by concentrating on the beautiful things, of which there were plenty: the cheering spectators who rooted for you all the time: "Looking good, Jorg!", "You rock, Jorg!" (it was good to print my name onto the shirt, even if the Americans don't figure out the "ö").

That helped me get away from the pain, and it started to get a little more edgeless, and I got accustomed to it a bit. I still continued running in a relieving posture, "unround", as I mentioned already, and full of doubts, and that costs you power. You wouldn't notice when just watching the clock: km 5-10 in 20:50, according to plan.

Somewhere between Mile 5 and 6 I was overtaken by Thorsten Müller, a nice guy from Rödermark near Offenbach in Germany, my father's hometown, four years younger, I had already met him at the Frankfurt airport and the marathon expo. "I told you we'd meet again!" he grinned, for me it was just a weak "Oh, hello!" that I managed to squeak out. I saw him for another couple of miles in front, disappearing. In the end, he ran a super 2:55:55, like a clock, like I did last year in Berlin, just a little faster. In that moment I just wished the whole plantar fasciitis thing away because that was what I had planned to do, I even might have been able to follow him, who knows. But you have to accept your challenges as they come, and so I figured I'd have to make do. Ah, well...

Between mile 7 and 8 in Brooklyn the seemingly never-ending 4th Avenue ends right at the Williamsburgh Saving Banks Tower, a visible landmark that you see even from Manhattan (at least from up the Empire State Building). Right beside is the newly built Barclays Center, where the Brooklyn Nets, New Yorks "other" NBA-Team beside the Knicks, are based. The pain in the foot got worse, but I talked myself into: "Almost a third's done - not far anymore!"

Left around the curve, good-bye headwind, at least for a short time. I sensed that I had slowed down, but let that happen. The third "5k-Block" in 21:00, that is a 4:12/km-pace. Well, good. If I could continue like that, I'd be more than happy.

The elite women in Brooklyn
Now we ran around in Brooklyn, not only that, but also up and down. Here, a lot of those 390m height difference hide themselves quite well, like in Clinton Hill, the name has its meaning. Walt Whitman (Leaves Of Grass) used to live here, and today actresses Susan Sarandon (The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Thelma & Louise, Lorenzo's Oil) and Rosie Perez (Fearless, Riding In Cars With Boys) call this neighborhood home. It's very beautiful, totally different from what I had imagined, the impressions are unbelievable. The ultra-orthodox Jewish community is very present here and they didn't seem to appreciate all the fuss about the marathon, at least I saw lots of elderly trying to cross the streets multiple times because they're entitled to do so, and the volunteers had to work really hard.

McCarren-Park is one of the few green spots in
Williamsburg. The corner Nassau/Bedford Av. is at Mile 12.5.
Also here in Brooklyn: "Keep it up, Jorg!", "Run, Jorg, run!", and it helped a lot. Some even shouted: "Go Neunkirchen!" after I passed, I wore my lucky shirt from Berlin 2012, with the slogan "Neunkirchen - the city to live (in)" on the back. The pain in the foot got worse and worse, and it started to swell up. On the one hand, I regretted not to have taken the pain medicine I had brought with me to the start, but then it might have slowed me down. It's o.k., I thought. You can cope with that!

At mile 12 in Williamsburg we passed McCarren Park. Not far from here, in Greenpoint, parts of one of my favorite movies ("The Departed" starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon and Mark Wahlberg) was shot. I played "I'm Shipping Up To Boston" (Dropkick Murphys) in my head, it was almost as if I wore earplugs...

Queens - halfway mark and ascent to Queensboro Bridge


 44th Drive in Queens, shortly before the last left turn
towards Queensboro Bridge. In the background: Manhattan with
the Chrysler Building (middle) and Empire State Building (left)
We approached the halfway mark. The fourth 5k-Block, km 15-20, in 21:07, still o.k., even after slowing down a bit more, bit I still figured to be in control of my resources. And again a bridge, Pulaski Bridge. 1:28:18 after 13,1 miles or 21,1 km,almost as fast as last year at Berlin, where I logged 1:28:20, but I already knew that improving that time would be totally unrealistic today. I still felt strong from a condition standpoint, pulse around 153, but the pain in the foot, the uncertainty most of all the "unround", cramped-up running style (you couldn't talk about a "flow") kinda got to me.

And don't forget: The second half in New York is hard, not only, but mostly, because of the 1,5-km-ascent up the Queensboro Bridge (and after that and 1st Avenue, there are two more bridges, plus the up-and-down Central Park).

I redefined my goals running through the Hunters Point neighborhood in Queens, a surging part of the city, though it still looks a little raw and harbor-like: Survive, Survive, survive, keep up the speed, at least don't slow down too much, take it easy over the Queensboro Bridge, enjoy Manhattan, fight after the Bronx and arrive in less than three hours.

We reached the Rafferty Triangle, turned left onto 25th Street, and there I saw the abyss leading into the lower level of the Queensboro Bridge. An amazing feeling. Suddenly there were no spectators anymore, all you saw and heard was your breath, your steps, your co-suffering runners, nothing else - for more than a mile!


Left turn, and into the abyss!
Queensboro Bridge is legendary.
I took it easy up the bridge and slowed down a little. Unfortunately the GPS watch got not enough signals and showed a pace of 5:50/km, I knew that couldn't be true, but it still made me feel a little uncomfortable. When I got to the 25 km sign, i quickly calculated and found out that the fifth 5 km-block had taken 21:51, almost a minute of my desired pace, but I had already crossed the highest point, so that was still o.k..

Below us laid Roosevelt Island, I could see a little looking through the bridge construction. Down the bridge I did not accelerate, but brought my pulse down to save energy, with a 153 showing, very good. Arrive, Jorg, arrive!

Manhattan - The long and not so winding road


And then: One of the most magnificent moments, an experience that alone makes it worthwhile to run here. You get off the bridge running a curve that usually is an onboard ramp from 59th street, and suddenly you dive into a sea of people, flags, music and cheers. Unbelievable! The total opposite of the almost dead silence under the bridge into this hurricane is like a intravenous shot of adrenaline! Another curve, and we're on 1st Avenue running north. And now even louder and more intense: Flags, people, signs, music, cheers. A blast!

A picture from the 2009 marathon shows that
1st Avenue is anything but "flat"...
But also headwind, and not just a little. I looked for a group to enjoy some slipstream, and shortly thereafter I saw the family and group of Ralf Niedermeier and Cliff Hämmerle, my friends from the Saarland. I waved and gave them a hearty applause, seeing them energized me a little. What also helped: 1st Avenue had a very good, new surface, seems like they renewed it for the marathon.

I still had to make concessions as far as my speed was concerned: km 25-30 in 21:28 even though I ran down Queensboro bridge, but 1st avenue is a bit bumpy and the headwind also cost me, good surface notwithstanding.

The pain in the foot: Well, I kinda got accustomed to it or it wasn't that bad at that time, don't know. Still, I was concerned it could get worse any minute or my foot would just give in. Do not worry, I thought. Still on pace for a Sub-3-Finish. Reaching km 30 I was still 1:02 ahead of a 2:59:59 finish.

But I also realized: This is gonna be hard. I really had to fight, the "unround" running with the cramped-up toes cost me, and meanwhile it affected my leg, especially the quad, my back, everything.

A sign seen at km 31.  I absolutely agreed! ;-)
I did what helped me in Berlin last year too: Think km to km, don't start a countdown yet! You may have completed almost 75% of the course, but that doesn't help you much.

In fact, it's the other way around: Realizing you still have to run 12,2 km almost deflates you. Psychological trick: Don't look to far ahead, watch the runner in front of you, at least on the looooong straight road. And verily, we were through with Manhattan - for now.

 

The Bronx - short, intense, angled, bumpy


Willis Avenue Bridge
We had reached Willis Avenue Bridge, km 31,5. The bridge ascends just so little, but you definitely feel it. Then there is the "Bronx Mile", and yes there's already 5th Avenue to Central Park, we're almost there! Ah, the power of auto hypnosis...

There was one big party in the Bronx. People here love their marathon, the spirit is unbelievable, and you feed off the energy.

The course, though, is "tricky" - there's lots of curves and corners, which makes you lose time, I was thinking. So I concentrated on gliding through on a close-to-ideal line, the field wasn't too crowded there, so that worked out pretty good.

Back in Manhattan - "Do the Harlem Shuffle!"


And there she was, Madison Avenue Bridge back to Manhattan Island, Harlem, to be exact. Same thing here: People were cheering you through to the finish. You don't believe how that helps, here, in the vale of tears between km 30 and 35. What brought me to tears (well, almost) was watching the Garmin and realizing how much time I was losing: 21:47 for km 30-35. The two bridges and the tricky Bronx had cost me. Only 35 sec. surplus for the Sub-3-Finish, and I pulled the last ace out of my sleeve: "Hey, it's pretty easy to run 4:12 per km. Just do it!" And hey, it worked!

You have to have a little reserve for Central Park, the bumpy road there can cost you, and here, on the flat 5th Avenue with the wind in the back, was my last chance to collect some time back. Dropouts to the left, dropouts to the right - fatigue, cramps, unbearable pain, whatever. I promised myself 20 times: "Ain't gonna happen to me!"

Marcus Garvey Memorial Park - 4 miles to the finish.
It's one of running's dirty little secrets: You see somebody give up, slow down, drop out, whatever - and you feed of it. That happened to me as it has often before. And I know from my experience in Berlin 2011 how cruel it is if you have to concede short of the finish line by slowing down some kilometers before. I never, ever gave up a race totally, finished them all, but in some I had to slow down well before the finish line because I was just spent. The pain, the frustration - that gets to you anyway, but it really hurts if that happens during the race, with all kinds of people passing you. That bites you, again and again, in the following weeks or months. No, not today, I thought.

Reaching Marcus Garvey Memorial Park we had to turn a corner four more times, and then again we strode down 5th Avenue. You sensed the wind in your back, that felt good. And we already saw the Harlem Meer, that big lake at Central Park's northeastern corner. Now I counted down: Only a little more than 6 km left! Where's that bleeping entrance into the Park? My pulse was still around 155, that was really not the problem. It was my legs that hurt, my knees, my back - as I said, I wasn't "flowing", I felt more like hobbling. But hey, those five km's I will master! If you look closely, it's only four and some change! Mind over matter...

Central Park - "You're almost there, Jorg!"


Finally! The entrance into Central Park, leaving 5th Avenue at 90th Street in a little curve, and onto East Drive. Starting here, I knew the course pretty well, having run it last year after the cancellation of the marathon together with Jeff Goold, a nice Canadian that I had met over Facebook. Knowing the course is a huge advantage, if you ever ran a marathon, you know what I mean. Suddenly, I felt safe and secure and could really enjoy Central Park. Marvelous! Autumn in New York, especially here, is fantastic.

                    Central Park, finally!                  
This is one of the very special things that makes this marathon unique. km 38 in 4:26, but I didn't care, knowing the course is hard here, 30m upwards in the last km, the first almost-completed one in Central Park. But now we were running downhill again, and we curved through the Park. Now I knew: That will suffice for the Sub3, if I don't cramp up or fall down. And this pushed me, right before we left the Park at it's southeastern corner and entered 59th (Central Park South).

Shortly before we had crossed a photo-opp, being told: "Keep your head up and SMILE!" to which I wanted to reply ""§%#@!", but I did as told and smiled. My fuel gauge was showing red already, but we were about to enter the last 2 km. And there, at the 40 km-mark, I logged a 21:18 for 35-40, there you go! 36 seconds reserve. I still tried to keep up the pace, though the pain in my left foot was about to become unbearable. Funny: You sense the finish line, you start to relax, and right then the pain, which you could push away or block out before, demands its long-denied right. Still, my happiness prevailed. It's all mental!

Only a couple of steps until the finish line...
Out of the park, on to 59th Street! I already saw Columbus Circle in front of me, to the left the famous Plaza Hotel. Reaching Columbus Circle we turned right direction "Tavern on the Green", about half a mile! I thought I'd see the finish line, but no: Mile 26. Still 320m to go. Now it's enough, the alleged "finish line" has fooled me, my bag of tricks is empty, I am about to trot, but one last time I get myself together, look at a runner in front of me and let him "tow" me towards the real finish line, albeit a bit slower than before. Sprinting is for another marathon, I think, the "2" will stand anyway.

Finish line


Done! Gun time 3:00:14, net time 2:59:33
Than the big blue/orange thing with "FINISH" all over it: 2:59:33. I've done it! And right after crossing and stopping my watch, my legs instantly turn sour, I have trouble walking on.

I thank Leonard Tchuindjo, the guy who towed me the last 300m and who crossed the line right in front of me. He seems to be disheartened, only later, studying the results, I figure out why: Between my gun time (3:00:14) and net time, there was a 46-second- difference because I was 100 yards behind the starting line in my corral. Leonard's difference was only 5 seconds, so he missed out on the Sub-3, finishing in 3:00:07. Bummer!

So here it was, my fifth marathon finish and the first in which I could not improve my personal best from the last one, but I knew deep inside that this race was, given the circumstances, my best so far. Though running on a "club foot" for most of the race I had conceded only 2:46 min. to my personal best, Berlin 2012, on a course that, according to experts such as Herbert Steffny is almost always run 5 min. slower than a "normal", i.e. flat, marathon on a circuit, so I was very proud of myself and satisfied with my effort. From my sheer will, but also from my shape before the race, this was my best marathon so far "by a mile" - even if the clock says something differently. Running energy-conserving between mile 15 and mile 22 saved me, because only by doing so I had enough left in the tank to finish "in control".

"Great job, guys!", "Congratulations!" - the volunteers cheered you on and made you move even though it was hard, but you couldn't stop - others followed. "Keep moving, keep moving!". Heat sheet, medal, recovery bag. I swallowed down what I could get into my system. Already during the race, I had drunk a lot, water and Gatorade every other mile, and that was crucial. Now I ate an apple and some nuts. During the race, as I said before, I ate two fruit bards early in the race, and after Mile 18 two gels. I needed all of that.

Thumbs up!
A couple of minutes later I had left the park, you were even handed a warm, nice poncho, and Annabelle and Vera picked me up happily. Home, fast! My daughter's nose was running, she had caught a cold, it seemed.

We passed the Dakota Building, where John Lennon spent his final days and was murdered, and headed toward Amsterdam Avenue/Broadway. My leg hurt so much, I wouldn't wanna walk anymore. Vera insisted on a trishaw, 3 $ per minute. Cool! In the morning, I had imagined to jog home in order to shake the lactat acid out of my legs, but now - NO!

The trishaw rider had completed three NYC marathons, but never under 3 hours. He really lavished me with praise, and that felt good, I have to admit.

Back home I hopped into the very cold tub, 15 minutes. With ice, even, that felt so good and relieved the pain! It cost me quite an effort to do it and once you start shivering, you better get out, but the hot shower afterwards feels much better that way and your muscles thank you.  I barely could plant my foot, though, but some pain relief will do here, I thought, and time.

Congratulations arrived via Facebook, Mail, texts, whatever. Thank you, everybody!

If you're a marathoner, you must run in New York: If you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere!

Amongst 50.740 starters (and 50.134 finishers) my net time of 2:59:33 was good for place 729, 681 among men, 137 in my age group 40-44. And I'm proud to say: Best one from the Saarland, my state (amongst 16) in federal Germany! And  26th amongst 1876 german finishers, second biggest foreign field after France (3265). Amongst german men I even was in the Top 25.

Splits:

Distance        time        run time     Pace/Mile
 
5K           10:04:33 AM     0:20:40       06:39   
10K          10:25:22 AM     0:41:30       06:41   
Mile 8       10:37:24 AM     0:53:31       06:42   
Mile 9       10:44:10 AM     1:00:17       06:42   
15K          10:46:23 AM     1:02:30       06:43   
Mile 10      10:50:54 AM     1:07:01       06:43   
Mile 11      10:57:48 AM     1:13:55       06:44   
Mile 12      11:04:33 AM     1:20:40       06:44   
20K          11:07:30 AM     1:23:37       06:44   
Mile 13      11:11:22 AM     1:27:29       06:44   
Half         11:12:11 AM     1:28:18       06:45   
Mile 14      11:18:13 AM     1:34:20       06:45   
Mile 15      11:25:24 AM     1:41:31       06:47   
25K          11:29:20 AM     1:45:28       06:48   
Mile 16      11:32:31 AM     1:48:38       06:48   
Mile 17      11:39:24 AM     1:55:31       06:48   
Mile 18      11:46:20 AM     2:02:27       06:49   
30K          11:50:49 AM     2:06:56       06:49   
Mile 19      11:53:12 AM     2:09:19       06:49   
Mile 20      12:00:14 PM     2:16:22       06:50   
Mile 21      12:07:17 PM     2:23:24       06:50   
35K          12:12:36 PM     2:28:43       06:51   
Mile 22      12:14:09 PM     2:30:16       06:50   
Mile 23      12:20:53 PM     2:37:00       06:50   
Mile 24      12:28:00 PM     2:44:07       06:51   
40K          12:33:54 PM     2:50:01       06:51   
Mile 25      12:34:55 PM     2:51:02       06:51   
Mile 26      12:41:53 PM     2:58:00       06:51   
Finish       12:43:26 PM     2:59:33       06:52



1st half: 1:28:18       2md half: 1:31:15


5k-splits with km-pace


km run time pace/km



0-5 20:40 04:08
5–10 20:50 04:10
10–15 21:00 04:12
15-20 21:07 04:13
20-25 21:51 04:22
25-30 21:28 04:18
30-35 21:47 04:21
35-40 21:18 04:16
40-42,2 09:32 04:21




02:59:33 04:15
    



My puls rate during ING NYC marathon 2013

The pulse curve is interesting, especially in comparison to Berlin 2012: I did NYC with an average pulse of  154, three bpm less than Berlin. The top pulse was also lower, 166 against 172. The trend (black) is quite flat, only towards the end I topped 158, in Berlin my trend line climbed much sharper, I ran almost all of the second half above 159 and more, the last 12km even above 160, though I felt great. So one can see that I really was hampered by the left foot. I couldn't go faster, though, the pain threshold isn't endless.

The day after...
P.S.: On "Marathon Monday" the foot had calmed down a bit. Still, everyone will recognize me as a marathoner seeing me hobbling around. I was at least able to see something that got under my skin way more than the run: Visiting the 9/11-Memorial was both moving and comforting.

I'm not gonna run anytime soon. An old saying goes: The number of km you ran is the number of days that you shouldn't run. I'm anxious if I will be able to do that! Obeying the more realistic and modern Foster rule, you shouldn't run hard for the number of days that corresponds with the number of miles you ran, so that would be 26 here.You still might be able to jog, though, and do other stuff such as cycling, swimming, and working out your back muscles. I'm looking forward to all of that. But recovery time is necessary.

 In 2012, I improved all my personal bests except in the marathon- 5 km (18:21), 10 km (37:54), half-marathon (1:22:45). By bike, I did the Cingle du Mont Ventoux, some friends and I rode four stages (550 km) into our sister city Mantes-La-Ville and I conquered some serious alp mountain chains (Cormet de Roselend and Petit St. Bernard, Col du Télégraphe and Col du Galibier), I also rode through the Luberon mountain chain in Provence and did some triathlon, either alone or  relay. 120 running sessions (1427 km), 57 cycling sessions (4089 km), 10 times swimming (9 km), 31 times health club - the next 10-14 days I'll take a break, and then I'll start anew.

Now, some serious thanks: First of all to Vera Beato-Smith, a very good friend, who for the second time already hosted me and my wife (2011) and daughter (2012)  for a full week in her apartment at the corner of West End Av./81th Street (Upper West Side). Her husband Ken was out of town, which I regretted, since I really enjoyed his company last year. And not only did she host me, but cared for me, entertained me, and brought me back to life with a whole lot of love after the race. Thanks, Doc!

To my daughter Annabelle, who accompanied me this year. It was her first trip to the Big Apple, she enjoyed it, learned a lot, but first of all, was a good girl! And she kept my homesickness away...

Thanks to the 12.000 volunteers who fed us, cared for us, made us safe, and a thousand other things, in short - made our marathon! That should be said after every run, even if it's only the "strawberry" 5k-run with 85 people in Hackensack, but this here is another league.

Thanks to Mark Neufang, my sports- and training-pal and sports doc, who got me running again so I could make it through. Now, it's repair mode, Mark!

The biggest thank you goes to my wife Doris and my two other kids, Jan-Robin and Amelie, who "had to stay home". They have to cope with me the whole year ("Gotta run! Gotta ride the bike! Gotta work out!"), help me, bring me up when I'm down and cheer me on. Without my family, there wouldn't be a running mayor, and I love them to death. If I come back here for another great marathon, they'll be with me - promise!

Links


ING NYC Marathon

Results

Schwimmtraining Lakai

Schwimmtraining Lakai von joaum bei Garmin Connect – Details

Dienstag, 12. November 2013

The Aftermath: Danke fürs Lesen und wie es nun weitergeht...

Wow, das hätte ich nicht erwartet: Über 1.000 Menschen haben meinen Bericht vom New-York-Marathon 2013 bisher gelesen (so viel wie keinen anderen bisher), mein Blog hatte insgesamt im letzten Monat über 2.900 Aufrufe, und seit ich mit dem ersten von nunmehr 340 Einträgen angefangen habe, kurz vor dem Berlin-Marathon 2011, hat es die Menschen 23.100mal interessiert, was ich da so schreibe. Vielen Dank für das Interesse!

Seitdem ich am 03.11.2013 um 12.43 Uhr Ortszeit im Central Park von New York die Ziellinie überquert habe, habe ich sportlich überhaupt nichts gemacht. Der Akku war aber auch total leer, der linke Fuß tat höllisch weh, ich war schlicht und einfach fertig. In den Tagen danach hab ich viel geschlafen, der Jetlag nach der Rückkehr tat sein Übriges, ich hab meinem Körper mal eine richtige Auszeit gegönnt.

Heute, am Dienstag, 9 Tage nach dem Marathon, sieht das schon wieder anders aus. Der Fuß hat sich beruhigt, das Hinken ist verschwunden, aber ganz in Ordnung ist meine Plantarfaszie noch nicht. Laufen fällt erst mal flach, intensives Laufen sowieso. Erst mal werde ich meinen Orthopäden aufsuchen und das ein oder andere Mal auch meinen Physiotherapeuten und mit denen besprechen, wie es weitergeht. Aber die Lust darauf, sich sportlich zu betätigen, kehrt langsam zurück.

Also wird heute das erste Mal wieder was gemacht, und zwar werde ich einige Bahnen in die Lakai, unser Neunkircher Kombibad, ziehen gehen. Wieviele, das weiß ich noch nicht, hängt von meiner Motivation ab ;-). Und in den nächsten Tagen wird auch der Aktiv Gesundheitspark in Neunkirchen wieder regelmäßig aufgesucht, damit die im Laufe der Marathonvorbereitung so vernachlässigten Körperpartien, vor allem mein Rücken, wieder mal zu ihrem Recht kommen.

Trotzdem: Echte Wettkämpfe werde ich 2012 keine mehr laufen, auch die traditionell bestrittenen und  liebgewonnenen beiden 10er im Dezember nicht. Den 37. Bank1Saar/Neunkircher Volksbank Straßenlauf werde ich zwar besuchen und anschauen, aber nicht teilnehmen. Und auch den 39. Bank1Saar Silvesterlauf in Saarbrücken lass ich dieses Jahr sein.

2014 ist schliesslich auch noch ein Jahr ;-)