Come one, come all! Do you have a big race this spring? Are you running one of the Spring Major Marathons happening in March or April? Or are you simply challenging yourself running in NYC at one of the NYC Half or Brooklyn Half marathons? We welcome any runner who is interested in finding out the ins and outs about the course from the start to finish and hopefully you will set a Personal Record!
We’re bringing the running community together to provide information to those runners that are interested in running or will be running for the 1st or 10th time. Sign up, join our discussion and be a part of our Marathon Major’s series.
- Tokyo Marathon Panel – Monday, February 27, 2023
- Boston Marathon Panel – Monday, April 3, 2023
- London Marathon Panel – Monday, April 10, 2023
The Tokyo Marathon
The first on our World Marathon Major tour is the Tokyo Marathon on Sunday, March 4, 2023. Lots to get adjusted to: cultural change, time difference, long airplane flight over and just everything written in Japanese! Rest assured, we have assembled a panel of different types of runners that can tell you about their running and personal travel experiences. Navigating through the expo, getting to the start and running the marathon with a cut off time adds pressure to just complete the race.
With a two year hiatus there are lots of new COVID restrictions and rules in place, which no one has experienced before. The race has two out and back features, shaped like a “y” but mixes both traditional and modern day architectural elements. Two pro tips that I would give out to all those running are to go to a local Japanese store (2 stores on 41st street near our office!) and purchase their sponsored sports drink called Pocari Sweat to try out beforehand, as well as when on the bathroom line at the start, make sure you go to a western porta potty instead of an eastern one. Eastern porta potties just have a hole on the ground of the porta potty.
The London Marathon
We’ll skip to the third World Marathon Major, the London Marathon on Sunday, April 22, 2023, since we’re on the topic of traveling out of the country for marathons. Still a bit to get used to since you are out of the country, but being in England has its advantages in terms of language, relative understanding of food, purchasing anything and getting around. The differences of course are flying across the pond, time difference (going the other way – which is ahead) and running on the other side of the street (for any training run, but for the race, you just have to follow everyone else!).
The race starts southeast of the city and runs around outside of the main city, but you run across Tower Bridge. The finish is amazing too as runners run around St. James Park and finish right on The Mall. Two pro tips that I would give out to all those running is at the start of the race, when you are running the first mile, you are running on a very tight and narrow road. There are volunteers on the side shouting “bump”. Don’t trip and fall on the speed bumps! These volunteers are telling runners that there are speed bumps on the road. The second advice I would give runners is to get used to carrying water bottles. During the race, water is not handed out in cups, but in a water bottle. Also, this might be the first time to get used to eating a pod.
Our experts can answer any of your running questions. If you are traveling to different cities around Tokyo and London, they might give you their travel tips, as well!
The Boston Marathon
Now on with the second World Marathon Major, the prestigious Boston Marathon. Congratulations to all of you who have qualified for this prestigious race and best of luck to all runners running this year (including charity runners!) This year, being the 10th anniversary of the Boston bombing, brings even more of a tribute to the race. If you have never done this race before, the HYPE is real! There is so much going on and if you come into Beantown on a Friday or Saturday, keep your emotions in check and try not to go to every event or you will be burnt out before the race on Monday. Yes, the race is on Patriot’s Day or as we all know it: Marathon Monday. Being in Boston and in April, the weather is unknown. It’s one of the first days of spring/summer and on a sunny day – get your sunblock on (on your right side) cause that’s where the sun will shine on you the entire time.
If there is any rain forecasted, those of us who have run on a cold day like 2018, are having PTSD of that cold terrible rainy day, we’d be sure to bring a disposable or small carry anywhere jacket to the start and even wear during the race. Two pro tips that I would give out to all those running for the first time is to go out to Boston and do your 20 miler out there on the course. Seeing the race course before and understanding the race course will help you navigate better in knowing where the downhills are and where the uphill sections are too.
Your 20-21 miler will get you to the Newton hills, but doing 21 miles will get you to Boston College and the infamous Heartbreak Hill. The second tip would be during the race, water and gatorade stations are on both sides of the street. If you miss it on the right side, go to the left to get Gatorade/water. Usually they stagger it, so that if you do miss it on one side, the other side will come up with water/Gatorade.
Running in NYC
Now all those running in NYC this spring! Be sure to check out local runners coming into Custom Performance to talk if you are running one (or both) of the NYC Half or Brooklyn Half marathons. If you’re running for the first time, here are a few tips from our running coach staff at Custom Performance. Sign up, join our discussion and be a part of running in NYC discussion panel:
Our team of running coaches advise the following:
The course starts off with Battlepass Hill in Prospect Park, then flattens out with an out and back u-turn, then downhill on Flatbush Avenue and onto the Manhattan Bridge for picturesque views. Start out on effort when attacking the first hill and then settle into your controlled pace on the downhill on Flatbush. If you are racing, take advantage of the downhill. If it is your first time running a half, enjoy the NYC running community, the crowds in Brooklyn and keep a good pace – don’t go out too fast!
The idea is to build up speed and have enough energy to finish the race. The first half of the race is definitely easier than the second half, as you come off the bridge – you’re halfway there! As you follow all the other runners onto the FDR Highway, you will have picturesque views of the east river, making your way from lower Manhattan to midtown. The FDR will give you some rollers, but once on the onramp at 42nd street, you will be at Mile 10. A few small rollers on 42nd street, a slight incline through Times Square to 59th street and two leveled out hills when entering Central Park…and boom! Small hill at the end to the finish!
The course starts running around the flat perimeter of Prospect Park. Just keep a good pace and try not to weave in and out of people as it is pretty crowded. It starts to open up a bit after mile 3, then you enter Prospect Park to do one loop. If you have done the NYC Half, this is the hill that you do in the first mile. Again to reiterate, when going up Battlepass Hill (the only real big hill on the course), go by effort when attacking the hill and then settle into your controlled pace. What you lose going up the hill, you will gain back on the southside of Prospect Park when dipping downhill. After exiting Prospect Park, you enter the long stretch of Ocean Drive from mile 7 to finish.
The running community comes together during the long stretch of road ahead and if you get bored, count down the streets, as they are alphabetical with a few more, heading to Coney Island.
Join the discussion to give you advantages at the start, advice along the course and more insider tips!