NYC Marathon – A look at the weather, pacing for race day

Posted: November 1, 2011 in Training
Tags: , , , ,

Tuesday morning brought my first run of the week – just a quick 3 miler that I decided to run as I hope to run the opening 3 miles of the race on Sunday.

At this point in the training cycle all the “training” is complete.   Now it is just a matter of keeping the engine idling all week long, running a few miles here and there to stay loose, and then let the body fully recover in time for the race of our life on Sunday.  Knowing that I would be running a relaxed pace 4 miles tomorrow morning, something :30-:45 seconds slower than marathon race pace, I wanted one last morning to really “practice” my pace and get it committed to memory.

I left the driveway uphill climbing about 50 feet over the first mile, then back down to the house at mile 2 and another slight uphill climb for half a mile before turning around and wrapping things up in 21:12.

7:15, 6:59, 6:58.

Without looking at my watch a single time I was able to pretty much nail my goal for each mile spot on.

It still amazes me that after all of the various training runs and workouts at different distances and paces that when you are ready to really concentrate and lock in at your goal pace it seems almost automatic.  This is critical for me as the first 5 miles or so are going to tell the story on Sunday.  If we can navigate the early crowd, the long climb up to the top of the Verrazzano bridge and the rushing bodies coming back down the other side still on pace without using too much energy – good things will lie ahead in Brooklyn.

After the bridge things get nice and flat with a long straight away covering the streets of Brooklyn.  We should be able to find our rhythm at this point, find a group of runners that are running a similar pace and even do a little drafting if the winds are out of the North or Northwest as some forecasts are predicting.

The temperature at the start of the race should be somewhere around 47 or 48 degrees.  By noon the forecast is calling for temperatures in the mid 50’s.  I would prefer things to be about 5 degrees cooler, starting at 42 and heading up to 50 by the end of the race – but when it comes to marathon weather, the forecast is a pretty darn good one – perhaps the best we’ve ever experienced on race day.

When you start a training cycle 18 or 20 weeks before a race all you can really hope for is to exit the cycle healthy and for the race day Gods to smile down upon you and reward you with weather that will be neutral.  It is greedy to ask for a tailwind or an overcast sky and 40 degrees.  All you want is weather that will not hurt you on race day.  That your training and preparation is what will make the difference on the finish line clock – not something from the outside that you can’t control.

I’ve got that much on Sunday.  I consider myself blessed.

Now it is just a matter of running my race on Sunday and not getting distracted from the plan we’ve spent 20 weeks and close to 1,000 miles perfecting.

That’s the word I guess I’ve been searching for.  Perfect.

I know that I am far from perfect.  I make my share of mistakes and then some every single day.  We learn from them, pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and try again.  That’s what life is all about.  That is how we improve as a person, a Dad, a Husband, Brother, Son, Friend or Boss.

But the question on Sunday is not whether or not I am perfect, but can I be perfect for roughly three hours?

That’s the race I plan on running on Sunday.  Perfect.



  1. Andy B. says:

    Good luck on Sunday! I’m assuming there is an athlete tracker, so I’ll be following along. I’m looking forward to seeing your finish time start with a 2.

    • Joseph Marruchella says:

      Thanks Andy! There is indeed a bunch of ways to track the runners – I’m bib 3644

      My facebook page should also be sending out updates at the 9, 13.1, 22 and finish line.

      Sub 3:00 would be huge – we’re going to run that last 10K like our life depended on it.

  2. noah says:

    Best of luck Sunday. I’m sure you’ll crush it. I’m running it too, and live here in NYC. If you and the family need anything, don’t hesitate to call on my wife, me, and my family. I shot an email to your email account listed above on the blog with contact info. Best of luck, and thanks for all the inspiration on this blog to help me through my training for Sunday’s race.

    • joerunfordom says:

      Noah – thanks so much fr the visit and the hospitality in New York! Hope you have a tremendous day out there on Sunday! Stop by and let me know how your race turned out afterwards.

      Best to you! J

  3. David H. says:

    Looking good for the weekend. Have a great trip and a strong race. Looking forward to your report.

  4. traintotri says:

    Have a great race. You’ve put in the work – all you have to do now is show up and let your body do what it knows how to do. I’ve really enjoyed following your training recently, and I’ll be pulling for you this weekend.

    • joerunfordom says:

      Thank you Sir! Really appreciate the kind words and support. Once that gun fires we’ll be just fine, right now the nerves are starting to build as the typical “A” Race, Race week jitters arrive. Seems like no matter how many of these you run, you always feel like its the first time.

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