New York Marathon


Aches, pains and the cold

I have just finished icing my hip…and thinking about the cold weather gear now needed for the NYC Marathon.  As Marathon days approaches, you realize that even will all the training and hard work, sometimes there are factors that are just out of your control, like injury and the weather.  My injury happened on Sunday during a measly five mile run.  My right hip started to give me excruciating pain.  I have not run a lick since, and it is still a tad sore, hence the icing and Advil.  I am hoping and praying it will heal by Sunday. 


As for the weather, that too is out of a runner's control, though I have begged "weather meister" Lee Goldberg to try to make it warmer.  He is now forecasting mid-forties for those starting in the 10 o'clock waves.  If you haven't heard, this is slated to be one of the coldest NYC Marathons ever.  I will bring mittens, a face mask, hat, and layers of leggings and shirts; all of which will be discarded just before the start.  Each year the clothing is collected and given to needy organizations.  I imagine this year will provide more donations than they've seen in a long time.


Tonight Schully and I pick up our numbers at the ING NYC Marathon Health and Fitness Expo.    We are anxious.  Our stomachs ache.  For supposedly being in great physical shape we feel like wrecks…I guess that's just how it goes.  Race day here we come.   



The Longest Run

"Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn't matter whether you're a lion or gazelle - when the sun comes up, you'd better be running."

- Unknown


  .  This past weekend you may have noticed a lot of runners with water bottle belts around their waists - many of them were likely doing their long run, the "20 miler." In Marathon training it is the Holy Grail for runners before the marathon race itself.  Most marathoners do it about three weeks prior to race day.


     Schully, my training buddy, and I decided to do the last big hurdle together.  The plan was to run the loop around Manhattan starting on the Upper East Side.  In planning the run you learn Manhattan is not all that big- just 13. 4 miles long and only 2.3 miles wide; so a 20 mile run covers a lot of territory. 


    We were prepared with our carbo-loaded gel packs - Schully had her water belt and a GPS App on her phone to keep us up to date on our pace and distance.  We left 81st street about 11:30 and headed north along the FDR, crossing through Harlem and then heading down the pathway that runs along the West Side Highway. At 125th and the West Side Highway, we had just gone about 5 and half miles.  We stopped for water and gel pack breaks, and yes, from time to time, we walked, especially as we went into our 3rd hour of running.  As we neared Battery Park and got battered by the wind, Schully and I split up - I should never have left her side -remember, she had the Distance App.  She stopped running at 20 miles and took at cab back from 20th street.  Clueless and on my own… I was still running all the way back to 81st street.  We've been laughing about it since.  


    There are those who never do the "20 miler" before running a marathon.  There are those like us who need it mentally to convince ourselves we can actually run a full 26.2 miles.  I think we can do it.  This weekend we run only 9 or ten miles.  It will seem like a walk in the park. 


   More to come.




What I've Learned So Far

Food matters when training for a marathon:   If you don't eat right, your body won't/can't do the work.  

Vaseline is great for blisters.    I slather my toes in Vaseline before any run: keeps the blisters a bit a bay, but doesn't mean the toe nails will stay.

Chewing on raw ginger root settles your stomach, eases muscle soreness and gives you a boost of energy.

Stretch, stretch and stretch some more.

Take a look at the story below...  A real challenge!

From the New York Times

A Finish Line With a Real High: 8,000 Feet
Runners in the Mount Lemmon Marathon in Tucson did it for bragging rights, for the challenge, for the absurdity of running to 8,000 feet above sea level.




Training talk

The emails and conversations between Schully, Michelle and I go like this:


…. hung in there for the whole 18 -- I’ll try again on Saturday to do 20 -- I’m not happy -- don't want to be walking the NYC marathon -- (Schully)

   ….I did 20,  my knee is hurting, my hips are hurting….it was a bad run….but it’s all in my head, I know it. (Michelle)


…awful about your toes -- I just get a lot of bad chafing -- I have egg whites on a roll with cheese which has been fine for me – (Schully)


   gnawing on raw ginger today…a friend says it helps with sore muscles and will give me some pep… …(Diana)


     Yes, this is how we talk to each other these days.  We discuss plans before the long weekend runs and whine or rejoice afterwards, and then re-examine what we did right, what we did wrong.  As the runs get longer, the number of "wrongs" grows.


    Schully and I ran the More Magazine Half Marathon two years ago.  So we know each other's running pace and style.  We trained together for the "Half" in Central Park for weeks ahead of time.  I like to talk while running and so we would chat pretty much the whole time.  And we adhere to rule, "What's said on the run, stays on the run."  That doesn’t mean we are gossiping about Regis or the folks at Eyewitness News.  We are usually talking about our running fears and phobias, and womanly issues.


We have not had a chance to train together for the NYC Marathon, our schedules have been too crazy.  And I haven't run with Michelle yet either.  But I think we are all around the same pace, slow.  And slow is fine with me.  Schully (the veteran) has informed us that none of us will win this race; we just have to finish it.  If you want to follow Schully on Twitter you can find her at @lschully   I'm @dianawilliamsny.  More to come        




The Marathon Virgin?

I'm trying to remember how I got rooked into doing the NYC Marathon.  I guess I have my friend Schully to blame… She works for Live with Regis and Kelly, and has run one marathon, and for some insane reason decided she would do another one.  She came to me late in the game… mid-August, and said I should run.  She was already registered, had her number, and was good to go.  I would need help and thankfully the folks at the NY Road Runners Club had room for me in their "media entry" category.  Of course, I wouldn't know that for a few weeks… so Schully said, "just start running and see what happens."

I told her there wasn' enough time… 16 weeks of training was needed.  I was starting 14 weeks out.  I also had not been running and could maybe do 2-3 miles at best.  Schully said, no problem (she is quite the optimist)… so off I went. 

In the early weeks I just ran, not thinking.  I read a few of the training schedules on the internet at and pretty soon I was up to 6 or 7 miles.  I still didn't know if I was officially in the Marathon.  The acceptance e-mail came after Labor Day (thanks so much to Karen Dmochowsky with Matter, Edelman Sports and Entertainment Marketing, and to Jane Cupo at the NY Road Runners Club).

And now here we are 30 days out to the NYC Marathon.  It has turned me into an obsessive compulsive running maniac. I watch marathon videos on the Yes network,  I run, I stretch, I read about running at  I read about eating, I think about carbs and shoes and music on my I-pod, and map and re-map my running routes.  I have a physical trainer after my calf started giving me trouble… and a food coach after too many pit stops during my long runs. I have converted to the religion of running and at times I scare myself.  

This is my blog about the 30 days ahead and the group I will be running with. Schully is my running mate, though she is off to the foot doctor right now.  Michelle Champagne is also on board, she is the extraordinary make-up artist for Regis and Kelly and this is her first marathon too… and of course, the woman who knows everything here at Channel 7 about running, Heidi Jones.  She has been a great source of inspiration and information for all of us.

Wish us luck, come out and cheer us on.  More to come.