I would never consider myself a runner, even though I’ve spent much of my life running. I played multiple sports growing up and ran around carelessly through the streets of my neighborhood with my friends all the time; my family would do 5Ks every now and then; this past summer, my hot girl walks transformed into hot girl runs (literally — it was 90 degrees in my hometown). Even though I was running as often as I could over the summer, it was never something I’d been fully committed to. However, on Sunday, Nov. 5, I was reminded of just how good moving and working out can be for your physical and mental health and how rewarding it is to witness your hard work paying off when surrounded by others supporting and cheering you on. The annual New York City Marathon took place this past weekend, and I have never been more inspired.
what is the new york city marathon?
The Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) New York City Marathon has grown to be one of the largest marathons in the world. This marathon is a 26.2-mile run in New York City that 50,000 people get to be a part of each year. The marathon is organized by the New York Road Runners, a non-profit whose focus is to inspire people through running.
Being a runner in this marathon is a prestigious opportunity, according to Jennie Coughlin’s article in the New York Times. The primary way that people register is through the $295 fee to enter a lottery where approximately only five percent of potential runners are chosen. Additionally, runners can run alongside Team For Kids (a fundraising group for youth running programs) or other charities where they must donate a certain amount of money to be eligible to run. Even being accepted to run in this race is a privilege that so many people have worked towards for years.
In the Blink of an Eye, History Was Made
If you thought an opportunity to raise money running in a worldwide race wasn’t inspiring enough, wait until you hear the story of Tamirat Tola. For 12 years, Kenyan runner Geoffrey Mutai held the record for men’s fastest time, coming in at 2:05:06. However, as described in Scott Cacciola’s article in the New York Times, the men’s 2022 world champion, Tamirat Tola, had some goals of his own to achieve. This year, running hard from the start of the race, Tola finished just eight seconds before Mutai’s record, with a time of 2:04:58. All the way from Ethiopia, Tola credited the crowd of New York for giving him the “moral support every kilometer,” ultimately leading to his success in beating the previous decade-long record.
Tola was one of many hard-working runners this weekend. Hellen Obiri and Letesenbet Gidey were neck and neck for most of the race ahead of the pack. In the end, Obiri found her speed and pulled ahead, winning the women’s championship title at 2:27:23. All three runners put in the work and deserve to be mentioned for their dedication and drive during their ace.
if They Could Do It, then You Could Too
While it’s impressive to see what records people are constantly breaking, just completing the New York City Marathon is a success within itself. Multiple celebrities participated in the run this year, and anyone could run alongside them if they were to be accepted. One person whom I’ve looked up to is Cody Ko, a well-known YouTuber who has recently been posting about his running career. Ko finished the marathon at a time of 3:53:29.
Claire Fahy summarizes some of the other celebrities who registered to run in the marathon this year in her New York Times article, discussing how most of them ran for charity, yet still compare finishing times. NBC’s Today show correspondent Sheinelle Jones ran alongside Good Morning America correspondents Amy Robach and T.J. Holes with race times of 4:41 and 4:14. Multiple cast members from ABC’s The Bachelor and The Bachelorette reality television franchise, including Matt James, Zac Clark, and Nev Shulman also completed the race with times of 3:04, 3:41, and 4:17. Even Olympic American bobsledder gold medalist Steve Mesler finished the race on Sunday with a time of 4:16.
These are just a few people who also choose to race, even if they haven’t always been runners or know how to complete a marathon. The New York City Marathon is yet another symbol of the endless possibilities of what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it, work hard, and focus on reaching your goals. I never would have considered participating in a marathon, but seeing all the videos of heartwarming reactions to runners completing the race has never felt more inspiring. So many people choose to doubt themselves for numerous reasons, but I believe that you can achieve anything you put your mind to.
The New York City Marathon is an inspiration to many. I hope maybe someday, you too can be inspired to try new things and commit to something that will show you just how successful you can be.