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In 2011 after taking the New York and New Jersey Bar, my wife and I finally took a long overdue honeymoon and for the first time, I went to California. Prior to landing there, I thought that California was a collective lie that the country was telling me. I had no real proof that I wasn’t Jim Carrey in the Truman show. Everywhere I had been to felt like it could be part of New York. I’m not sure what it was about San Francisco, the laid back attitude, the cool ocean air, the funky smell or the Bush Man but it was the first place I’d been to that didn’t feel like New York. In three short days, I’d fallen in love.
By a funny coincidence, I was in San Francisco the same weekend as its marathon. Sunday Night while waiting to dine at the House of Prime Rib, I saw a number of people shuffling around, proudly displaying their SF Marathon Medals. I was doing the races for the 9+1 to qualify for New York in 2012, so I remember thinking I’ll be there. It would be a New York Medal but still. I also realized that even though my prime rib tasted good, theirs tasted great. BTW, the chicken parm wedge after the NY Marathon was torture. If you’ve been running all day, don’t try to eat anything on a bulky wedge. They don’t talk about that in any of the training books.
I’ve talked to a few people who had aspirations to run a marathon in each state which I’ve always thought was pretty cool. However, when I was researching, I started to like that idea less and less. I mean sure, New York, Massachusetts, Illinois would be great marathons. But did I really want to run in the Minot, North Dakota 26.2 Below Zero Marathon? Of course not. So I decided instead to run marathons in cities that I love. If you didn’t read the paragraph above, I love San Francisco.
I signed up for this marathon way back in April of last year when the registration first opened. My wife was trying to get pregnant around that time and if she became pregnant, the marathon would probably be off. Essentially, the marathon would be the consolation prize if things didn’t work out for us. However, we were fortunate enough to find out she did become pregnant, then pregnant with twins and we were blessed with Jackson and Whitney in January. The marathon had gone from my mind.
My sister and her boyfriend were planning on running the marathon regardless of what I was doing (Thanks, Sis). As we were getting closer to the date, I was getting more and more ads on Facebook reminding me that the marathon was around the corner. After talking it over with Maryclare, I am running San Francisco on my sister’s birthday in honor of her 29th.
I’m interested to see the differences between the New York and San Francisco Marathons. From talking to my sister, New York ruins you for every other marathon. New York clears the route and it stays like that for the whole day pretty much. San Francisco starts at the butt crack of dawn and they seem to want you to be finished before the city wakes up. Of course this isn’t a concern in New York as it never sleeps. I don’t mind getting pushed to the sidewalks to finish but the website says I’m an “Official Finisher” only if I finish in 6 hours. I’m not changing this to the Under 6 Club because that’s not my goal. 6 is just on the way to 5.