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Athens Greece Marathon Race Report – Heather Irvine by nbrwebjohn
April 2, 2016, 4:30 pm
Filed under: Inspiration, Marathon, Members, NBR Goings On

​Finishing a marathon. Running a sub-four marathon. Breaking three hours in a marathon. Running a marathon in all 50 states or across seven continents. Qualifying for Boston. ​We’ve heard the bucket list items again and again. But the deeper I get down the rabbit hole that is the the running community and the more bucket list items I hear about, the more perplexed I become.

There’s an item missing from the majority of these lists: the Athens Marathon in Greece, more specifically, the one that starts in the town of Marathonas. Literally where marathoning started.

Maybe Greece doesn’t publicize the November race enough. Or maybe it’s overshadowed by the New York City Marathon, which falls the week before and draws worldwide attention. Or maybe people don’t even realize there’s a marathon in the town of Marathon.


No matter the reason, distance runners should be breaking down the doors to flock to their mecca of Marathonas. I did, last fall, and it was the most fun I’ve ever had over 26.2 miles.

I could go into specifics about my training (I trained for the September mile and then threw in some long runs and called it a day), my weekly mileage (not many), how I modified my diet in the days we hung out in Athens before the race (stayed away from shaved meat). But this marathon wasn’t about that. I knew going into it this was going to be a fun race, a once-in-a-lifetime race, a bucket list race, and I wasn’t going to be bogged down by my Type A self turning this into another “race the clock” race.

We got to Athens 2.5 days before the marathon. Enough time to tire my legs out walking all over the city, time to drink heavy Greek coffee causing my stomach to ask me, “what the heck?,” and time to experiment with some authentic Greek cuisine, barring the shaved meat.

The temps were warm (low 70s), and I knew it would be a warm race without much shade. But instead of panicking about my time, I thought, you’re here to enjoy it and not end up in the hospital hooked to IVs (again).

The bus ride
On Sunday morning, while Jeff slept in the separate twin bed, because Europe, I made my way to a line of coach buses in the dark. It was cool, and there was a buzz of excitement, but one that was still shrouded in sleep. I sat next to a woman from England who’d run the race at least once before. She warned me that there’s no shade and the road has bits of marble in it, causing the sun to reflect back into your face. But then she told me it took her almost six hours to complete the course, so I worried a little less about my day in the Grecian sun.

Marathonas is about a 40- to 45-minute northeast drive from Athens. The farther away from Athens we got, the more desolate the landscape became. I think the one “thing” to do in Marathonas is the “Marathon Museum.” And it doesn’t get very crowded.

The sun came up and we passed signs for “Marathonas.” Quite surreal, actually.

The bus unloaded 11,000 runners (most of them European men) at a local beat-up track. There were porta potties, not lines of them like at Boston or New York, but there also weren’t many runners. And lots of toilet paper.

The start
There wasn’t much fanfare at the start. Nothing like you’ll see at the major marathons in the United States (or London, Berlin, or Tokyo). Although that wasn’t for lack of effort on the mayor of Marathonas’ part. There was music, and he tried to hype people up by repeating over and over again, “Where it all began! The authentic Athens Marathon!” I think they realize this is a big deal, but Greece’s marketing team didn’t get the memo.

I was toward the front and noticed how few women there were. A few people nodded at my North Brooklyn Runners singlet. I even got a couple “BROOKLYN!” screams from Europeans.

Balloons were released before the first corral took off – a pretty cool sight against the clear blue sky. And we were off, to the sound of the mayor shouting, “You’re about to run the authentic Athens marathon!” On repeat.

The race
I’m not going to break down my race mile by mile. Again, it wasn’t about that. It was about putting an olive branch in my hair at mile three, from a Ya Ya. Stopping around mile five to take a photo of a street sign that read
“<—Athina Marathonas—>.” Pulling over at a porta potty (which over a dozen half marathons and five marathons I’d never done) because I wanted to be comfortable throughout the race.

It was about making some Greek and Norwegian friends on a six-mile hill and literally running with the world. About pretending I was Pheidippides on a mission to deliver a very important (and world-changing) message, as I passed through an underpass to the beat of some very impressive drumming.

It was about smiling at the little girls who pointed at the gold wings on my shoes and about applauding the children who proudly wore fun run medals around their necks. About savoring the ceaseless cries of “brava bella!” from the women in the crowd because there were so few women in the race.

Running from Marathon to Athens was about being in the moment and savoring the history of our sport. It was about stopping just before the finish line to hug my husband who watched me in yet another marathon. And stopping again to take a photo of the finish line in the marble Olympic stadium, and then sprinting down the straightaway, Acropolis in view on the hill several miles away.

It was about crossing the finish line relatively pain-free in 3:39: an unexpected time on a hot day on a hilly course with a relaxed pace.

It was about yelling “nike” as they placed a medal on my neck.

“We are victorious.”

Registration opens Monday, April 4.

-Heather Irvine

Spring 2016 Gear Pre-Order by nbrwebjohn
March 24, 2016, 11:48 pm
Filed under: Apparel, Gear, Marathon

We have your Spring-Summer essentials ready for pre-order! We have singlets, shorts, your new NBR cotton T in Imperial Purple, and a few other things. Make sure to visit all the categories on the gear site by clicking the tabs on the left.

Pre-Order is the best way to order your gear! We only order a few extras in the sizes and styles that sell the most. You have 1 week to pre-order!

Pre-Order Ends Noon on April 1st! Don’t be a fool and miss out! (sorry)

Shop here:

Any orders from today on will be considered a pre-order which means it will take about 6-8 weeks after the pre-order ends for you to get your gear.

A few of you have asked for short-sleeves which we usually carry but unfortunately they are out of stock at this time.

Happy Shopping
-Gear Masters

Little Rock Race Report – Sherry Rosenkrantz by nbrwebjohn
March 11, 2016, 9:47 pm
Filed under: Inspiration, Marathon, Members, NBR Goings On

It takes a certain amount of optimism (or perhaps delusion?) to continue running marathons, even when they don’t always go as planned.  I registered for the Little Rock marathon the day after miserably running, jogging, and walking my way to a personal worst in NY.   My goal was to train more consistently for a couple months and to run a marathon I felt good about, regardless of the finish time.  Success would mean crossing the finish line with a smile.  Little Rock did not disappoint!

We each have our own reasons to run, our own goals.   A good time or great race for one runner can be a terrible disappointment for another.  There’s so many numbers to keep track of in running – distance, pace, place, time.  Someone finishes first and someone finishes last.  But those numbers take on different meanings for different people.   Even though the numbers are absolute, the meaning behind them is personal.  You can feel completely different physically & emotionally from the person finishing right before & right after you.  It’s one of my favorite things about a race.


I wanted to race on a course I didn’t know & in a city where I’d never been.  I sometimes wonder if I slow down at certain points in the NY marathon not because I’m tired but because I remember feeling crappy at that point of the marathon many times before.   I was trying to bring a new perspective to my training & not be bogged down with memories from past experience. Little Rock’s course was fantastic & full of surprises.  So many hills!  So many people handing out beer along the course!

For anyone looking to run an early Spring marathon in 2017, consider Little Rock.  It’s a great size, around 2k people in the full and another 4k in the half.  So you’re never alone but also not crowded.  The logistics are so simple.  The start & finish are a few blocks from most hotels.  No waiting around before our after.  The race organizers & town bring a lot of love to the race.

Little Rock reminded me how I felt after running my first marathons in ’95.  Super positive about my running & excited to train more.  Bring on the Brooklyn Half!

-Sherry Rosenkrantz

Race Report – Austin, Texas- Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 5K- 2/14/2016 by nbrwebjohn
February 14, 2016, 8:00 pm
Filed under: Inspiration, Marathon, NBR Goings On, Races


Live from Austin! Amazing presence from NBR today with 18 total participants in the marathon, half marathon and 5K. I must say- the 70 degree weather was a nice bonus! On the topic of weather- a huge shout out and congratulations to those who participated in the PPTC Cherry Tree 10 Miler today! Way to power through the Arctic chill.



  1. Shane Clarke
  2. Meredith Mahoney
  3. Kevin Dopp
  4. Meg Duffy (who made her goal time of 3:45 coming in strong at 3:41)!


Half Marathon:

  1. Sean Laude
  2. Michael Stermer
  3. Christopher Wheeler
  4. Raymond Riparip
  5. Katie Winther


  1. Fernando Feria
  2. John Riccardi
  3. Polly Jones (new PR)!
  4. Marie Figueredo
  5. Kate Maxwell
  6. Magdalena Barbara
  7. Ed Murphy
  8. Gaelle Cyr
  9. Christina Mayes


PPTC Cherry Tree 10 Miler & Relay
February 14th, 2016 at Brooklyn, NY


Cherry Tree Crew!


10 Miler:

Overall Age Grp. Age Pl. Name Chip Time Pace Gender
22 Top Fin 3 Laura Coogan 1:03:42 6:22/M F
77 F 25-29 5 Heather Irvine 1:13:21 7:20/M F
110 M 40-44 13 Christian Fischer 1:16:45 7:41/M M
133 F 30-34 8 Sophie Tholstrup 1:18:50 7:53/M F
147 M 40-44 19 Zandy Mangold 1:19:58 8:00/M M
187 F 25-29 12 Sarah Murphy 1:23:13 8:19/M F
295 F 35-39 22 Anna Spinner 1:34:43 9:28/M F


Team 10 Miler:

Overall Age Grp. Age Pl. Name Chip Time Pace Gender Club
3 M 0-99 1 James Chu 18:50:00 5:39/M M NBR
5 Top Fin 3 Alex Walsh 18:50:00 5:39/M M NBR
7 M 0-99 4 Xander Woolverton 19:09:00 5:45/M M NBR
25 M 0-99 22 Drew Reynolds 20:35:00 6:11/M M NBR152
28 M 0-99 25 Quinn Batson 21:00:00 6:18/M M NBR152
35 M 0-99 32 Alun Williams 21:33:00 6:28/M M NBR152
42 Top Fin 1 Angela Ortiz 21:44:00 6:32/M F NBR Women
44 Top Fin 2 Tien-Tien Yu 21:50:00 6:33/M F NBR Women
56 Top Fin 3 Taeya Konishi Schogel 22:50:00 6:51/M F NBR Women
219 F 0-99 62 Lilly Stevens 32:52:00 9:52/M F LCV 3 NBR
223 F 0-99 64 Caitlin Shu 34:17:00 10:18/M F LCV 3 NBR



THE Five 2016 NBR TEAM NYC MARATHON SPOTS GO TO… by nbrwebjohn
January 16, 2016, 9:00 am
Filed under: Events, Inspiration, Marathon, Members, NBR Goings On

Congratulations to NBR’s 2016 NYC Marathon Team Spot awardees!

After careful consideration of what was an incredibly deep and well-deserving pool of candidates, the committee has decided the recipients of the five team spots for the 2016 NYC Marathon. Their dedication to the North Brooklyn Runners and Brooklyn community as a whole is unmatched and we are honored to have the following five represent us this coming November. Please congratulate

Anne Barry
Lou Fox
Samuel-Christophe Tedjasukmana
Sue Walsh
Jeffrey Skaar

Thank you to all who applied!

2016 NYC Marathon Team Spots – Apply Now! by nbrwebjohn
December 19, 2015, 2:00 pm
Filed under: Events, Inspiration, Marathon, Members, NBR Goings On, Races, Volunteering

Did you fall short of your 9+1 but still want to run the 2016 NYC Marathon? Apply for one of our team spots in next year’s marathon! Thanks to our team volunteering efforts at the NYC Half and NYC Marathon fluid stations, we’ve officially been awarded five team spots for the 2016 Marathon!! (Volunteers—thank you!!)


This could be You!

Want to snag one? If so, fill out this form by January 8th to apply. To enter, you must have a My NYRR profile with a credit card attached to it. Next, the board will engage club leaders and previous club spot recipients in the process of selecting this year’s awardees based largely on club involvement. The team spot awardees are typically those people who are regulars at runs, who volunteer whenever they can, perhaps take on a leadership role in the club, and generally demonstrate a commitment to our team and community. Winners will be announced by January 15th. Awardees will have from January 21- February 21 to claim their entry and pay for it with a valid credit card.


1. Do I have to have applied for this year’s marathon lottery to be eligible?
No, but it is preferable if you did.

2. If I am awarded a team spot, do I have to pay for my entry?

3. If I am a fast runner, will that help my chances?

4. Do I have to be a current member of NYRR and be affiliated with NBR?

Any other questions? Please email NBR Team Captains.

Check out the previous NBR team spots awardees: NBR team spots awardees.

NBR Volunteer Opportunity – The Brooklyn Marathon Water Table 2015 by nbrwebjohn
November 10, 2015, 9:00 am
Filed under: Events, Inspiration, Marathon, Members, NBR Goings On, Volunteering

The Brooklyn Marathon is this Sunday, November 15th! We need your help at the water table!

Come “support the team” (Seinfeld-Putty reference intended) this Sunday to the Brooklyn Marathon in Prospect Park.  Come at 8 am to provide water, gatorade and good cheer to our fellow runners. If interested, email us at

BACKGROUND: Since the inception of this race, NBR has managed the water table. Furthermore, that spirit has carried-over to the course where brooklyn_logowe have taken 1st place three of the four years.

November 15th 2015
Sunday – 6:30AM – 2:30PM
Prospect Park

Please come and volunteer for the benefit of the team and the running community!  As always, you can count us to supply you warm friends and hot coffee and good times.

6:30 – 12:30 shift
8:30 – 02:30 shift
6:30 – 02:30 shift

-Volunteer Coordinators