Posted on

April to November 2020

Although this is our first post since the beginning of April, a lot has been going on. What hasn’t changed is the pandemic we are all in, so please, wash your hands, stay home or socially distance if you cannot stay home, and wear a mask. Follow the recommendations from the state of NYNYC, the CDC, and the WHO.

Instead of highlighting every event, group run, or race like we usually do, this post will only highlight main events and information. The content is mostly coming from the latest QDR newsletter, so if you are not already subscribed, send us a message that you want to be added to the list! As always, follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest information.

Being Grateful

This past November, we had so much to be grateful for. This year is one we will never forget and one that changed many of our plans, but we were able to adapt. Unfortunately, the past few months were painful to many. We have done the best we can to help one another and be there for them.

At the very beginning of the pandemic and the city shut down, we saw businesses close down and friends losing jobs or being furloughed, and an increase in financial worry. That is why we came together to create the QDR Emergency Fund to help out QDR teammates with financial problems. Since then, we’ve been giving a hand to teammates who were, and are, in need of help.

Black Lives Matter

 Later in the Summer, we came together in unison with those protesting systematic racism in the country. Racism takes shape in different forms. What good is a running club if we cannot feel safe and respected, equally?

We came together to support protests across New York City, including organizing a couple of our own with the newly formed Queens Running Collective. The Black Lives Matter movement affects us all. We have teammates that have been persecuted simply by being who they are, and we do not stand for that. We will continue to keep showing up for this. 

Park Cleanup

During the summer, a number of us recognized the neglect that our parks received. It was so overwhelming that one of our teammates – Cathy – started plogging on her own. Through her initiative, we decided to open up the cleanups to all of our teammates. What started as an individual act became a group activity; every other Saturday, we were able to organize cleanups of a few of our parks, including Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Forest Park, and Queensbridge Park.

We did not expect the turnout to expand each time or the support from our teammates, their families, and local running clubs. If you’ve been to one of these, you know how much trash was being left behind and how much the Parks employees needed help, due to their diminished budget and manpower. During many of these cleanups, regular park-goers would thank us. It really did feel good to keep our parks clean for all of us, for our community. Although times are tough, this was something that let us be together while still observing the social distancing guidelines.

Training Runs, Destination Runs, and Track Sessions

For a lot of us, when everything shut down in March, we all felt a palpable loss – of motivation, social connections, finances, and more. Because of all the hardship we saw and experienced, we decided to keep spirits high by hosting regular training runs in our parks and track sessions – with social distancing in place and adhering to COVID guidelines.

We even got to host some destination runs (Connecticut, anyone?). Although we limit RSVPs to ten people for every group run, we had dedicated teammates come out and motivate themselves and each other to do their best. We had several teammates PR on all distances, ranging from 1-mile to 16-mile runs. We met new teammates that have gone on to become close friends. Highlighted by “The Kids”, our track sessions have proven to us all that we can still hold each other accountable and even hit new physical peaks despite losing the racing calendar.

Community Group Runs

In August, we wanted to uplift and inspire our communities. The best way for us to do that was to host weekly group runs. Kevin’s Jackson Heights Community Runs started to bring attention to the community fridge in the area and evolved into inspiring kids to run up to 3 miles! This is how we will keep our communities moving (with guidelines in place). These Community Group Runs are about keeping it LOCAL.

Our Woodhaven Group Runs was led by Paulina, a lifetime Woodhaven resident. She was everything that makes a Queens Distance Runner. Hopeful, unafraid, kind and willing to accept the good in others. The final run she led was a goodbye of sorts, but more of a “see you again soon.” The group run leadership has since been passed to Arlenys, who is another longtime Woodhaven resident. Our Flushing group runs, led by Linda, has still been going strong, as well as our Friday Kessel Run (Forest Hills), led by The Bocc. Although some policies have changed, our leaders and runners have all been phenomenal in keeping one another safe and having fun along the way. This is not something to be taken for granted. Thank you to everyone for keeping our communities strong!

Queens Marathon and QDR Half

Our flagship race has been stripped to bare bones, but it is back. In normal circumstances, we’d have one big event and then rest for a week. But we’re not in normal circumstances so we have to split up our one big show into seven smaller shows. As we host more smaller events, we get better at marking and running the game plan each time. Many athletes have been waiting patiently to take part in a rare 2020 Half Marathon or Marathon and we are delighted to put on races with new race guidelines in place. This goes without saying, this is a crazy running team! 🙂 

As we always say, without our teammates and volunteers we cannot have a well-run race, pun intended. Seriously, our volunteers have been amazing! They have been helping us mark the course, directing runners, and unclogging the multiple puddles around Meadow Lake. We now have a small crew of dedicated individuals that sweep and pump out the lakes around Meadow Lake. Shout-out to David Corona, David Law, Patrick, and Marvin Canita, Nancy Silva, Vikram Singh, and Aaron Lehman. Every race that we’ve held so far, the runners rave about the positivity from our volunteers and the amazing course. Thank you!

Consider volunteering for any race in 2020. Understandably, if you cannot make it but still want to help out, we are accepting donations for expenses to stretch one event into seven. Donations are tax-deductible as QDR is a 501c3 non-profit organization. Thank you! 

We have gotten many messages in the past few months, both wonderful and sad. Throughout it all, we are grateful to be in a position where we can continue moving forward with one another. We can all continue to dream big thanks to the generosity of one another. We are so grateful for your support as we reach for our next steps. Every gesture, each measure of kindness has built up to where we are today as an organization, and as a running family that hails from “The World’s Borough”.

Keep an eye out on our on Strava for more group runs and training sessions. Do not RSVP if you cannot make it! Make sure to also follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates and news!

Queens Distance

Posted on

March 2020 Recap

Let’s face it – right now we’re all in a state we weren’t expecting to be. The situation has become hard to deal with and every day we see and hear news that puts us on the edge. COVID-19 has changed the world as we know it. Before we get to the recap of all the events that occurred this past month, we want to thank all the healthcare workers who risk their lives daily in order to take care of those who are sick. Remember to wash your hands and only go outdoors if you need to and follow all the recommendations from the state of NY, NYC, the CDC, and the WHO.

* All photos were taken in early March before the group ban took place.

Early March Wednesday Track Session
following #socialdistance rules

This is a hard time for everyone. It’s been said that every New Yorker knows someone who has been affected by the COVID-19 virus. Everyone is dealing with this in their own way. Everyone is trying their best right now. Everyone is missing those who they cannot be around with at the moment.

Our running Facebook group turned from a community that shared photos of runs and accomplishments, to news about safety, memes, and activities to distract and motivate us during this time. This empathy for one another is what brings us closer together. Late in March, member Scott Luxenberg shared this link with us and it really resonates what we are collectively going through and that we are not alone:

One of my good friends from work shared this with me. It’s important to remember in times like these that we have each other! Go QDR!

And it’s true; we have each other. We still talk to one another and do our best to keep the motivation going. We are optimistic about all the fall races that were postponed, but we can’t say for certain what the future holds. We just have to do what is recommended to stay safe.

Early in March, we had the first NYRR club points race at the Washington Heights 5K. Two members ran the Little Rock Marathon in Arkansas and some ran the Atlanta Marathon in Georgia. They all seem like a lifetime ago. Since then, we slowly saw the race calendar come to a halt. First, it was the Paris and Rome marathons that were canceled. Then came other big marathons and races. QDR group runs were suspended indefinitely. The United Airlines NYC Half was canceled. Talk was that the Boston Marathon was going to be postponed, and eventually, it did to September 14. The NYRR RunCenter was closed initially for a few days, and then indefinitely. And finally, in late March, the unprecedented news of the Tokyo Olympics being postponed to 2021 came…

Yes, these races being canceled and postponed are frustrating for many of us. We know; we had to postpone the Queens Marathon and the Inaugural QDR Half Marathon to November. It hurts. For runners and organizers alike, we’re all in a state where we don’t know what to do.

So what can we do? We can stay home to save lives. We can reach out to friends and family on the phone or through video calls. We can, if possible, volunteer at shelters and food drives. We can donate money to organizations that need it, like those helping out healthcare workers get a meal during their shifts. We are not helpless to show compassion to everyone. We can cross-train at home and work on strengthening our bodies. There are many sources online giving free boot camp or exercise sessions, or classes for almost anything. Just remember that getting through this epidemic is more than enough for many. Reach out to us or anyone else if you are going through a hard time.

We’ll get through this and we’ll cherish everything. We’ll be more grateful for all the group runs where we can run with friends. We’ll be able to plan for a goal race and commit to the schedule. We’ll be able to spectate and cheer for the running community during races.

We love and are grateful for all our amazing teammates and friends. Until this epidemic is over, take care of yourself and each other. We’ll leave you with achievements we made in early March, not just because we need to celebrate them but because those memories mean so much.

Queens Distance

View this post on Instagram

Let's Gooooooooo!!!!!

A post shared by Queens Distance Runners 🌎🏁 (@queensdistance) on

View this post on Instagram

Race cancelled, chin up & look forward! . Am I disappointed? Heck yeah, I've worked really hard rehabbing through the winter for the #UnitedNYCHalf. . But #glasshalffull I think it is better that we are overly cautious vs facing larger health issues down the line. There will be more races and it's not like we lose the fitness gained from training. Our goals don't go away just delayed for a bit. . It's difficult decisions being made by the race directors and their teams. They are also sacrificing hours of logistical planning and money invested. So let's all try to be understanding and be happy we got our health. . A lot of uncertainty moving forward but we shall get through this 👊. . 📸: @horseandduckstudio . . . . . #qdrhalfmarathon #itsinqueens #queensdistance #bostonmarathon2020 #londonmarathon2020 #coronaviruscancelseverything2020 #injurymanagement #healthiswealth #comebackseason #wearetherunners #runwithpurpose #runeveryday #tracknation #runningformylife #lifeofarunner #runnershigh #dedicationhasnolimitation #initforthelongrun #wewhorun #runblogger #fitnessdedication #workharderthanme #runnerslifestyle #pushpastyourlimits

A post shared by JP (@l3eatyesterday) on

View this post on Instagram

Let’s gooo one team @shuavemente @queensdistance @queensmarathon @runtowards_yourdreams @victorrunsnyc @barton86x @nyrr .We are ready for Queens Marathon .💪💪💪💪we are not scared .we will do it .💪let’s gooo.💪 Let’s goooo. 🤗. #runmercedes @run_mercedes .lets gooooo speed work Tuesday team ❤️💪💪🤗@philly_marathon. 💪🙏👍@runrocknroll @nycruns @brooklynmarathon @rnrvegas 🏅@nycmarathon @nyrr @queensdistance @ineos159challenge @chimarathon @chimarathon @berlinmarathon @berlinmarathon @prospectparktc @5borughs #nycrun #bostonmarathon @bostonmarathon @londonmarathon @tokyo2020 @tokyomarathon @cheereverywhere.jpg @runrocknroll #nycmarathonrunners #nycmarathon #nycmarathontraining @wmmajors @nycmarathonrunners #happyrunning #nycmarathon2019 #tcsnycmarathon #tcsnycmarathontraining #chicago #nyc #statenislandhalf @runrocknroll @kipchogeeliud Island . @themiamimarathon @lamarathon @thesfmarathon @brooklynmarathon @runsra_cim @njmarathon @dallas_marathon @grandmasmarathon @chevronhoustonmarathon @austinmarathon @run_mercedes @afmarathon 👍💪💪 #brooklynhalftraining #brooklynhalf2019 ##statenislandhalf @runrocknroll @kipchogeeliud Island . @themiamimarathon @lamarathon @thesfmarathon @brooklynmarathon @runsra_cim @njmarathon @dallas_marathon @grandmasmarathon @chevronhoustonmarathon @austinmarathon @run_mercedes @afmarathon 👍💪💪 #brooklynhalftraining #brooklynhalf2019 #brooklyn 💪💪 #rnrdenver 💪.#brooklynbridge . #rnrdenver #mondaymotivation #medals #mondaymedal@thesfmarathon @af_marathoner #rnrlasvegas #5k @philly_marathon #mondaymeditations #medalmonday @runsra_cim #runcim @marathonmaniacs @armorynyc

A post shared by Zein Aly (@zeinabod) on

View this post on Instagram

Nothing like racing in trainers! 😆 On our way to Washington Heights, I misplaced my racing flats, mistakenly picked up homie @algorhythm19's flats, and warmed up with them. Minutes before the race we realized the mixup and he was reunited with his flats and I was off in my everyday shoes. By the way, these are two of the leading minds behind the @queensmarathon in three weeks 😆. With all the news surrounding running shoes, I'm very pleased to report I put my head down and gave it my best up and down the hills of Washington Heights. 19 minutes and some change, I'll take it! Grateful to open another @nyrr Points Race Campaign with the sunny folks from @queensdistance! Thank you for your support! 💛 _ 📸: @nmarvelous _ 🎥: @jonarunsthecity _ #queensdistance #nyrr #washingtonheights #running #runners #justracetherace #elcapitan #breakfromorganizing #qdrscreamstation #qdrletsgooooo

A post shared by Kevin Montalvo (@kevinamontalvo) on

Posted on

February 2020 Recap

Wow! Did we have a huge February this year! If you follow along, then you know this is already a few days late! As you can imagine, it’s been busy for us planning for this month’s Queens Marathon, QDR Half, and Spring Forward 10M and 5M races, as well as being consistent with our own training. Let’s get to it!

This past February’s temperature was milder than most Februarys. Of course, there were some pretty harsh days which many of us still braved to run outdoors – and even race! February was a very exciting time in the running community, especially in the NYC running community, because we were all excited, inspired, and motivated by the USATF Marathon Olympic Trials. Leading up to the race, there were many predictions on the top three male and female athletes who would represent the US at the Olympics in Japan, but there were so many highlights of all the local NYC runners who were racing the Trials and their stories just moved us.

Achieving a spot on any Olympic team is a distant dream for many of us, but we can still dream. Even better, we can incorporate what many professional and top amateur athletes do on their day-to-day training into our own training. You don’t have to be an elite athlete to train like one.

All of this to say that, the dreams we have — whatever they may be — are not silly or ever out of reach if we make a plan and consistently work towards them. The bigger the dream, the bigger the risk of failing, but at least we put the effort to go for it.

We’d like to congratulate Chaz, Charles Remillard, who ran the Trials on February 29th! He’s in Colorado at the moment, but always a friend of the team!

QDR Gala

Another year has past and that means another year to celebrate all of our achievements. What better time than to do it at our annual Queens Distance Gala! It was a time to put away the running clothes and get the dance shoes on.

This year was very special; our teammates ran a committee to gather photos and videos of special moments throughout the past year and we also had Mike Bocchinfuso and Mario Silva as hosts for the evening. Here is just one of the many award categories for the evening – Rookie of the Year! For the rest of the categories, check out our Instagram!

We want to thank and congratulate everyone who ran with QDR in the past year, who scored points for the team, who celebrated big PRs, who invited their friends to run with us, and those who wore our gold singlets proudly!

For photos of the event, check out the album from Horse and Duck Studio!


We hosted the first of many QDR races – the For the Love of Queens 5K and 10K relay! It was a cold morning but a lot of fun. The next race is the Spring Forward 10M and 5M race on March 8th. For more races, check out the racing calendar on Elitefeats. For race day photos, check our partner, Horse and Duck Studio!

As always, we follow the races in the tri-state area but also in other cities. This past month we saw teammates race in NOLA, Miami, and more cities across the country. Marie also won first overall female at the Manhattan 7 Mile race!

Unfortunately, we saw the Tokyo Marathon get canceled for non-elite runners and then the Paris half. Since then, into the first week of March, the Rome Marathon and the Paris Marathon were canceled and postponed. We are currently monitoring official word and recommendations from the city and will act accordingly.

Group Runs

As usual, follow the schedule below and make sure to RSVP on Strava for our runs! The leaders wait around for everyone who RSVPs and it helps us make sure everyone is accounted for. All our runs are open to everyone from any club and any experience. We just ask to be respectful and to bring a good attitude!

Thursday evenings in Flushing!
Monday nights at the RunCenter!

Keep an eye out on our site’s meetups page as well as on Strava for more group runs and training sessions. Make sure to also follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates and news!

Queens Distance

1 – Group runs in Queens

2 – San Jose 408K: Race to the Row
NYRR Gridiron 4M

3 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park
4 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track

5 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session

6 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run
QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
7 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel
8 – Cupid’s Chase – Queens
9 – NYRR Manhattan 7 Mile

New Orleans Half

Miami Half

10 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park
11 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track
12 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session

13 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run
QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
14 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria

QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel
15 – QDR: For the Love of Queens 5K and 10K Relay
16 – Cherry Tree 10M
17 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park

Tokyo Marathon Cancelled
18 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track
19 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session
20 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run

QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
21 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Gala

22 – NYRR Al Gordon 4M
23 – NYCRuns Central Park Half Marathon
24 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park
25 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track

26 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session
27 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group RunQDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
Club Night at NYRR

28 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel

29 – Mississippi Blues Marathon

Posted on

January 2020 Recap

New Year! Same grind! Let’s go!

Thanks for following us for the past year and hope you enjoy another year of monthly recaps of the races, group runs, and achievements we all made. This past month has been surprisingly warm and allowed us to spend more time out on the roads. It was a month to keep on training for the NYC Half, Queens Marathon, QDR Half, but there were also many races and goals accomplished!

Small aside: on the first of every month, Maria announces every teammate who is celebrating a birthday that month. This was special as we celebrated the three co-founders’ birthdays on the 19th, 23rd, and 27th!


There were so many races for what is typically a cold and snowy month. There was no snow this past month (many see that as being lucky, but it also speaks to the climate crisis we are encountering), and that meant that no races were canceled. Right off the bat, we hosted the New Year’s Day 5K and 10K time trial and then that same weekend we went to Central Park for the NYRR Joe Kleinerman 10K. Later on, we were at the first biggest half of the year, the NYRR Fred Lebow Half. That same day there were teammates in Houston running the Marathon and the Half! Read more about Marie’s half marathon, 1:14:12 and World Championship qualifying time, in her blog post!

You don’t have to be a championship qualifier in order to be a great runner, however! One of the best things we love to see is self-improvement over time. This past month, Robert Sanderman also shared his running story and we believe it resonates with many who are intimidated to join any running group. So let’s all help welcome one another for the rest of the year!

Big congrats to everyone on their races, including many who raced new and longer distances for the first time!

View this post on Instagram

Congrats to everyone who conquered Harlem Hill three times this morning at the @nyrr Fred Lebow Half Marathon! And congrats to all first time half-marathoners like Paulina! 💪🏼 #Repost @linnetteishere with @repostapp ・・・ Completed my first half marathon at Fred Lebow (1:47:06)! Admittedly, it was a tough course. I may have struggled in the second loop, but I came out knowing more about my current running ability. There’s plenty of room for improvement (particularly in races with a much longer distance) and I’m glad I realized that. Thanks for the cheers, @queensdistance! I really appreciate the support in and outside the races 💛 . . . #QueensDistanceRunners #NYRR #FredLebowHalf #FredLebow #HalfMarathon #CentralPark #HarlemHill #CatHill #ThreeSisters #SundayFunday #NewYorkRoadRunners #Painful #ButRewarding #JustKeepRunning #Photography #Portrait #NewYork #Manhattan

A post shared by Queens Distance Runners 🌎🏁 (@queensdistance) on

Group Runs

Kessel Run on Fridays

The Friday evening Kessel Run group run just celebrated their one year anniversary this past month! We thank Mike and Ann-Marie for leading group runs on this Star Wars theme run in Forest Hills.

All our runs are open to runners of all abilities. Follow the schedule below and make sure to RSVP on Strava.

Flushing Evening Group Run

Queens Marathon & QDR Half Training

At Kum Gan San B.B.Q.

We are now less than 10 weeks out until the Queens Marathon and the QDR Half Marathon. Runs are becoming longer, the intensity higher, intervals longer, and we definitely reach a point where we seem to be hungry all the time! Join us at our Queens Marathon Cuisine Tour group runs to satisfy your hunger after a long run.

This past month we hosted the fifth and sixth tours eating Korean and Greek cuisine. Follow the Queens Marathon on Strava for more Cuisine Tours and weekend course preview runs!

Keep an eye out on our site’s meetups page as well as on Strava for more group runs and training sessions. Make sure to also follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates and news!

Queens Distance

1 – New Year’s Day 5K and 10K Time Trial

2 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run
QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run

3 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel
4 – NYRR Joe Kleinerman 10K
6 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park
7 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track

8 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session
9 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run

QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
NYRR Night at the Races 2

10 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel
11 – Disney Marathon and Half

Queens Marathon Cuisine Tour #5 Korean- Ft. Kum Gan San (Flushing)
13 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park

14 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track
15 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session

16 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run

QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
17 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel

18 – Queens Marathon Cuisine Tour # 6 Telly’s Taverna
19 – Chevron Houston Marathon and Houston Half Marathon
NYRR Fred Lebow Half Marathon
20 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park

21 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track
22 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session
Sign up for the BK Half!
23 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run
QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run

NYRR Night at the Races 3
24 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria
QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel – 1 Year Anniversary!
25 – F3 Lake Half Marathon
26 – Queens Marathon-QDR Half Course Preview #2 

27 – QDR Monday Evening Group Run: Central Park
28 – QDR Tuesday Evening Astoria Track
29 – QDR Queensborough Community College Wednesday PM Track Session
30 – QDR Thursday AM Long Island City Group Run
QDR Thursday PM Flushing Group Run
31 – QDR Friday Morning Group Run: FunFridayRun Astoria

QDR Friday Evening Forest Hills: The Kessel

Posted on

#FasterTogether towards World Championships Qualifier

The following was authored by Coach Marie-Ange Brumelot. Along with Coach Medina, they have built a community of athletes working together towards their goals. It is, therefore, great to see that the encouragement she instills in others is matched by her own inspiring work ethic, attitude, and achievements. Even with so many goals achieved, there are many more right around the corner to work towards.

Through the Queens Distance Team, #FasterTogether family, and the driven NYC runner’s community, I have had the chance to grow as an athlete and always thrive for more. Everyone supports and motivates each other to keep moving forward and chase their own personal goals. This is gold.

Three months ago, at the Chicago Marathon, I achieved my A-goal by running a low 2:36. I was definitely happy with the performance but celebrating it with everyone is what really made it special. Achievements are only truly appreciated when shared with loved ones. It is later on when I realized that this was the second-fastest French marathon performance in 2019 that things started to sink in. With the Half-Marathon World Championships coming up in late March, I now set the chase of making my first National team.

I have had the goal of making a World team for some time, but never expected it to be a realistic possibility by 2020. But here we are. The training cycle towards the Houston Half-Marathon on January 19, 2020, was quite short but I believed it would be sufficient towards at least making the standard set by the Federation at 1:15:00. We took a couple of weeks to get back some lost aerobic fitness after recovering from Chicago and having fun pacing the NYC Marathon, and we focused on learning to run faster and embrace intensity. Everything worked out smoothly. We let the training talk for itself and set the A goal to sub 1:14:15 and A+ goal to sub 1:14:00.

Race day conditions were favorable despite a strong wind that would face us on the second half of the race. Aware of that, Dmytro and I did not worry much about coming out slightly fast through the first 10km. The second 10km was a battle against the unforgiving headwind. The pace had definitely slowed drastically. A quick time-check at the 20km mark, I was 24 seconds behind my split for my A+ Goal. I ran that 1.1km with the mentality that I could totally make up that time, sped up on this portion where the wind was not a factor anymore, and drove all the way through. I ran for every second, as if the clock would show 1:14:00 and I had to squeeze under. Finish Time: 1:14:12. The best I could do on the day and happy with this result. “A” goal achieved.

3+ min PR
World Championships Standard met by 48 seconds.
Current second-fastest French HM performance towards making the team, as of January 2020.
And 100% confident that I can run a lot faster.

I am at a point in my running when I am slightly disappointed about not surpassing expectations. This comes from setting higher goals and having a better sense of my true abilities. I have to adjust my mindset and learn to appreciate more achieving the A goal. In each stage of a journey, things change and that is something to embrace.

I love the process and the community. Thank you for the endless support, warming congratulations messages, and all the love. What’s next? My eyes are set on making that team. Maybe I’ll squeeze in one more race to better my mark and increase my chances of making the team, or maybe not. That is still in the works. The team will be announced March 3rd, let’s see where I stand then!

Dmytro, Marie, and Luciano
at the Houston Marathon and Half-Marathon expo

Thank you again, and cheers to fast miles for all of us in 2020!

*Congratulation to my loving husband for a smart and strong race finishing in 2:36:19, a 7-min PR!
**Also, thank you to my favorite pacer, Dmytro, for the company, the help, and the blazing fast early miles!