Brooklyn half-marathon recap

Well, that was a pleasant surprise. Despite feeling like CRAP all week long, I some how managed to feel awesome during the Brooklyn half-marathon yesterday. Good enough for a 1 minute and 36 seconds PR – huzzah! Seriously, I did everything wrong – too much alcohol last week, not enough sleep, and a dangerous amount of fiber the night before (an entire can of chickpeas – what was I thinking??). And yet, the legs cooperated. Thank you running gods!

Since the race started at 7am in Prospect Park, I set my alarm for 4:45am. Coffee was necessary.

Frida coffee mug

And a clif z-bar.

clif z bar

The subway ride took about 50 minutes – I chowed down on a banana and drank some water.

Brooklyn half-marathon

After checking my bag, making a port-a-potty stop, and saying hello to Ashley and Shelby – it was race time!

Race Name Brooklyn 1/2 marathon
Warm Up 1.5 miles
Distance 13.1Β Miles
Time 1:33:34.00
Cool Down 1 mile
Pace PerΒ  Mile 7:08
Overall Place 435 out of 7,006
Age Place 16 out of 1,206
Comments I wasn’t sure what to expect since I’ve been feeling so crappy this week, but the warm-up went surprisingly well. Alma paced me for the first 7 miles (I felt like an elite – she got me gatorade and reminded me to run the tangents!) and then I was on my own.Β  Miles 1-7 in Prospect Park ranged from 6:55 (downhill) to 7:24 (uphill). Miles 8-12 were consistently around 7:00 pace, and the last mile was faster (maybe 6:50?). It was humid and warm, but at least the sun wasn’t too strong. Took sips of Gatorade at miles 2, 5, 8, and 11. I felt SO strong today. I didn’t even feel that wiped out at the finish. If it makes sense – today’s effort seemed easier than last week’s 10k. Weird.

After the race I rounded up the troops for a cool-down and some FOOD. Shout out to Sarah who WON the 25-29 year old age group. She’s a star! At the finish line I had about 3 cups of Gatorade/water and part of a chocolate chip bagel (sounds better than it actually was).

Brooklyn half-marathon

The race finished in Coney Island (on the boardwalk!), but by the time we finished getting our bags, it was still only about 9am. My stomach told me that it would not tolerate anything too heavy (i.e. fried oreos). After hard efforts, my stomach feels a little off sometimes. I bought an overpriced ($7!!) smoothie that contained mango, strawberries, and banana. It was $$, but you can’t really beat a post-race smoothie on the beach.


Every runner has a different post-race fueling preference. Nathan’s hot dogs, anyone?

Coney Island hot dogs

After a 1+ subway ride back home, I was practically gnawing my arm off in hunger. The Builder’s Bar below is actually a stand-in. I ate the actual protein bar in line at Whole Foods and gave the wrapper to the cashier when I reached the front of the line. I couldn’t wait!

I also sipped on an Illy iced cappuccino (these are delish!) and TWO bowls of low-fat cottage cheese, sliced strawberries, sunflower seed butter, and Nature’s Path Heritage Flakes.

Post-race fuel

The rest of the afternoon was spent showering, napping, and compression sock wearing. Lovely. Around 7 o’clock I finally ate a vegetable: arugula, sliced leeks, shredded mozzarella, Kashi TLC crackers, lots of hummus, and sriracha sauce. This is a good combo – try it!


I had a surprising amount of energy, so I actually made it out and about Saturday evening. I met some friends at a secret E. Village bar for a few rounds of rum punch and then crossed another thing off my Summer to-do list: Artichoke Pizza!!

Note: This pizza is intense – thick, crispy crunch topped with spinach-artichoke-cheese dip. Yum, the perfect late-night, post-race treat πŸ™‚

artichoke pizza

Question: What’s your favorite non-peanut butter nut butter (i.e. almond, cashew, sunflower seed, etc)? I recently tried sunflower seed butter and I have mixed feelings.

  • Ada

    Congratulations!!! That is SUCH an amazing time, you are a total rock star:) Artichoke Pizza is delish, the perfect post race dinner.

  • Great run and great time! I think I like almond butter or cashew butter best. Almond has a really distinct flavor whereas cashew tastes almost like air

  • You recouped like a freaking rock star. I was passed out with the lights on at 10 p.m., and you’re out boozing. That’s incredible. Even more incredible that your PR, which is pretty darn astonishing. I’m going to fuel for my next race with beer and popcorn and I’ll let you know how it goes. Sweeeet.

  • That is such a GREAT time. You always amaze me…I mean really jaw on the floor amaze me! πŸ™‚

  • Crunchy granola gal

    Megan, what an awesome race! Comgrats on PRing! Aaand I went to both Cienfuegos and artichoke last Friday – double life? πŸ™‚

  • Oh, great! Congrats PRing after such a crazy week…the fact that you PRed means you probaby have an almost guaranteed PR next time you run bc you’ll be better rested, better prepared, etc.

    Artichoke pizza looks fricking awesome. Antipasto veggies–artichokes, mushrooms, etc. are my favorites…besides eggplant, that is. And yours looks so deliciously hearty and cheesy.

    The only nut butters I’ve gotten my hand on are peanut, almond, and chocolate hazelnut. I think I would love regular hazelnut butter as well as cashew butter (but ugh….expensive…tear)

    I hope you’re taking it nice and easy today. You deserve it!

  • Great job in the race! Brooklyn looks so fun. Naturally Nutty Cinnamon Vanilla Sunflower Butter is my favorite. Locally made in Michigan, it’s not cheap, but very natural and has a great flavor!

  • Congratulations again! You kicked serious tush, lady.

    I’ve always wanted to try Artichoke pizza! I will have to treat myself soon.

    I LOVE almond butter. If you like a sweeter nut butter, Maranatha’s no-stir almond is pretty delicious.

  • A huge congrats to you, way to go!!!
    I love maple almond butter!

  • j

    LOVE: sunbutter and tahini (mmm so good on a banana)
    Like: almond, hemp, and peanut butter
    Not crazy about: cashew butter
    Would love to try but can’t afford: pistachio butter, coconut butter

  • I think my stomach would much prefer post-race smoothies compared to hot dogs, too!

  • Congrats for your time and your Artichoke discovery ! Have you tried Curly’s, the vegan restaurant right next door ?

  • You’re a machine! I’d love to do seven minute miles for anything! Way to go.

  • Ellen

    You are so hardcore, it kills me. Awesome job! And it’s so funny you mention the artichoke pizza! I was in Union Sq today and I saw a girl eating the same exact slice and she told me about that place! Looks like I def need to try it πŸ™‚

  • That’s so funny, I just heard about the artichoke pizza this weekend. I have to try it! Excellent race, btw! No PR for me–about a minute and a half slower than my PR. Maybe I pushed it a little on Thursday AM, or maybe it was the 7am start πŸ™‚

  • Also, I just realized that I had beer and wine the night before my PR. Next time…

  • Awesome run woman! Sometimes the stars just align and you kick butt without even trying. I’ve had some pretty surprising races in the past that I thought were going to be terrible. But I think the key is to make that the exception rather than the rule. You are usually so good about eating, resting, etc. that your body could handle the slight switch up.

  • i’m psyched you went to cienfuegos! you’ll have to tell me if you’re in love with it too.

    congrats again on the awesome race! i’m beginning to think that excessive going out is the key to success in any aspect of life. a theory to test, i think.

  • Eileen

    Awesome race! You are quite a runner. I love Brooklyn, and your post made me very nostalgic for it.

    That artichoke pizza looks INCREDIBLE.

  • Great recap. That’s an amazing time, and an impressive smoothie. I’m a big fan of the smoothie myself. Pretty sure I cheered you at the finish since you run for my club. Congrats!

    Also: almond butter. Tried cashew butter too, but it didn’t take.

  • Congrats girl you totally rocked that race! I tried sunflower seed butter a few years back and really really like it, just haven’t got around to picking up a new jar.

  • That time is AMAZING! Congratulations Megan! You must be so proud – you should be!

  • Woot! Great race. I love your pictorials. I’m too lazy to do it. LOL at too much fiber. My last trip to Prospect Park nearly resulted in a similarly ugly situation when no restrooms were open. πŸ™‚

    I eat PB protein bars, but I’m really not that much into PB. Weird for a runner?

    See you Tuesday?

  • Congrats on the PR speedy! Justin’s maple almond butter rocks my world

  • Congrats on the PR!!!! I need to try that Illy iced coffee looks delish!

  • Congrats on a great race! That was a pretty early start, wasn’t it!

    The only non-peanut butter nut butter I’ve tried has been almond and I love it. I do want to try sunflower seed butter and have been eyeing it at TJ’s for the past few weeks.

    Interesting pizza. Sounds incredibly rich!

  • newest obsession: TJ’s almond butter with flaxseeds. salty and delicious.

    but more importantly, CONGRATS ON THE PR! i honestly can only hope to be as fast as you someday, and i am glad the running gods were looking out for you.

    and that pizza? DROOL.

    happy tuesday lady πŸ™‚

  • Congrats on your PR!

  • Where did you get the artichoke pizza?! It looks divine! I dislike sunflower butter as well; I’d have to go with Almond butter, but if it counts, I’d saw P.B. and Co’s Dark Chocolate Dreams is my favorite not-quite-peanut-butter peanut butter!

  • Congratulations! You are super fast : )
    Peanut butter is definitely my favorite but I guess next would be Almond butter.

    Question: Do you normally just eat something small like a banana before a half? I’m running my first half on Sunday and I’m torn what to eat before hand. I’ve experimented with a banana, wheat bread with some pb, and oatmeal and the banana so far has been best, but I worry that isn’t enough fuel for 13 miles. Usually I work out in the morning and eat nothing before hand except runs over like 9 or 10 miles.. I’d appreciate any help you can offer!

  • jj

    Don’t give up on sunflower seed butter until you’ve tried Sunbutter Natural Crunch. This stuff is GREAT! I got the cruncy kind and it has whole sunflower seeds in it along with the smooth “butter”. Check it out at There are several varieties, but I have only tried the “natural crunch” variety. It is really yummy! And I actually prefer it by the spoonful rather than spread on something…

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