Category Archives: Run

Mission Completed- I Ran Up the Empire State Building!

a man holding a medal
Nice views from the Observation Deck

In late December I signed up for an odd running event- the Empire State Building Run- Up.

Last night I headed into Manhattan to torture myself a little by running up the Empire State Building. I ran up 86 Floors which is 1,576 steps. Runners are released in waves so by the time I got started it was almost 9:30 PM.

a tall building with a bright top

There were over 700 runners registered for the event, the largest field ever. The race was well organized which is impressive due to the logistics involved. The run ended at the Observation Deck which was closed to the public for the race.

a blurry image of people in a hallway
Blurry Kelly Ripa photo

The beginning waves were open to invited runners. The first two were for runners competing to get to the top first. Wave 1 was for top women runners (about 7), Wave 2 was for top men runners (also 7). Wave 4 was for news and media. A friend had mentioned to me that Kelly Ripa was running. She was the biggest name there from what I could tell. After all of the media left the staging area Kelly was announced and she ran out to loud cheers. I tried to take a photo of her but the iPhone camera was way too slow so all I got was the blurry image above.

a group of people in a building
The Starting Line

While waiting around for my wave to run, I had plenty of time to think about what I had gotten myself into. I had trained on a stairmaster but I knew it was not at all like the real thing.

Running up the stairs in the Empire State Building was a painful and grueling task. It was extremely hot with little fresh air to be had. My legs started feeling a bit heavy before I got to the 20th floor, the first water stop. To keep motivated, I had my mind on the next stop on  the 65th floor. From there it was only 20 more floors to the top. It is much harder to breathe properly while running up stairs opposed to when I am running at the park. However, once I got to the top I actually felt pretty good. I was very tired and sweaty but my legs felt great. The only bother I had was a little pain in my lower back- probably more from sitting on the floor when working with my students at times.

a silver medal with a logo on it

All runners that completed the run got this nice, shiny medal. I proudly wore it while admiring the views from the Observation Deck. It was freezing up there and very windy but I braved the cold and took a few photos. (The photos were not so good since I was using my iPhone.)

a long sleeved shirt and a bag

All registered runners also received a couple of goodies. We were given a draw-string bag and a very nice long sleeve wicking T-shirt.

Overall, I am really glad that I participated in the event. I am looking forward to finding out how long it took me to finish later today.

I can’t say that I have the desire to run up the Empire State Building again, but then again you never know!

JFK Runway Run 2013- Date Announced

a group of people running

In 2012 I ran in four 5K Airport Runway Runs. The first runway run that I participated in was at JFK Airport in New York. It was a really fun event with a huge turnout. There were some great views of planes taking off and a generous raffle which gave away many flights! 

Even though I didn’t win a flight I still had a great time (and workout) and have been looking forward to the 2013 run.

The other runway runs that I participated in were:

I just received an e-mail from the race coordinators announcing the date for the 2013 
JFK Runway Run. The race will be on Sunday, April 14, 2013.

Besides the date for the 2013 race, there was no other information. The site said details to follow- not so helpful!

However, there was a link to register online for the race. I clicked the link and was happy to see loads of information about the race!

Here are the details:

  • Race starts at 9:00AM
  • Number pickup- race day of only- 7:00- 8:40AM at Building 14
  • Online registration closes April 13 at 6:00AM
  • Cost: $25 for adults, $19 for students 18 and under with student IDs
  • Runway Run T-Shirt and Goody Bag guaranteed to anyone registered by April 1
  • All participants are entered in a drawing to win round trip airline tickets
  • There will also be a raffle with tickets for purchase. Airline tickets and other prizes will be given away

Kim and I plan to register for the JFK Runway Run soon, we just have to check our schedules first. Does anybody else plan to sign up for this event?

Click HERE to check out the JFK Runway Run webpage. Details should be added soon.

If you’d like to register for the race now Click Here

Off Topic: I’m Running Up the Empire State Building!

a logo with a tall building in the background

Last year I started off the New Year with a fun and somewhat crazy activity. I decided to join the Coney Island Polar Bears for their annual New Years Day Swim.  

I was thinking about swimming again to start off 2013 but it turns out that Kim, Lucas and I will be flying back from Nashville on New Years day. I’m not planning to make the swim an annual event but I’m still a bit bummed to be missing out in 2013.

To make up for missing out on the Polar Bear swim, I decided to enter the New York Road Runners Club lottery in hopes of winning a spot in the Empire State Building Run-Up. 
Due to anticipated high demand for a spot, a random drawing was held to select participants for this race. I didn’t expect to get a spot but was happy to receive an e-mail that I was in!

This is another one of those wacky and odd events that I’ve wanted to participate in for a while now. However, while filling out my application I was close to exiting from the page a few times. 
I can not imagine how my legs (body?) will feel after running up the Empire State Building! 
(It also costs $100 to enter. Definitely not cheap!)

Here is a little about the Empire State Building Run-Up according to the NYRR:

Run like King Kong in the ultimate uphill race: Climb 86 stories to the top of the world’s most famous skyscraper! Get vertical as you climb nearly a quarter-mile—and be sure to take in the spectacular view of Manhattan at night as you circle the Observation Deck to finish.

This unusual race was the brainchild of Fred Lebow, and it may have been the first of its kind. The inaugural Run-Up was held in 1978 and was won by Gary Muhrcke—the former firefighter who was already renowned for winning the first-ever New York City Marathon in 1970. While visitors can reach the observation deck via elevator in under a minute, the fastest runners cover the 1,576 stairs in about 10 minutes.

a tall building with a spire with Empire State Building in the background
Image from Google search

I’ve been having fun running 5Ks and participated in a 5 mile race on Thanksgiving this past year but I have a feeling that this is going to be the toughest quarter-mile that I’ve ever ran!

It’s almost time to start doing some sort of training for this race. Any suggestions for training ideas would be a big help!

If you’ve ever entered a crazy race or event, I’d love to hear about it!

Check out the NYRR event page for the Empire State Building Run-Up HERE

Teterboro Airport Runway Run 5K- New Jersey 7/21/12

a sign with a white triangle on it
About a year ago I started running as another way to exercise (I’ve been working out for years).  To keep motivated, I’ve been running  5K races a couple of times a month.
One of my favorite 5Ks that I participated in took place on an airport runway-the JFK Runway Run this past April. I had a great time and got to see parts of the airport (I am assuming) that are usually not accessible to the public. There were some great closeup views of planes taking off too!
When I got home from the race I decided to start looking around for similar races close to the New York City area. After doing a bit of research, I came across the Teterboro Airport Runway Run 5K in New Jersey.
This will be the 15th year of the Teterboro 5K and it should draw over 1,000 runners. The race benefits NJ 2-1-1- the United Way’s free service in New Jersey that connects people with social services and community programs. There will also be over $10,000 in random prizes given out. (Maybe some free flights???)
Some race details:
  • The Teterboro Airport 5K takes place on July 21, 2012 
  • Race starts at 8:30AM
  • Nobody will be allowed entry to the airport and race staging area after 7:55AM
  • Registration Fees: $22 by July 16, $25 after July 16 and on race day
  • The race is timed by ChronoTrack D-Tag
  • Registration includes a Teterboro 5K T-Shirt
Find out more about the Teterboro Runway Run and sign up HERE
**Image above: Teterboro Airport page on