A Marathoner’s Guide to Carbo-Loading in NYC

Loading up on carbs for the big race doesn't have to mean lowering your standards. Here's how to fill up in true New York City style.

marathon

Every year, on the first Saturday of November, there's a dinner held for the 40,000+ lunatics totally rational runners who will take on the NYC marathon the next morning.

New York's marathon is the biggest in the world—one of the six that make up the World Marathon Majors, and a championship showdown for people who run 26 miles faster than you can haul ass for one. Olympic athletes come from around the world to stampede through the five boroughs for a prize purse that can reach as much as $600,000. So you'd figure we'd bring the big-city heat to the dinner to show off our chops, right? Wrong. On the menu: steam tray after steam tray of bar mitzvah-quality pasta and dinner rolls, washed down with Coors Light. Sure, runners are supposed to stock up on almost exclusively carbs in the day(s) leading up to the race, but at what cost? That slop might fly for the Des Moines marathon, but this is New York City! We've got standards.

Luckily, we've also got starch. While we New Yorkers like to pride themselves on our game-changing chef talent, we're also a city of drunks, one of the few places in this country where bars stay open until 4am (what up, Alaska and Louisiana!). Late-night lushes need carbs to soak up all that booze, and New York delivers. This is the city that invented the ziti slice, for god's sake—a bowl of pasta poured ON TOP OF a piece of pizza so you can eat it on the go. Surely, we can give a crowd of runners something better to eat.

As a public service to all the racers who come to town and don't know where to turn, we've pulled together New York City's 10 greatest carb-centric dishes. But don't think you need to be about to run from Staten Island to Central Park to get down with these starchy delights—they're equally good fuel for standing around watching other people run, or for soaking up your next night out.

Let the carbstravaganza begin...

Click to start the list
  • http://caryrandolph.tumblr.com caryrandolph

    Excellent list, but under no circumstances would I ever recommend a rice roll with fried dough (or fried anything) the night before a long-distance race. The morning-after effects around mile 6 would be traumatic.

    Sincerely, another lunatic

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