After a three-year hiatus, the marathon's return sparks unparalleled interest
New York City — Marathons have long served as a metaphor for life. After all, the true aim of the marathon isn't to win the race. No. The purpose of a marathon is to finish the race.
Perseverance, not immediate gratification, is the name of the game. For a half-century now, NYC's hosted the largest marathon in the world. With over 50,000 runners each year, the emphasis is always placed on "finishers."
According to Greek mythology, a messenger ran from Marathon to Athens, nearly 25 miles.
Deliver the news that Greece defeated an invading army of Persians in 490 B.C. And to commemorate this legendary run, the first Olympic marathon was set at roughly 25 miles.
Since 2019, the pandemic's been an army invading the City That Never Sleeps. In fact, in 2020 the race was canceled altogether Yet this year with the marathon's full return, the symbolism speaks volumes.
According to the New York Road Runners, the interest in this year's marathon has been unprecedented. "More than 84,000 applications were received for the non-guaranteed entry drawing. An estimated 12% will be accepted," CBS News reports.
With more than 84,000 applications for the non-guaranteed entry drawing, only 12% will be accepted. Yet for New Yorkers — the 2022 TCS New York City Marathon symbolizes hope.
"If you are losing faith in human nature," said Kathrine Switzer, "go out and watch a marathon!"
Though at the height of the pandemic doom and gloom hovered over Gotham City, as if it were the Bat-Signal, NYC is gradually returning to form — back and better than ever.
"Every year, runners from all over the world come to New York City because there's no better race than the New York City Marathon," Mayor Adams said. "This race is the strongest proof of New York's unrelenting spirit and determination."