Asics Runner Diego Estrada Shares Why the NYC Marathon Is Special

After months of training and preparation, runners can rejoice that the TCS New York City Marathon is finally here. Prior to the event’s start, Footwear News caught up with Asics-sponsored athlete Diego Estrada and talked favorite running shoes, the races he’d like to participate in and more. Here’s what he had to say.

What advice would you give a first-time marathoner?

DE: I would do the training, but I wouldn’t lose sleep over it. And I wouldn’t obsess over the marathon distance itself; I would more enjoy the distance and be patient. And I wouldn’t think of 13 miles as a halfway, I’d look more at 20 as my halfway point. And I would focus on hydration, regardless if it’s going to be a cold day like it potentially is going to be Sunday. I wouldn’t change anything the morning of the race; I would treat it as a regular workout because it’s such a long race you don’t want any surprises along the way.

What makes the New York Marathon such a great place to be, even if you’re not running?

DE: I was walking down Seventh Avenue going to Times Square and just listening to people speak, hearing all the languages out there: It puts it together that this is a world event; it’s not just an American sort of thing. It brings the world together — New York is the center of the world — and I feel like if you can shine in New York people will recognize you around the world. And as a spectator, just spectating that finish line and seeing all those countries from around the world just puts things into perspective. Sports unite this world: The Olympics does it, the World Cup does it, and I feel New York plays a role in that.

What are your favorite Asics styles to train and race in?

DE: It all depends what type of run I’m doing. If I’m doing a longer run I’ll go in the Gel Nimbus, if I’m doing something short, I’ll go in the FA or something more natural. If I’m doing a tempo, I’ll go in my Hyper Speeds, and if I’m on the track, I’ll use the GunLap. It just depends on the terrain and the distance I’m doing, but I have a lot of favorites.

Asics Gel Nimbus 18
Asics Gel Nimbus 18.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Asics.

What is your favorite race you’ve ever participated in?

DE: The half marathon I ran in Houston in 2015, that was my first serious attempt at the distance, and it’s the first time I ever raced in the Hyper Speed just because I was coming from the track and I just remember how bouncy those shoes felt. It was the U.S. championship and I had a minute lead on the field. That race will forever be one of my favorites just because not only did I run the third fastest time ever for the U.S., but the fact that I won by a minute, it was a combination of everything — just winning a championship, dominating the field and learning something about myself out there.

Do you have a race wish list? What races do you want to do that you haven’t done yet?

DE: I want to run every world major marathon. Right now there’s six on the list, and I knocked out Chicago – the timing’s not right, otherwise I’d be here doing New York, too. My wish list is just to finish Top 10 in every world major.

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