SAN DIEGO – Like most major events in 2020, the world-famous New York City Marathon was canceled this year due to public health concerns. But for runners in the marathon’s virtual showcase, the show still must go on.
That’s the approach for Olympic hopeful Emily Sisson, who will run the 26.2-mile trek Saturday on Coronado Island.
“It’s not how I pictured doing a marathon with New York Road Runners but we’re just kinda going with the flow this year” said Sisson, a New Balance athlete who averages about 460 miles a month while training for the marathon.
“Typically, when I’m training anything less than a marathon, I’m running in the 90s, 100-mile weeks but then when I get to running 115-mile weeks, 120 miles some weeks,” she said. “It’s a lot of running.”
Sisson, 29, starred as a long-distance runner at the University of Wisconsin and Providence College before turning pro in 2015. After taking sixth in her marathon debut last year in London, expectations are growing that she could be among the country’s next great women’s marathoners.
When she found out this year’s New York City Marathon was going virtual, she decided she’d wanted to run it more than 2,700 miles away from the race’s starting line on Staten Island.
“We do a lot of training here anyway so we know the area, so we’re like ‘Coronado bike path could be a great place to map out and run,'” she said, “and so it’s a little different than a normal race, but it’s kind of fun that I get to map it out.”
Saturday is another stepping stone for Sisson, who is using the training for the marathon to get her body into shape for the Olympic Trials next summer in Eugene, Oregon.
“I like to build on aerobic strength, which is what marathon training does for me and then works on my speed as we get closer to track season and then give that a shot,” she said.