NYPD captain jumps hurdles to run in Philly Marathon
November 16, 2012By Elizabeth Fiedler
Would you spend almost $500 to run 26.2 miles? For non-runners, the life of a marathoner is not easy to understand. The cancellation of this year's New York race means some marathoners are investing even more money to compete.
Hundreds of displaced New York Marathon runners signed up to race in Philadelphia this weekend.
That includes Tim Kelly, who has not had an easy time recently.
"Probably about 15 minutes after I found out the New York Marathon was canceled I said to my wife I'm not going to waste my marathon conditioning -- I'm going to have to find another marathon," he said.
Kelly says his wife thought he was crazy. But the Long Island resident refused to give up his dream of running 26 miles for a second time. His determination is due, in part, to how hard it was for him to train for the race.
Kelly is also a captain in the New York Police Department.
"Sometimes, I'd get stuck at work and I'd have to run at night. Sometimes, I'll get called in on my day off or I'll think I'm starting work at 9 and my phone will ring at 5 a.m. and I've gotta come in early," Kelly said. "So there's a lot of last-minute schedule changes. It's a lot of juggling. But you know, where there's a will, there's a way."
Kelly says he runs year round but started his marathon training program in July. He's hoping to beat the time from his first marathon: four hours and 47 seconds. Yes, even if you run 26.2 miles, you still count the seconds.
Philadelphia opened up 3,000 slots for displaced New York Marathon runners such as Kelly. More than 1,000 ponied up the $200 to run here.
Kelly's been dealing with more than just the marathon's cancellation. His home was damaged by Superstorm Sandy.
"Our house was in shambles that week it got canceled and my house still doesn't have a roof on it. A tree fell on my house," he said. "Right now, it's really just a waiting game for the insurance company to come through and for my contractors to start."
Kelly's family made it through 11 days without power. They're still living in their home, tarp-covered roof and all. Kelly says while his wife wants him to be at home, she understands why he needs to travel to Philly to run a race for which he's trained so hard.