Pre-Race FAQ

These are your final instructions!

The weather forecast calls for clear skies for several days leading up to the race, in contrast to last year’s mud fest. I apologize in advance for the good weather.

With a modicum of good luck, this should answer all your questions:

1.      Start Time: The first wave starts with a gunshot at 9 am on October 14th, rain or shine. Only a severe storm could alter plans. If you don’t pick up your packet beforehand, please leave ample time before the race for parking/packet details.

2.      Wave Start: Four waves, with five minutes between each, with an estimated 150-200 runners per wave. While you can jump back a wave to start with a friend, or finish up at the toilets, you cannot jump forward! The race is electronically timed and we know from your chip where you’re supposed to start. You’ll get your wave assignment when you pick up your bib.

For an explanation of how (and why) we set up the waves click this link.

3.      Number Pick-up: We encourage runners to pick up race numbers and shirts prior to race day at Westchester Road Runner at 179 E. Post Road in White Plains:
Friday: 5-8 pm
Saturday: 10 am-4 pm

The first 100 to pick up their packets will receive a free copy of Trail Runner Magazine.

The store will also recycle old running shoes to charity, so bring in the shoes laying in the back of your closet for the last couple years.

You must pick up your own number and nobody else’s.  The only exception is picking up for someone with your same last name or address. Please do not ask for additional exceptions.  Please bring a picture ID to packet pickup.

4.      Number transfers are not permitted. If you transfer a number, a kitten will die. Please remember that this is a fund-raiser to improve the trails you are running on. This is what we have done for the trails and what we hope to do in the future.  If you were to transfer a number you would foul up the results, and could deprive another person of an award.  This is the reason for the no transfer (and no refund) policy.

5.       Tech shirts are guaranteed to those who registered by September 15th. If you don’t get a shirt at check-in, you can pick one up after the race on a first come, first serve basis (depending on the number of no-shows). Our shirt policy can be found at this link.

6.      Late Registration: If you have a friend that still hasn’t registered, well, shame on them for waiting. But if they come to number pick-up on Friday or Saturday, or to the registration area between 7-8:30 am race day, we’ll try to squeeze them in if we still have openings. But we will not oversell the race and swamp the trails with too many runners. Please check the website for updates if you insisted on waiting until the last minute. Shirts are not guaranteed to late registrants.

Late registrations must be paid by check or with exact change.

7.      Parking is available in two parking lots and on the street. The lot in front of the High School will fill up early. The lot behind the High School on Clove Road is quite large, and has a walkway bringing you past the front of the school toward the start. Don’t even think about parking on Broadview, as that is the racecourse. Click here for a printable map of the parking areas, which you can click again to enlarge. Please consider carpooling to alleviate congestion.

8.      Public transportation from NYC: There is a Metro North train (New Haven line) out of Grand Central at 7:37 that pulls in to New Rochelle at 8:08. A taxi from the station should cost about $7. We expect many Manhattan/Brooklyn runners, so keep your eyes open to share a taxi with other runners. To find taxis, go up the mid-platform stairs to the bridge over the tracks. There is a taxi stand next to the northbound track and also next to the southbound track after you cross the bridge and go through the station house. There is more at this link, including taxi numbers.

Return trains to Grand Central are at 11:33 am, 12:33 pm and 1:33 pm.

9.      Baggage Drop is available at the start. You can check one bag, which will be brought to the finish line. Your bib will have a numbered pull tag that can be pinned to your bag. Please don’t leave valuables in the bags, as we are not responsible for them.

10.      Course Markings: We expect to lay down about 500 bright yellow flags with our Colonial Runner logo, placed at trail intersections and occasional intervals. Some people will ignore the flags and run off course anyway.

11.      Toilets: Porto-potties at the start (get there early!), the 7.5-mile mark (Saxon Woods golf course) and the High School locker room at the finish.

12.      Water/Medical: Water and medical attention will be available at only three spots during the race, in addition to the start and finish. These aid stations are at miles 3.8, 7.5 and 10.8. If you want more water, you better carry it.

13.      Mid-Race Drop-Out: If you get injured, or are too exhausted to finish, you should check in with a volunteer at an aid station. If you can’t make it to the aid station, tell a volunteer on the course. If you tell the police you are injured they will transport you to the emergency room, not the finish line.

14.      The course closes: A sweeper will discharge police and volunteers, starting in Wave 4 and finishing in three hours. Please stay in front of the sweeper! We estimate that middle-of-the-pack finishing times will be your regular 1/2 marathon pace plus an extra 15 minutes to account for the rough terrain.  If you are slower than the sweeper you are on your own, but we will leave the flags in place so you don’t get lost.

15.    Kid Races: We will have kid races for the first time. Young teens will run approximately one mile on a course that takes them on a dirt trail around the twin lakes in front of the high school (with rocks, roots and uneven ground, suitable for tripping and falling). The young teens start around 9:30, while P2P is in progress. Younger kids will run on the football field afterward. Listen for details on race morning.

16.      Post-RaceFood by Fairway! Need we say more? OK, we’ll say more.Robek’s smoothies are back! And VitaCoco coconut water and bottled water fromWalgreens. Oh yeah. We expect an awards ceremony at 11:30.

There will also be a medical tent staffed by Sound Shore Medical Center and we expect several independent massage therapists to assist with post-race stretching.

17.      Post-Race Showers! We’ve once again arranged for the High School locker room to be opened so you can shower and change. But if your shoes are muddy, please remove them before entering the building. We’d like to continue using the facility in the years to come, and trashing it will be, shall we say, counterproductive.

18.    No Dogs. We have dogs. We like their happy, wagging tails. Sadly, we don’t get to make all the rules for the school grounds. That means Tucker, Princess and Snoopy have to stay home.

19.    Volunteers: This event is put on by a local running club, and the entire event committee, race director included, is volunteer. We expect 150+ volunteers on race day. Please be nice to them, they are working hard. Kissing volunteers is permitted. But not the cheerleaders; kissees must be 18 or older.

Feedback: We started with 50 people in 2008, had 191 finishers in 2009, 300 in 2010 and 475 last year. As of this writing we have become one of the largest trail races on the East Coast, having surpassed 850 registrations. The vast majority of our runners learned of the race by word of mouth. We encourage feedback regarding the event to know what works and what doesn’t as we continue to grow and continue to rely on word of mouth as our main means of marketing. This feedback includes, most importantly, our desire to avoid trail congestion with strategic wave assignments that break the middle-of-the-pack runners up into different areas.

Sponsors: This race would not be possible without our sponsors. They include:


NewRo Runners
Fairway Market (Pelham Manor)
Westchester Road Runner (White Plains)
Nathan Sports
Robeks (New Rochelle)
Vita Coco
PR Bar
Houlihan Lawrence
REI (Yonkers)
Twin Lakes Farm
Sound Shore Medical Center
The Turkewitz Law Firm (NYC)
Breaking The Tape Productions (Mamaroneck)


Westchester County Parks
City of New Rochelle
Town of Mamaroneck
Village of Scarsdale


Preview Run — September 23rd

2011 race, photo courtesy of Sport-Memories.

NewRo Runners, the group that organizes the Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon, will host a preview run of the course on September 23rd at 8 am. Please arrive 10-15 minutes early so that we can start promptly.

Runners are invited to join us for this trail run, whether you are signed up for the October 14th race or not, and whether you want to run the whole loop or just a section (see below).

The preview is not a race, but simply a guided running tour of the P2P course, hosted by NewRo Runners, who will do this run as one of our regular weekend group runs.

We will have three paced groups – which we coyly designate as fast, medium and slow, because tall, grande and venti didn’t seem right.  The groupings will generally (and very loosely) be:

  • Fastest – training for 3:20 marathon or faster (or 1:30 ½-marathon)
  • Medium – training for 3:20 – 4:00 marathon (or 1:30 – 2:00  ½-marathon)
  • Slower – training for 4-5:00 hour marathon (All runners should be capable of running a 2:30 half marathon on the street – please, no walkers.)

There are no fees, no services, and you don’t have to be a member of NewRo Runners to join us. Just send me an email so that I have a sense of how big our crowd will be, and let me know which group you think you might run with. You can always change groups on the spot, or mid-run if you don’t like the lime green shorts of the guy in front of you.

You can also run a shorter distance if you choose.

Important!!  We do not meet at the starting line for P2P! We start, instead, at the trailhead for the Leatherstocking Trail. This is at the corner of Pinebrook Boulevard and Hillside Crescent in New Rochelle. (See map) There is parking available on Hillside Crescent.

There is one water stop along the way, at the Saxon Woods Golf Club, which has bathrooms as well, and is at the 6.5-mile mark.

Your options are:

  • 5.6 miles — Out and back on the Leatherstocking trail, which is marked.
  • 9-10 miles — Stay with the group until we head down the Hutchinson River Trail (after passing the water stop) and then bail out when we cross Pinebrook Boulevard.  This is the same street we started on, but two miles away. Then run two miles on Pinebrook back to the start. There are no turns to make after leaving the group.
  • 13+  —The full monty. As an extra bonus, instead of running the Broadview hill at the start of the race, you get to run it at the end when you are tired.

Please let me know if you will be able to join us. You can respond via Twitter (@PaineToPain), on Facebook (Paine to Pain has its own page), the comments here, or via email.

Signed Up Yet? Six Weeks to Go…

Paine to Pain 2011. Photo courtesy of Sport Memories (

I know what you’re wondering: With Paine to Pain now less than six weeks away, has the race committee followed in the footsteps of the New York City Marathon and dumped baggage check?

Not to worry, not only will we have baggage check on October 14th, but we will also have showers at the finish, courtesy of the New Rochelle High School.

Do we treat you right, or what?

Also, Fairway is returning! Because even if you want to stay dirty and sweaty at the end, you’ll still want fresh fruit and food. Smoothies are also back at the finish, thanks to Robeks. And VitaCoco is a new sponsor, providing its increasingly popular coconut water. Don’t fret, we will also have regular H2O, courtesy of returning sponsor Walgreens.

Our objective here, of course, is not only to put on a fun event, but to raise funds for the local trails we use. Municipal parks departments have been cut to ribbons, so net proceeds of the race will be used to maintain and improve them. (The race committee, myself included, continues to be 100% volunteer.)

If you’re worried that all those trail racers might cause congestion on the course – we are expecting a record crowd of perhaps 700 or so – we have you covered. We will once again use chip timing as we send runners off in four waves, set five minutes apart. Our middle-of-the-pack runners will be sprinkled across different waves to help spread things out. We seed you based on your recent 10K and longer results, so the speed demons don’t get stuck behind my plodding feet. Your wave designation will be available at packet pickup.

And new this year: Free kid races! We are working on those logistics now, but hope to have various distances for toddlers, teens and in-betweens.

If you haven’t registered yet for the main event, you can do so online at or by completing the entry form on our website.

And now, for the trail rookies in the crowd, or for those who need a little boost in confidence:

Six Tips to Start Hitting the Trails (

Trail Racing 101 (Runners World)

Blaze Any Trail (7 all-terrain tips for your off-road steps) Men’s Health

The Ups and Downs of Trail Running (Sky Runner)

Next up, some reviews from last year if you have still not registered for this year’s event:

And the 2011 Reviews Come Pouring In… (Paine to Pain Blog)

We are also proud to welcome this year Team in Training (training thousands of athletes as they raise money to combat Leukemia and Lymphoma) as well as Bike MS (whose event this year is October 21st, as they combat multiple sclerosis).

We could always use some extra helping hands, so to volunteer, please contact our Greg Stern.

Finally, we couldn’t do this race without our sponsors. Included this year (in addition to those above): Westchester Road Runner, Houlihan Lawrence, REI, Nathan Sports, PR Bar, Twin Lakes Farm, Breaking the Tape Productions and Sound Shore Medical Center.

You can also follow us online with updates as we get close to the race by joining the Paine To Pain Facebook group, or following us on that Twitter thingie (@PaineToPain).

Registration for 2012 is now open!

Registration for the 5th annual running of the Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon opened yesterday, April 22 ands sign-ups have already started to pore in.

The race starts with a gun shot at 9 AM on Sunday October 14th, at the Thomas Paine Cottage at the corner of North Ave. and Broadview Ave. in New Rochelle. Registration is available on

Funds are being raised for trail maintenance and improvements. Last year we raised $5,000 for this purpose, inclusive of net proceeds from the race and voluntary (tax-deductible) donations.

Who knew the race would grow so fast in popularity? In 2008, 50 local runners showed up on short notice to dedicate our new trail system. We followed with 192 the next year, then 304 (sold out!), and last year 485 (with wave starts and chip timing). In a very short time we’ve become one of the most popular trail races in the northeast. Why? Because it’s a great racetrack, that’s why.

And registration can still be done for $45 if you register early. After June 1st it goes to $50. Want to wait until September 1st? Then the fee is $55. Want to wait until you can check the weather forecast because you’re a bit on the wimpy side? Then you pay the top rate (if space is still available) of $60. But don’t worry, it all goes to a good cause. And your humble organizers still do this on a 100% volunteer basis.

There is a $10 discount for paid Sound Shore Runners and Multisport Club members, for paid NewRo Runners members and for active military or veterans (thank you for your service), good before September 1st.

Westchester County and the local municipalities maintain the beautiful Colonial Greenway trail that hosts Paine to Pain, but due to shortages of both cash and manpower, we are helping out. You can donate on when you register or on our donation page. Donations are tax-deductible and will go into a dedicated trail maintenance account. Yes, we know this is redundant of the third paragraph, but we’re trying to make a point.

To see what improvements have taken place in the past, and what we hope to do in the future, please see: Trail Improvements, Past and Future on the Paine to Pain website. If you prefer to donate by check, please make it payable to Sound Shore Runners Club and mail it to:
Matt Lewis, c/o Colonial Greenway Trail Donations, 70 Center Av, Morristown, NJ 07960

Age group awards will be based on chip timing. Overall 1-2-3 will be based on first across the finish line.

Of course, a race this size doesn’t run itself. With the potential for 750 runners this year (and more waves than last year), we need 100+ volunteers. If you (or a friend, spouse, kid, sibling, neighbor or other fun-loving sort) are interested in helping out, please email Greg Stern.

If you or your company would like to be a race sponsor, please let me know as soon as you can.

Think dirt.

And the 2011 Reviews Come Rolling In

First off, if you haven’t read about the people responsible for this race, then click this link before you go any further.

OK, welcome back. Now, if we read too many more like this, it’ll go to ours heads. But don’t worry, we can handle it…compiled  from multiple sources…

Matt Walsh, 2011 Men’s Champion and course record holder (via Facebook):

It was a great, great race; probably the most fun I’ve had in a long time!

Marty Brown (via blog comment)

Racing on roads, trails, tris, etc., for the better part of the last 40 years…this was one cool race!! Innovative and challenging!!! With out a doubt the volunteers from check-in to throughout the course to finish (not to mention the cheerleaders!!!) were THE BEST I have ever encountered hands down! A proper letter of thanks is forthcoming!!!!

Ben Mandeville (via Facebook):

I ruined my shoes, got stung by a bee, walked for the first time ever in a race and missed a water stop. Epic run, can’t wait for next year

My Name is Phil (via

I run a lot of trail races and have enjoyed many courses, but this is near the top and by far the best course in the New York City area. Great technical sections separate out the field and the flats make for some speedy times. The weather opened up and with the previous rain gave us some great muddy sections and a fabulous feel to the course.

Maggie Windsor (via Facebook):

I just want to say – almost a full week after the race and I am still excited about it. I keep talking about it to people who look at me like I am crazy to run 13 miles, let alone in the woods… as soon as the sign-up is available for 2012, I am there.

Gaetano1027 (via

Excellent 1st time at this race! The trails were well marked and the MUD made it so much better. It should become a permanent part of the race each year! [Ed.  Yeah, I’ve been thinking about that] The overall mood was very uplifting and an awesome finish area and tons of food!

Tom Dente (via Facebook):

…congratulations on creating and organizing such a great race! It just keeps getting better. Thanks for making such a unique event for this area!

Yelling Stop Blog:

First, let me say what a great, well-run race this was. The course was terrific and well-marked, the volunteers were enthusiastic and numerous, and they even had cheerleaders at the start and the finish. …I really can’t think of one thing wrong with the race today, they even arranged for perfect weather.[more]

Annabel Saunders (via blog comment)

Really enjoyed the run. It went like clockwork – great pre-race instructions, polite co-runners, solid direction and much needed encouragement at road crossings, timely water stops, plenty of water crossings and mud, envigorating cheerleading at the finish, ample post-race refreshments, lightening fast results, and perfect weather.
We will be back with friends!

OliverNY (via

Well organized and friendly race. Every year is an improvement: – trail marking was much improved from last year,- tag timing is a big plus,- two waves starts helped congestion.

Jodi Berkowitz (via Facebook):

A great, big thank you to … the countless volunteers who made it happen. It was a fantastic, muddy, exhausting experience!

Jenster26 (via Twitter)

Thank you @PaineToPain for a very muddy race, my first Half Marathon and hands down the funnest race ever!

Jim Aiello (via Facebook):

…thanks for putting on such a great event. It’s been so much fun watching how this race has grown from a local event to one of the class races in the area. I hope you made some funds for trail maintenance because we certainly chewed them up today. Great fun, let’s do it again next October.

TowerPower31 (via

This race is a gem. The race has grown in popularity each year, but with the growth the race has kept its small, local feel. The trail itself is great. A nice balance between single and wider track w/ some technical features (roots, small rocks, catwalks, etc) but not overly punishing. The organization of the race is very well done. You can tell it’s managed by runners for runners. Post-race has great food and amenities to start a solid recovery. And lastly, the race volunteers were terrific. Helpful, encouraging, and abundant. Would not surprise me if this race gets to 1K runners in a few years.

Israel Good (via Facebook):

the Paine to Pain is a Baddd Boy. I loved it

Beth and Carl (via

Amazing event! Most of the trail was muddy conditions due to all the recent rain but made it that much more of a challenge. And challenge it was! Highly recommend the trail half marathon. This was my 1st trail run. I’ m hooked! Many fine people obviously put a lot of time and effort into making the run an awesome experience. Can’t wait to do it again next year!

Jack Serra-Lima (via email):

I ran the Paine to Pain race today and have to say everybody did a really fantastic job and created an incredible event.  I don’t know who was in charge of the weather but that person needs to be congratulated as well.

Thanks for everything and I’ll see you there again next year.

Larry Hrbek (blog comment)

Great race!!! Perfect weather, great volunteers, fantastic course and lots of chances to get dirty….a perfect trail race. I had a super time in this my first Paine to Pain and you can count on me to be back with friends next year. This is everything an honest to god trail race should be. Thank you all.

Scott Sherman (via Facebook):

I echo all the thank yous. The race just gets better and better each year (although this was certainly the muddiest). To Eric and all the other people it takes to makes this happen, you are wonderful.

Kai McBride (via Facebook):

Thank you for putting on such a fantastic race. It was well organized, beautiful and clearly marked. The run was well supported with volunteers and it was great seeing the aid stations. Runners were very polite and I don’t think I was the only one who did a face plant! Muddy? Oh yeah. I’ll be back next year.

Penny (via blog comment)

It was awesome & super muddy this year. Thank you to everyone — volunteers, sponsors, and runners.

Wleexx (via

Great trail race. The rain the night before made the race even more fun. Excellent post race food.

Lee Ann Zarger (via Facebook):

Awesome race. My second but surely not my last.

Peter Carpenter (via blog comment):

Awesome race. Extremely well organized. Everyone involved (staff, volunteers, sponsors) was fantastic. I just want to thank all those who helped create a truly great experience. I will be back next year!

YiShun Lai (via Facebook):

what a great race. second year for me, and just as good. volunteers were incredible, and we continue to be impressed with the amount of trail maintenance you guys do. thank you! hope we can help put some muscle into helping you with maintaining the trail before next year’s race!

Stacey Smith (via Facebook):

Thank you for organizing an amazing run! I am keeping the Cheerleader chants going in my head – “you can do it”; yea ” you can do it”; L.E. T. S. G.O, Let’s Go!. Great fun; great organizers; great volunteers; great friends! See you again.

Christine Dwyer (via email):

This race was AWESOME!  First time for my ½ marathon and very proud, lots of fun & definitely do it again next year – thank you for a fine job!

The Gigante (via

Great race – tough, very muddy and wet this year (2011). Pace yourself in the beginning with the hills and rocks and you will be fine on the back half (if you like mud that is) Be prepared to need new shoes after!

Kevin Barrett (via email):

That’s a GREAT race you’ve put together.  My friend and I ran it together as part of our training for a marathon later in the Fall.  I was particularly curious about a Westchester trail race of that length.  Three quarters of the way through, we’d had so much fun that we decided we’d run it again next year.  I was particularly impressed with the extent and organization of volunteers throughout the course.  Well done.

I will add to this list to the extent any additional comments (that we like) come rolling in…

See also, 2010  reviews and 2009 reviews.

2011 Is In the Books!

I’m exhausted! And I didn’t even run the darn thing.

Congrats to all the finishers.  Unofficial totals are 655 registrants and 481 that actually toed the start line. Some cancelled due to injuries or family  committments (as we always expect will happen), but I think it’s clear that the mud from prior rains was a concern for some.

But based on all the  happy faces I saw in the finish area, they missed a great day racing this grand loop around lower Westchester. We apparently had very few injuries — for which one of our sponsors, Sound Shore Medical Center manning the finish line and aid stations, was no doubt happy — and none that appeared major.

My thanks to a superb group of volunteers that I think numbered over 100, including groups from Iona College out on the trail (cross country / track and field teams), New Rochelle High School cheerleaders at the start and finish, the Remington Flyers (Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle, who ran from the White House to Westchester earlier this year).

On an individual basis, we couldn’t do this event without:

Greg Stern, my right hand man who handled so much in the way of placing volunteers, handling race logistics and working with sponsors;

Matt Lewis, our registrar and treasurer who fielded a thousand “what happens if…” questions from me that he punched into spreadsheets;

Wayne Rubin, who handled water station logistics with a crew, and improvised a mid-race solution when we had trouble with our third water stop;

Nina Steinberg (sporting bib #1) who handled a crew of people to flag the trail, and then proceeded to take home her fourth consecutive age-group tankard;

Jane Turkewitz, who not only puts up with me, but spent a huge amount of time trying to get our shirt graphics onto a small print area, and also worked with sponsors;

Joe Tait who put together a parking plan and getting signs and people out on the streets so that we didn’t have chaos;

Gregg Rubin, who worked the finish line and captained the stuffing of 600 goody bags,that were provided courtesy of Weichert Realty.

And a growing list of sponsors…if you haven’t checked your goody bags yet,  you will see some good swag. Water from Walgreens, PM Pediatrics (off-hours pediatric services) with those indispensable post-race towels and hand sanitizer, so you can put your mitts on the Fairway food (check the goody bag for a $10 off coupon!). Thanks to Robeks for the ice cold smoothies that were sucked down so fast by runners they had to go back for more.

Almstead Tree and Shrub was a very recent sponsor and cleared part of the Leatherstocking for us, just three days ago. REI was great with those  gels at the start. Clifbars in all the bags. Violight sonic toothbrushes went to the first 75 to show up at Westchester Road Runner (a founding sponsor of ours), and if you look around those goody bags you will see a discount coupon from Violight also.

And with winter coming on (but not today!) there are those Grabbber Warmers in your bags that my wife loves to use when skiing.

A full list of our sponsors for 2011:


I wish I could go to sleep at this point, but I have a van to unpack, signs to retrieve, and results to post. Stay tuned for that… And the results are in…




Are Shirts Guaranteed?

Updated for 2023:

One problem that bedevils Race Directors is managing the swag that gets ordered and distributed. Order too much? Big problem with money wasted and my basement fills with shirts. Order too little? Also a big problem, with unhappy runners.

The problem exists because we have to order weeks in August, but don’t know how many will try to sign up after that, and don’t really know what the no-show rate will be since that is largely dependent on the weather.

Our solution: After taking stock of our registrations in mid-August, we order our shirts. We know there will be some no-shows based on injuries and competing plans (which we account for when we set the price of the race).

If you registered by September 1st, you get a shirt when you pick up your bib.

For the later registrants, we hand them out at the finish line to those that didn’t get based on what we have left.  We do our best to have enough but no-show rates are inconsistent so we make no promises.

And if you know a better system for managing this kind of stuff, by all means let us know, and give us a hand with it next year. I will give you double my salary as Race Director.

Paine to Pain Practice Run – Saturday, Sept. 24

With Paine to Pain fast approaching, it’s time to line up a nice practice run as we did last year. This is purely a fun run — think of it as a guided running tour of the 13.1 mile course. It’s open to all, whether you are running the race or not.

This will be eight days before the race, on Saturday, September 24th, at 7:30 am.

But. The run does not start at the P2P start. It starts instead at the trailhead for the Leatherstocking Trail on Pinebrook Blvd. (about .9M mark of the race)

Starting here allows runners that don’t want to do the full monty to do the shorter versions. This includes the popular 10-mile version where you jump off the trail as you cross Pinebrook Blvd a second time (as you head south down the Hutch Trail), and simply run Pinebrook two miles back to the start.

Options include:

  • 5.5-miler – simple out and back on the Leatherstocking Trail
  • 10-miler – Leatherstocking–>Saxon Woods–>Hutch Trail–> Pinebrook
  • 13 miler – The full monty – Leatherstocking–>Saxon Woods–>Hutch Trail–> Twin Lakes –> Nature Study Woods –>New Rochelle

You can view the course map at Yellow flags will mark the course on race day.

MEETING PLACE: Leatherstocking Trailhead on Pinebrook Blvd., New Rochelle (at the intersection of Hillside Crescent and Pinebrook). Park on Crescent if you are driving.

Meeting spot map

TIME NEEDED: Two pace groups. I will lead one (I run an 8 mile road pace, 9 mile trail pace) and Nina Steinberg will lead another that is 1-2 minutes/mile slower.

WATER/TOILET: At Saxon Woods golf club, about 6.5 miles after the start. Please carry a water bottle. There is no support of any kind.

And if you haven’t signed up yet, well, what the hell are you waiting for? We currently have about 500 registrants, and with wave starts, we still have room for you without overburdening the trail.

Register online at or by completing the entry form on our website.

And yes, of course we are still looking for volunteers. Duh. You think these races run by themselves? Please email our Volunteers Poobah, Greg Stern, to help out.

Last thing, if it rains, remember this: Mud is not a problem. It’s a feature.

Please RSVP to let me know if you are coming so I have a rough idea how many to expect. Eric [at] PaineToPain [dot] com.


Fairway Joins Paine to Pain as Food Sponsor

Fairway Markets. Just thinking of their new Pelham store and its 75,000 square feet of gastronomical goodies makes my mouth water. Any place that can stock 600 varieties of cheese is going to know a thing or two about food.

And now they are a sponsor of the Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon, and will be providing food at the finish line. This should be a big step up from the food we had the last three years as we work hard to make this race even better than ever and improve the finish line festivities.

Fairway’s commitment comes fresh on the heels of adding REI as a sponsor just weeks ago, as they opened their brand new store in Yonkers at Ridge Hill.

Our pace of registrations has been steadily increasing as we get closer to October 2nd, race day. So if you haven’t signed up yet, head to our website or and do so.

REI and Fairway join our already impressive roster of sponsors (listed below) that are providing necessary goods and services for the race. Make sure to visit their booths at the finish line or check for their coupons and other goody bag swag!

Sound Shore Runners & Multisport Club
Fairway Market (Pelham Manor)
Westchester Road Runner (White Plains)
Weichert Realtors, House & Home
JanMar Trophies (New Rochelle)
PM Pediatrics
Robeks (New Rochelle)
Clif Bar
Grabber Warmers
Sound Shore Medical Center
The Turkewitz Law Firm (NYC)
Breaking The Tape Productions
Westchester County Parks
City of New Rochelle
Town of Mamaroneck
Village of Scarsdale


We need more volunteers to make the race go as smoothly as it has the past 3 years. Water stops, registration, finish line, parking, hanging signs, marking trails, we got lots to do.

And if the thrill of volunteering isn’t enough by itself, we also offer to any volunteer a $10 discount off of next year’s race.

And, if you can coax someone else to join our merry band of volunteers, we will give you another $5 off next year’s race. (Max discount $15, don’t forget, this is a fundraiser for the trails.)

To volunteer for one of the great half marathon trail races in the northeast U.S., please contact our Volunteers Poobah: Greg Stern.

You can also follow us online with updates as we get close to the race by joining the Paine To Pain Facebook group, or following us on that Twitter thingie (@PaineToPain).

Early August Update…

With Paine to Pain now just two months away, we wanted to share with you some articles on trail running (for those who’ve done little), introduce our newest sponsor, link to reviews we received last year (for those of you who haven’t yet had the guts to sign up) and give you the volunteer contact info if you can’t run but want to help out.

If you haven’t registered yet, you can register online at or by completing the entry form on our website.

First up is the news that REI — one of the great outdoor co-op retailers in the country – has now joined us as a sponsor. They just opened a huge, new store in Yonkers in the brand new Ridge Hill shopping complex off I-87.

Second up, a few articles to help with training for those tackling trails for the first time (or to give confidence that yes, you really can do this race):

Six Tips to Start Hitting the Trails (

Trail Racing 101 (Runners World)

Beginner Trail Running (multiple articles) (Trail Runner Magazine)

Blaze Any Trail (7 all-terrain tips for your off-road steps) Men’s Health

The Ups and Downs of Trail Running (Sky Runner)

Third up, some reviews from last year in case you haven’t yet registered for this year:

And the 2010 Reviews Come Pouring In… (Paine to Pain Blog)

Paine to Pain 2010 Reviews (

Batting cleanup, we always keep our ears open for volunteers, since we know how important they are to runners. Water stops, registration, finish line, parking, hanging signs, marking trails, we got lots to do.

And if the thrill of volunteering isn’t enough by itself, we also offer to any volunteer a $10 discount off of next year’s race.

And, if you can coax someone else to join our merry band of volunteers, we will give you another $5 off next year’s race. (Max discount $15, don’t forget, this is a fundraiser for the trails.)

To volunteer for one of the great half marathon trail races in the northeast U.S., please contact our Volunteers Poobah: Greg Stern.

You can also follow us online with updates as we get close to the race by joining the Paine To Pain Facebook group, or following us on that Twitter thingie (@PaineToPain).