Tina Cervasio ran the New York City Marathon in 2008 and ’09 and had no immediate plans for another - until the aftermath of the bombings at the Boston Marathon in April.
They came 4:09 into the race, right around when some of her friends were finishing, and just ahead of her pace.
“I was watching that thinking, ‘Gosh, I could have been rolling into Boylston [Street] around that time,’’’ the MSG reporter said.
Her response was to enter Sunday’s New York race and assemble a fundraising team, as she did her previous two times, with proceeds going to the Garden of Dreams Foundation.
The idea, she said, was “looking fear and terror in the face’’ and refusing to back down. Her team, which includes fellow sportscaster Anita Marks, requires participants to raise a minimum of $3,000.
Cervasio’s goal is $4,026.20, a nod to the marathon’s 26.2-mile distance, which she hopes to cover faster than the 4:18 it took her in 2009.
She can’t take too long, because she will have about two hours between finishing the race and reporting for work covering the Timberwolves-Knicks game at the Garden.
Cervasio, 38, hopes to pull that off with help from her husband and parents, from the use of a hotel room near the Garden where she can freshen up, from the Knicks’ trainers and even from a sponsor, 2XU, providing compression calf stockings to help her recover.
Recently, she got a pep talk from Mike Woodson urging her to relax. “He was coaching me,’’ she said. “It was really humbling and exhilarating at the same time.’’