THE skyscraper-lined streets of bustling New York await Warrnambool runner Alison Wilson.
Wilson is in final preparations ahead of her debut run in the famous New York City Marathon on November 4.
The Warrnambool Athletics Club (WAC) member will be one of more than 40,000 people attempting the 42.2-kilometre race from Staten Island to Central Park.
Wilson, 35, has a personal best time of three hours, 15 minutes, achieved in the 2011 Melbourne Marathon.
But the massive field set for New York means she has not put pressure on herself ahead of the biggest running experience of her career.
“I don’t know what to expect but it’s going to be pretty full-on,” she said.
“I don’t know what kind of time I can do. I think I’m going over for the experience.
“In Melbourne, you get a few people watching but over there they get millions — the whole city embraces it.”
Wilson will travel to the United States with her husband Jarrod.
The couple will spend a week in Los Angeles and San Francisco before heading to New York for the marathon, and will stay in the country for another three weeks.
“I want to enjoy it. I don’t want to stress myself,” Wilson said.
“After Melbourne last year I couldn’t walk for three or four days. I don’t want to be like that while I’m over there.”
The New York City Marathon started in 1970 with just 127 competitors running loops around Central Park.
It has grown into one of the most iconic events in world sport and the current course takes in all five New York City boroughs.
The 2011 event had a world record 46,795 finishers — 29,867 men and 16,928 women, including politicians and sports people.
“I’ve You Tubed the course. You can do a flyaround and I’ve done that,” Wilson said.
“I feel like I know what I’m going to be in for. But that feeling of excitement and hype, you can’t capture that on video.”
Wilson, a mother-of-three who started running seriously in 2010, said she enjoyed her almost-daily training regime. “It’s not a chore”.
She said she was thankful for the support of WAC president John Keats, and her husband, who has joined her on a bike during training sessions.
“I never thought I’d be someone who would run that far,” she said.
“When I lived in Perth there was a girl who I worked with who ran 20 kilometres to work. I thought she was insane, crazy.
“I couldn’t understand it, so when people look at me as strange, I know where they’re coming from.”