finally under 30

can you believe, this goal (sub-30 for a 4-miler), has been one I’ve been trying to achieve for about 4 1/2 years??

i can’t even remember how that even came about. My first NYRR race ever was a 4-miler, and I just barely squeaked in under a 9 minute pace. I guess when I really learned how to race, that became part of a set of goals…under 50 for 10K, under 40 for 5 miles, under 30 for 4 miles (NO under 20 for 5k!! not even close to being there…) And I was able to achieve the first 2, the third just seemed to elude me…

First I tried for it in July 2004-went out way too fast, paid for it on the west side hills in mile 3, finished in 30:28 (though considering that was a PR of almost 5 1/2 minutes at the time, couldn’t be too disappointed.) Tried again in November-pacing was much, much better….but just missed by the skin of my teeth, coming in at 30:01!! Ever since then, any attempts hadn’t even come close…til now. Figuring the Race to Deliver last month would be too close to the marathon, I felt today’s Holiday 4-Miler would be a better attempt to try again for sub-30. And so I did…

Back to the present. Boy it was COLD this morning!! I was much, much more bundled up than I was at the 10K-headwrap, gloves, Flyers short-sleeve shirt over a warmer long-sleeve shirt, tights, the whole nine yards. Didn’t care too much about the layering (I actually liked the ensemble 🙂 ), but more concerned about the legs warming up quickly enough in the first mile (though I had done a warmup of about a mile and a half) and if breathing would be an issue, as I remember it was a little during the Colon Cancer 4-miler earlier this year. (Thankfully, I had no bad aftereffects from the Flyers’ holiday party last nite, I was very well behaved and paced myself well!) Kept moving around to try and stay warm and loose until the starting horn sounded…thankfully on time!!

Tried to go out hard from the start…but not too ridiculous that I’d pay for it on Cat Hill or something like that. Legs felt a little tired, don’t know if it was because they were still warming up, still feeling last week’s race or if I spent too much time on my feet yesterday. Nevertheless, the first mile came up in 7:32 and I was pleased, looked to be right on pace. But wait a minute…what’s up with Mr. Garmin? He’s not letting me take mile splits!! Guess I will have to pace on cumulative time, thank god 7:30s are pretty easy math (7:30/15:00/22:30/30:00) Downhill on the west side and onto 72nd…still felt pretty steady. My 2-mile split was 15:04…ok, guess I am nothing if not consistent!! However, I really thought mile 2 should have been faster due to it being downhill, did I take mile 1 too hard? Either way, I will really have to run a quick 2nd half in order to get under 30 minutes, which includes Cat Hill too…

around the mile 3 pointAnd just like last week, Cat Hill really didn’t seem to do a lot of damage. (Or maybe I was *finally* warmed up!!) I picked it up once I hit the top of the hill…partially because I wanted to be out of the cold, but partially because I knew I was a little bit behind. But now Mr. Garmin was acting even crazier…taking an autosplit every second (even though I had that turned off!)-does he not like the cold? Flyer BC was taking pictures around the 3 mile marker…I’m sure the picture he got was me looking at the watch and trying to make some sense of it…or not 😛 Cumulative time at that point was about 22:31…so I made up a few seconds, but boy was this going to be close…

At that point, I was just taking that last mile as hard as I possibly could. I didn’t want a “so close” moment this time…I had that 4 years ago!! Was glad to run past the reservoir and see the home stretch…how long is that again? Do I have enough time? Am I going to make it? Just kept going…but then with maybe about a minute or 2 to go, some guy in front of me dropped his hat and had to pick it up-right in front of me. Needless to say i was a little annoyed…I hope this wasn’t gonna cost me my race!! However, I saw the final turn with my watch still in the low 29s…beautiful!! I rounded the corner and crossed to the announcer calling out a New York Flyer finish. And Mr. Garmin had to misbehave once more…when I hit the stop button, it tried to keep going until I stopped it again!! So I would have to wait for the official results to be posted, but either way, it was still a PR, it was still under 30!!

Afterwards, I was so cold, I was just dying to get my baggage and head home to warm up and have a hot beverage!! I saw Johnny and a couple of other Flyers and we walked towards the baggage area…which, I have to say the baggage logistics were not good for this race, instead of on the transverse, it was over on the East Drive, meaning that we have to cross the path of runners to get to it!! But finally I got my bag, and headed right to Starbucks for a well-deserved gingersnap latte…

…and waited for the NYRR results to come up…and finally they did. 29:43, 7:25 pace, PR of 18 seconds.

Estimated splits…
7:32 (15:04 cumulative)
7:27 (22:31 cumulative)
7:12 (29:43 cumulative)

so looks like a negative split of 15:04/14:39, and my fastest mile ever in Central Park with the 7:12…between last week and this week, guess I do better with getting the west side hills over with early!!

And even though I was happy to have gotten a goal that I have been chasing for over 4 years, it seemed a little anti-climactic compared to last week!! Maybe it was the weather, maybe it was the Garmin issues…or maybe I just need a nap. 😛

And that brings the 2008 racing season to a close, and was a very nice way to end things this year 🙂 Tonite, I celebrate even more…


7 thoughts on “finally under 30

  1. Awesome job breaking the 30 minute barrier! It’s always so much fun to see those round numbered goals fall.

  2. 17 seconds to spare — you crushed it!!!

  3. Look out. PR train rolling through. Awesome, awesome job! Didn’t I tell ya last night this would happen! So cool. What a way to end the year! Congrats!

  4. CONGRATS !!! Great job in the cold !

  5. Impressive! Especially considering the cold and the previous night’s activities 😉 See you next week for the 15k??

  6. congrats on reaching another of your goals! solid end to a great year 🙂

  7. Sorry so behind but CONGRATS on breaking 30 minutes! I was thrilled enough the day I got to 32 for a 4 miler 🙂

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