#trackmeetmilemajorfail

Well if there is anything last nite’s “NYRR Tuesday Night Speed Series” revealed to me-it’s that I am not cut out to race crazy short distances.

So I mentioned before what the dealio was for last nite-mile time trial, on the track at Icahn Stadium.  Sounds like fun, but no one anticipated the crap weather.  I still decided not to bail, as the forecast did say that the weather would clear up around race time (7:30-ish)  Unfortunately, I decided to pass on trying out my brand-spankin’ new racing flats, as I figured a slick track surface would not be ideal to try them out…went with the DS-Trainers instead.  (The Adidas Tempos are resting up for Saturday 🙂 )

So I actually got to leave work “early” (aka 5 pm) for this (and my boss said “is tonite the Corporate Challenge?” when she saw me in my running gear.  a month too early…)…headed up to Urban, then whoever was there divided and conquered…or in other words, split up into small groups so the very nice peeps who volunteered to drive could, well, get us there 🙂  Unfortunately we hit a LOT of traffic….man, who knew so many people would be heading to Randall’s Island…this meet is really drawing a crowd…oh wait, the traffic is actually heading to the Bronx and most likely Yankee Stadium…my bad!!  And the Google Maps on the CrackBerry actually had no clue where we were…said we were in the Bronx when we were actually still in Manhattan 😛  Finally, the traffic cleared up once we got past the toll plaza, and we got to the stadium not too long later (though had to drive around in circles to find out where to park!)

yes, this was what we had to run in.

So luckily, there was a covered part where we could warm up and hang out til the mile race started!!  And there was a possibility it would start earlier than expected…the rains drove the crowds away, meaning 1 combined-gender heat for the other events.  And during this time, I changed the shirt I was gonna wear for the race 3 times…had a singlet on originally, but changed to short-sleeve, then eventually to long-sleeve.  Pin the tag on the shirt and put the bracelet on so we can get our happy hour drink specials…I mean to show that we were not bandits 😛

Before we knew it, was time to split up into heats….I think usually they separate by gender, this time they just did mixed-gender heats, separated by predicted time.  Not surprisingly, I would be in the 2nd heat…so 5 more minutes to warm up…all the good that would end up doing.  The first race finished (with some exciting close races in there!) then our heat lined up.  A coupla words of wisdom from the coaches, then the gun sounded.  All I could do was run hard, but not too hard that I’d choke at the end…I was getting passed, but let them go.  I think I finished the first 400m in 1:40…so around pace for a 6:40 mile?  The 2nd and 3rd laps felt harder, and I was really feeling the head winds…I wasn’t taking splits (I had Mr. Garmin set to take automatic .25 mile splits, but they didn’t look accurate)…but from what I heard being called out as I passed by the start each time, I was definitely slowing down.  (ugh, and to hear the gun for the “bell lap” before I’ve even reached the last turn of my 3rd lap!)  I was able to pick it up for the last lap (estimated 1:42)…I heard the announcers counting down, and knew I had to hustle or I wouldn’t even make it in under 7 minutes!!  Made it by the skin of my teeth-6:56.  Estimated splits:

Lap time Cumulative time
1:40 1:40
1:46 3:26
1:48 5:14
1:42 6:56

Update 5/25/10-to add more insult to injury, the official times are posted and mine was actually 6:57.7.  Ugh.

Was I disappointed?  Hells yeah.  I just felt rain or no rain, it should have been faster.  I mean-I ran a 6:58 final mile in the 4-miler last month, I ran 6:33 in the 5th ave mile in 2004 and supposedly am in better shape now-yet all I could come up with last night was 6:56?  And even said 4-miler predicted a 6:31 mile.  Several peeps (including the coaches) said that the times were most likely 10-25 seconds slower than normal.  But then there are those who say I shouldn’t be using the weather as an excuse for a crap race!!  Devil’s advocate, I hate you.

The head coach did write us all a nice email today saying how proud he was of all who showed up, that it “spoke volumes to your dedication and toughness”…and yes the times were slower but “for the real results, see above.”  Made me feel a little better.  Just a little though.  You all know me, I don’t like to “just show up”, I want to run my best and yesterday just was not it.  What will make me feel better?  Running a nice, easy half-marathon in Brooklyn this Saturday.  Don’t get me wrong, I will be racing it, but it will seem nice and easy compared to racing a mile!!

Changing the topic briefly-one good part about the rain meant I got home in time to watch Dancing With the Stars (while having 1 1/2 glasses of nicely chilled Riesling…meaning watching Evan Lysacek dancing the encore for the week, the one that got him the perfect 30 (and definitely my favorite dance of his this season!)

Yum.

Evan FTW!!! You heard it here first 😛 Next week’s final will be interesting…will it be the golden boy or the ringer Pussycat? 🙂

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9 thoughts on “#trackmeetmilemajorfail

  1. Wow – sounds like absolutely brutal conditions for a “speed race” last night. Congrats on pushing through those elements and finishing with a strong final 1/4.

    Ironically I’m running my first timed mile race ever this Saturday and your post today did not soothe my nerves one bit! I feel like I’m just completely out of my element as a marathoner pretending to be a sprinter.

    Wish me luck! Going to be interesting that is for sure.

    Best from Austin, J

    • Sorry about that!! I didn’t mean to make you more nervous 🙂 If Im reading correctly, your mile race is a road mile as opposed to a track mile, correct? So you’re still road racing in a way 🙂 Good luck-I’m sure you are gonna do great!!

      • Correct – we are “road racing” so at least I will be in my element a bit. I looked at the course again last night and it is definitely downhill for close to 1200 meters – should make for a fast time.

        I just knew what my “fast time” was! Will definitely check in with you after the race. Have a great weekend!

  2. Man,talk about “if a picture could paint a thosand words”…..and I’m not talking about Evan either!!!
    Better luck Saturday,hopefully the conditions will be much more user friendly,sorry I could be there to cheer you on,my ride owes me big time for this one!!

  3. Ha! What makes this post so great is that I absolutely believe that I wrote it! Our coach has been on us and me about doing Icahn too. I will in the next couple of weeks, but I know my experience will be the same as yours … rain or shine. No track background and inexperienced at pacing. For that reason I will likely do an 800m only.

    Your coach is totally on the money about your dedication and toughness to get out on Tuesday. That weather was crap! Screw the time, you did it and can build from it. Nice job! See you out there soon. 🙂

    • didn’t ya know? My ghostwriter’s name is A Marathoner 😛 Thanks. Feeling better about it now, but no desire to try any more track races any time soon. Crazy that I would feel in my “comfort zone” at the half-marathon distance…

  4. It takes getting used to racing on the track. My first track race after many many years, a 1500 at Icahn, was a disaster of disappointed expectations. But it was still fun and I keep coming back.

    In my experience, they do the heats by time, not by gender. And I was surprised seeing JT’s post because when I’ve done it the 1500 has always been the first event. And, as with her, it was a bummer that the heat was so big. But I guess everyone just wanted to get out of town.

    Garmins don’t work on the track. Mine reads “1 mile” with about 80 meters to go.

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