race report: Snowflake 4 mile

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by Donovan Rebbech, Feb 28, 2004.

  1. Date: 28 Feb 04
    Race: Snowflake 4 mile, central park NY
    Temp: 38, sunny, low humidity, beaaaauuuutiful weather!
    Time: 23:13 5:56/5:48/5:50/5:40 splits -14 AG% 73.0 (!!!)

    Coming off the track meet where I went crazy and ran three races in a night, I had moderately saw
    legs coming into the race. But I was happy with my track times (closing in on that 10:07 3k I ran in
    college!) so I figured I had a chance at a good time. Ran a 24:16 in a 4 mile 2 months ago on the
    same course. I wanted to beat 24:00 today.

    This time, I wanted to do something different strategy-wise. Previously I'd gone out very carefully,
    and came home hard. But the last race, I did 2 miles in 12:30. I realised that repeating this would
    destroy my chances at a sub 24. So instead, I resolved to play off my team-mates for pacing. Chatted
    with one team-mate, Matt, and asked what he was shooting for. Close to 22. I though "OK, I'll let
    this guy go". But I paid close attention to other teammates who were similar in ability to me (and
    also improving).

    Chief weapons for this race were more milage (up to about 50 in past 6 weeks) and the Tiger Paw
    flats. I'm only 4 weeks into interval training, so my speed prep was better than nothing, but not
    that great.

    The start was moderately chaotic as usual, with people who'd just lined up at the wrong place. Since
    they did the mens/womens separately (mens first then womens 1hr later), it was at least moderately
    less congested. After a crazy 300m or so, it cleared up a bit -- I'd lined up close to the front, so
    I was spared the worst of it. Kept an eye on teammates Dave and Dan. Both of these guys were
    slightly better than me on previous times, but not that far ahead. Matt surged ahead and I let him
    go. Put the stopwatch on Dave after about .5 miles and I was about 3s behind. Good enough. The first
    mile was the West Drive "roller coaster", wanted to avoid racing in front of either Dave or Dan. So
    I stayed behind Dave who seemed to be running a very steady pace. The uphill mile 1 came in 5:56.
    Good enough. The second mile was largely downhill. Used the downhills to make up a few places, and
    overtook Dave who was sounding very in-control and still running well. Focused on Dan who was still
    a few seconds up. Mile 2 in 5:48 -- fast but not surprising because of the downhill. At this stage,
    I realised I'd really have to screw up to miss a sub 24.

    Mile 3 has the dreaded "Cat Hill" -- a steep incline that is only about 400m long but tends to be
    sufficient to make that mile much slower. Usually, I make a big "move" at mile 3, but I was content
    to just hang on to Dan who remained maybe 6 seconds in front. Already pushing the pace, so I
    concentrated, switched breathing into 2-2 mode and kept my form steady.

    Mile 3 5:50. What a relief, that was pretty fast. But there was still a mile to go. Downhill, but I
    could feel "the bear" closing in. Of course I had 24:00 in a bad at this stage, but I wasn't going
    to just wimp out and jog the last mile. So with my body screaming "NOOOOOO!!!!!!!" I hung on as best
    I could, kept pushing and kept turning over. Passed some runners who were slowing, but most of them
    were pretty steady. Passed a tiring Matt halfway through the last mile. Incoherently babbled some
    words of encouragement between gasps. My breathing was 2-1 at this stage. Just hang on, and keep
    moving those legs, I told myself. For whatever reason, the last mile was 5:40, fastest of the race
    -- didn't feel that I was surging though, just hanging on.

    Maybe my instinct for feeling the finish-line "calling" me is sharpening with race experience. I
    always view the tendency to instinctively surge as the finish line approaches as a very positive
    development.

    After the race, I watched the womens, and took several photos for my team and cheered them on. One
    thing I learned is that it's not just about running fast times -- being a good spectator is as
    important as being a good athlete.

    What else ? I like the tiger paws a little more each time I run in them.

    Cheers,
    --
    Donovan Rebbechi http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
     
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  2. Ed prochak

    Ed prochak Guest

    Donovan Rebbechi <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Date: 28 Feb 04 Race: Snowflake 4 mile, central park NY Temp: 38, sunny, low humidity,
    > beaaaauuuutiful weather! Time: 23:13 5:56/5:48/5:50/5:40 splits -14 AG% 73.0 (!!!)
    >
    > Coming off the track meet where I went crazy and ran three races in a night, I had moderately saw
    > legs coming into the race. But I was happy with my track times (closing in on that 10:07 3k I ran
    > in college!) so I figured I had a chance at a good time. Ran a 24:16 in a 4 mile 2 months ago on
    > the same course. I wanted to beat 24:00 today.
    >
    > This time, I wanted to do something different strategy-wise. Previously I'd gone out very
    > carefully, and came home hard. But the last race, I did 2 miles in 12:30. I realised that
    > repeating this would destroy my chances at a sub 24. So instead, I resolved to play off my team-
    > mates for pacing. Chatted with one
    []
    > Maybe my instinct for feeling the finish-line "calling" me is sharpening with race experience. I
    > always view the tendency to instinctively surge as the finish line approaches as a very positive
    > development.
    >
    > After the race, I watched the womens, and took several photos for my team and cheered them on. One
    > thing I learned is that it's not just about running fast times -- being a good spectator is as
    > important as being a good athlete.
    >
    > What else ? I like the tiger paws a little more each time I run in them.
    >
    > Cheers,

    Congratulations on the PR!

    Clearly a well planned and, more importantly, well executed race. Thanks for the report and the
    insights that come with it.

    One of my "weaknesses" is a strong finish. I say this with the view that if I had put more into
    earlier stages of races, I wouldn't have the energy for the final burst. But actually most of
    my PR's have finished like yours in that I felt I pushed it hard the whole way. That seems to
    be a key idea.

    Thanks for sharing the report. ed
     
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