It has been a long goal of mine to break 30 minutes in 4 miles. I was a bit unsure about today. I've had tired legs. My 17 miler on Sunday was a sludgefest. Yesterday's recovery run, not much better.
The race started at 8am. I got to the park about a half hour early and warmed up for a few miles. With shorter races, I need a long warm up. There just isn't much distance to make up a mistake in 4 miles so I wanna be ready to go from the gun. I was hoping to start with Hilary and just hang on, though she was looking to go sub 29 (and did 28:27 a whopping 72.2% age grade!) I knew with in the first half mile that wasn't going to happen. I was already throwing elbows.
Mile 1 has Cat Hill about half way through it. I want to run it smart, but not too easy that I fall off my overall pace goal. 7:22 good, maybe a bit fast but I feel good.
Mile 2 brings us gradually back down hill. Why is it STILL so crowded? Once we turn into the 102nd st transverse, I know I'll see the mile 2 marker. I also know at some point I'll see Loren and Ms. Bea. Ms. Bea is working up her milage. 7:13. Ok, still pretty fast but I'm banking a bit of time cause mile 3 brings ALL the hills. I just want to keep the same effort through them. Nice and steady. There hasn't been any water yet which is odd. I can go with out, but I'd rather have.
There is it, right before the mile 3 marker. I dont even slow down as I grab a cup and take a quick gulp. 7:31. Not bad for the hills.
Now I know I just have a mile to go and it's a fairly fast mile. It's mostly down hill then at the end, there's a left turn into the 72nd st transverse and a little rise to the finish. The same finish as the 15k. I let the hills take me. When I make the turn, I push, but really there isn't much there. I can usually find a kick but not today, I think my whole last mile was a kick. 7:02. I didn't know I was going that fast! Wow if would have been cool to run that last mile in sub 7!
I finished in 29:09, shattering my previous PR of 31:20!
I am totally pooped and totally thrilled!
Stats for the day:
679 outa 5739
66th woman outa 2818
8th in AG outa 436
67.5% age grade
Oh and the icing on the cake, the Front Runners men AND women both placed 3rd in the team events.
I have one more week of heavy training for the NJ marathon then I go into the taper. I'm looking forward to letting my legs recover before the big dance.