Friendly Neighborhood Track Meet – Why I Hate The Mile

Last night we went to an open track meet hosted by the Holy Trinity track team and The Running Zone. What a blast, and a great idea for a fundraiser for a track program or running club. There were all sorts of ages and abilities there, and lots of events.

 

The cool thing is that all the little kids run too. They have heats at the shorter distances for them (it’s so cool to see a 7 year old PR the 800 by 1 second). They also get to high jump, long jump, put, and everything else. Our kids had a blast just running around the track and drinking Gatorade, aka “shiny yellow”.

Now for the nitty-gritty…

My original plan was to only run the 5000 meters, but I was the only one who registered for it, so it got cut. I ended up running the 1600 and 800 and scratching the 3200 because it was the last event and my quads felt like car batteries at that point–very heavy and full of acid.

The 1600 sucks. I have no idea how to judge my pace for that distance because, you know, when do you ever run that fast when you’re training for distance running? Sure, you may do some 1 mile repeats, but those are run knowing that you have more of them to run and that you need to be able to run that pace multiple times (hence the word “repeat”). The 1600 is a one-shot distance–how fast can you get it done. I knew ~6:00 is the best I’ve ever run it, but I wasn’t expecting to be able to run that. Unfortunately, I didn’t really know where I’d be.

6:15? 6:20? 6:30?

Imagine what went through my head when I finished my first painful lap at 1:27.

Great. I’m hurting really bad and I’m running way too fast.

I quickly came to two conclusions:

  1. I’m about to slow down whether I want to or not.
  2. The pain isn’t going anywhere.

I ended up at 6:28. Ugh…way off anything close to negative splits, and going out fast probably cost me at least 5-7 seconds. I just didn’t know how to pace that first lap, and I’d probably make the exact same mistake if I ran it again tomorrow. I’m not sure how many of these I’d have to run to get it right, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want to run that many of them. 🙂

The 800 was a little better. Still DFL’d my heat it by one second at 2:59, but at least I got a 4 second negative split and had some kick at the finish.

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