Sunday, February 6, 2011

NYRR Gridiron Classic 4 Miler Race Report.....and other stories of pain.

I wrapped up another good sized week of training with a 14 mile run, including the NYRR Gridiron Classic 4 Miler in Central Park this morning.

What a great morning! 41 degrees, bright and sunny! WOo hoo!! Wish I was out on the bike.

So I have been going pretty hardcored for 5 weeks straight now. I am starting to feel some accumulated fatigue so after a 4 mile warmup, I had NO IDEA how this 4 mile race was going to go. I really didn't want to PR the distance but I did want to get some speedy miles in. So I settled on a holding a 7:30 pace. Nothing too crazy since I still had to run another 6 miles after the race was over.

So off we went....

Mile 1: 7:11
Mile 2: 6:59
Mile 3: 7:09
Mile 4: 6:48
28:08 / 7:02 pace

Uuuuuuuuummmm, this went a BIT faster than I had expected. Oops! I guess my legs were feeling pretty fast? hhahahahaahahaha!

Basically I hit mile 1, saw the 7:11 split, and slowed down. @ Mile 2 I saw the 6:59 split, said to myself, "WTF?!?!?" and decided to just hold it since I was already halfway done. New PR for the 4 mile distance. Next time I do this distance I am going sub 7 min mile avg for the first time!

Then I did a 6 mile cool down to round out the morning. 14 miles? Not too bad when you break it up into three different runs.

So now for some Heart Rate number analyzing:
The last time I did a stand alone running race was a 10K last December 5, so 8 weeks ago exactly.
I held a 7:14 average pace and my heart rate averaged 179 BPM.

Today, even though it was a shorter distance, I held a 7:02 average pace, but my heart rate averaged 169 BPM.

12 second faster pace, but 10 BPM lower? Yes, I WILL take that!!!! That right there is called IMPROVEMENT!

Looking back at my logs, I have done little speed work, maybe 1X a week and even that wasn't anything crazy. All I have done since then is a TON of volume. I am a big believer in speed work (its fun!) but I am also a big believer that simply running more is another key to speed.

If only this was the case in the pool........sigh.......

OH! OH! If you wanna get a kick out of how I did this race two years ago. READ HERE. I remember doing this race for the first time and finishing with an 8:04 pace. I think that was the first time I dropped a sub 8-min mile (mile 2). I think I remember I was totally gassed @ the end! haha!

Hope you had a great weekend! Spring is not too far off! The morning's are getting lighter earlier already and its not getting as dark as early. Hang in there!


  1. Woohoo! Awesome job with the 4 miler! And, that is a great HR improvement! Your training is definitely paying off!

    Yes, spring is getting closer, but I wish it would come sooner! I'm itching to get outside for a ride big time!

  2. Great run! You are getting faster! The training is paying off!

  3. Um...awesome. Like, seriously, I saw the splits (because I'm a race time psycho and looked there first) before reading it was part of a training run and was already impressed. Congrats buddy!

    I'm reading World Without End by Ken Follett. Super good. Over 1,000 pages of literary crack.

  4. Good job. I ran that race today too. The second mile of that course is always the fastest for me. Did you go on the Steelers or Packers side?

    I did see some folks wipe out on the ice beforehand. That was interesting.

  5. Isn't it great to PR when you aren't expecting it? Nice job dude! You got me thinking about a 10K I did two October's ago (very similar to your race two years ago) and I held like a 7:45 pace and thought I was flying. Now I have races where I am holding sub-6min paces? Wonder where we will be in 2 more years? Can we even go faster yet? I thinks so ....

  6. what a difference a year makes!
    you are totally on it with your run training and HR training
    good work nice splits !!!


  7. check that
    technically its
    what a difference two months make
    and also
    what a differenbce two years make

  8. Nice work on the race and long run! I have had a really hard time doing a warm up run and post race run in the past. I've tried it with a 5k in the middle and I always end up skipping the final run.

  9. You know this... but I will type it anyways.

    With the HR training, takes about 4-6 weeks for improvement to rear its ugly head. (changes per person too).

    After you start getting improvement you will idle out at some point. When you notice that you are idling out and not getting improved speed at your desired HR, that is when you need to regularly incorporate speed work into your workouts, 2 times a week for a few weeks. Then go back to your standard HR training and keep rotating.

    Its amazing but it works. Patience. Huge gains will keep coming from this.

  10. Wow, I didnt know ice would make you run faster, I guess that makes sense

    In all seriousiness, congrats

  11. HA! I ran past a bunch of runner doing this race (I was running the opposite direction). Maybe I passed you.

    Great PR time, congrats!! I have my HR test tomorrow, gulp. going to see if it is working, although I might suffer from the sophomore effect as my coach calls it. Anxious about it because you are hoping to see improvements and the stress raises your HR unnaturally. will see.

  12. congrats!!! i just found your blog - i ran the 4miler yesterday too!

  13. Awesome job on the 4 miler. You are correct that the best part is the HR improvement. That is just awesome. Congrats on that.

    I just read your thoughts on fats and they are perfect. Nothing like those items to get good fats in and have them be good for you too!

  14. hey! couldn't find your e-mail address but yes i'm all signed up for the women's half in april.... was thinking about the 15K but it is the weekend before the half. definitely planning to do the scotland 10k, nyrr 4m, healthy kidney 10k for april and may. can not wait. :)


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