Ready to Race? Running a Road Mile

Sunday, I am going to run a mile. I suppose, since I went for an easy run this morning, I also ran a mile — five of them — but Sunday I will run a mile FAST.

I’ve done the San Rafael Downtown Mile (now called the Miracle Mile) a couple times, maybe last year, maybe the year before it. My PR is 5:32 (which is my mile PR period), so obviously I’d like break 5:30. But that’s not going to happen.

Here’s the only photo of me racing it previously:

Do you see me at the very very back of that line of people? Looking squat and not very fast.
Do you see me at the very very back of that line of people? Looking squat and not very fast.

The race is typically filled with Olympic qualifiers and elites, etc. The women’s course record is like 4:49. And, it’s not a particularly fast course. You blast through the first two turns and then for a little under half-a-mile you run up 60 feet of elevation — just enough that it burns and hurts and slows as you hit the peak. Then, you turn around and go part of the way back down.

And, then you try to not throw up on anyone.

For four weeks after the Dipsea, I didn’t run. I did one 30′ easy jog with some friends one weekend, but that was it. Since starting up again in the last week-and-a-half, I’ve done three 30′-50′ slow, slow runs. And, Wednesday, I did one tempo workout with some efforts at half-marathon(ish) pace to remember that I do know how to theoretically.

So, theoretically, I should be able to get through this mile on Sunday. My plan is my standard plan: go out hard with the fast girls and hang on for as long as possible.

Have you run a road mile? Any ideas how much it’s going to hurt?

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