In running and in charity, the challenge starts long before you toe the start,
and the work doesn't end when you cross the finish.

02 December 2009

The 7:00 Barrier

A year and a half ago I ran my first NYRR race. It was four miles and I ran it in 31:35, or a 7:53/mi pace. Since then I've gradually ratcheted down my pace for the shorter races, following up with another 4mi @ 7:42, then a 10k @ 7:22, and finally a few months ago my last 4mi @ 7:01. This weekend I'm running a 10k, my last race of the year, and my goal is to finally break the 7:00 barrier.

Seven minutes not only serves as a nice, round psychological barrier, but it also opens up a whole world of possibilities for my racing going forward.  First of all, since NYRR bases your starting corral placement off of your fastest average mile split, the faster I can run these shorter races, the closer I get to the starting line.  This means less dodging of slower people (I get to be dodged instead), and potentially even a 3-digit race number (the ultimate Central Park status symbol).

Second of all, seven minutes is the race pace to which I need to start acclimating myself over longer and longer distances. At that pace a half marathon would take about 1:32, just a few minutes short of my longer-term goal.  And a full marathon would take 3:03, a few minutes faster than a Boston qualifier. So being comfortable at and around 7:00 is key.

And finally, sub-seven is just badass. 

All that being said, this would be a huge improvement on my earlier performances, and I haven't done any speedwork lately. But I'm hoping to piggyback off of my marathon fitness, hit the starting line fast, and just hold on for dear life...

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- Jake


  1. Hey good luck with that! I ran the 4 miler before Thanksgiving and, to my surprise, I was placed in the first corral. I ended up a super race, with a new pace of..6:47. But I will say that first corral is all business. Much different feel in that group. And I too was worried about being the speedbump for everyone else to run around, but it wasn't so bad.
    Good luck this weekend.

  2. 7 minutes/mile translates to sustained speeds of 8.57 mph. Not bad, placing you in between a mouse and a chicken:


  3. Haha, according to your chart it also puts me at about 1/3 the speed of a "Human".

    Something to aspire to...


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