New weekend, new race!
On Sunday — that is yesterday — I woke up at the ungodly hour of five thirty in the morning to manage to be in Central Park, around 102nd St, by seven thirty. The train took one hour and half, and I barely got to the start line on time. Just the time to drop off my backpack and to get into the corral.
I felt sluggish and stiff for the entire trip to Uptown. Sleepy, very. But I thought it was ok, for I wasn’t planning to race, just to have a nice run in the park. Having to race so much before August, I’m quite wary of not over-racing and getting injured. I thought it was a good opportunity to do some quality tempo run, or maybe to train in negative splits.
Oh well. Probably I did, but since I improved my previous time on a 4 miler, I can’t be certain.

Route of the Japan Day Run (4M)

At the gun, I let much faster runners to start their race: there’s no reason for me to start at a pace I know I’ll not be able to keep. When I got bored to wait, I started. I started with what I thought was a good pace, and I was very surprised to see my first split to be a 6’50” per mile. I got a bit worried I was going to blow the race. I kept running forgetting of the those who were going faster and kept an equal effort pace. The second split was pretty much at the same pace as the first, and the third, a bit more hilly the previous two, or more likely I was more tired, at 7’00” per mile, which by the way was my goal pace.
I don’t remember if I felt good while running. Actually that’s not true, I know I felt the heat a lot and that tired me a bit. Now, I try to remember my performance, but truth be said, the heat is what I remember the most.
After the 3 miles mark, I had to decide whether to race the final mile or not. I was right behind a couple of runners, and looked inside me if I had enough energy for a last sprint. Problem was that I wasn’t much familiar with the route, so I didn’t know exactly where and when the finish line would have appeared. I used my watch to gauge the distance run after the last mile-mark, but that is not obviously perfect and for much longer races I have to keep in mind to manage to find time to get familiar with the last half-mile, if not the last mile.
Fortunately the finish line was right behind a curve, so that I could see it a hundred meters before. And then, what the hell! Let’s run. I sprinted for the last few meters, and it felt so good.
I know that was childish. But where’s the fun otherwise?

For the record I finished in 27’20”, so an average pace of 6’50” per mile.

Now it’s training for the marathon in the fall. Unfortunately I didn’t get in the Nike NYC Half-Marathon, whose lottery was drawn on Friday and the result was communicated via email today.

This blog has become a runner’s blog … I gotta write about something else soon!