Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Ithaca Festival Mile

I have never raced a mile.  I have run a mile for time in middle school P.E. many years ago and possibly high school...(can't really remember)...and I didn't run track in high school or college.  I have, however, run mile repeats for marathon training but that was after a few miles for warm-up and during relatively high mileage weeks.  Some people laughed when I told them I was running knowing that is a little out of my element but many were helpful giving valuable advice.

Last year Iroquois Trails 100/50 Ultras' (soon to be changed to Virgil's Crest Ultras next year) race director Ian Golden teamed up with some others to formulate a mile race that takes place right in downtown Ithaca.  We would be starting at the high school on Cayuga St. and be running straight towards the commons on a pretty flat section of road (except one little bridge maybe five to ten feet of climb). 

Last year I was just coming off a demanding race at Highland's Sky 40-mile in West Virginia so I didn't partake but this year I decided to jump in and see what I could do.  I really hadn't  done much speed work prior to the race although I was feeling much better in terms of my running health and was excited to be in a race atmosphere even though it would be short lived in a race of this length.  I calculated that I could finish right around the five minute mark.  The cool thing about this race is that it kicks off the Ithaca Festival Parade that is notorious for floats, people walking, and doing all kinds of off the wall things.  It is definitely a sight to see!  Anyway, we had a built-in crowd almost the entire mile with people getting ready for the parade and this sort of thing really helped in a race that hurts like the mile.  You're basically sprinting the whole way!

I went out with the elite pack but had no intention of competing for even the top five positions.  I mean even if I was completely healthy and trained specifically for the mile I don't think I could hang with these guys.  I settled in a nice clip for the first couple of minutes knowing that it was only going to get tougher but I didn't want to burn out too quickly.  We did have a bit of a headwind and it was a little humid that could have accounted for maybe a second or two but all in all a pretty fast course.  I ran shoulder to shoulder almost the entire way with fellow club member Adam Engst but was able to outkick him at the end.

I came into the finish line with a time of 5:04 good for 9th place.  Another thing that I would mention for next year is that it would have been helpful to have quarter mile splits because I felt like I could have started my kick earlier if I would have known where I was on the course.  I know I have a sub five minute mile in me but oh well I still had so much fun taking part in this event.

There are some great photos here from BEFORE, RACE START, DURING, and AFTER the race...Thanks Steve Gallow...the photos look great and are very artistic.

The men's results are HERE
The female results are HERE
We had fun mingling afterwards and like I said before the parade was an absolute trip consisting of some of the most eccentric people  that this great little city of Ithaca has to offer!

Thanks again Ian, Liz, Alan, Joe and Chris, Nancy and all that helped out!  I have heard so many positive things about the race and I can see this becoming a tradition here in Ithaca.

As far as my status goes I am so happy to be running some substantial miles on the trails.  I have been doing some barefoot speed workouts on a nice manicured soccer field and I feel that it is really helping with my form, speed, and strength.  We'll see how I feel with some hilly back to back long runs thrown into the mix.  

I think I'll head down to the Tortoise and Hare 6.7 mile trail race at Buttermilk Falls on Saturday June 6th.  Hope to see some of you there!


Hannah said...

Your link to the Ithaca Festival Mile 2009 results is broken. How can I see a copy?

Viagra Online said...

When I was a little a and silly boy... I went to the Festival and the people there were looking me like a little rabbit, I can remember anything about it, so actually, I have a trauma or something like that in my mind about this events.