4:30 or Bust: A Quest for Marathon Mediocrity

PPTC 5 Mile Turkey Trot Race Report

with 2 comments

Thursday was the 5 mile Turkey Trot in Prospect Park.  I finished in 42:17, and had a great time.

Typically, my family travels for Thanksgiving.  But this year, we had an early holiday last weekend, and so we remained behind in NY.  I decided to take advantage and run in the turkey trot race, which would be my first ever!  With so many half marathons and marathons on my race calendar, I was really looking forward to this short distance race, to try and air things out a bit.  With a planned long run on the weekend, the Thursday morning race fit perfectly, especially considering Thursday is the same day of the week I’ve been speed working lately.

My goal for the race was 42:30, which is 8:30 per mile pace.  It would not quite be a PR for me, (my PR is 41:24) but would still represent a very fast effort.  I arrived at that goal because I have been doing speed work over the last month, which is making me faster, and also because I ran a quick tempo run recently at under 9 pace.  I figured that in race conditions I should be able to get down to 8:30 pace.

The day dawned beautiful, in terms of running conditions.  It was 40 degrees, with no wind.  I wasn’t sure how to dress properly, and wore a base layer and heavy shirt on top, and running tights on the bottom.  When I got out to the park, I realized I had overdressed, and put on the spare lightweight shirt I brought with me just in case, in place of my original 2 layers.  Also skipped the gloves and ear coverings.  Additionally, I perfectly executed the pre race activities, which included registration, changing of my clothes, 2 trips to the bathroom, and some meet-up time with Michelle.

As the race started, I knew I wanted 8:30 pace, but didn’t really have a strategy.  I knew the course was first across Center Drive, which would be uphill, then on the main loop we’d hit part of the long downhill to the bottom of the park, and then a full loop of the park.  I knew I needed to save just enough for the big hill, which would come in the 3rd mile.  I set out at a good hard, but manageable, pace, and happy to see that I could maintain 8:35-8:40.  I knew I had a bunch in the tank for a fast last mile, and so long as I kept myself with 20-30 seconds of 8:30 pace, I’d make my goal.

In execution, the race was perfect.  Very consistent first 4 miles, and then was able to hammer it home.  My splits were 8:35, 8:42, 8:32, 8:35, 7:52.  My finishing time was 42:17, beating my goal by 13 seconds!  Very pleased I was able to get it down to around 8:30 in race conditions.  My ultimate goal is even faster, perhaps down to 8 pace in short races, but with the winter to train, those are springtime goals.  Next weekend is the Joe K 10k in Central Park, where my goal will again be 8:30 pace.


Written by SCL

November 28, 2010 at 5:50 pm

Posted in Race Report

2 Responses

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  1. Great race, perfectly executed from start to finish.

    It was nice to get to spend some time with you before and after the race.

    Well done Scott!!!! Joe K should be a great race for you as well.


    November 28, 2010 at 6:13 pm

  2. Way to go! Great job!


    November 28, 2010 at 6:51 pm

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