A nice cold front moved in today, dropping temperatures by 15-20 degrees. Jay and I showed up to the track around 5:30pm, ready to throw down another mile. We were fortunate to recruit a friend and awesome runner, Eddie, to help pace us today. Eddie is a sub-5 miler, has qualified for the Olympic Marathon Trials in 1996, and has many other runner accomplishments. Needless to say, I'm quite happy to have a guy of his ability to pace me. The goal for today was to try to get down to the 5:10-5:15 mark, trying to split around 78 second laps. Eddie would go out in 78 and try to hold pace for all 4 laps. My goal was to stay a stride behind Eddie the entire way.
Around 5pm we started to get some ran and the wind was picking up to 10-15mph. We would have a headwind on the homestretch, with the wind aiding us on the backstretch. After a 2 mile warm-up and a few stride-outs it was go time.
I immediately fell in behind Eddie after the start, with Jay right behind me. It felt like Eddie was sprinting the first 200m, but I made sure to stick right behind him. We came through the first lap in 78 sec. Perfect. Lap 2, 77 seconds. Once again, perfect. I was starting to feel the pace a bit and I wasn't sure how much longer I could hold on but i was determined to stick with Eddie for at least a 3rd lap. I tried to stay relaxed on the backstretch, the wind aiding my pace. When we hit the homestretch turn on the third lap I thought I was going to drop off the pace but I dug in and stayed just behind Eddie. 3rd lap, 78. We were on pace to run under 5:15. At this point I was struggling but I was determined to stay with Eddie through the backstretch. I was half expecting Jay to pass me on the backstretch but he never did. I pushed hard the last 150m, finishing the last lap in 76 seconds for a final time of 5:09!! Jay ended up around 5:20. He let a small gap form on the first lap because he thought the pace as a little too quick and he was never able to make up the distance.
I was stocked! It was a great time, especially since it's still mid July, I hadn't done as much speed work as I'd have liked, and the conditions weren't great. I thanked Eddie for pacing me and he offered to pace the next time we were planning a time trial.
Final splits: 78, 77, 78, 76. Total Time: 5:09
Another few weeks ahead of speed work and I'll do another time trial sometime in August. Good night, and good luck... running that is!