The Trolley Run, the nation's largest and fastest 4-Mile, was in jeopardy of being cancelled because of possible lightning and thunderstorms. Luckily, the lightning flashes held off and the race went on without any delays. The Trolley Run 4M was only my 3rd 4-Mile race I've ever ran (4M is not a common race distance). I ran my first 4-mile race back in 2005, and my latest one only 2 1/2 months ago at the KC Love2Run (21:26) - a couple's run where Lisa and I won 1st place in the non-married couples category (we were not yet married) and 2nd overall team. The goal coming into the race was to run a PR and hopefully go sub-21, 5:15 pace. With a fast course, lots of fast runners and my legs feeling mostly recovered from Boston, I knew I had a good chance of achieving my goal.
I started out very aggressive when the gun went off. My leg turnover and pace in the 1st mile felt very fast, but nothing too outrageous. I crossed the 1-Mile marker in 5:08 and caught up to the leading female runner and Kenyan athlete, Jane Kibii; she won this race the last four years. In the 2nd mile, I pulled slightly ahead of her by about 10 meters. I never saw the Mile 2 marker, so I was not able to get my split. Approaching 3 miles I started to feel my lungs and the lack of speed workouts. It was obvious my pace slowed because I hit 3 miles in 15:40 (10:32 for miles 2 and 3). Jane caught up to me in the 3rd mile and pulled ahead by a few meters. At that point I was hurting cardio wise, but kept telling myself to maintain the pace as I only had a few more minutes of running left. When I turned left onto Ward Parkway I saw the clock read 20:30 and counting. The finishing stretch is a slight gradual downhill and about 150 meters long. Determined to go sub-21, I sprinted to the finish passing Jane and almost overtaking another runner. I finished in 20:55 for 19th place and PR'd by almost 30 seconds. I'm happy with my race considering I just came off of marathon recovery. Results here.
My wife also ran the race and did well, despite not wanting to run in the first place. When I registered for the race I also registered my wife without asking her if she wanted to run it. Lesson learned - don't assume she wants to run if I'm running. I'm extremely proud of her; she also ran a 4M PR and broke 25 minutes.