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 then vs. now
Rickshaw
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

then vs. now Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 10:45 am 

My high school track career was short and undistinguished. I ran on the junior varsity team for just one year in 10th grade, and I was terrible. I didn't know anything about training techniques, and I mostly just goofed around during practices. I'm not exaggerating when I say that I finished dead last in nearly every race I entered. I even stumbled and fell once in the final meters of a 400m race, ripping my knee open and embedding track cinders that are still visible under my skin today.

Having said all that, I was still far faster than I am today. I wasn't sure that my recollections of my race times were right, so I recently double-checked with a high school friend to confirm them. While I don't remember the exact numbers, I raced the 200m in something like 28 seconds, and the 400m in maybe 70 seconds. Those were pretty lame times compared to my high school competition, but I could barely run a 90 second 400m today, and maybe a 40 second 200m if I was flying. Of course, 20 years will do that. Sigh.

Anyone else have an aborted track or cross-country career in high school? How do your times then compare to now?


Rickshaw
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

Re: then vs. now Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 11:53 am 

I had a track workout today, so I decided to indulge myself in a "vanity 200m" race, and see how close I really could get to my old high school times. It was weird. It's been a long, long time since I hit the track and ran absolutely all-out over any distance. So I did a two mile warm-up, threw in a couple of quick strides, and then walked for a bit. I tried to wait until my heart rate came down, but it didn't, because I was pretty nervous. :-)

Finally I took up my position at the starting area for lane 3, and kind of leaned down into a crouch. No blocks for me. I felt kind of self-conscious, as there were a few other people jogging and walking around the track, and I didn't want to attract too much attention as the idiot attempting to relive the glory days from when he was half as old as he is now.

I punched my watch and took off hard. It felt pretty good for the first 50-100m, then I started to feel kind of tangled up. Not tired, but like I simply couldn't move my legs any faster! Coming down the stretch, I was all jerky, like a badly played marionette. I think my legs just don't have the coordination to turn over that fast anymore. At the line, my time was 32.87, and I felt a little winded but basically fine. If I practiced a little, I think I could do it a bit faster.

So that's actually pretty encouraging. I wish I remembered my exact 200m times from way back when, but I just remember they were really bad and I think somewhere in the high 20s. Given that, 32.87 doesn't seem too shabby considering I'm 35 now instead of 16.


Rustyboy

LA, CA
Joined: 14 Dec 2004
Posts: 225

Re: then vs. now Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 4:18 pm 

Not bad, old timer!!! (I kid, I kid)

I'm supposed to do a track workout with a friend tomorrow. Maybe I'll give a 200 all-out run a try. I fear my time will be embarrassing, but hey, we all need humbling now and again, right?


Rickshaw
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

Re: then vs. now Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 5:23 pm 

Yeah, give it a shot. I was afraid it was going to hurt like hell, but actually it didn't really hurt at all. I just physically couldn't move any faster!

Rustyboy

LA, CA
Joined: 14 Dec 2004
Posts: 225

Re: then vs. now Posted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 9:17 am 

Welp, I gave it a shot yesterday at the UCLA track, in front of countless exercising coeds: 400 meters in 1:08. And you're right, it didn't hurt, but I just hit this wall of speed that I couldn't push through.

Then, I watched the most buff, lean, 20 year old sprinter take a "casual" spin around the track at what looked to be 30 miles per hour.


Rickshaw
Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

Re: then vs. now Posted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 9:38 am 

Nice!! I think that's around where I used to run 400m in high school. According to mcmillanrunning's calculators, a 68 second 400m is about the same or slightly better performance than the 200m I ran, so I'll have to give you the edge in the sprint competition. :-) Now you just need to keep that pace up for another 3 laps to make it a 4:32 mile.

Ah, those casual runners blowing past you can be pretty demoralizing. I had one of those when I was at the track too. He was just warming up, wearing his sweats and doing an easy jog, at a similar pace to my speed intervals. Doh!

Of course, there was also someone walking slowly around the track in the wrong direction, huffing and puffing, so in comparison to her I felt like a track god. :-)


Rustyboy

LA, CA
Joined: 14 Dec 2004
Posts: 225

Re: then vs. now Posted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:19 pm 

Rickshaw wrote:
Now you just need to keep that pace up for another 3 laps to make it a 4:32 mile.


Not a problem: I'll just wear my blue tights and red cape. Piece of cake.


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