My Attempt at a Sub-5 Minute Mile

>> Thursday, January 01, 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! Pharmie and I had an exciting New Years Eve. I got a double cheeseburger from McDonalds at 7 pm:

We cracked into the bubbly at 9:22 pm:

And we were in bed by 11:30.

Then Pharmie didn’t get up until after 9:30 am.

Yep, that’s how we roll in the Stenzel/Pharmie household.

Once Pharmie got up, she decided to come to the track meet with me, which I thought was AWESOME news! She grabbed the camera and got a photo of me warming up:

And then of me stretching my heel:

The mile was the first event. I was in the first heat, and we all got ready to run:

Pharmie actually got talked in to helping record laps and times for the runners, so she was handed a clipboard and was put to work! She snapped a few more photos as the race was getting ready to start:

Two weeks ago when I ran the mile in 5:00.7, my 400 splits were 1:15, 1:15, 1:18, and 1:11. Today, my goal was to take 1 second off of each 400, to put me just under 4:57 (although anything under 5:00 would do). So I kept track of my splits and compared them with the same race 2 weeks ago.

Gary shouted GO, and we were off and running.

First 400: 1:11. “4 seconds faster than last time - take it easy.” I was running in 5th place.

Second 400: 1:15. “Nice pace, same as last time.” At this point I passed a 16 year old to move into 4th. I think it was around this time that Pharmie was able to grab these 2 photos:

Third 400: 1:14. “4 seconds faster than last time! I’ve got this PR!!” This is the toughest part of any race for me. So to have actually ran this split FASTER than my last 400 was a great sign!

Last 400: 1:13. That was 2 seconds slower than my final 400 during my last race, but I had ran the first 3/4 of the race much harder. Here I am giving chase to the guy in 3rd as we’re heading to the line:

Hitting the finish line:


Total: 4:54.60. YYYAAAAHHHHOOOOOOOOO!!!!! That’s 6 seconds faster than last time! I was THRILLED with that!!

1 Mile Run
4th out of 21 runners
2nd out of 4 in Age Group

(lost to 2 high-schoolers and a 20 year old)

Pharmie snapped this photo after I had finished, and even my nipples were excited!

I chatted with Brenna and Danielle. I’m not sure, but I think my eyes are trying to steal Danielle’s soul:

I look so weird because just finished running hard,
so cut me some slack. Thanks.

They were getting ready to start another heat of the mile, and Pharmie was in charge of 2 runners again. Here she is doing her civic duty (counting laps and taking splits):

And here’s the second heat ready to take off:

(Side note: I teased Danielle [above in orange] before the race and asked her if she could hit 6:05 today [she ran a 6:12 at the last meet]. She rolled her eyes and said “Yeah right.” Well, she finished in 6:04 today! Nice job Danielle! And Tom did about 8 seconds better than he thought he would in the 800!)

After that, they were getting ready to run the 200 meters. I thought, “Aah, what the heck. Sign me up for the 200!” I’ve never done that short of a distance before, but I thought it’d be fun. So I got my name added to the roster, and I was put in the first heat.

We lined up for the 200, Gary gave us a 3-command start, and we were off! Do you know what these next 2 photos tell me? They say “your hair is slowing you down.” See for yourself:

So I finished my first 200 meter run today. It wasn’t that fun. I’m not built for short bursts of speed. Here’s how I fared:

200 Meter Dash
28.24 seconds
4th out of 13 runners
1st out of 2 in Age Group

Well, my feet had had enough. (Remember what happened at the last track meet? Scroll down a few posts to see.) I got changed and we got ready to go. One last stop at the goodie table:

“Apple Fritter, get in my belly.”

Gary, thanks for another fun Charities Challenge race! I’ve set my PR and I’ve gotten under 5 minutes, so I don’t think I’ll race any more track meets this winter. Time to focus on half-marathon training!

And another reminder: Saturday, 11:30 am, Coliseum at the State Fair, $3, running stairs! See you there?

Happy 2009!!


Amytrigirl (aka Amybee) 6:45 PM, January 01, 2009  

CONGRATS on a great PR for the Mile!

(and happy new year to you and Pharmie).

I ran the Polar 10K today. First race since the LTF Turkey Day run.

...Not pretty, my friend. Not pretty at all.

Time to get back in to training.

I'll see you at the track soon. (I won't be running the stairs, however!)

brendaj 7:19 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congratulations! You looked super speedy in the pics!

RoadBunner 7:27 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congratulations on your mile PR! Holy Speedy Cow!

Happy New Year to you and Pharmie (and the cats!)

Sarah 7:38 PM, January 01, 2009  

Awesome job!!! Congrats on the PR supah fast speedy. Yah, I'm convinced if you shaved your head you could cut a second off at least!

Maggs 7:49 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congrats on the mile time. Happy New Year.

Felice Devine 7:52 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congratulations! What a terrific job -- and terrific way to start 2009. Wow.

But don't think for a second that the bread on the refreshments table went un-noticed. There is always bread after your races!!! I see more bread on your site than I do anywhere else. ;-)

Happy new year!

Kelly 7:52 PM, January 01, 2009  

Yay! Good job!

PS That cheeseburger looks gross, but the donuts delicious (dieting does this to me...)

Michele 8:03 PM, January 01, 2009  

congrats on your PR!

Happy New Year

chia 8:13 PM, January 01, 2009  

Dayum, he's gone to plaid! Great showing Steve!

Michelle 8:19 PM, January 01, 2009  

I'm completely flabbergasted at how fast you can run!!!

Its so beyond what i ever was able to do!!!

YOU ROCK congrats on your mile PR!!! Amazing Steve!!!!

Bill 8:20 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congratulations on the PR, Steve!

I thought about your attempt while I was on my hilly run today. Thinking about your pain kept my mind off my pain.


Unknown 8:22 PM, January 01, 2009  

Wow! That is awesome!

And look at all that good food!

Aron 8:29 PM, January 01, 2009  

that is sooo awesome! way to start out 2009 with a bang! happy new year!

Casey 8:50 PM, January 01, 2009  

Great job! Way to shave those seconds off!

PS: I was kinda hoping for a blister photo.

Trishie 8:51 PM, January 01, 2009  

Congrats on the sub 5 miler! that's AWESOME and a great way to start out 09! what is your trick to looking like a good runner in race photos? I always look... well... ;)

Eileen Swanson 8:58 PM, January 01, 2009  


KK 9:24 PM, January 01, 2009  

Awesome! That is smokin' fast. What a fun way to test your speed and set a PR. The goodie table looked yummy too. Happy New Year, Steve.

BaddApple 10:37 PM, January 01, 2009  

Holy Crap! You are my Hero. 6 seconds off your time! Nice work. That's how to start the year off. Proud of you. Keep it up. I'm going try and eat more McDonalds.

J~Mom 10:48 PM, January 01, 2009  

Great job Mr. Speed in a Speedo!!

Anonymous,  11:31 PM, January 01, 2009  

Sick run Steve! That is crazy fast.

I'm noticing a trend. Are donuts a big thing in Minnesota, or do you just happen to favor events that let you stuff your face with dough and icing after finishing?

Happy new year!

The Bear Cub Bakery 11:33 PM, January 01, 2009  

Damn, child! You're too fast!


RBR 12:17 AM, January 02, 2009  

I’m not sure, but I think my eyes are trying to steal Danielle’s soul

When you make me snort with laughter it is not very attractive and I wish you to please stop.

4:54 for 1600. Holy crap!

Glaven Q. Heisenberg 4:23 AM, January 02, 2009  

You with you 4:54 miles and Danielle with her 6:04 miles ... Do you fast people belong to some secret society so you can all meet up with each other and not have to deal with us slugs?

It's okay if you do. I'd do the same thing if I were that fast.

Congrats to you all!

And Happy New Year!

P.S. My wife and I do Chinese Food each new year's even and hit the hay at like 10:30. So that's how we roll here in Joisey.

nwgdc 6:39 AM, January 02, 2009  

Man, you're an animal! Way to go on the 4:54!!!

Missy 7:53 AM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats, that is rock solid, you have to be thrilled AND the donut table, mmmm, fried dough!

Brent Buckner 8:07 AM, January 02, 2009  


Those blurry photos make you look even more like the Flash!

Marlene 8:29 AM, January 02, 2009  

Holy crap, congrats on the sub-5:00 - you killed it!

Shannon 8:31 AM, January 02, 2009  

Awesome, I could dream that fast. Great workout.....

Kim 8:37 AM, January 02, 2009  

HAPPY HAPPY NEW YEAR!! and way to get 2009 started with a fantastic PR! way to go!!!

Charlotte 8:45 AM, January 02, 2009  

Nice work on the PR!! You run a seriously fast mile! Loved all the pics too - esp. you with the devil eyes.

Fizzgig 8:55 AM, January 02, 2009  

dooooo nuts. mmmmm. Did you at least see the ball drop?

Amy 10:07 AM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats Steve!!!! That's an awesome time and you should be proud of yourself for all the hard work you (and Pharmie) have put in over the past year. Cheers to 2009!

J 10:39 AM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats on running a PR in the 1600m! Happy New Year!

Jen Rife 11:23 AM, January 02, 2009  

WOW! Congrats on an awesome run! Very impressive that you could shave that much off your 1 mile time!

P.S. Where are the Friday Funnies?

See you tomorrow at the Coliseum!

Sarah 11:24 AM, January 02, 2009  

Way to start your new year off right! And also impressive - you run with glasses on. I see that in your pictures and that dazzles me almost as much as your running speed does.

X-Country2 11:38 AM, January 02, 2009  

How much do I love that all Minnesota track meets seem to have a GIANT plate of donuts. God love you upper midwest folk. :o)

Great race, and happy new year!

Tea 12:29 PM, January 02, 2009  

What no aid stations? No porta potties? What kind of race is that? Those donuts should have been firmly planted at every 200m marker. (Oh wait, there's a race like that isn't there?)

congrats on the huge pr!

Jess 12:36 PM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats on an awesome PR!

Jess 12:36 PM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats on an awesome PR!

Unknown 12:48 PM, January 02, 2009  

Great job with both of the races! You are just smokin' fast. Looks like 2009 is starting out to be a great year for you.

Jess 12:51 PM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats on such an awesome PR for the mile! You're like a speeding bullet!

Anonymous,  1:33 PM, January 02, 2009  

These are nicer. The heel-stretching is my favorite. A fetching smile, and for those Crzy Ankles, you should have a license....

Carolina John 2:19 PM, January 02, 2009  

Nice! great mile steve. your ankle stretch pose is sexy. but you eating a doughnut might be more sexy...

Charisa 3:05 PM, January 02, 2009  

CONGRATS!! Seriously awesome - you should be proud of that! And those donuts look amazing :)

Anonymous,  3:27 PM, January 02, 2009  

wooohoo! That was fun to read :) Happy New Year!

Kathleen @ ForgingAhead 4:03 PM, January 02, 2009  

Big time congrats! That's fabulous! An inspiration to us slow-pokes (me) who aspire to go faster one day.

TRI TO BE FUNNY 4:52 PM, January 02, 2009  

As usual you are amazing!!! I guess I need more donuts in my diet!

Unknown 5:56 PM, January 02, 2009  

Looks like the secret is to have McDonalds cheeseburger and champagne before the race! I am going to try that and see if I can do a PR for a mile. That's it. That's it!

Man - that is freaking AWESOME. Congrats on the PR !!!

Happy New Year !!

Alisa 7:23 PM, January 02, 2009  

Wow!!!! Congrats!! What an awesome PR!

Runner Leana 10:37 PM, January 02, 2009  

Awesome Steve, you are so speedy! And the pictures even prove it. Congrats on your new PR and happy new year!

Lisa T 11:39 PM, January 02, 2009  

Congrats! I'm almost envious that I don't live somewhere cold enough for indoor track. Almost.

rocketpants 1:04 PM, January 03, 2009  

Awesome PR! 6 seconds off your previous race time...that is great!

Judi 2:59 PM, January 03, 2009  

wow. i am amazed, you go BOY!

Nat 5:41 PM, January 03, 2009  

You are incredible (and one of my new heros.)

Happy New Year

Dave M 9:58 PM, January 04, 2009  

Read this the other day and even though it took me a while to stop by for a comment, I wanted to say Happy New Year and what an awesome mile PR!! Congrats!

RooBabs 10:47 AM, January 05, 2009  

Congrats on the sub-5:00!! (sorry about the slow hair, though). And I think I see a maple bar on that table with my name on it. But since I can't run that fast, I guess I don't deserve one.

About your New Year's Eve, you know you're old when you go to bed before midnight (either that, or have an event/race the next day, LOL). I've been doing that for at least the last 5 years. I am so not a night owl.

sRod 2:34 PM, January 06, 2009  

Congrats! What a great way to start off a new year.

SixTwoThree 10:01 PM, January 06, 2009  

Wow, super speedy and no speedo!! That's an amazing time. Congrats!! You earned that fritter all right :-)

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