Although I'm obviously not a great mile runner, I did reach my goal of under six minutes! I scraped by just getting 5:59 at the finish and I was a little bit too happy. Considering it was FREEZING that day and I was running in short sleeves and knee-tights, I was pretty proud of myself. I ended up being the twenty first person from our cross country team to finish the mile under six minutes - a new record for our school!
I'm not sure exactly how others school's tracks are like, but my school has a 400 track, and 4 laps make a mile. I'd ask a coach or gym teacher if you're not sure about the length of your school's track, but if you don't have access to a track, my team sometimes does the time trial at our local forest preserve. You can mostly see the mile markers on the trails and if you can't, odds are that there will be some sort of map of the whole preserve.
As for actually running the mile, it's pretty damn difficult. People tease me for being nervous about the mile, but they're obviously not in cross country. Although it's definitely not the toughest workout, it can get pretty crazy. For one, you're basically going 100% the whole way, apart for the places where you're going 110%.
Starting off, you really want to get yourself out there. The first two hundred to four hundred meters are your chance to find a group that you could run with. Make sure to not overshoot it and find that you're gonna die halfway through the mile. The first half of the race is pretty easy mentally, at least for me, but the third lap is KILLER. I always always always always seem to slow down there! Don't be like me! I've been trying to really push through my mentality at this stage of the mile. You have to remind yourself that you're more than halfway done! This is the part that makes or crushes you! Keep a steady pace, and DO NOT let go of it.
The last four hundred is where you really just go all out. Especially right when it's about one hundred meters to go you wanna kick it and sprint as fast as your legs will let you, making sure not to ease up. You wanna lengthen your stride and really just try your hardest on this last stretch. It's the difference between a six minute mile and an under six minute mile.
Since these time trials, aren't that long, eating one of those Gatorade chews or something that helps you get pumped isn't a bad idea. I always forget to pick them up at the store, but I have heard various good things about them!
Good luck if you're ever planning on running a mile time trial in your lifetime!
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