I haven't blogged for a while, but I am proud of the progress that my kids are making with their own running so I wanted to post something as they exceeded my expectations today. Periodically my kids and I run time trials so that they can try and set personal records in distances ranging from 400m up to 2 miles. The 800 is the distance that we run for time the most regularly.
Today I wanted the kids to run mile time trials as the boys have only ever run an all out mile once each (last summer), while the girls have only done so twice (last summer being the most recent for them as well). We ran the mile on a mostly downhill stretch of Main Street and 200 North in Alpine (mild uphill at the end, but otherwise downhill or flat). I need to take the time to estimate how aided it is while accounting for the fact that we started the mile above 5000' elevation.
My kids performed as follows:
Anita (10 years old) - 6:54, previous best of 7:58 on the same course. Her previous best was an underperformance as she dealt with a side stitch during the run. Today she didn't have any limiting factors, and when she started her kick a couple hundred meters from the finish she surprised me by running somewhere between 5:00-5:20 pace briefly before slowing down for the remainder of her kick.
Shayon (9 years old) - 7:48, previous best of 8:18. Shayon fell on some ice earlier in the week and has struggled to run faster than about 10:00 pace because falling threw out his back. By today his back had improved, but was not 100%. I considered scrapping the time trial, but we decided to start it and call it off if it hurt too much at the beginning. After the start Shayon told me that his back hurt but that it was manageable so I decided to have him continue. I was impressed by his resilience and positive attitude even though it was obvious that the injury affected his performance.
Olivia (8 years old) - 7:06, previous best of 7:44. Olivia doesn't have the kick that her sister has, but she is probably the strongest of all my kids. She started with a solid pace and held it. Her 800 pr on the track is 3:34 and today she averaged 3:33 per half mile. I was impressed by that even when considering that today's run was downhill.
Kamran (7 years old) - 7:36, previous best of 8:21. Kamran has an 800 pr of 3:51 on the track, and today he averaged 3:48 per half mile during the mile. As he ran first of all the kids he briefly held the children's mile record in our family until his sisters eclipsed his time a while later.
All things considered, I was not expecting my kids to run as fast as they did. I was reasonably confident that my boys could run faster than 8:00 for the mile, but I was not expecting them to go under 8:00 by as much as they did, and I was worried that Shayon would not even be able to break his record at all because of his back. I was expecting the girls to run somewhere between 7:20-7:30, and then they both ran under 7:10. Total running distance for each of the four kids was about 2 miles, and I ran with each of them individually, so I ended up with about 8 miles total for the day.
UPDATE: I re-mapped the course and found that because we didn't stay on the sidewalk exclusively like we did last time the distance was just barely shorter than a mile by maybe 10 ft or so, which maybe aided the kids by about a second or so. I also found that we started at about 5050' elevation and ended at about 4951' elevation which I estimate would aid my kids by about 17-18 seconds for the full mile. However I also looked at the NCAA altitude conversions for different distances, and based upon the time my kids were running (not the distance as the time is more relevant) I would estimate that the altitude cost them 9-10 seconds. So with that in consideration (ignoring the cold weather and very mild headwind), the mile was probably aided by about 8-10 seconds compared to sea level.