The BKLYN Mile, Bandit Women's & Men's Opens is this Sunday, August 6th. The notorious "battle down Kent Ave" ain't the easiest mile in the world, but it can be one of the most fun.
Here's some words to the wise to make it out alive...
1. Plan a proper warm up. Give yourself a chance! The number one thing runners do wrong for a road mile is to not plan enough time for a proper warm up. Think about it, you're about to ask your body to go 0-100 effort for a full mile, for the sake of your muscles and tendons, set an alarm for 60 minutes before the race and get things moving. We recommend a 15-20 min slow jog followed by checking a bag at the festival area or friends and then 4x 15 sec race pace accelerations on your way to the start line. Start 60 minutes out, leave your friends if necessary, there's no team prize on Sunday, you're welcome.
2. Get your booty to the corral. This year's BKLYN Mile is the biggest the race has ever been, while on the flip side Kent Avenue is as restricted it's ever been by construction. Translation, getting to the corral in a timely manner will be extremely important to have enough space to run a personal best, not to mention compete for a top placement. With ample time scheduled for warm up, bag check and the mile walk/jog to the starting line you'll be primed to enter the corral early enough to carve out a nice starting position before the starting bell.
3. Expect it to be physical. Want to experience the NYC running community? The BKLYN Mile is a true running community mixer, with that, expect to be hip to hip, shoulder to shoulder, elbow to elbow to your fellow milers throughout all stages of the race. While you may separate from nearby competitors in the later stages of the race, it is crucial early on not to fight your surroundings, absorb the group energy, flow with the masses and visualize riding the crowd momentum to a new personal best.
4. Run the tangents. Sure, Kent Avenue runs north but it's definitely not a straight line, because of this fact there's a little hack to the BKLYN Mile that is only available on the one day a year Kent is closed for the race, running the tangents. Finding and using the tangent lines requires a duel balance of looking into the distance as you move through the quarter mile markers and paying attention to your immediate surroundings so you don't cut anyone off, imagine changing lanes on a bike. Keep your eyes on the horizon and change lanes safely to find the fastest route down Kent, good luck.
5. Kick hard. The good thing about the mile is that even if you screw everything else up your supporters are only going to see you once during the race, and most likely in the last quarter mile. With that in mind, I implore you to WAIT until the last quarter mile to start your kick and I would even go further to suggest waiting until Kent and North 6th at the Bandit Cheer Zone to summon your final surge to glory past your fellow milers. In the same breathe, be sure not to be the people who accidentally kick from half way or, if I may be so bold, not to be the one individual who kicks from the start, and who's suffering is paraded by the crowd at an undesired pace and an unforgettable amount of time. Be patient, kick hard.
Join us at the Bandit Afterparty at Brooklyn Backyard (RSVP).
If you're not racing, you're cheering. Come to the Bandit Cheer Zone (RSVP).