In New York City, life moves pretty fast, but apparently it doesn’t quite zoom along at a 4:46-per-mile pace.
In the lead-up to Sunday’s 2013 ING New York City Marathon, ASICS has been driving a flatbed truck around Manhattan with a treadmill and a harness on it, challenging folks to hop on, strap in, and see how long they can run at that very pace.
A 4:46 mile translates to 12.6 miles per hour, and that number is significant because in 2011, it’s the speed that Ryan Hall averaged over 26.2 miles at the Boston Marathon. He finished with a time of 2:04:58, the fastest time ever run by an American on any course.
Hall’s mark still stands, and while the 29-year-old two-time Olympian won’t compete this weekend—he withdrew from the race last month due to a hip injury—he need not worry too much about relinquishing his crown, at least to any average New Yorker off the street.
As of October 31, Runner’s World reports, some 500 people had taken ASICS’ Ryan Hall Treadmill Challenge, and none—not even the city’s famously tough firefighters—could keep up Hall’s pace for 10 minutes, let alone two-plus hours.
So far, the men’s record belongs to one Christopher S., who hung with Hall for 8:06. Current ladies champ Ryisha B., meanwhile, held on for 2:31.
Those wishing to try their luck still have two chances, as the truck visits the ASICS Store at Sixth Avenue and 42nd Street today (November 1) and Central Park tomorrow. The treadmill will be available from noon to 9:00 P.M., though after watching this video, folks may wish to stick to the streets.
With luck, the next time ASICS stages such a contest, they’ll need to speed things up even more, as Hall is looking forward to overcoming his injury and posting even faster times.
“I am very disappointed that I won't be lining up on November 3 as I had so looked forward to, but I am refocusing now on getting back to 100 percent and going after some big goals in 2014,” he said in the statement announcing his withdrawal. “Redemption will have to wait, but it will be all the more sweet.”
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg