Senior Masters Ace Kathryn Martin, 65, Runs Blazing Mile World Record
A year-round training approach equals a mix of speed, strength and distance so she is always prepared to race well at events of any length.
By John A. Kissane, Runner's World
American and world records don’t come easily for Kathryn Martin, but anyone would be excused for thinking otherwise. On March 2, on the indoor track at the Armory in New York, Martin sped to a 5:51.74 Mile, the fastest ever run by a woman age 65 or over, indoors or out.
Two weeks before the Armory Mile, at the U.S. masters indoor championships in Mile-high Albuquerque, New Mexico, Martin lowered the world indoor 65–69 standard to 6:01.46. She also set the global 800 meter record during the meet with a 2:44.35 and won at 3,000 meters in 11:53.52.
But failing to get a sub-6:00 Mile was disappointing. Martin and her husband, Chuck Gross, who serves as her coach, were confident that back down from altitude, and at the familiar confines of the Armory, she could run much faster.
That is, provided Martin made it to the starting line.
“We left home [in Northport, New York] and went into the city,” Martin said in a March 11 interview with Runner’s World. “And we were on about 43rd Street when our son called. He goes, ‘Uh, mom, you know this old suitcase is here in the living room, right?’ And I’m like, ‘Oh, my god.’ We had to go buy everything, from a running bra to spikes to a top.”
“So if there wasn’t enough pressure, we just added a little more,” Gross said. “You gotta be adaptable, right?”
Once properly outfitted and on the track, Martin made fast running look easy. Gross had instructed her to target 5:56 pace, or roughly 44.5 seconds for each of eight 200 meter laps. She covered the first circuit a bit slow. “She overcompensated on the second 200 and then settled into the correct pace,” Gross said. “But it ended up being about half a second per lap faster than I’d hoped. So, you know, all for the good.”
Long known for her excellence at a range of distances on the track and roads, Martin is also peerless as a cross country runner. She has won five world cross country titles and has been named USATF masters cross country athlete of the year 11 times since 2000.
Continue reading at: runnersworld.com
Masters (40 & older) outdoor Mile records HERE.