NYRR classes are offered in 1x a week or 2x a week packages. The sessions last 10 weeks. For a NYRR member the 10-week session costs $105 for once a week classes. To attend classes twice weekly, it’s only $180 for all 20 classes.
It doesn’t matter how fast or slow you are because there are 8 levels of classes to choose from. You are grouped according to how fast you can run a 5K. (There is no audition, you just self-identify on the form. If you’re obviously too fast or too slow, the teacher might suggest you switch groups.)
I took the class on Tuesday nights and I joined the 9-10 minute mile group. Technically I run a 5K in sub 9-minute miles (8:40s) but I felt this class was challenging enough!
Each week we’d meet at the same uptown public elementary school. A NYRR coach leads a quick stretch in the school’s gym. Then we huddle up and the coach explains the workout. The workouts are amazing, varied and regimens I would never do on my own.
We did sprints, fartleks, tempo runs and other kinds of speed work. I found myself really pushing (and at times really struggling) for the full hour. But when I’d set out on my regular weekend long runs, I was faster and more conditioned. Everyone says speed training works, but when it works for you, it’s the best surprise.
We always run in Central Park – though right before the marathon the group ran the Queensborough Bridge.
Through this class, I exploring the park in new ways. I learned there is a small dirt track far uptown in the park. I learned it’s exactly a mile from the east side 90th street entrance and the 72nd transverse. I have run the last .5 miles of the NYC Marathon countless times.
These low-cost classes might be the best kept secret of the New York running world. Once I am comfortably able to run again, I’ll be back.
Has anyone else tried these? Or taken a different running class? Tell me more!