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May 30, 2018

Re-Introducing the Blue Jeans Mile (Season 2): Rules, Regulations, Quest for Sub-4

It is now officially “after Memorial Day” and that means it’s time to begin another summer of the Blue Jeans Mile season.

Last year, the idea came about when we blogged “Track needs a new gimmick: introducing the Blue Jean Mile” on March 4. The concept is simple. Run a mile as fast as you can while wearing a pair of blue jeans. It started with our own Ryan Sterner testing himself out on a track in Los Angeles. Then, Sandy Roberts ran 4:43 in North Carolina. We started receiving submissions of race results across the country. The men’s world record is 4:11.80 by Dillon Maggard of Utah. Healther Wilson, a professional runner for the New Jersey/New York Track Club, holds the women’s world record of 4:58 – the only sub-five Blue Jeans Mile by a woman.

We started off with a bet that we’d offer up $200 to the first man to break four minutes for the mile in jeans or the first woman to break 4:36. The prize purse went up to $1,200 and we’re thinking that it could go up even more this year. If you’re interested in raising the prize purse for the first-ever sub-four Blue Jeans Mile, shoot us an email [email protected] and we’ll let you know how you can help make history. A Citwit did bring up the idea of donating money to the fund and then additionally tossing bonus prize money for every lap faster than 58 seconds.

This year, we’re enforcing that the first sub-four that takes our money will have to be run without an altitude conversion. Maggard’s time with the NCAA altitude conversion for Logan, UT puts that performance at 4:06.79. We’re dishing out the bucks to someone who can run sub-four straight up.

The Blue Jeans Mile garnered national attention from Competitor, SB Nation, Canadian Running and even got a mention on SportsCenter from John Anderson.

We set some rules in order for the sub-four to be legit. The attempt must be verified with video evidence of the feat being accomplished. The video must show the entire track and be a continuous stream of the time trial. Pacer are allowed. (Pacers must also wear jeans). Some sort of proof of the track’s accuracy as a 400-meter venue are also required. If you plan on trying to run under 4:00.00, you should give us a heads up with possibly a week’s notice. The other option is to run under the requisite time in an actual, sanctioned race. A photo of you in said race wearing jeans, coupled with official results corroborating the time would work.

In 2017, there were several questions as to what you’re allowed to wear. Jeans must be 100% denim or cotton since we’re not looking for the fastest mile in jeggings. Last year, we had someone run 4:19 in a pair of 99% cotton jeans and they got an asterisk on their performance.

You can wear compression shorts or whatever you feel comfortable with under the jeans.

Spikes are permitted.

Jeans can be cuffed for safety but you’re not allowed to rolled them up two inches above the ankle. “I know this sounds like a Victorian bathing suit law, but I’m not writing a check for $400+ to some chucklehead who runs in jorts, and it’s a slippery slope.”

If you want to submit evidence of your times, email us at [email protected] and use #BlueJeansMile on social media posts. We’ll be keeping a list of all times run in 2018. As of right now, there’s no world leading time for men and women so grab your best pair of Wranglers, spike up and be the first!

Stay tuned for details on possible Blue Jeans Miles in New York and Portland.

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