In Vermont, you have to take advantage of "nice" weather whenever it comes up. Thursday was sunny and in the 40s. It was also Tempo Run day. The "plan" put me on doing 6 miles -- 2 easy, 3 at Short-Tempo, 1 easy. My target Easy pace was around 8:55 per mile and my target Short Tempo pace was around 7:25 per mile.
I ended up cutting the first Easy sector in half and planned out my 5 mile run from the gym. The only pain about this route is that there are 13 road-crossings (didn't realize there were that many until I counted!). Not all of them tend to be trouble, but there are two pretty major intersections that tend to either get you coming or going and interrupt the flow of the run.
Most of the time I run solo, but today my coworker & friend (Shannon) who is also training for the Vermont City Marathon was doing her tempo run as well. We're using completely different plans, have completely different goals, and very different paces. We joke that my "easy" pace is her "tempo" pace. We were running the same 5 mile route and our best guess was that I was running about 1:00/mile faster, so the plan for the run was to give her a 4 minute head start, catch up at 4 miles and jog out the last 'easy' mile back to the gym.
I extended my warm-up for the 4 minute delay and set off on my run at what felt like a comfortable, easy pace. Navigating the first few cross-overs was uneventful. The first mile went down without issue and I kicked up the pace from comfortable to uncomfortable. Shannon was wearing drivers-please-hit-me-while-you're-distracted-with-your-smartphone dark colors (I think the color of the Wickify shirt I was wearing was called Sunburst), so I had no idea how far 4 minutes translated to distance on the route. The sight lines.for about 2 miles of the initial part of the run are pretty lousy, so I just set into my pace.
8 weeks until the race.
8 weeks to get it right.
8 short weeks.