Joe accompanied me on today’s two hour MP run. He’s been doing low milages lately while waiting for his plantar fasciitis to subside, so he had no expectations about staying with me for all of it. After the warmup he dropped back and tracked me from about 200 yards back.
Thus removed from any peer pressure, I immediately forgot my plan to stick to 7:50 pace and got into a groove at about 7:41. After about five miles of this, Joe decided that he’d done his tempo for today and slowed down. This run was up and down the Bay Trail staring at point Isabelle in Richmond, heading south as far as Emeryville, then going north to the gate at the end of the trail in Richmond (slap that gate!) and returning to the starting point. At a road crossing in Berkeley, drivers waved me over, so I was able to run the whole thing without breaking stride once. On the way back from the gate, I met Joe who turned as I passed him. “One more mile, then I’ll slow down.” His retort: “You animal!”. Suitably encouraged, I tempo’d that last mile in 7:17.
The hill behind the racecourse had slowed me a bit, as did a slight headwind in Richmond. I ended up covering 16 miles in 2:03:44, average pace 7:44. A bit faster than the planned 7:50. The warmup and cooldown brought the total to 20.5 miles. I am extremely pleased with this run. Even the weather was perfect!