Thanks to a lot of sun and a high above 40 during the day, a lot of the ice and snow melted and my 12-mile loop was pretty clear. After my tempo the night before, I had no need to push too hard, but I liked the chance to go out and run without having to worry so much about my footing.
It was 39 degrees when I got home, so I took the opportunity to wear shorts and man, it was worth it. I was pretty tired so the run wasn't a chucklefest, but I menadered between 6:40 and 6:49 pace.
I thought ahead to the Pittsburgh Half Marathon, and I'll admit I am getting pretty excited about it. I feel like that could be my optimal distance to race, and the opportunity to try it for the first time on a course I am familiar with is enticing. A favorable baseball schedule this year means the course can return to the north shore. We'll have a lot of flat stretches and get away from that boring out and back on Chateau and Manchester streets that the larger crowd at the race last year necessitated. I have about two and a half months to prepare for it, and given the way I feel right now, I need all of it. I'll have plenty of races along the way at which to evaluate my fitness, chief among them being Cherry Blossom in April. If I can run under 55 there, I'll feel like I'm in pretty good shape. But right now, running 5:40 pace for two three-mile tempos is a long way from 5:30 pace for 10 miles.
3 days ago