My First Crossroads Run of the Season

So, each and every Thursday, there is a run out of the Crossroads Pub in Boston. Right at the intersection of Beacon Street and Massachusetts Avenue.  Many of the charitable organizations participate in this weekly event. It’s a good way to get as much exposure to the Newton hills, including the famous (or maybe infamous to some) Heartbreak Hill. It’s 8.8 miles total, though one can easily make it an even 9. The bar also proves a place to keep you gear and change out your wet clothes. Once you arrive back, there’s lots of water and free (albeit greasy) pizza. They serve beer which runners seem to like. 🙂

Last night, I had amazing parking karma. After a horrific commute, it was pretty psyched to get a parking spot directly across from the bar. Wow! It was a smaller crowd than usual, possibly because of the chilly weather. It was around 15 degrees. Calm conditions, though.

Anyway, everybody gathered to make a bee-line to the Green Line, and I told some I would catch up. Well, less than a minute after they left, I started up Beacon Street and not a soul was in sight. I thought, “Man, these folks are fast!” I arrived at the Kenmore Square T station and again, no runners. Hopped on the the D Line out to Woodland, which took longer than usual, and was elated to see a few other runners get off. I asked where they all were and I was told they all went to the Hynes T stop. Nobody informed me of this. Kind of silly, if you ask me as Kenmore is far more convenient.

I asked the few that were there if anybody wanted to be my running partner, and was in luck. Mimi, who was running for a local running group, said she wouldn’t mind but that her pace was around 9:30 – 10:00. I told her that was quite all right with me and we started off for Boston. It’s much nicer to run with another person, or a group, as I think the miles go by faster.

Here’s the route we took (and the same route every week):

Woodland T Stop to Boston

Woodland T Stop to Boston

Mimi was a great running partner and was amazing consistent with her pace. We swapped off taking the lead, though I tended to be up front because I had a headlamp and I had the GPS watch to keep the pace. The others in the group were at least 2 trains behind, and that meant not one person passed us on the run, even at our slower pace.

Anyhow, here’s the breakdown of the pace:

Mile 1: 9:45
Mile 2: 9:23
Mile 3: 9:22
Mile 4: 9:44
Mile 5: 9:21
Mile 6: 9:08
Mile 7: 9:25
Mile 8: 9:02
Mile 8.8: 9:27

The average pace ended up being 9:24. Very smart pace for this point in my training. I wouldn’t mind keeping this up for race day as I only want to finish. The sub-4 hour goal doesn’t seem to be all that important these days. If I can do it, well that would be a perfect way to end my marathon career….

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