But one of my training partners who I thought was in the same ballpark threw me a curve on Tuesday. He told me his goal pace was 6:15. What? We had been training and racing at compatible paces for months and suddenly he is going to run a sub 2:45 marathon? This news really had me confused. Yes, he runs twice the weekly mileage I do, but still.
We were planning to do a marathon pace run (10 miles at pace) Tuesday and there was no way I was going to go that fast. Unless I could do it and consider it a tempo pace run instead.
As it happened, after a 2.5 mile warm up, we did the first five and while he ran at 6:15 I trailed behind him at about 6:20. This was too slow for tempo and still too fast for a marathon. After a brief break, we did another five, and this time my partner slowed to the low 6:20s, and I led the way back by repeating my 6:20 pace from the first half of the run. In the end, he concluded that his plan for a 6:15 pace was unrealistic, and I became more convinced than ever that 6:29 is the absolute fastest I am going to run at CIM. Those ten miles at 6:20 were doable but I could not imagine running another 16 at that pace. My heart rate peaked in the low 160s, which is where it should be for a marathon, but it got there too soon and would no doubt go higher if I were running farther at that pace.
Both of us plan to run Clarksburg Sunday at marathon pace (me: 6:29, him: ???) and then figure it out from there.