2011-12-25 - Bethesda Tempo Loop

~11 miles @ ~8.6 min/mi

"Merry Christmas!" I greet walkers out to take the air. It's mid-afternoon and the sun is already setting. Temps in the 40s and intermittent breeze makes me glad I'm wearing gloves and long-sleeve shirt. Shorts are adequate except when heading into the wind. Setting off I hope to see how long I can maintain a sub-9 pace. Glancing at the GPS after a fraction of a mile, "8:30 min/mi" is scary to see. Too fast? But onward it is, and except for slowing during the long climb up from Rock Creek along Cedar Lane speed remains decent with splits of 8:33 + 8:34 + 8:26 + 8:55 + 9:09 (boo!) + 8:34 + 8:31 + 8:01 + 8:23 + 8:51 + 8:49 and a sprint for the final ~0.13 mile to the front steps. Pause to take a few sips of water at the fountains along Rock Creek. Skip the downtown Bethesda zig-zag and proceed straight to the Capital Crescent Trail tunnel. A long line waits to get into the Bethesda Row Cinema. In this weather they're probably not queuing up for ice cream at the Häagen Dazs outlet next door.

(cf. GPS trackfile, ...) - ^z - 2012-01-04