Tuesday, September 23, 2014

My Journey to My First 5K

 Well! I did it!

I ran my very first 5K - and it was amazing.

Let me start from the beginning...

I was what you could call and "anti-runner." My family has always gave me a hard time about it. My max speed was a power walk and that's only if the word "hurry" was involved, or if I was late to class. I'd try jogging from time to time - on the evenings I couldn't make it to the gym, or if for some reason I just got an inkling to try it again. I just hated it. I was uncoordinated, sloppy, and just - well, bad at running. I spent my time in group classes where we did dead lifts and k-bands classes. WAY more fun! But also requiring blocks of dedicated time...

Then, I had a baby! If there is one thing a baby can abolish, its blocks of time dedicated to working out!

Parenthood is amazing and wonderful and thrilling (so far) and I love Jackson to pieces, but group training with a baby is not as easy as it sounds (wait..does that even sound easy?). I go to class as often as I can (with baby in tow), but its usually 2-3 times a week max, and that's only if the planets align. I needed something more flexible to fill in the gaps. Binging on Netflix was not exactly melting away the pounds...

Enter, running.

I knew I needed to get my but into gear to lose the baby weight, and the (ahem) excess weight that existed before baby. So I bit the bullet and committed myself to a jogging routine. I found a used jogging stroller on Craigslist (which was harder than it sounds), and downloaded a Couch 2 5K (C25K) app on my phone. I tried to forget all the hateful feelings I had toward running.

Let me just say this now, I COULD NOT have done this without the C25K app. I swear I'm not being paid to say this...its just THAT good.

Slowly, I started making the 8 week trek to a 5K, though it was more like 10 weeks for me (I didn't run 4 times a week...baby wins again!). The C25K training plan seems designed for lazy, unmotivated, hateful runners like me. It keeps us from getting too hot, too exhausted, and too pained; until we finally have the stamina to deal with those experiences - until we finally start enjoying it!

The training plan started me out slow, and it kept me from getting sore. I began to realize that I could run and not feel like death the next day.

While I was starting to adjust, Jackson took a little longer. Occasionally, he would just start rapidly losing it midway through our run. Then I found myself caught pushing a stroller a mile home - bent over trying to hold a paci in the mouth of my obviously upset infant - and hoping my neighbors didn't call social services on me in the process. Talk about a buzz kill...

Thankfully, a few weeks in, Jackson figured out this could be pretty fun. My body started getting stronger, and running began to be something to look forward too - something to enjoy! I found a 5K (Diabetes Dash for Life) I wanted to run in. I signed up and marked it on the calender, with the goal being "not to walk".

Once I was signed up, I began to feel excited. By now, I was REALLY looking forward to my evening runs. Jackson loved it too! By this point, he either sat there peacefully...or took a nap. I was cool with either one.

Naturally, I downloaded Runstastic to help track my pace and distance. I mapped out a 5K course in my neighborhood. I did some "5K for Beginners" research on the internet.

Then, race day was here!

Seth and I took off to Town Center, baby in tow. I picked up my race packet the day before, so we just walked around and enjoyed the experience! So much positive energy! It was addicting. I walked and stretched and did a light jog around some buildings. I checked the shoes of some of the other runners - whew! - just checking to make sure that time chip is actually supposed to go there..

Then, I lined up with the pack, and we took off! This was my first time actually jogging the full 3.1 miles. I had only done 2.95 at home. I kept a steady pace the entire time. Never walking, never feeling like death. I took pride in the fact that I had beaten my former self. I had improved so much that I was doing the one thing I never had been able to do in the past. I was RUNNING! Me! Running.

I finished my 5K in 31:40, and came in 17th out of 45 in my division. I was stoked!

I have several 5K's lined up in my future. My hubby treated me to an early birthday present...running shoes! We went to Gary Gribbles Running Sports and got professionally fitted for an extraordinary shoe.

I am seriously pumped at what I could accomplish. There is nothing better than succeeding at what you once failed at.

1 comment:

  1. So proud of you, I know what an accomplishment this was for you! Really looking forward to seeing you progress in your upcoming races! You rock sweetie!!


Hi there! I love reading comments from my friends. Feel free to leave a note!