I did it – I completed my first 5k race on Saturday! Whenever I've mentioned that I've run a 5k before, I've always made sure to mention these were my own personal 3.1 mile or 5k's. This was my first official, timed, 5k race and I'm pretty pleased with my accomplishment!
I did not train for this race as hard as I could have. The weather has been in flux here since I registered and I was only able to run maybe three times a week. I don't know my own limit and went from just walking to running 2-3 miles every time I'd run. I didn't bother modifying my diet or changing anything else I do, I just started running. Since I usually run with the BOB with a 32 pound toddler in it and in an area with lots of hills, I wasn't sure how I'd do running on my own. Obviously I thought I could do better running on my own, but I didn't have any gauge as to how fast I could run or what to expect. I ran with two friends who had both run 5k's before and they agreed to stay with me and let me set the pace. From the get go I just started running. Because of the hills, when I run at home, the most I'm able to run in one burst is about .60 miles. On race day, I ran 1.5 miles straight, averaging a 10:00/mile pace!
- Avoid races that are several hours away or stay closer to the location. Getting up at 4:30 in the morning after only 4 hours sleep doesn't make for the best feeling in the world. Couple that with the two hour drive and a toddler prone to motion sickness in the morning – not a great way to start the day.
- Even if it's overcast, wear sunglasses. Either that or wake up even earlier and put makeup on. There will be cameras.
- There will be bathrooms, if only port-a-potties, so properly hydrate before running and avoid side cramps.
- Cue up your running playlist before starting out, you'll save yourself some frustration of having to run and scroll through to get things started.