August 26, 2011

Fitness Friday -- First 5k Edition

Good morning, friends! (Don't you love how I only post a Fitness Friday when I'm not completely embarrassed about the last weeks' activities? Oh well, at least I can admit it, right? RIGHT?)

So it's FRIDAY,and I'm doing my best to wake up and get the day moving after staying up way, way too late last night.

But sleepy though I may be, I"m feeling pretty great this morning.  A little sore, but incredibly accomplished.  You see, yesterday, I had a really good run.  And I had a pretty good run on Monday, too!  Let's talk about Monday's first....

After last Thursday's quite grumpy post, I tried to get myself out of my funk by going for a treadmill run.  I left that run feeling even poopier because my pace SUCKED and it was really hard.  Just goes to show you that sometimes even exercise can't bust you out of your funk, and you just have to have a crappy day.  Well, on Monday I got on the treadmill again and thought, "Okay, treadmill...why should I let you slow me down??" 

So, instead of picking the speed I usually pick, I bumped it up until it showed me a speed that would give me a pace/mile similar to what I'd been achieving outside.  Then I covered up the display and decided to run for 30 minutes.  I actually ran for 32:39 because I wanted to finish a song.  I lifted up the towel and saw that I'd achieved 2.45 miles at a pace of 13:19/mile.  My fastest outside so far has been 13:06, so I was pretty pleased!

My plan was to run again on Wednesday, but we got invited to a Red Sox/Rangers game, so I decided I'd just go Thursday.

All day yesterday, I was waffling about whether or not I wanted to go run.  I was THIS CLOSE to just skipping it.  Then I got a series of messages from the amazing Sarah over at Sarah Snacks informing me that she'd just registered us for the Labor of Love race in McKinney, Texas on Labor Day (she's doing the 10k, I'm doing the 5k).  First of all, HOW AWESOME is Sarah for sponsoring me for my first 5k?!  Do me a favor and go visit her blog and tell her how awesome she is for doing that for me...

So....all thoughts of skipping my run flew immediately out the window since now I'm actually running a 5k for the first time ever in about a week.  Cue the butterflies in my tummy.  Eeeek!  I've already started formulating a plan (which may or may not include a LOT of googling about "tips for your first 5k") and I'm very excited to be participating with Sarah and having Laura along for the ride for support and photography.

I got to the gym yesterday intending to do a repeat of Monday's treadmill run, but since it was the first day of classes, the place was MOBBED, and no treadmills were available.  So I headed upstairs to the indoor track and decided I really oughta push myself past my typical 2.5-ish mile mark since I have to run 3.1 in a week.  A few things I did differently than usual as I ran in circles:
  • I refused to look at the digital clock on each lap, so I wouldn't worry about time
  • I counted DOWN the laps, instead of up.  This actually helped a LOT mentally...I was counting how many I had left, rather than how many I still had to go.  Plus I always lose count and err on the side of caution, so who knows if I actually even ran more than the 3.13 miles that 25 laps approximately equals.
  • I stopped a couple of times to stretch/slow down/walk but not for long. I wanted to keep going...not to push my body too hard, but because I wanted to keep running.
  • I made an effort to try to go a little faster when I felt good, but didn't try to maintain a ridiculous pace if I needed to catch my breath a little.
The result?  3.13 (ish) miles in 40:23 with an average pace of 12:54/mile!

Who's awesome? THIS GIRL
I was REALLY proud of myself and I felt really accomplished that I'd run a 5k (in circles, but still...) in less than 45 minutes. 

I also learned that I need to do this a few times next week to get my body used to it before I do it outdoors.  I felt great for the first 2 miles, started getting tired around 2.5, which is what my body is used to running, and really had to give myself some pep talks in those last 5 or 6 laps because my body was really getting tired.  In retrospect I suppose I could've stopped/slowed down to stretch and keep my body feeling good, but I was afraid I wouldn't start back up again.  Live and learn, right?

SO YEAH!  Good week!  Didn't run as MUCH as I would've liked, but it was a very accomplished week for me mentally and my pace/mile even improved a little bit. 

I've also found that having some good tunes can really pump me up in a run.  Here's what my iPod decided I should hear yesterday:

I'm not gonna lie...every time I hear "Club Can't Handle Me" on a run, I can't help but go a little faster and get excited.  That's one I'm gonna have to make SURE comes up on my playlist when I run on Labor Day! 

Sorry for such a LONG post, but I am very excited about my running right now, and I am really proud of this crazy body of mine for adapting to a spot where I can say things I never thought I'd say ("I miss running!"  "2 miles is easy!"  etc.).

Have a GREAT weekend!


  1. Oh my goodness, you are totes going to ROCK it on your 5K lady!! I am SO proud to sponsor your very first 5K! Oh and I'm totally doing the 5K too- I've done their 10K course before and it super sucks. :)

  2. I am SO excited about this 5K you are doing! You will never forget your first 5K and we will make sure to document this up with photos :)