Sunday, May 12, 2013

How to Train for a 5K

Just to clarify I don't really know how to train for a 5K. I read a few websites that gave tips, but they seemed kind of intense so I just made up my own plan. It pretty much consisted of running around the block until I got tired and calling it done. In my mind I was quite the runner. I would go run a predetermined route and return out of breath, exhausted and sore, within 20 minutes.

Then I decided to try the app: Map My Run. Um, so I was not quite the amazing runner I had thought I was.  In fact, between walking to warm up and cool down, I was only running a mile. I had to run 2 more miles to be ready for the 5K. This was not good news considering I was only a couple of weeks away from the run.

I even went for a run on my birthday present day of rest. I found that to be particularly admirable.  I never quite made the full 3 miles in my training runs. I did hear that when training for a marathon you never run the entire distance before the race. You just get close and then hope that the adrenaline will carry you the rest of the way. I'm going to go with that theory. I also felt that running with the dogs was like a handicap. So, if I only ran 2 miles with the dogs that would be like running 10 miles without them. Or something like that.

The day of the big 'race' arrived. It technically wasn't a race, but saying fun run loses some of my street cred. My boys were very encouraging and gave me such tips as: "never give up", "do your best" and "encourage others". Okay, I think they may have just had some motivational speaker at school, but still it felt good.  Although they really wanted me to win. I kept telling them that just crossing the finishing line was going to be winning to me.

To not keep you in suspense any longer. I did cross the finish line, and I did run the entire way. I give all credit to my friend who ran with me. I told her it was up to her to get me to keep running. At first she tried to keep my mind off the fact that my legs were killing me and we had only hit the 1K mark by asking me all sorts of questions. I finally panted, "Your (gasp) turn (gasp) talk (GASP)".  And she did. Luckily she had some great stories from work to share and that got me at least another 1K. Then I only kept running because I was too embarrassed to stop and walk. But oh dear, I have never seen anything that made me happier then finally seeing the finish line.

Next year a 10K? Maybe. I'll decide after I can move my legs without screaming in agony.