Saturday, May 14, 2011

Dare to be There

I've been training for months, and this morning I ran in the Fifth Third River Bank Run. I've never run in a race, never even ran track or anything when I was growing up. This was a completely new experience for me. About seven years I started running purely as exercise to lose weight and get into shape (I started running at a time in my life when I was almost done losing 70 pounds, it was a complete transformation). But my running was either by myself on a treadmill, or with my dogs in the woods. Nothing formal about it. I know it's more common to start with a 5K, but I had already been running 3 to 4 miles at a time, and I wanted to work towards something. So I decided to challenge myself and signed up for the 10K.

Since I'm not a runner by trade, I did some research on some good training methods. I alternated my trainings: long run, short run, interval run and hills run. Now that the race is complete, I feel like my training was exactly perfect for the race. I'm so glad I pushed myself with every workout, especially with the dreaded hills routine. When the hills came up on the course, it was no big deal at all, I was prepared. I'd say the only struggles I had were that I struggled to pace myself and I struggled because I didn't notice the mile marker signs. Pacing can be hard to do anyway, and I am easily distracted. I am so used to running alone, that at the race I would get caught up in other people's paces. I was worried for the first half of the race that I was running at too fast of a pace and I would regret it with the second half of the race. In the end, that wasn't the case. In fact, that last 0.2 miles, I started sprinting. I had enough energy left to push myself a bit further. The mile markers would have been nice to know since I was only guessing how much further and started to slow my pace a bit in case it was a long way. Neither issue was a big deal because I finished in a faster time than I anticipated.

In the end I crossed the finish line a 1:06:35 according to the clock and 1:04:06 according to my chip time, giving me a pace of 10:20/M. I was thinking I ran an 11 to 12 minute mile, so I was faster than I anticipated.

For me this was never about winning or even making a certain time. It was about challenging myself, pushing myself out of my comfort zone, and finishing something I never would have thought I could do. Now I'm ready to do it again next year!

Adding a picture of me. I was home alone prior to the race so I had to take my own picture. I attempted the picture in the mirror technique:

1 comment:

Cathy said...

Congrats on your finish Cara! I ran a 5k (my first time running: I dog walked it last year) this past weekend as well and was pleased with my 31:10 time. My time was faster on the flat paved course than on the hilly gravel roads I train on. 10K? I'm impressed!

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