This time next week

Week 9, Day 1. The beginning of the end. Or is it the beginning of the beginning? A tough 3 miles today. Mostly because it’s Saturday and we’re tired and 3 miles is a long way to run. My legs are still aching, but maybe that just means it was a good workout.

One week till 5K and I’m starting to think of logistics. Where will we park? How far is the beginning from the end? How early do we show up? Will it be feasible for the kids and their grandparents to see us at the end? What am I going to wear? Those are just today’s questions. But this time next week, none of those questions will matter. Barring any debilitating injury this week (Please, God, don’t let that happen!) I will have run a 5K. Our goal is 40 minutes. Today’s 3 mile run was 37:26, so it’s possible. Probable even. But the course is unfamiliar to us, so we’ll see how it goes.

I’m also looking ahead to what happens next. So, we’ve had this training plan to run a 5K. What do we do when the 5K is over to maintain or continue our training? It may have to be indoor and low-cost, so I’m open to suggestion if you have any. I don’t want to lose the winter and end up starting couch to 5K over again in the spring, but winter does pose its share of problems for fitness.

Three miles. I once thought it impossible, avoidable and miserable. I’m on the other side of that fence now. I think I might be on the verge of loving running. Who’d have thunk it?

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One thought on “This time next week

  1. Well done for getting this far!

    Tips for the last week:

    Follow your running schedule – they should have you taper a bit this week before the race.

    Run one of the days in the clothes and shoes that you plan to wear on race day so you can be sure they are comfortable, they don’t ride up anywhere, they don’t rub anywhere, etc…

    On race day with all the adrenaline the tendency is to start out running too fast. Although it may feel like everyone is passing you at the beginning, slow down and pace yourself. If you gun it at the beginning you’ll tire yourself too early.

    Keep warm. Jog slowly around the block a few times to warm your muscles up and loosen up a bit. Jump up and down…jumping jacks etc… Get that heart going and get those muscles warmed up. It may take a little longer now that it’s cooler outside.

    Think positive! Think of how far you’ve come! You can do this! You have done this! This is just the icing on the cake…the fruit of all your labor…the t-shirt you finally get to wear for the weeks of training.

    Change into your race shirt after running…Don’t wear it for the run – you’ll want something dry and fresh smelling after the race.

    Pin your bib with four safety pins – one on each corner of your shirt. Pin it a tad bit on the loose side so you can move without it pulling. Don’t rip the lower tab off until they tell you too. Different races use this tab for different purposes. Some use it to mark your belongings bag and others use it to verify you completed the race at the finish line.

    If you are chip timed you will want to securely attach it to your shoe. Don’t be afraid to ask more experienced 5Kers for help. You’ll be able to spot them in the crowd.

    Either way use your watch to time yourself from start to finish. Usually it takes a few seconds or even minutes to cross the start line. This will give you an idea of your actual time – not the time on the clocks (from when the start buzzer goes off).

    Watch yourself at the finish line gathering. There are many treats around. Eat what you need but not much more and drink plenty of water at the end – try not to get water during the race unless you absolutely need it. It’s so easy to eat double the calories after the race that you just burned during the race.

    After the 5K:

    Let your body rest for a couple days. Then start up again – at whatever frequency you were doing before…3 days a week. Aim to run about 2 miles each time. If you stop running outside you can do this on a treadmill. If you despise treadmills as much as I do – then try an elliptical machine and go for about 1/2 hour. In a gym you can swap and do cardio every other time and light weightlifting on the other times.

    Look for holiday fun runs. Lots of times there will be Thanksgiving fun runs or even New Years runs. Look ahead for 5K runs in the Spring to sign up for so you have goals to look forward to and work towards.

    AND watch the holidays – (I’m telling myself this more than I’m telling you). Easy way to reverse everything you’ve worked so hard to achieve. Don’t deprive yourself but don’t go overboard either.

    Keep blogging about your runs! It will help you be more accountable for what you do do for exercise.

    Keep up the great work! And congrats on your upcoming 5K! You both will do great! You’ve worked hard for it!

    -Laura

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