Sunday, March 13, 2011

5K for Fun - Now I Need Your Help

Yesterday was an absolutely beautiful day here in Northwest Arkansas.  The sun was shining, the birds were singing, there was a slight breeze - and the temperature was in the upper 60s....BEAUTIFUL!!
This time yesterday morning, I was having an internal conflict.  Saturday is usually the day I go to the gym.  I go to the gym on Saturday and run on Sunday.  Looking out my window told me that I didn't think that was going to happen.

All I could think about while looking out of my window was going for a run.  I wanted to run - BAD.  It was the first day of the year that was nice AND wasn't extremely windy.  I don't mind the wind - I like to use it for resistance - but it was nice thinking about going for a run just to enjoy the weather.  So that's exactly what I decided to do.

Before I left, I made another decision - I was going to run my first 5K of the year....just for the fun of it.  It was more to see how I would do...could I do a whole 5K, what kind of time I could do it in...that sort of stuff.

In case I got there and chickened out - I decided to make a public announcement on Facebook.  I wanted to hold myself accountable - so that I didn't get half way through, realize it was a little too hard, and give up.

Well, I got to the track and started my 5 minute warm-up.  I decided to stick with the 8 min jog/ 2 min walk intervals that I started last weekend.  Last weekend was the first and ONLY time I have ever been able to run that long - and that was for 2.2 miles.  It was difficult, but I really pushed myself to finish.  This time, I was going to have to push myself for an extra mile.

I started strong.  I could feel that my pace had increased since starting the C25K back in January.  Back then, I used the term "wog" as what I was doing for my jogging intervals.  It was more of a walk/jog combination.  I was convinced that I actually walked faster during my walking intervals than I did when I was supposed to be jogging....but not anymore.  My legs are coming much further off the ground, my strides are getting bigger....and I'm getting very close to moving up from jogging to actual running.

I completed the first mile and felt some tightness in my calf muscles.  Not pain - not uncomfortable...just tightness.  By the second end of the second 8 min jog interval I didn't want to jogging had become comfortable and I didn't want to mess it up by slowing down - but I did.  I just walked FAST. 

Getting through the first two miles was almost easy.  My legs were warm and enjoying the push.  Once I got past 2 miles...things started getting a little more difficult.  My legs were like jello for the walk interval after the third 8 minute jog.  Then I had to restart my podcast over because week 5 only has me running for 30 minutes.  I decided to "wog" through the warm-up portion of the repeated podcast.  I didn't want to lose momentum, but I could feel that my legs were really having a hard time.  The fourth 8 minute jog approached and I picked up speed again.  I completed over 1/2 a mile in the 8 minutes and I finished the 5K.
I finished the 5K in 44:59....a second shy of 45 minutes.  That puts my pace a little less than 15 minutes per mile - 14:42 per mile to be exact.  The fact that the time also includes the 5 minute warm up walk and a 5 min "wog" in the middle gives me a little hope that I can do much better by the time my first competitive race comes up in April. 

Last year, I ran my first 5K race EVER in April.  It was the Susan G. Koman Race for the Cure...the same race I will be doing April 30th of this year.  It was probably one of the worst days of my life - I finished in severe pain and spent two days after recovering due to a nasty knee that DID NOT appreciate what I had put it through.

I have come a long way in a year - and I'm not there yet.  My goal is to finish the race in less than 40 minutes.  I think I can do it. 

Before I go, I want to send out a plea for your help.  Last year, I did not promote my participation.  I did not raise any money for Susan G. Koman - except for my race entry fee.  I'd like to really make a difference this year.

If you can, please help me raise some money for this great cause.  I've worked very hard - and plan on working very hard to do the best I can this year.  I'd like to do that physically - and monetarily.

So, if you can - please make a small donation and help me raise my goal of $100.  I've already got it started...and now I need you to help me get there.

Please visit my donation page and donate what you can.
Till next time.  ;)
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