This was always something I wanted to do, so instead of talking about it I decided to do it! I went early Friday morning and signed up for my first 5K!!! (3.1 miles)
Now, I'm not a runner. I describe myself not gazelle like, but much more...Saint Bernard chasing a lint ball-ish at best. I trot, I have no beat, I pant, I gasp. But I have run enough over the past year to get the job done.
I had no clue where to stand, how to pace myself, how to stretch and look like I know what I'm doing, or even how to put my toe scanner on my shoe...zero clue.
I am use to running up and down the road for about an hour as the kids trot, bike, RipStik, or scooter along.
This was called a "Prediction Run" which means you average your last 5 runs, minus the slowest run, add 33 seconds for a 5K, and that's your goal.
I never really timed myself, so I had other goals in mind.
1. Not to die.
2. Not to be carried off in an ambulance.
3. Not to be run over by the straggler bus.
4. And somewhere in there was to get the really cool shirt!
I put my time down, and lied by several minutes so I wouldn't look like a loser. Oops, who is going to know right?
There were 9,441 runners who showed up for the race.
At 9:00 AM the gun went off...I started with one foot in front of the other. At first I trailed and followed the pace of the firefighters...If anything else, it was a great view. Then I followed a few ladies who had about the same shape and pace as me. I then found myself getting tired at about 1.75 miles into the race. I was NOT going to stop running though. I searched, and breathed, until finally I saw a guy who had a great pace, not too fast, not too slow. He was taking short strides for such a tall guy, but it looked like something I could do. So I stuck behind him like glue. And the race continued...At about 2.75 miles I lost the guy I had been dragging off of for so long. I walked about 30 seconds and then I heard the noise of over 3000 military folks hooting and hollering and doing their chants closing in on me. Yes, I was passed me...but only by some of them...YEY ME!
I glanced over and saw a Marine doing a good pace and thought ya know, I'm NOT going to look like the fat dumpy girl who they beat. So I ran for the finish line!
I ended up placing:
24th out of 362 ladies in my age group
465th out of 9441 total runners
Beat my predicted time by 20.61 seconds
I'm not sure if I should thank the cute fireman, or the Marine. But I had a great time. Overall I flamed past what I had been running at home by almost 5 minutes! WOW!
Now, I am NOT fast at all, but I was happy to use such a scientific method to find my goal. :*)
So at the end of the race I figured I would go let the guy know I appreciated his skill and wow thank him for letting me draft off of him. He told me he had run 50 thousand of these things, and I mentioned it was my first one. He then told me a big congrats and was happy I was able to keep up...
Because he then told me he was a track coach!!!
UGGGG!!! Well, with that I thanked him for his pace and that I actually learned quite a bit. He laughed it off (thankfully). I am sure I broke some sort of runner's protocol. I didn't dare tell him I had learned about the run only two days prior!!!
Anyway...Moral of the story...I'd like to thank all my friends who helped push me along the way to do something for myself, to run, to get healthy, and to do something I hadn't done before. I'm sure this sounds a little odd, but....Thank You Friends!!!