My first 5k Race – WWWP 5K

Oh my, I am so late with this post 😦

I found the WWWP 5K challenge right in the knock of time, and I think it was great timing that my first 5k run actually fell during the time frame.

As I said in my last post, I signed up in a local 5k Halloween Dash. It was my first race ever and my own little goal was to come in under 42 minutes, which I believed I would be more than capable of.

On the day of the race, I had butterflies in my stomach the whole day. I was careful what I ate, as not to upset my stomach.

The race was on at 4pm, with registration finishing at 3:30. We (Stephen, myself and the two girls) left home in plenty of time, but unfortunately the signing once we got there was a little poor (which is the only criticism I have!). While looking for the Sport Center, we accidentally actually drove around the track that I would be running soon after. It was cool to see the km markers, but at the same time I was a little more nervous than before, because it was a little on the hilly side and my training runs have all been fairly flat.

We thankfully found where we need to go with a good bit of time and after registration we slowly headed to the starting line. Once there, my nerves properly set in. Everybody around me was chatting away and I have to say, some of the costumes looked fabulous! I’m kind of glad I didn’t dress up because I would not have been able to compete. Next year though, I’ll make more of an effort.

Once the starting whistle went, I quickly found my cadence with the help of my favorite running song at the moment, Renegade by Michael Patrick Kelly. I had set my Runtastic to tell me my pace every 500m, and I realized that I was going faster than the 8min/km that I was aiming for. I kept trying to slow down a little but I pretty much kept up the same tempo. From 0.5km to 1.5km was quite a tough part of the run, with a constant up and down, and then came a constant slow incline for another 300m or so. After this I managed to settle into a good rhythm and when I ran past the 4km mark, I realized that I was almost done, and decided to pick up the pace.

I didn’t quite manage a sprint for the final meters because I was too exhausted (maybe I should try to pick up the pace a little later next time), however I was absolutely amazed, when I saw my time under 40 mins! Since the race was chip timed, I know that I came in at a great 38:38mins. I was absolutely amazed with that result. 

Me very happy with my awesome custome medal

 Since then, I have realized that I was actually the last person that continuously ran the distance, and that even some people ahead of me decided to run/walk. I have to admit, it put a little damper on my excitement, but really, this is my first race and I think I did great. I was not as fast as the others, but I was faster than I have ever been before, and that counts for something.

Me shortly before crossing the finish line, courtesy of John O’Neil photography

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My 5K Training – Race Day tomorrow

When I went back to running just 5 weeks ago, I was looking for the right challenge to get me motivated, and decided on a Halloween 5K dash. I still have not completely decided if I will “dress up” (i.e. wear a batman face mask that I bought). I have run-tested the mask so I will just play it by ear on the day.

I found a 5K training plan online here, that I have been following quite closely (I might have skipped a day or two). I love analysing numbers, so I would love to be able to look more closely into my run data. Unfortunately I have a little issue with my Runtastic app these last few weeks (I’ll post more about that next week) so even with the correcting of the figures that I had thought of, this would have been an almost impossible task to actually determine.

Basically, I am going into the run a little blind as to my actual performance.

Day 1: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 3 minutes. Repeat 7 more times. (Total workout time: 32 minutes) – In reality I just ran as far as I possibly could, because I only found this plan after the run. – 3.86km at 8:18 average pace.

Day 2: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 3 minutes. Repeat 7 more times. (Total workout time: 32 minutes) – 3.70km at 8:43 average pace

Day 3: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 3 minutes. Repeat 8 more times. (Total workout time: 36 minutes) – 4.61km at 8:01 average pace

Day 4: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 4 minutes. Repeat 6 more times. (Total workout time: 35 minutes) – 4.95km at 8:31 average pace

Day 5: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 4 minutes. Repeat 6 more times. (Total workout time: 35 minutes) – 5km at 7:51 average pace definitely not accurate!

Day 6: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 4 minutes. Repeat 7 more times. (Total workout time: 40 minutes) – skipped

Day 7: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 4 minutes. Repeat 7 more times. (Total workout time: 40 minutes) – 4.64km at 8:19 average pace

Day 8: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 4 minutes. Repeat 7 more times. (Total workout time: 40 minutes) – 5.2km at 8:31 average pace

Day 9: Walk for 1 minute, then jog for 5 minutes. Repeat 6 more times. (Total workout time: 42 minutes) – 5.36km at 8:44 average pace

Day 10: Jog for 35 minutes. – 5.10km at 7:37 average pace this one is definitely wrong as well

Day 11: Jog for 35 minutes. – Skipped

Day 12: Jog for 40 minutes. – 6.45km at 7:19 average pace (as per Runtastic), really more just over 5k at probably about 9 average pace

Day 13: Jog for 30 minutes. – 4.11km at 8:33 average pace

Day 14: Jog for 30 minutes. – 4.19km at 8:11 average pace

That run on Day 13 was tough to the max, with rain, strong winds, a buggy that kept wanting to steer off my path and a fuller stomach than wanted. I’m thinking, if I managed to keep that at an average pace of 8:33min/km (with a 2 min walking warmup and cooldown included) I should definitely be able to run at least that pace over the 5k on Race day. So I have set my target as coming in under 43 minutes. I will report back once it is over.