And Now I’m Officially a Runner

Yesterday, I ran my VERY first race ever. EVER. A 5K to be precise. I could barely run a mile and a half at the beginning of the year without feeling like I was going to collapse, so this was a HUGE deal for me and I kind of haven’t been able to shut up about it, so sorry about that. This will be the last mention of it. Except for maybe my Mamavation Monday post’s non-scale victories. But then that’s it. Promise!

My Stats

So I’m clearly not a competitor, but that wasn’t the goal. I was in this to finish and finish strong, which I did. I’m incredibly proud of my time and the goal is to keep improving upon it.

Log Your Run’s Time: 34:44
Official Gun to Gate Time: 34:39
Official Chip Time (Gate to Gate): 34:20

Overall Place: 568/890
Overall Place by Sex:247/482
Place by Age Group (19-24 Female): 22/38
Fun fact: The first place female was in the 45-49 age group. WABAM.
Also, finish times ranged from 16:56 to 1:11:09. Big range, but very cool to see people from all walks doing something great for themselves.

A Little Review of Race on the Base

Anyway, I did the Race on the Base 5K in Los Alamitos, and it was SO very well organized. I mean, they had about 7 different events going: a 5K Run, 10K Run, 5K Walk, Skate/Wheelchair 10K, Kids 1K, Reverse Triathlon, and Kids Triathlons, with each of the Triathlons happening in 2 waves (so 4 waves total). No joke. Yet instructions and placement was clear, it was easy to tell where you needed to be and when, and there was really no confusion.

The course itself was great – I mean, it was a tarmac, so it doesn’t get too much smoother, I don’t think. The water stations were well spaced (just before mile 1 and at mile 2) with either 3 or 4 different bands spaced throughout the path, which was AWESOME. The outside encouragement was a big plus. The course also surrounded a couple military choppers, because this race is on a military training base after all, so you could see kids and their parents checking out the choppers as you passed.

Then at the finish line, the volunteers were lined up with medals (which are shaped like dog tags, of course), clippers to take off the timing chips, water bottles and boxes upon boxes of sliced oranges. YES. PLEASE. I’m not sure if other races do that, but I really really appreciated it, because man oh man did that keep me together. On top of all that, the volunteers were fast, efficient, and super nice.

All in all, the event was awesome, the sponsors were great, it was super family friendly, official times were posted online in a timely manner, the woman who sang the national anthem didn’t totally overblow it (yay!), and it was a great experience overall.

My Run

Before

The day was really perfect for a run- a little overcast, not too cool but not warm, and just generally nice to start off with. I didn’t take a lot of time to warm up, except to get a good stretch, which is out of routine for me. Usually, I start with a 5 minute jog, but between coordinating with my mom and sister over Cameron, I ended up doing some high knees, ponies, and butt-kicks (is there something else I should call those? I just jog in place and kick my own butt for about a minute) over a span of about 2-3 minutes, then I stretched and made my way over to the chute.

Then, I just ran. I always use the Log Your Run app to track my runs and play music and the like, but I turned off the distance feedback for once, and just focused on the music, the road ahead of me, and moving my legs. It was encouraging to see other people who were maintaining a similar pace to my own, although there was one kid that made me laugh a little because he would start walking for a length, and every time I seemed to catch up with him, he’d take off in a sprint. Then he’d repeat the process. I know it wasn’t intentional, but it was funny nonetheless.

Anyway, I kept a solid pace of about 5.2 mph and kept it up without walking (HUGE deal, you guys), only stopping briefly to grab water and to take off the long sleeved shirt I was wearing on top. By the time I could see the finish line, I was still feeling great, not short of breath or anything. Then the Bruno Mars song came on. You know the one. “Runaway Baby”? Yeah. That’s my jam. And it just so happened that it came on at the final length to the finish line. In fact, I had it queued at such a perfect place in my playlist that it ended as I crossed the finish line. Granted, I also picked up the pace in that final stretch (which according to Log Your Run was about 8:00 min/mi), half because that song gets me super amped and half because I had it in me.

After

I will say that I wish I’d taken more time to warm up – my right calf felt a little tight through about half of the race, and as usual, the top of my shoulders (upper trapezius) started to ache. I don’t know why that always happens, though. Anyone with insight?

While I’m glad I didn’t run with the jogger this time, I will definitely run with it for the Fourth of July 5K. It was nice to see Cameron “cheering” as I neared the finish line, though!

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