I did it! I ran a 5k! With no training! I literally went from Couch to 5K – in ONE day!
Why? you ask.
Why not? I say!
*Disclosure – I do NOT recommend this for anyone who has never run and is not currently at least a little bit active!
So here is how it all went down.
A few months ago, my husband started training for
the Olympics his first sprint triathlon, and since then he has been training like a fool. His buddies asked if we wanted to join them and their wives in a Tough Mudder. I thought that sounded fun, after all, I completed a Dirty Girl mud run last year and had a blast!
So, I agreed. Got us all signed up and THEN watched the video clips.
And nearly curled up in a ball under the table to cry.
It’s no 5K. It’s 10-12 MILES. Through obstacle courses that look like they were designed by the criminally insane. For example, one is literally electric wires hanging down that you run through, getting shocked all along the way.
OK, so I may be bypassing the obstacles. My goal is just to FINISH.
So I figured I should start doing some running. We signed up for our first 5K. The weeks passed. I did not train. The day arrived. And I just went for it. (But I did used to run. In fact, I trained for and ran a full marathon 8 years ago. So I knew I could do 3.)
And I did it! In 36:06. I ran the entire time.
1. Be physically active in some way. I didn’t run, but I did walk outside and on the treadmill 1-3 times a week, I occasionally go to Zumba, and I try to attend a HIIT class at least 2-3 times/month. Plus, I chase after 3 little ones. So while I am not in running shape, I am not in TERRIBLE shape.
2. Buy yourself a good pair of shoes! I bought mine the day before the run. I purchased them because they were a) purple and cute and b) on sale. Turns out, I actually picked a really good pair.
(I do recommend that you wear them at least once before the race, which I did not, but they were still awesome!)
3. Get yourself a good cheering section! I had my mom, my kids, and my husband cheering me on. I can’t tell you how much it motivated me as I started off running and saw my 3 little ones cheering for me. It made me feel awesome to be setting such a good example for them! (My son also ran the kids’ fun run)
4. Have a really good motivational factor. Mine is my kids. It goes back to a promise I made myself when I was on bed rest in the hospital and could barely even walk from the bed to the bathroom. I told myself I would be more active and healthy. I hadn’t done much of that. And my poor body, which suffers from Lupus and RA, needs me to take better care of it. Plus, as I mentioned above, I want to set a good example for my munchkins. (The promise of a beer and pizza after the race also kept me moving along!)
5. Hydrate! Ours was an evening race, so I was able to drink water and Gatorade all day.
6. Must have awesome tunes! I selected the “Linkin Park” Pandora channel and jammed my way through the 36 minutes.
7. Find your happy place. The whole time I was running, I let my music and my imagination carry me away. I was not thinking about discomfort, the 88 degree weather, the pain in my knees, or any thoughts that I couldn’t do it, and I got lost in the characters of my book. I played out different scenes that I want to add to The Boys I Left in Paris, and in some ways, it was like watching a movie while I ran. Certainly kept me distracted!
8. Just Do IT! Nike would be proud of me. I can make excuses all day. Finally I just decided to just go for it! I made the decision to just start running and keep going. Keep a slow pace and just willed myself to keep going. It’s amazing how much easier it is to do that when you’re
surrounded by left in the dust by 400 other runners! (I actually finished somewhere in the low 300s!)
I did it and I feel great now! I know that I CAN! I have now signed up to be on a half marathon training team! Tough Mudder, you don’t scare me!
What physical challenges have you taken on (or want to take on)?
*I am neither a medical professional, nor a physical trainer, so be sure to consult with the appropriate people before you start a physical regiment!