Today’s Adventures in Fitness (AIF) is a twofer – I completed C25K Week 3, Day 1 while I participated in the Silicon Valley Santa Run.
I’d been looking forward to the Santa Run all month because it was going to be the first time I attempted any sort of run/walk while doing a 5K. And, it was going to be the first time I did the 5K on my own, well, sort of. Ani and Di both did it with me, but I’d told them upfront that I really wanted to continue my C25K program, so I’d be using my headphones and doing the walk/run. They were both really cool about the fact that we wouldn’t be walking this 5K side by side as we had when we did the Color Me Rad.
Pre race, I had to get my selfies in:
We wanted to get down to the race area early, so we’d have no problems with parking. Since it was starting really late – at 3pm, we left around 12:30 and had lunch at Chipotle. I had a steak burrito bowl, which was a great choice since I only eat 1/3 of it at a time and it fueled me perfectly. We got down to the race area with over an hour to spare. So what do three girls who are excited about a 5K do? Take “groupies” of course:
Waiting for the race was the most difficult part, partly because I’m just so impatient and partly because I had so much anticipation going into it, because I was going to do Day 1 of Week 3 of C25K, which is fairly intimidating:
5:00 warm up
Jog: 3:00 (yes, that’s 3 entire minutes of jogging at once)
5:00 cool down
And just like that, I was off and walking at a brisk pace (Endomondo clocked me at 4.0mph). At the first jogging section, I knew I started running too quickly – all the adrenaline hit me, and my competitive streak definitely kicked in, too. Because I’d started running at was was surely a 5.0 mph, I barely made it to the end of the first section, but I did. And I definitely used the 1:30 walk time to catch my breath. When it came time to run for 3:00 run, I have to be honest and say that I stopped running with about a minute to go. I couldn’t seem to regulate my pace. I was either going as fast as I could, or I was walking. By the time it got to the next running section, I realized I needed to slow it down if I was going to make it through, which is what I did. I was still going at a good pace, about 4.5mph, which is faster than my usual treadmill runs. By the time I was hitting the second and final 3:00 run, I am so proud to say I made it all the way through. I took it slow, but I did it. 28 minutes of the C25K was done, but I still had more of this 5K to go.
I’d thought I was going to complete the remainder of the race walking, but I felt so guilty about giving up a minute early on that one section of running, that I continued to do a run/walk style for the rest of the race. Nothing evenly timed, mind you. I’d just walk for a bit and then tell myself to run from those palm trees to that street sign, and so on. I did that at least 4 times.
The proudest of those times was when the course was getting to a fairly steep incline, and I decided to “get all Rocky” on that incline and run up it. And I didn’t stop at the top of that incline, but kept running to the next intersection. When I finished, I felt like this:
I kept doing these periodic run/walk intervals for the rest of the race. I was listening to my Madonna RockMyRun playlist, and felt incredibly invigorated. I did end the 5K walking, but I was walking strong, and proud. I felt so good!
As I crossed the finish line, I got completely overwhelmed. Tears welled up in my eyes, and I had to hold myself back from the brink of the ugly cry, because I was on the edge of it. I was so emotional because the realization hit me – I had just done a 5K where I was running for 1/3 of it! (Carina, my math may not be right – I don’t think I did a full 1/2, so my English-teacher brain goes to the next “measuring cup portion” I can think of). I’d also just PR’d! (More on that in a second). As of today I have lost 112 pounds, and I am doing things I only dreamed of. Actually, I guess I’m living my dreams. So you can see why I was so emotional. This experience meant the world to me.
When I got this notification that I’d completed the 5K in 48:56, I was ecstatic! I can actually say I’d PR’d!! By about 8 minutes, which is awesome! I can’t explain the feeling of pride that I had at that moment. Just so happy about my life and all that I’ve done to change it. Incredible!
The Santa Run ended at Christmas in the Park, and this tree was the first thing I saw as I finished. I was still trying to get ahold of my emotions, and seeing this majestic tree really hit home for me. In those post-race minutes when I was taking it all in, this tree symbolized everything I had just accomplished. I know that may sound corny or silly, but it’s 100% true.
It didn’t take long for Di to finish next and then Ani was shortly behind her. We’d all finished the 5K in under an hour, and were feeling really good. As we walked back to the car, we happened upon one last photo op: