My Kaiser 5K Experience
Thursday, September 12, 2013 I participated in Kaiser Permanente’s Run/Walk Challenge. You may recall that my first 5k of the year (See My 5k story), I completed it in 51:34. My end of the year goal (see 7 habits of…) is to complete a 5K in 45 minutes. So, my goal for the Kaiser run was really just to beat my 51:34 time. Well, I achieved that goal and finished in 46:10. So, I achieved that goal and I’m almost at my end of year goal. Well, let me tell ya, it wasn’t easy.
I ended up being right behind the “elite” runners, so when the gun went off and the elite runners started to sprint, I got caught up in that and started to sprint as well. Not sure I even made it a full block before I got winded like I’ve never been before. It must have been an adrenaline rush. I was desperately trying not to start walking already because I was in the group of runners not walkers. But, reality set in and I had to basically stop to catch my breath. At that initial pace, I wouldn’t have finished the race. So, I got real and started walking to catch my breath.
First lesson learned: I’m a slow starter when I run. I need the time to warm up with a fast paced walk.
As I was catching my breath, I even asked myself, “Why did I sign up for this again?” I even questioned if I really want to continue with running. Once I got settled and clear in my mind, “I wanted to do this because I enjoy it.” “Yes, I’m a runner and will continue to improve as a runner.” So with almost half the race completed, it dawned on me that since I stopped focusing on the pace of those fast runners and started going at my pace, doing what I do, everything became easier.
Second lesson learned: In running and in life, you’re really only in competition with yourself. Running your own race in your own time, results in success every time.
From this experience, I won’t be as quick to call an athlete a choke artist since I started off choking. It really is a difference between practice, training and game-time.
My Back to Football Run 5K
With lessons learned from the Kaiser 5K, I felt more prepared for this run on Saturday, September 14, 2013. I started at a better pace. The weather conditions were better. This took place on a cool 8am morning versus the Kaiser run at 7pm with peak summer heat. Conditions really do make a difference. I finished this race at an unofficial 42:56.
Lesson learned: The main lesson that I learned in this run is to not only have a plan about how you start the run, but a plan for each part of the run. I need a plan for how I’m going to run the hills and how to finish. I misjudged it at the end which may have cost me about 50 seconds on my timing.