Last Saturday, I ran my first 5K. Though I did walk at some points during the Monkey C Monkey Run race, I ran every hill and beat my time goal. That said, I didn't care for myself well in the days leading up to the race. In fact, I could have injured myself badly during the race due to my stupidity.
In the future, I will get a good night's sleep before a race. Last Saturday, I worked a bar shift, and got four hours of sleep. Adam drove me to the race so I didn't have to stress out about parking or having an accident, but I get even clumsier when I don't rest.
I will pace my first mile better so I don't burn through all of my energy. Even though I beat my time goal, my energy level was shot for the rest of the day. Interval training will also help me to build endurance so I'm not bedridden for the weekend.
Speaking of training, I will do more cross training and yoga. After the race, I didn't cool down properly. Even after 45 minutes with my torture tube -- errr -- foam roller, my gluteus maximus is still pretty sore. Again, it's something that I usually do religiously, but my sleep deprived brain rejected stretching in favor of huddling under a towel during breakfast.
Despite the number of silly ways I undermined my race, I did do a few things right. The day before, I over-hydrated. I stretched out well before work and stuck to the dinner and snacks I had packed. I ran once early this week, and worked out my core so I wouldn't fatigue my legs.
After setting a benchmark time, I have signed up for another race on November 16th. By that time, I will most likely have started training for a half marathon (a what? a half marathon). Right now, I think this distance will be more of a challenge than anything, but I have an amazing resource in the coaches and classes at Resolute Running. Just knowing that I'm not training alone is a huge comfort.
When I race in November, I plan to run the entire route without stopping and to improve my time. These goals may be modest, but they're doable as long as I exercise regularly. The bump in energy and productivity that regular activity can provide me with the impetus to work through my to do list and to set new goals. From there, the possibilities are endless.