My friends and family are wondering who I am, and what did I do with the “real” Megan, because I have started getting up at 4:30 in the morning… for BOOT CAMP. I started a boot camp workout class on Wednesday, and even on my days off from I am getting up no later than 5am and running. Outside. In the dark. Seriously. Even today, my alarm went off at 4:30am, and although I didn’t get up right away, I was still up and out of bed, eating breakfast by 6am.
Who is this person that I have become!?!
After my first day of boot camp, I was a little nervous, because I felt a soreness like I had never felt before. I thought that the soreness in my quads after the Crim was the worst soreness I’d ever felt. No. That does not compare to the soreness after doing a fitness test where we had to do squats for one minute, squats so low that our bums hit a medicine ball sitting underneath us. And then after than a minute of push-ups. Followed by a minute of sit-ups. Followed by an intense workout. Anyway, I was nervous because I knew I was running a race in a few short days. I went for a run on Thursday morning and could barely sit down and get back up for the rest of the day. On Friday I went back to boot camp and everyone in class was complaining about how sore their quads were. We all agreed that we were excited and ready to workout again, but please, for the love of God, no squats. First thing on the circuit – goblet squats. ::sigh::
Yesterday morning when I woke up for my race, however, my quads felt much better. Apparently all the arm and chest exercises we did took the soreness away from my quads and put it into my triceps, pecs and lats. That left me feeling more positive about the race. Looking at the weather, I was even more positive – temps under 60 degrees, YES, this is my kind of running weather! Well, except for the chance of rain. Which proved to be 100% when the race started.
I got to the race and met up with my boss who was running with me. He much prefers warm weather, so while I was feeling quite comfortable in my capris, a long sleeve shirt and a short sleeve over it (I totally rocked my Crim shirt, heck yes!) he was freezing in long leggings, shorts, “the warmest under armour I could find”, and another running shirt on top of that. So we took a short little jog to warm up, and as we were jogging, the mist started. I don’t know what is worse – straight up pouring rain or a constant spray of mist. I feel like the mist is definitely more annoying.
We got up to the starting line and found some more of our coworkers that were doing the walk. My boss and I headed up to the front of the start with the rest of the runners and anxiously awaited the start of the race. I told my boss not to worry about me this time – last time we ran together, he wanted me to keep up with him, and I did for about 1/10th of a mile. That was his first 5k and he came in 3rd place in his age group. Yesterday he was nervous because he had done a trial run the night before and his pace was slower than in our previous race. I told him that today would be different because it’s a race – there are people to pick out and run faster than, adrenaline is pumping, plus he would want to finish so he could warm up! As they finally said “Ready, set, go!” I wished my boss a good race and I got off to my slow, steady start.
My goal for this race was to keep my pace steady and not burn out. I wanted to run the whole race, since it has been a long time since I did that. Back in April or May I had started to train with run/walk intervals because my friend that was running the Cedar Point 5k with me was training that way. You might remember from that race recap that I discovered I was much faster doing those intervals, and my running had just taken off from there! But I found that now that I was running intervals, whenever I tried to just run a race, I would tire myself out by running too fast in the beginning and have to revert to intervals again. So my goal yesterday was to NOT let that happen.
The course for this race was very similar to the Bee Healthy for Life 5k course. Really the only difference was that we actually ran through the Children’s Zoo in Saginaw, which was an experience. The paths were very narrow so I kept getting stuck behind people running slower than me. And it wasn’t exactly the most pleasant smelling place. There were lots of cheerleaders (literally cheerleaders, like from the local high schools and middle schools) along the route, and I had fun cheering with them. They made that misty, cold, somewhat miserable race much more enjoyable.
My first mile felt great. I was running at an 11:05 pace. I thought hmm… not sure if I can pick up my pace for the rest of this race. My second mile was done at an 11:29 pace. So much for trying to do negative splits. But I pushed myself hard for that last 1.1 mile… my third mile was an 11:06 pace and the last .1 was 10:35! As I sprinted across that finish line and saw that the time on the clock was less than 35 minutes, I wanted to cry tears of joy! I had run the entire 5k, and I had ALMOST gotten a PR!!!
Here’s a breakdown of my recent running stats:
- The last 5k I did was the Canadian Lakes 5k for the 4th of July. It was a “fun run”, so no official time, but my unofficial Endomondo time was 34:12. I ran the first mile, then switched to intervals of 4 minutes running, 2 minutes walking.
- My last “officially” time 5k was the Bee Healthy for Life 5k, which was pretty much the same course. My official time was 34:52. I also ran the first mile, then switched to intervals of 4 minutes running, 2 minutes walking.
- The last 5k that I ran without stopping was the Chip River Run, and it was brutal – super humid and so slow. My official time was 43:19.
- Prior to this race, my best 5k without stopping was the Little Foot 5k in 2014, but that course is short – only 2.98 miles. And it was not officially timed. So based on my pace for 2.98 miles, my 5k time should have been about 35:31…
- My official time for this race (Run For Your Heart) was 34:32!
So not only did I run the fastest 5k that I have ever run without stopping to walk, but I also shaved 20 seconds off my time for (almost) the same course! Oh, and if you were wondering about my boss… he placed second in his age group this time! Overall it was an awesome race, and I am so proud of how far my running has come. I may still be a “slow runner” but I don’t care. I’m out there, I’m improving, and I’m lapping everyone that is on the couch!!!