My mother told me that my grandfather used to say of the weather in Oklahoma, that only “fools or foreigners” would dare to predict it. Today was good evidence of that. This morning our favorite weatherman predicted that the high would be near 60 and the foggy, cloudy stuff would clear by noon. He was wrong. Very wrong. It was a chillier 51, when I embarked on my 5K and it was still damp, cloudy, a little breezy, and mildly unpleasant at 5:30. Mildly unpleasant is pretty standard this time of year. What’s funny about the weather here is that people will always say, “It could be a lot worse.” True. Very true. And I’m pretty sure there’s always a 20 percent chance of a tornado.
Enough about the weather for now. Today’s 5K went fast. I focused on every step and paid close attention to my pace. My total time was 41:53 minutes and an average pace of 13:31 minutes per mile. My best pace was 7:57 minutes per mile.
The best part of walking/jogging a 5K when it’s cooler outside is that it’s natural to quicken your pace to try to keep warm. Either that or to shorten the time spent on the 5K. Both are very motivating.
Part of my focus was on my heal and toe steps, my attention to my speed, and pushing myself to jog just a little farther than usual. Part of my goal, if I haven’t mentioned it before, is to eventually train myself so that I can jog all or most of the way.
Melissa has decided that we’re probably only going to participate in half marathons this year, so we begin our training this weekend for the first one that occurs on April 1. She has designed our training schedule to begin with a 4 mile walk this weekend, that will also count as our daily 5K. I think her plan is to increase our distance by one mile each Saturday and then rest for a Saturday or two before the race. Except for our daily 5K, that is.
A half marathon takes us approximately 3.25 hours to complete, which is quite a commitment. The cool part is that we can eat anything we want afterward. The weird thing is that after walking 13.1 miles, you don’t feel much like eating, so it has that added effect.
Half marathons also require some planning. We have to take Ibuprofen before the race and keep some with us just in case of pain. We also have to carry tissue and sometimes a little snack. After about the sixth mile, I get really hungry. Some of our better supported races, people will kindly setup beer stations, candy stations, or other snack and refreshment pauses for us. There are also the standard water or Nuun stations sponsored by the race coordinators. I almost always choose Nuun over water at the stations.
We have an extremely great group of people who support us as volunteers from the community, including Police Officers who keep us safe during the races.
Let us know if you’re running any 5Ks, 10Ks, Half Marathons, or other races this year. We’d love to have you write up a guest post. If you’re taking part in the 5K-a-Day Challenge, let us know and let us know if you want to write a guest post.