Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I Ran a 5k!

I have hated running my entire life. In high school I consistently failed the mile run test and though I wanted to do better, I just could not run the way that some of my peers could and I did not have the motivation to get out on the track and work on my endurance.

After coming on as a full-time writer for Now in Salt Lake, I somehow began gravitating towards the Healthy and Fit section. It started with features on local yoga experts and the next thing I knew I was talking to cyclists, runners, 5k organizers, Zumba instructors, belly dancers ... the list goes on. I have never been an athletic person and the closest that I ever came to being an athlete was dedicating two nights a week to yoga practice.

After talking to so many athletes in various genres, I became interested in branching out. A close friend of mine suggested that we run a 5k together and after talking to the organizer for Salt Lake's "Night of the Running Dead" 5k, I decided that October 15, 2011, would be my first-ever 5k. I did not give myself very much time to train for this. I had a total of 3 1/2 weeks to go from not being able to jog for more than a minute to jogging three miles. Daveed told me that I was ambitious with my goals but he couldn't have been prouder when I told him three days before the official 5k that I made it to my three-mile mark.

I was incredibly proud of myself and the day of the race I got decked out in zombie makeup and a cute little skirt, put my running shoes on and hit the Utah Fairground to compete.

There were over 2,000 people there to run and it was a really exciting moment. When the horn blew I took off and with my friend Natalie, by my side, we jogged our way through the course.

There were some set-backs. The heat was pretty daunting for my first time running especially because I had been training in the morning or twilight hours, so it has been much cooler. At nearly 90 degrees, there was no shade over the fairgrounds. There were a few problems with the markers on the course and some runners ended up running nearly four miles while others ran less than three. Natalie and I felt like we did run more than three miles but there is no way for us to be certain since there were no mile markers and we did not have our MapMyRun programs turned on on our phones.

Regardless, I did it. I finished in like 505th place or something like that and I am totally fine with that. My goal was to finish and I did. Somehow, I ran at least three miles and that is a pretty incredible feeling.

My next 5k is on Nov. 5, and I am working on improving my time and my posture. I noticed in a photo that Daveed took of me that I am slouching and that would explain my sore back after I jog.

My experience was pretty great and the hardwork paid off. I am looking forward to the next 5k. And I am still a little weirded out that I not only "like" running, but I am looking for more opportunities to do it.

Take that, high school gym class!

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