I had a new first this past weekend, you may remember that I said a few weeks ago how my wife wanted to start this couch to 5K thing. Well, I've been doing some of it with her, not as much as she has, I did miss some days due to my work schedule. Plus, I'm a bicyclist, not a runner, but anyway. We ended up registering for a 5K run that took place this past Sunday.
We arrived at the local Y about an hour early so we could get signed in and get the little one to the kids center to play while we ran. This run was a fundraiser for the Livestrong foundation, so I of course had no problem at all supporting it. There were a few others we knew doing the run including three people my wife was "training" with regularly, and we also found her brother in law and his son were running as well. We meet them all there and were ready to take off for the 11 o'clock start. I might add, that there was an incredible sea of well built women in tight running shorts and tops.
To tell you the truth, I wasn't sure how well I was going to do, I mean I carry a decent pace because of my height I think, but I'm not that good at continuous running. I tend to stop occasionally to rest my bad knee a bit. I've been doing ok on the runs with my wife, but I haven't run without stopping at one point or another.
Anyway, we got off to a start on a nice sunny day Sunday, not to hot, in the 70's. My wife and I agreed to run at our own comfort levels, so I wanted to get my faster pace towards the beginning knowing I'd fade after. We started and I wasn't ready for the crowds and clusters of people involved. I've done a few bike races in my time, but the groups in those tend to stretch out at their own intervals and paces quite quickly. This was just masses of people that I had keep finding ways around. I wanted to keep the brother in law in sight, since I knew my nephew was a good runner. I lost him in the crowd though and just did my own thing.
It was at at the end of the first mile when I could finally keep my own steady pace and the crowd had thinned. I just kept pounding away, my legs feeling good, by breathing steady. At the end of the second mile I was feeling parched, I was so happy to see the water stand. I just kept going, my pace starting to slow. I picked someone who was going about my pace and stuck with them, it helps to keep your mind occupied on something else I think.
At about the two and quarter mile mark, my knee was really starting to bother me, so yes, I had to walk to stretch it some. I only walked about a minute, I told myself, just to that corner there, and I did. I rounded the corner and just kept going. I hadn't seen anyone else I knew at all, so I wasn't catching or being caught by anyone it seemed.
I got to the finish in a time of 26:40, not bad for a guy who's not a regular runner I think. Turns out, the brother in law was only 30 seconds in front of me. His son did it in a bit over 23 minutes, damn kids have all the energy. My wife finished in just under 30, which she was quite happy with. All in all, it was not too bad for my first 5K.