Saturday, June 14, 2008

2 This Saturday's "Run for the Roses 5K"


Well, it's official. I just registered this morning for the Run for the Roses 5K, which is this Saturday. Yes, I know I've barely trained for the race, but at the bare minimum, atleast I know I can complete the distance, as I just did it last weekend (i.e., The National Race for the Cure 5K! ;-)

And of course, I've been running 30+ minutes (or 2.96 miles), 2-3 times a week over the past few weeks, which is close enough to the 5K (or 3.1 mile) distance. Even so, my running's been rather spotty, especially from mid-May until mid-June. Of course it'd be great if I could say that I ran 30 minutes, 3 times a day for several consecutive weeks on end, but then that just wouldn't be remotely accurate or true! ;-)

So, bearing the above factors in mind, I'm not going to worry about pace (or my finishing time) too much, & will instead focus on just completing the distance & running the best that I can at my current physical shape! More important is just getting back into habit of racing & re-developing the race-training mentality. And the first step is just signing up & running for races.

Ideally, I like to enter races after having completed about twice the racing distance, mostly for stamina reasons. Also ideal would be the lovely idea of being able to run the race at (or close to) "goal pace," whatever that means at this point! ;-)

But seriously, it'd be great if I could 10:30 minute-miles, but since I'm currently running between 11 & 12 minute miles at the same time of day & temperature, it's probably an unrealistic expectation at this point. Of course, it'd be different if I'd been running consistent distance over several months.

Anyhow, enough focusing on this. OK, it seems this "not focusing on pace" thing might be a bit harder in practice. ;-) When it comes to metrics, I'm very competitive, even if it's only myself that I'm trying to beat. And OK, I also do have to admit that I try to keep other runners at bay upon sensing their footfalls in back of me. But if you've been faithfully following this blog all along, then you already know all about that. ;-)

So what if I'm not currently running my best pace right now & am not perfectly trained for the upcoming race?! It's not like I'm an elite runner or a serious contender for cash prizes. LOL. My finishing time will probably be a blip on the radar of human existence. In the end, no one but me, & of course some friends & family, will probably even care (!). So what if I get a bit nervous or hesitant when I begin to think about race day?! If I didn't, it'd probably be slightly abnormal. Adrenaline can do that to a person. ;-)

And again, I can't use any of these reasons as an excuse not to enter races. I can't hold myself back with excuses or fears; it's just about doing it & going for it. It'd be different if I wasn't physically able to cover the distance, but since I already know I can, the only thing that would be holding me back from racing 5Ks at this point would be ...myself. And that'd just be ridiculous, shameful, & wussy. Yeah, that's right. I "ain't no sissy," & am not afraid to say it. I might not be the faster runner out there, but I've got heart & guts, & a fighting spirit, & am certainly not going to give up that easily. So, time to put my money where my er, feet are. ;-) Hey Abi, are you taking all of this in?! ;-) Of course, I'm saying this to spur you on to run that 8K! ;-O

But anyhow, back to the race itself. I ran it once before a few years ago (can't remember exactly when!) & remember enjoying the course, which is really scenic & beautiful. Have any of you done this race before? I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on it.....


Looking ahead: At this point, it's probably a tad bit unrealistic for me to do the Rockville Twilighter 8K on July 19th, which is 5 weeks away. Now, of course, I physically could cover the distance & run the race, since an 8K isn't that much more than an 5K, but in principle, it'd completely go against my overall training philosophy of gradual distance building, tempered with common sense & moderation. And anyhow, I'm honestly not in the kind of shape right now where I could be ready to run 5 miles (decently!) in 5 weeks.

Plus, if I continue with the BOHR program at the current rate/schedule, by the week of the race (on July 19th), I'll only be in Week 6 of the program, which are comprised of 30, 33, and 41 minute runs. And if you think that I'll be covering 5 miles in any of those times, you've got another thing coming. ;-) It won't even be close, not by any stretch of the imagination.

But that's OK. The Twilighter will be something to look forward to doing... next year. ;-) My friend Janice loves to talk about how much fun this race is, so if any of my running pals decide to enter this year, chances are I'll be showing up regardless to lend my support. Speaking of which, if any of these friends happen to be checking in here & reading this blog, please email me & let me know what your plans are! ;-)

So now I just need to find another 5K race in a few months time, to have something to gauge my racing progress. Anyone got any suggestions for good 5K races in the Northeast & Midatlantic?


Tom@RunnersLounge said...

Good luck in your race this weekend.

You have a great outlook about running. Your enthusiasm and enjoyment for running is more important than your speed.


cyberpenguin said...

Thanks, Tom! I'll be sure to keep your supportive comments in mind when I'm racing this weekend! 8-)

I'm sure you're probably familiar with "The Penguin's Column" at Runner's World. I think he's got a lot of wisdom & his point of view definitely makes a lot of sense, especially in terms of preserving the fun & the joy of running. I bet more people would probably be able to run as a "lifetime" sport, if they followed his advice! ;-) (It's really inspirational to see people well into their 70's, 80's, & 90's who're still running! It's validation that people can live full & active lives no matter what their age!)

Of course, in the end, everyone runs for different reasons, & not everyone is a born track star. But of course that shouldn't preclude people from participating in the sport, or enjoying it!

Speaking of which, the race I just did on June 7th, i.e., the National Race for the Cure, was all about runners & walkers supporting each other in their mission to raise money for a good cause. I find that it's nice to do races every so often where the focus isn't solely on metrics, placement, & winning, but rather is more about the collective energy of the event itself. And this race was definitely an incredibly uplifting event. Have you ever done this race before?! If not, I highly recommend it. It was even more fun this year because we ran it as a team.

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