Woo! There is nothing like running 6.4 miles (yes the trail was a little longer than a true 10k which should be 6.2) and a mojito to start the day off right! I was even able to convince my morning-hating husband to get out of bed at 7:15 to come and support me! He wasn’t able to register for the race because he didn’t think he would want to do it before and when he finally decided to go for it, it was full. He did join me in a beverage and some treats after the race though :)
This was my first 10k race only my second race ever. I did my first race last month and it was a 5k. I have been so scared to start doing races because I’m a pretty green runner and not super fast but I’m so glad I decided to try it out! I actually run a lot faster on my races than I do when I run for fun or fitness. I don’t consider myself a competitive person, but I guess I do try to keep up with the group which motivates me to keep a faster pace than usual. My game plan is this: I pick a person a little ahead of me and match their pace for awhile. Then I pass them! Sometimes this doesn’t work and they pull ahead. But like I said, I’m not too competitive so it doesn’t bother me! It’s more like a game than a race to me.
I don’t know my exact “chip time” yet, but I think I ran 6.4 miles in about 54:30. I wasn’t even sure that I could finish in under an hour so I was pleased as punch!
To train for the race, I have been doing about 3-4 runs a week. I go about 3.5-4.5 miles most days and have a “long run day” on Saturday where I have progressively worked up to running 7 miles. This is just over the last month and I hope to get up to a higher milage, but that’s where I’m at now! About a year ago I couldn’t even run a mile, so I feel like I’ve come a long way! I also crosstrain during the week. I do 2-4 days of other types of cardio, such as the elliptical, bicycling, the “rowing” machine, or walking. I throw in 2 or 3 “strength” days, where I might do a pilates video or lift some weights. And of course, I do yoga at least 5 days a week. My yoga practice varies in duration from about 10 minutes on days I’m rushed to an hour on a more leisurely day or a day I’m sore and want some “active rest.”
I have flat feet, an old ankle injury that likes to pop up and say hello every now and then, and because of these issues am more prone to injuring other joints such as my knees and hips. (Umm did I mention I’m only 23? Should I really be falling apart like this?) Anyhow, injury prevention is very important to me because I hate having limited mobility! Here are the most helpful things I do to prevent injuries:
*YOGA! Yoga is great to stretch and strengthen your muscles as well as reduce lactic acid build up in the muscles. Lactic acid is responsible for the soreness you feel after working a muscle too hard.
*Crosstraining rather than running all the time
*Icing my legs and ankles after a long run- I hate cold more than anyone, but this really works to reduce inflammation and prevent soreness the next day!
*If ice is unavailable- pop an ibuprofen. I don’t advocate taking a lot of pain killers or pills of any kind, but ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory than will help to both prevent and treat soreness. I took two this morning before the race because I knew I wouldn’t be able to ice my legs afterwards.
Of course, nutrition and performance go hand and hand, so I made sure to properly fuel my workout! Last night I had a nice carbohydrate and protein rich meal of veggies and chickpeas over millet topped with lite feta and hydrating watermelon for dessert. This morning, before the race I had an infamous kale smoothie: 3 kale leaves, 1/2 frozen banana, 1/ cup frozen strawberries, 1 tablespoon chia seeds, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon maca, stevia to taste, and 1 cup soymilk. I topped it with some homemade granola! BAM. It was earlier than I like to eat, but I wanted to have something to run on.
After the race, I was not hungry, but I figured I should give my body something to replenish its glycogen stores and some protein for muscle recovery. I had a banana and half a piece of whole wheat bread with peanut butter that they were giving out for free, as well as a mini jamba juice smoothie (also freebie). Of course I also had the mojito that was complementary… I probably could have done with out it though. There wasn’t a lot of alcohol in it but really any amount was more than I needed…
Once home, I showered and dressed and around 12 my hunger hit! I whipped up a super food salad to feast on:
That’s an all raw, all delicious salad composed of a bed of wasabi arugula, cucumber slices, shredded red cabbage, carrot ribbon, sprouted quinoa, sprouted lentils, and avocado with a homemade lemon-tahini dressing. Topped with salt and pepper of course- I earned the salt! I did a lot of sweating :) I also had a mini protein bar that they were giving out at the race with my lunch.
Do you have any special running/ training tips or routines?