Weekend Plans Post: On Running A 5K
I ran a 5K.
I have never run a 5K before. Like, in my whole life.
I may have walked 5K in one stretch, before. Disneyworld, maybe. Cedar Point. I’ve gone on hikes before, went for long walks in Vegas. (What’s the distance from the Luxor to Treasure Island? 2.3 miles? I’ve done that! Wait, how much is 5K?)
Anyway, I jogged a 5K. I stopped once, for about 15 seconds, to re-tie one of my shoes. The rest of the time, I was jogging. I jogged with a couple of my married friends, who have small kids (one is old enough to explain Frozen, the other is very much interested in animal noises) and they push a double-stroller as they jog… which slows them down just enough for me to be able to jog at pretty much exactly the same pace they’re going at. The roads we jog on are empty (we saw ONE car the entire time we jogged) and we all kept socially distant, only getting close to each other when they traded the stroller between them and once when they gave me a bottle of water, half of which I dumped over my head.
We said that we’d meet at 7:15 PM in front of one of the office buildings that has an abandoned-between-5PM-and-7AM parking lot and I’d be able to enjoy the sunset somewhere around the tail end of the run. Up a hill. Down a hill. Up another hill. Down another hill. Apparently there was a very subtle slope for those first two hills because jogging back to the car was all downhill. Which was nice.
And the sunset was beautiful.
And now I hurt. Like, holy cow, I can’t believe my shoulders are ticked off like they are. They didn’t even do anything.
Anyway, I think I started jogging back in 2017. It was one of those things where my friends and I would get changed into jogging clothes and I’d go for a brisk walk for one-half mile, spin on my heel, then briskly walk back. Then I did the thing where I jogged for a tenth of a mile before briskly walking. Then a jog for a tenth of a mile, walk for a tenth, jog for a tenth. Then two-tenths, walk for one, jog two-tenths, walk for one, jog two-tenths, walk for two. Then jog the WHOLE mile.
Ugh. (But somewhere in there I went from being unable to speak for two minutes after I was done to being able to hold a conversation the entire time. Provided the words were short.)
As time went on, my boss said that he picked up an app called “Couch to 5K“. And we were going to do it! And we started it and didn’t finish it. Then we started again and didn’t finish it.
All of these were punctuated with life happening, of course. Sometimes we’d go a month without jogging. Sometimes I’d say something like “well, I’m climbing at the climbing gym… I don’t need to jog”. Sometimes there would just be too many things happening.
This most recent time, we had decided to be good this time and DO IT. We jogged pretty religiously, 3 times a week.
It starts out pretty easy. Walk for a warm-up. 30 second jog, 60 second walk. Do that 5 more times. That’s not so bad, right? Nice day one!
Then you skip a day. Then on day two, you do 30 second jogs and 30 second walks.
Then you skip a day. Then you throw a 60 second jog in there in the middle.
As the days pass, you start doing 5 minute jogs, 3 minute walks to punctuate. Six minute jogs.
They have a peak there in the middle where you do a single, uninterrupted, 20 minute jog. Holy cow.
And it’s right around that peak there that winter hit us and we slowed down and then the pandemic hit us and we stopped.
So when I started jogging again from home, I started where I left off. 5 minute walk to warm up. A 20 minute jog. Up the hill, get to the top of the hill, turn around, jog all the way back. 5 minute walk home to cool down. And then again the next time. And then again.
When I started these jogs again, I always was certain when I neared the top of the hill that I had the Coronavirus because my breath was gone and I wanted to die. Then I was sure that I had it because my breath was gone. Then I was curious whether or not I had it because I was pretty out of breath.
And then, Wednesday, I visited my friends and we ran a 5K. It took about an hour. One hour and two minutes, to be exact. Yeah, maybe it was more of a jog.
And, lemme tell ya, if I could do it. You can do it.
I think that I’m going to go jogging with them again next week. It’s nice to get out of the house, it’s nice to have conversations with people face to face (even if we’re all 8 feet away from each other), it’s nice to have jogged.
This weekend, I’m probably going to extend my 20 minute jog to a 30 minute jog. See what’s on the other side of the top of the hill close to home.
So… what’s on your docket?
(Featured image is Tiger enjoying a moment of Zen.)