My First

I ran in an official timed 5k! It was amazing! {Sorry for the excitement πŸ™‚ } I was so nervous and waited to sign up until just a few days before, but at least didn’t wait until day of when I could easily have just not. I had a pretty bad run (slow) two days before this, so I was worried how I would do. This small 5k is promoted as a fast 5k because it’s flat (yay, no hills). This brings a few who are looking for a new PR. I was impressed with the group. These were real athletes in my small little town. And here I was doing the same thing they were doing. Waiting for the start, I spotted a man with an Ironman tattoo on his calf. Holy Cow! There were also plenty of first-timers just completing a local couch-to-5k program and also lots of children racing. There were lots of families and groups that knew each other. I was with my neighbor, her son (BQ) and her sister visiting from out of town. I got to experience first-hand the camaraderie of runners that I’ve heard so much about from you running bloggers.

river city fourth 5k

I lined up at the very back of the pack. I had my Jeff Galloway app all queued up. The gun went off and I was thinking okay, I guess it’s “time to run” (Jeff Galloway voice). He encouraged me the whole way, telling me when it was “time to walk” and “time to run”. I was encouraged early on when I was able to pass some people and I thought that at least I wouldn’t be last over the finish line. A large part of the race I was with an older man who’s running style resembled shuffling to me. It was kind of comic that I would catch and pass him on my run and he would catch and pass me on my walk. Back and forth we went until at about mile 2 I was able to get ahead and stay ahead of him. The last mile was tough. The sun was hot and my stomach was upset. I really tried to think that in a few minutes it would be over, so now was not the time to slow down, no matter how bad I felt.

I did finish and it felt so good. I couldn’t have been happier. When they started handing out medals, I realized they were giving to 5th place for age groups. Oh, my, goodness!! I looked at the results sheet and sure enough, there were only four of us women in my age group. What?!? That meant that no matter what my time, I was going to get a medal. Okay, maybe I was proud of myself for finishing and even proud my time was better than I was expecting. But it sure was fun to get a medal. All I could think was how lucky I was to be old (haha).

Here’s the data:

River City Fourth 5k
July 4, 2014 8:00a
Method: Galloway run/walk (1 min/1 min ratio)
43:44 Gun time
42:35 Watch time
327/342 Overall
4/4 Age group

One thing I found amazing about this experience was the very young and very old racing. I could not believe it. The youngest age group was 9 & under, with the best times of 25:52 (female) and 24:01 (male). Wow. Of the 17 kids under 10, only two had a time slower (slightly) than mine. The youngest of the whole race was a boy who was 5 with a time of 41:31. I hope these kids stick with the healthy lifestyle and really hope they aren’t being pushed by adults. I remember when my kids were in sports how hard it was for me to differentiate between encouraging and pushing. I guess the best way to encourage is to be an example and when it comes to any kind of sports/fitness I was definitely not an example for my kids. Well, better late than never.

Now, for the very old. The oldest age group represented was 75 & older. For the women there were two 78 year olds with the fastest at 39:41 and the second just behind me at 45:54. I hope I can still run at 78 and I hope I can have a time like that too! Amazing! For the men, there were two 75 year olds with the fastest at 36:35 and the second just behind me at 45:09. It turns out he was the man I ran back and forth with during the middle of the race. In this small race, there were 39 people older than me and most of them with times better than me. This is so inspiring to me. I don’t care what my age is now. I just want to run and hope my health will allow me to for a long time.

This upcoming Saturday I will be doing the local Balloon Fest Morning Launch 5k. It’s the first year for this 5k, so it should be interesting. I’m already getting those knots in my stomach and it’s only Monday. I hope this gets a little easier with experience.


Full disclosure: my medal may have been gotten by default of only four of us in my age group, but the other three here earned their medals by their times!



40 thoughts on “My First

  1. Woohoo!!! Congrats! So proud of you for pushing through the initial anxiety, and having fun with it! I can imagine how empowering that felt πŸ™‚


  2. So proud of you and I love your personable account of it. But, I still get the jitters before each race….until I stand in line waiting for that horn to sound off. And then I just feel excitement. Good luck on your next one and I think you have “the running bug” . πŸ™‚


    • Thanks, Charlotte! I did feel a lot of excitement too- a funny mix of excitement and dread lol. It does feel like I’ve caught the bug, but I feel like I have a long ways to improve on commitment and motivation. But I know this is common, I don’t worry too much about it, just keep moving forward.


  3. Wow wow wow!!!! Very well done!!! That medal is deserved and earned and it doesn’t matter how many people who were in there in your age group. Everyone one else was on the couch or a spectator – you were out running!!! So happy for you!!!


  4. CONGRATULATIONS!!!! Well done, I am so happy that you pulled through till the end despite the upset stomach among all the other things. Getting a medal is indeed a special moment and all the pain is totally worth it. Keep it up! ❀ xoxo


  5. Yay! so awesome!!! I’m glad you got to see that there are all types at races – from elites to kids to walkers to ironmen. And it’s always great to get a medal! Again, way to go! Glad you had fun!


  6. I’m so impressed! And excited for you!! Wow! I’ve considered doing something like this but never quite had the courage. You are an inspiration. I just might try one of these days. You go girl!!!


    • Thank you! I highly recommend it. It’s something I thought I would never ever do, and now I have! It’s such a great learning experience to attempt something you feel is so out of your comfort zone.


  7. Yay! Awesome job and you deserve to be proud and earned that medal! My first ever was just over 2 years ago, and I still remember and treasure that moment! Changed my life.


  8. Congratulations!!! This is so great and I love your medal too! That’s a fantastic time, my friend. πŸ™‚ It’s definitely a moment to be cherished forever.

    Man I hope I’m still running when I’m nearly 80! That’s awesome!


  9. Congratulations, Cynthia! I can feel your excitement, you described it so well. I’m utterly impressed by you and you’re already gearing up for your second one — AMAZING! What an inspiration you are! I can’t wait to hear about the next race.


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