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Thinking of running a 5k.. but

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Old 06-20-2010, 10:57 AM   #1
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Default Thinking of running a 5k.. but

My next major goal (as you can see in the sig) is to complete a 5k. I'm not much of a runner, and I'm still obese, so I planned on trying to complete this in the safety and comfort of my own home, on a treadmill. We don't usually have 5ks or events like that in my area, anyhow. Well, I just found out that the local Children's Hospital is having a 5k on August 7th. Everyone is welcome to run or walk it (I would prefer to run).

I really am considering it, but I am kind of terrified for the obvious reasons. I'm imagining scenarios of being the only fat person left behind everyone else in my head, even though I've lost 73 pounds.. and I know it shouldn't bug me, but it kind of does? But the nagging part of my brain is telling me to go anyway, because I know completing that would make me feel so awesome. Of course, now I'm rambling. But I just have trouble running in front of others, and a lot of that has to do with some embarrassing high school gym moments I'd rather forget.

Another thing I'm wondering is would it be possible to train in time for it? I can walk for days and I jog quite a bit, but most of my workouts have been lifting weights, yoga, and other random exercise techniques. Can I fit training for this 5k into that without messing up my weight loss?

Any advice would be helpful, thanks so much. This place is becoming a safe haven for me.
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Old 06-20-2010, 11:06 AM   #2
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A walk/run 5k is a great intro to a 5k. I did a 5k 2 winters ago and it was a charity 5k (jingle bell run). Even though I got an injury within the first half mile and couldn't run the whole thing, I was far from being last. It was a great experience and everyone cheered everyone else on.

The only thing I'd say is that running on a treadmill isn't quite the same as running outdoors so I'd mix in some outdoor running intervals in to give yourself some practice.
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Old 06-20-2010, 11:37 AM   #3
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Thanks, nelie, I'll try that. I jog outside sometimes, but I live in a mountainous area, so it can be difficult to run around here. I might try driving to town and running along the sidewalk if I can muster up the confidence to!
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Old 06-20-2010, 11:56 AM   #4
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I think you should do it, for sure. Trust me, at 5ks you see a lot of people that are overweight. It's a great starting distance for people that are getting into running and it'd be really good to celebrate your accomplishments. You've lost 70lbs! That's amazing! Yeah, you might not be done losing weight yet, but you are so much healthier than you were 70lbs ago. Running a race (no matter what the distance) is a great feeling. Everyone's cheering for everyone as you cross the finish line. I ran my first race at like...185lbs and I wasn't the biggest person there by any stretch. 5ks are great for that reason. You get all shapes and sizes of people.

Also, keep in mind you'd be training for this. It's not like you're gonna pass out at mile one because you're overweight still. You'll have trained and built up strength and endurance. You'll do great. And then the next one you run you can work on your time and then maybe try a 10k if you enjoy racing.

Do it. Seriously. You'll be glad you did. And get a good outfit to run in so you feel comfortable

And you absolutely have time to train for this. Even if you have to walk part of it, you'll be able to finish it just fine. Lots of people run intervals (I'm training for a half marathon and I still run intervals, my friends dad is 6'0", 130lbs and does marathons and he takes the occasional walk break).

And running is one of the absolute best forms of weight loss. If you're still following your eating plan there's no reason the weight won't keep coming off. You might be a little swollen on days after your runs (like with any workout routine), but the scale should keep going down overall.
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Old 06-20-2010, 02:54 PM   #5
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Check out the Couch to 5K (C25K) running plan. It's a 9-week program of walking/running intervals that increase in intensity to prepare you to run a 5K. Since the race you want to participate in is in less than 9 weeks, and because you've already had some experience with walking/running, you might be able to skip the first few weeks.

I'm about to begin Week 3, and I'm loving this program! Four weeks ago, walking from my front door to my car exhausted me, and now I'm running. The intervals have been perfect for increasing my endurance.

Also, check around your area to see if there are any parks with running trails or tracks. Running outdoors is different from running the treadmill, and it's a lot more fun (imo).

And those embarrassing phys ed class memories? Yeah, me too. Like trying to complete a required mile run with a broken bra strap. Just remind yourself that this isn't high school anymore, and 90% of the population is going to be supportive and encouraging of your efforts to improve your health.

Good luck!
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Old 06-20-2010, 03:11 PM   #6
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Molly - I started running when I was at 215 pounds or so, and completed my first 5k when I weighed 205 pounds. Still obese for my BMI. And you know what? There were lots of people who came in after me. I am sure every race is different, but if it the kind of race where people are encouraged to walk as well as run, and you try to run at least some of it, you are pretty much guaranteed not to come in last. In my race, there were several people who took over 60 minutes to complete the 5k. There were people of all ages and fitness levels in my race, and I imagine that is the case in most races, especially ones like yours that are for a cause so people participate to support the cause, not just cause they are atheletes. And, okay, I bought the picture the race photographer took as I crossed the finish line - and guess what? I am finishing right in front of skinny minny runner - if you train well and prepare, it is possible to be faster than others who may have a lower BMI but aren't as prepared. Not that I encourage being competitive, but, I gotta admit I love that finish line photo!

I agree with Rochester - it can be tough to overcome bad gym class memories. Mine include being the last to finish the mile, running/walking 4 laps around the track and wheezing, red-faced, with sore muscles for days afterwards. Now, my mile PR is 8 minute 30 seconds (almost twice as fast as I did in high school) and I regularly run ten to fifteen miles a week. Your past doesn't define your present, or your future.

I ran 5k on the treadmill quite a few times before I tried to run in outside, and before I raced, so I felt confident with the distance, and I'd recommend that. Also, keeping in mind that running is high impact, I would recommend doing other exercises on 'off' days - I run 2-3 times a week and do strength training, yoga, swimming, dance classes, etc on other days.

Congrats on your loss so far! Keep up the great work. Let us know how your progress goes - we are all here to cheer you on.
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Old 06-20-2010, 10:22 PM   #7
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Thank you so much, everyone.

I decided that I am going to do the 5k, even if I have to walk some intervals. My brother is going with me and he plans on walking. I am doing this to make myself feel good and proud about how far I've come (the race is two days before my 20th birthday!)

I hope someone takes my picture at the finish line. That would be awesome!
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Old 06-21-2010, 12:04 AM   #8
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Awesome Goal!!

I am working through the C25K program right now. I am okay with saying its taking me longer than a week to progress to the next levels!! I am out of shape and its REALLY HOT in Florida right now and I don't have a treadmill or gym membership right now.

Check this site out also: http://www.c25k.com/

I have been using the podcasts, they give you an audio cue when you should switch paces. There is also an iPhone app but I'm not so cool as to have an iPhone.

I always thought running people were crazy, and I'm still a long way off from my goal weight and being "in shape" but I'm really enjoying it so far!
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Old 06-21-2010, 09:54 AM   #9
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I'm sure you've been told this, but just to be clear: People that work hard and run and exercise regularly are the most supportive people I've ever seen. They don't look at you and think, "Look at that fat-so. Ug." No. They look at you and think, "Good for her! You go!"

Not that I've ever been to a 5K, but I've heard more than once that the people coming in last are often praised the hardest. I mean, it shows how hard this is for you, and it shows that you pushed through it anyway. Completing a 5K, no matter how slow or in what way, is celebrated. Period.

So I'm glad you've entered it. I doubt you'll have to walk much if you take up a jogging program from where your current level is. You'll have to let us know how it goes. (I've always imagined breaking down in to tears at the end, and saying, in some colorful language, "Take that HS gym class!")

Btw, I wish my brother was as sweet as that!
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Old 06-21-2010, 09:57 AM   #10
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DO IT! I did my first one in April. I was worried about being last and I wasn't! It was a lot of fun. (I enjoyed getting free schwag!) and it is nice to run along with other people.

I did another one a couple weeks ago... and I can't wait to do my next one. It will make you feel SO good about yourself.
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Old 06-21-2010, 11:32 AM   #11
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You can do it! Even if you walk your first one, just to see what it is like. You can do it and you will see that there are others out there like you that are doing it too.

Glad to see your brother is doing it with you, that will help you out.

Like another poster said - runners tend to be extremely supportive of each other. When I workout with groups, those that finish first tend to come back and run the other in, so nobody runs in last or alone. Even when I've been out running by myself in a populated area, I've had runners come up next to me and encourage me along my run. Or others that I'll pass who will find their motivation to keep up with me, and if I slow down, I find their encouragement to keep up with them.
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Old 06-21-2010, 11:57 AM   #12
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I started training for my 5k today with my brother and aunt! I'm really excited.

I completed two miles doing walk/run intervals and was overall pretty pleased with that! I think by the time August rolls around I'll be ready for that 5k!

Thank you for all the support.
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Old 06-21-2010, 01:08 PM   #13
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You can do it!!!! I agree with all of the other posters that are saying runners are super supportive! I have never found a greater bunch of folks (besides all of us here on 3FC!!) I did my first 5K in May and was terrified to say the least but I did it and the feelings that I had when I was done were so amazing. I have been inspired to train to do more 5K's and have now made running a part of my life that I look forward to having for years to come!! All I can say is you will do great and you will surprise and amaze yourself when you run across that finish line! Great job!!!
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