My journey to a healthier me

Tales of my life

Sandbanks 5k/10k

on September 15, 2014

So yesterday I ran my 4th 5k race of the year.

It was the first time I’d done this particular race.  I learned about it from my friend Karen, who has run it before.

So new race meant new route and new terrain.  As if I’m not nervous enough before a race.

Being September, it’s a little cool in the mornings.  I dressed in layers, and even brought along a thin pair of gloves just in case.  I wore them before the race, but took them off just before the race started.

We got there and I got registered.  And as always before a race, I paced around, did some stretching, retied my shoes, paced some more.  I was nervous, but not as nervous as I thought I might be.

I double checked the route on the map a couple of times.  The lady said the route is well marked and there are volunteers out so no one should get lost.  I was hoping she was right.  Because I’m a slow runner, I always worry I’ll get off course or get lost.

Quite a few people run this race.  Always good to see a nice turnout.

Finally it was time to line up for the start.  I had my music with me, which always helps keep me running.

I use the Nike running app to track my runs and walks.  Mostly for review later.  I try not to pay too much attention to it while I’m in the run.  And it plays my music.

The first part of the race was on the road.  I’m used to that, so not too big of a deal.  Except that I was running on the side of the road, and the road dips down a bit so I was running on an angle.  It was a little weird, but I kept going.  There was some traffic, so I mostly stayed to the side.  A few times I moved a little to the middle of the road.

The lady I talked to was right, the route was well marked.  There were arrows on the ground, and people directing runners/walkers where to go.  I was happy to see that.

Sometimes I run with a water bottle, but I opted not to this time.  I paused briefly at the water station, and then kept on running.  Several people were already on their way back by the time I got to that point.  A few passed on good wishes to me, or smiled, or gave me a high-five.  One of my favourite things about running is the camaraderie.  I even had a couple motorists wave at me.

I made it to the turnaround point and headed back.

I paused at the water station again, again briefly.

On the way back, the route takes a turn and goes through a wooded area.  I had never really done any trail running before.  I was not sure what to expect.  I got through it just fine.

As I reach each kilometre, the running app gives me my time.  I’m actually making pretty good time.  I’m pretty impressed with myself.  I noticed that the app and the route markers are not the same.  I’m not sure how they measured them out.  Not that it makes too much of a difference.  I just keep running.

The route had a couple little hills, not too much to worry about really.

As I near the finish, I can hear the people.  As they spot me, a bunch of them start cheering.  I love that.  It never gets old.  It sometimes helps push me to finish strong.  Most of the people there don’t know me, but they cheered anyway.  My friend Karen was there and taking pictures.

By the Nike running app, the route was 5.39km, and I finished in 1:03:45.  I hit the 5k mark at 59:11.

I’m not sure what my official finishing time by their clock was, but that’s okay.

I’m super proud of that result.  Best I’ve run in a while I think.

I’m especially proud because it was a race I’d never done before, on terrain I was unfamiliar with.

One of the things I think helped was chewing coffee beans during the race.  Yes, you read that right — I chewed on some coffee beans. And they tasted good!  I think they gave me an extra energy boost that I needed.  That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

I celebrated with chocolate milk and a granola bar.

And I had a healthy lunch when I got back home.

Overall, this was a great race.  It was well organized.  The route was well marked.  The scenery is beautiful (if I hadn’t been in a race, I would have paused to take a few pictures).  Everyone was friendly.  People donate prizes and they give them out at the end.  Anyone who has registered and checks in is eligible to win a prize.

I would definitely run it again.  And I hope to next year.




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