I Survived My First 5K

I had my first ever this past Saturday, which was a fun run 5K in the dark! I was really dreading this run because I haven’t really exercised in awhile (still winding down from the wedding) and know running really isn’t my forte. But I wanted to do it and get it over, even if I ended up walking the entire thing.  We met up with our friend Autumn (pictured below) and glammed up with glow sticks and glow in the dark bracelets to get ready for the run.

I was a little intimidated when we started because there were quite a few serious “athletes” running. Like running to warm up, super muscular, water bottles strapped to their waists. I’m sure they were gearing up for a half marathon or marathon later this fall, but for someone that hasn’t run a race before and was a bit out of shape – it did give me second thoughts about how fun this run really would be.  But we ended up lining up towards the back with the rest of the regular people.

The race had quite a few hills, but we actually ran through a neighborhood and there were tons of families out on their lawns cheering the runners on. That was pretty neat. And even though I did have to walk a bit, JP stayed with me the entire time and finished the race with me. My goal was to at least run a 15 minute mile and was under 15 minutes all the way through Mile 2, but ended up finishing the race at 45:44. I’m quite happy with that time and quite happy that I finished!

before and after the 5k!

before and after the 5k!

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So, there’s this 5K on Saturday…

JP and I signed up for a Dash in the Dark 5K back in July hoping that by the time it rolled around we would be ready for a run in early September. Totes not the case. Honestly, (and we’re being honest here, right? safe space?) I haven’t worked out in over 2 months. I think I crashed right before the wedding and it’s just been a consistent deep breath taking ever since. I know I need to kick it into gear, and I’m dreading that this 5K on Saturday will show me how out of shape I have become over the past few months. Run 3 miles straight? We’ll see. I’m 99% sure there will be some walking involved – embarrassing.

Any advice on making it through the 3 miles with no “practice” or exercise in over 2 months? I just want to survive, at this point.

Any tips on getting my exercise mojo and motivation back?

Songs To Run To

I recently updated my running playlist because I found I had too many slow songs that I had to flip through to get to the high energy songs. Annoying if you’re trying to focus on making it through a workout. So I went through my phone and picked out the songs I most liked to run to or were really upbeat or that I just liked. What’s on my list?

song

Chris Brown “Beautiful People” – So Mr. Brown may be the poster child of domestic violence but this is probably my favorite running song. It has such a great beat that I can’t ignore it! It makes me pump out those strides longer!

Foster the People “Call it What You Want” – Anything by FTP from this album is a running favorite. Great beats, catchy tunes.

The Wanted “Chasing the Sun” – This Brit boy band has an okay album and I have actually downloaded a few of their tunes. I like this one because the chorus is really fast and is great to time your steps to.

Tegan and Sara “Closer” – This is a fairly new tune and I just love it. I’ve been a long time fan of T&S and their new album is pretty decent. This is one of their more faster paced songs though. Tidbit – a good love song on the album is “Love They Say”.

Young the Giant “Cough Syrup” – This is one of the songs I discovered when I was in California so it always immediately evokes images of palm trees and sun which make me happy and make me want to run.

The Wombats “Jump Into the Fog” – This is an obscure addition to a running playlist. It’s kinda creepy and somber and doesn’t have a terrific upbeat tune. It actually starts with a really slow pace first verse. But I like how it builds up and is kinda relaxing – it’s a good pacing song.

V.V. Brown “Shark in The Water” – This is a fun song! Catchy and playful upbeat tune – kinda beachy feel. What’s not to like?

DJ Tiesto (feat. Tegan and Sara) “Feel it in My Bones” – T&S makes a second appearance on the playlist. This is a great, fast tune with DJ Tiesto controlling the tempo. It has a marching-like quality, which I like, and some power-like lyrics. “Left hook, I didn’t see it coming…”

Robyn “With Every Heartbeat” – So she was popular a REALLY long time ago, but Robyn still has some good tunes that I hear from time to time. I like this song because it has a slower pace but quickens up through the song – really builds you up!

Radiohead “15 Step” – Not going to lie, I snapped this song up from the closing credits of Twilight. Not because I’m an enlightened Radiohead fan. I do like some of their music, but not enough to call myself a faithful fan. This song has a serene-like quality, very flowy and has a terrific back beat to keep you right on pace without blowing out your eardrums.

Phoenix “1901” – One of the best songs to work out to. Great up beat tune from beginning to the end. Another song with a great beat to pace yourself with!

M83 “Midnight City” – I loooove this song. It reminds me of California and has a quirky, techy feel to it and a 80s-feel to the end.

Foster the People “Houdini” – FTP has the best music to run to. Futuristic and upbeat. I love their entire album and “Houdini” is one of the best tracks on it!

Florence + the Machine “Dog Days Are Over” – Um…is this not THE best song to run to? Gradually building up, super upbeat, and Flo’s amazing voice. I love it to pieces. Plus, I feel like they are clapping for me during the song – hello, encouragement!!

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros “Home” – A FUN song! I love the lyrics and it’s so playful. It reminds me of weddings because I think a lot of people use them in their wedding videos – so it’s a happy song to run to!

Calvin Harris (feat. Florence Welch) “Sweet Nothing” – A great DJ paired up with Florence’s AMAZING voice – can’t beat this. It’s a great super fast song! Seriously, it’s like being in a techno nightclub! Get your glow sticks out!

The Band Perry “Done” – I’m not a huge fan of country music, at all. I usually like a song here and there but I’ve liked the sibling trifecta of The Band Perry since they came out with “If I Die Young.” This is their newest tune and you may have seen it on advertisements of their new album during the NCAA tournament. It’s a fast song and full of break-up angst.

Atlas Genius “Trojans” – Another song that reminds me of California. Great pace and beat. Nothing too intense, but something to keep you bobbing your head to.

So, that’s my long list of my most recent running playlist. What’s on your playlist? What’s your favorite tune to work out to?

Ultimate Loser: Shoe Review

I think I’ve mentioned a few times that I tried running a couch to 10K program a few years back and dropped 16 lbs in 6 weeks. Yep…it was awesome. Although I’ve always hated running, I’ve found that it’s the only exercise that really shows me results … and I’m not going to lie, I do usually feel better afterwards. Like I climbed a mountain or something. I begged for some Nike Free shoes last year to replace my usual and boring running shoes. When I run I switch up my shoes – and I’m not really good at replacing them because I think they feel better if they’re worn in.

A few months ago, JP and I spotted gray and neon green shoes on clearance at a local sports equipment store. She nabbed a pair that she liked which were Nike+ shoes where you can link up to your iPod and mine were the newer version of the Nike Free shoe – which has a slimmer build.

shoes

Fun story about these shoes – when I first purchased them I accidently snipped the laces on the right shoe, so now I have to tie them in a tiny bow on the right had side of the upper tongue – or get new laces. But it works.  The first 2-3 times I wore them, they hurt. I have thicker hands and feet (ie. “meaty paws)  compliments of my father, so the narrower version of these shoes squeezed my toes and sometimes made my feet numb after wearing them for a workout. Not good, if you’re running. But after the first few times with them on, I’ve found that they have stretched a bit to make room for my toes and now aren’t too tight.

They are much thinner than my original pair, but I think they look great on my feet, and aren’t too bad when I run on a treadmill. I haven’t (and don’t) ventured outside to run in them yet and am not sure if they’d be a great fit for the hard pavement, but I know there are lots of runners that enjoy the slimmer shoe to give them more flexibility when they run – it can also make your feet stronger and give them a good work out too.

Personally, I think I enjoy my older, slightly thicker soled version of the Nike Free shoe. It provides a more cushioning run and is easier on my feet.

Do you have a favorite running shoe? Do you prefer indoor or outdoor runs?