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I am currently on W7D3 of the C25K program.
I am 31 year old male that weighs about 190 pounds. I have not ran since participating in Cross Country way back in high school. At that time, I was not completely committed to the sport. I only ran to do something in the Fall, to stay in shape, and to help my coach (who was also my baseball coach) field a decent team for a school of only 200 students. Back then, my personal best was somewhere around 21:00. I remember breaking 21:00 one time, but I never got to break 20:00. Back then, not only was I 13 years younger, I was 50 pounds lighter, not to mention more active.
I started the C25K program in early September and have lost nearly 10 pounds since then. I made the initial mistake of picking out my own pair of running shoes and soon discovered that I had made a huge mistake. After my feet going nearly numb on a couple of runs and a couple of throbbing shins, I discovered that I had flat feet and had picked a pair of shoes for someone with high arches. After getting a correct and more comfortable pair of threads, my shin pain has decreased significantly and I have been able (for the most part) keep pace with the running schedule.
Right now, the pace for my runs goes about 12:00/mile. I feel a little labored at the end of my runs, but I am not bent over or gasping for air. I am scheduled to run my first 5k on November 15th, so I figure that at my current pace I should be somewhere around the 36:00 mark. I know that my body still needs to get used to running, but I feel like this time is so slow. I have also considered some cross training on my off-days between now and the 5k.
At first, I thought I would shoot for breaking 30:00, but it seems a little optimistic going from 12:00/mile to 9:36/mile. I don't want to be bent over in pain with a mile to go because I was too ambitious.
In your experiences, how much faster have you found your race day pace to improve over your training/endurance paces? I don't want to go out and push myself too hard and get hurt on race day, but I don't want to feel like I could have done much better either.
Congratulations on your hard work! I think that it's hard to pace yourself at a race -- it's easy to get caught up in the moment, so to speak, and burn yourself out in the beginning. I also do a lot of my running on the treadmill, and am still learning how to set my own pace when I'm outside (rather than just keeping up with the treadmill).
For your first 5K, I would suggest that you try to keep around a 12:00/mile pace, at least for the first mile. Then, see how you feel, and maybe push yourself a little more for the second & third miles if you have enough gas in your tank.
Good luck, and have fun!
For your first race I would concentrate on comfort rather than speed. Finish happy and injury free. This will lead to improvment and an oppertunity to bexceed your last time. Doing a race simulation is always a good was to judge. Run a 5k at home and evaluate yourself. How do you feel? what pace did you run? try to recognize that pace and start with it for the race. go out slow. If you have leftover save it for a strong finish. Have fun and you will do it again. nothing perks up your training routine like a race.
'10 Zoo Run Run 25:31
'10 Strawbeerry Classic 10k 55:06
'10 Clearwater HM 2:02:14
'10 Space Coast Marathon 4:13:10
'11 Dances With Dirt Trail Marathon 5:54:34
'11 Bolt Run 5M 44:04
'11 Florida Youth Ranch Marathon
'11 Trout Creek 15K
'11 John Holmes Run/Croom 15m
'11 Wisconsin Marathon
Don't get caught up in your time on the 1st one. Run your race and start easy and increase your pace if you can every mile. Enjoy it, this race will give you a time to shoot for on your next one.
I would run the first mile at your normal 12 minute pace and see how you feel then. If you feel really good, pick up the pace a little, then see how you feel at the 2 mile mark, and adjust your speed up or down, depending how you feel. I'm running my first 5 mile race next month, and plan on going out at my average 5 mile pace, then adjusting it during the race. I also wouldn't worry about your final time in your first 5K. There's always another 5K to sign up for.
I agree with the advice about not killing yourself by going too hard. My recent personal experience was achieving a 9:55 pace in a 5K race after training around 10:10 to 10:20 in similar distance training runs in the few weeks before the race. I was thrilled to finish under 31 min.
Guadalupe River Run 10K April 2013 (1:01:36) PR!!
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Coyote Hills 3.5 mi Jan 2011 (38:47)