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8984 Views 30 Replies Latest reply: Mar 27, 2011 4:55 PM by NRDgirl 1 2 3 Previous Next
High-Heeled Diva Amateur 24 posts since
Mar 25, 2011
Currently Being Moderated

Mar 25, 2011 4:05 AM

My very first 5k... need help. Any suggestions?

I will run my very first 5k on Sunday, the Bonny Eagle Scot Trot. I am scared but excited at the same time. But I don't know what to expect or do. Any helpful suggestions? Thanks, will appreciate it.

  • DadtoTwins Pro 55 posts since
    Mar 17, 2009

    As long as you have been training, you will be fine. Just relax. You've probably heard this before, but it's worth repeating - Don't go out too fast. Start off at a slow comfortable pace and pick it up as you feel comfortable. Prepare to become addicted to racing.



    Run the Quay 5k, 6/4/11, 24:34

    Tobacco Road Half Marathon 3/20/2011, 1:52:19

  • Dreamstate Legend 278 posts since
    Dec 1, 2009

    Might I add that it's important to dress comfortably. We're dealing with a cold snap here in the northeast so I'm having to dress for "wintry weather" when I run. If that's the case with you, just make sure you don't wear so much that you overheat during the race but wear enough to stay comfortable.


    If your race is in the morning, eat something light. Many would suggest toast and peanut butter, a banana, or some combination of the two.  A little water or juice won't hurt.


    Just have fun! When I get all in my head about a race, I just breathe deeply and repeat this to myself: "Have fun. Just run."


    Good luck! Let us know how it turns out!

    Completed Races 2012:

    Rock and Roll USA Half Marathon, 02:54:26 (1st run POST injury)

    Cherry Blossom 10-Miler, 01:49:00


    Upcoming Races 2012:

    IronGirl Half Marathon, 4/29/12

    Frederick Half Marathon, 5/6/12

    Atlantic City International Sprint Tri, 09/17/12

    Rock and Roll Philly Half Marathon, 09/18/12

    Baltimore Half Marathon, 10/13/12

    Marine Corps Marathon, 10/28/12

    ING NYC Marathon, 11/4/12


    Personal Record from 2011:

    Teach, Learn, Play 5k, 10/02/11 00:26:57 (PR)

    Marine Corps Marathon 10k, 10/30/11 01:05:38 (PR)

    Baltimore Half Marathon, 10/15/11, 02:24:15 (PR)

  • flamomof3 Legend 1,928 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007

    Good Luck and Have Fun!

  • Samatva Rookie 1 posts since
    Oct 23, 2009

    I used to go out and run the actual race course a week before, at the same time of day as the race. Took a lot of the "unexpected" out of it. I don't do this much lately, and even enjoy most of the surprise now..


    My biggest mistake in my first race was that I drank too much water before the race! It's *very* unlikely that you will become dehydrated in a 5k, and all well-organized races will have at least 1 or 2 watering stations along the way.


    Start out at a comfortable pace, you will be fine!


    Have fun!

    Timed races in the last year:

    • 2010 Peachtree 10k: 56:59
    • Shamrock and Roll 5k: 31:34 (with my dog!)
  • susan-n-the black dog Legend 425 posts since
    Jun 11, 2009

    Enjoy yourself.  It's not a is a training run with a few hundred of your closest friends joining in.


    Run YOUR race.  Run YOUR pace.  Try not to get caught up in the start line craziness, just enjoy it like it was another day out there for a run.


    If you are used to the distance don't do anything new.  I do suggest a new pair of running socks (if you use them) as a way to mark the day.

    Susan in CA
    Brazen Racing Bear Creek 10k Aug 09
    Brazen Racing Rocky Ridge 10k Oct 09
    Brazen's Turkey Trot 10k Nov 09
    Walked the Golden Gate Bridge - too cool!

    Monterey Big Sur Internationl Half Marathon.(10mile walk)

    Brazen's New Years 10k Jan 10

    Brazen's Bear Creek 10k MUD FEST Jan 10

    Finally, back out on the trails!

    Blossom Trail 10k March 2011

    Miracle Miles for Kids - May 2011

    Brian Waterbury Memorial Rock to the Pier 10k - July 2011 Happy Birthday to me!

    So many little time...

    I did it - I signed up for Big Sur - April 2012

    Unless you faint, puke or die...keep walking - Jillian Michaels

    I can't come in last because I am ahead of those who didn't start!

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007

    All above is great advice, I would add a couple of things:


    Scared and excited = bathroom arrive early so you can go before the race starts, the closer it gets to race time the longer the lines to go are!!!


    Start towards the back of the pack and run your race/pace it is very easy to go out to fast.  If you need to walk that is okay!


    Most important thing is to have fun, the running community are a great bunch of people!!!!  Enjoy it becomes a habit.

  • LPARafael Pro 166 posts since
    Sep 13, 2010

    Congrats on signing up and participating in your first 5K.  Like what the othres said, just go out and have fun.  Arrive early enough to get a good warm up, as well as get a chance to go to the bathroom before the lines start getting really long.  Depending on how the start area is set up you may have to walk a little bit before the crowd thins out enough for you to get your strides going.  There will be a lot of very enthusiastic people around you and that will get you excited.  Maybe cheering along and yelling will help burn off extra energy so that you won't go off at the start at a pace so fast that you will be unable to continue after a quarter mile.  Near the finish line you may find yourself very tired but try to enjoy the moment.  Let it soak in that you just completed a 5K, put on a big smile and hope that the race photographer gets your good side   Again, good luck and enjoy.

    To paraphrase Newton, "A body in motion tends to stay in motion", so keep those feet moving ....

    2012 Races

    Year 2 Year 5K - 12/31 - 1/1

    Tinkerbell Half Marathon - 1/29

    Rock n Roll Pasadena Half marathon - 2/19

    Old Agoura 10K - 3/24

    O2O Half Marathon - 6/3

    City Impact Half Marathon - 6/16

    Channel Islands 10K - 7/4

    Disneyland Half - 9/2

    Marine Corps Marathon - 10/28

  • Runningcolorado Expert 50 posts since
    Mar 4, 2009

    How exciting!  Just remember to relax and breathe.  Remember, if you trained, your work is behind you.  Your race is just the culmination of all your hard work.  You CAN do this and you will.  Best of luck to you.  Let us know how it went.

    Live, love, run

  • puknut Rookie 1 posts since
    Mar 25, 2011

    Great post and relies! I am also running my 1st 5k tomorrow morning in Md. It is supposed to be about 35 degrees at start.

    I have been running 5k's on the treadmill with a approx time of 30 mins per. (10 min mile). I run shorter distances outdoors, about 1-2 miles at a time.


    My additional question is how does running on treadmill equate to running outdoors?


    I love running and it has made me feel so much better since I started running again in Dec 2010!

  • Runningcolorado Expert 50 posts since
    Mar 4, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    14. Mar 25, 2011 5:07 PM (in response to puknut)
    Re: My very first 5k... need help. Any suggestions?

    Puknut:  Good for you for deciding to do your first 5k.  You will have so much fun. 


    I find it easier to run on the TM than outside.  That is until I've been running outside consistently.  Then, the TM becomes harder due to the boredom factor.   I actually enjoy the TM as long as I have good music and/or something stimulating to watch on TV.  It really all depends on the individual as each of our perceived efforts outside vs. TM are different.  I only run inside if I absolutely have to (too hot, lightning, etc.).


    Since you said you've only ever run 1 to 2 miles outside I'm guessing you may need to slow your pace outside.  Don't be so tied to the 10 min./mi. during the race. You can get through the 5k outside just fine. Remember to pace yourself. Just relax and take your time. Take walk breaks if you need to.  It's all good.


    Good luck to you.

    Live, love, run

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