One run can change your day, many runs can change your life.
I read this online more than few times already but it wasn’t until I finished my first ever 10k last Sunday can I relate to it. I freaking did it. I ran my first 10k. With just two months into running, inconsistent training and asthma tendencies, I am happy to report that I am alive and recovering. Hahahaha.
Congratulations to everyone–all 4,500 runners who finished Pinoy Fitness Sub 1 10k challenge!
To be honest I was very, very anxious the night before. So much so that I keep on waking up every hour and had only 3 hours of sleep. I always get anxiety attack especially before an early morning flight and whenever I have to do something challenging such as running my first 10k. But no excuse and off I went to Mall of Asia that Sunday morning to run.
Halfway through the race and my thoughts are running faster than I am. I don’t know if it was the lack of sleep, the early morning feels or the pressure I gave myself to finish fast that made me feel like I’m about to pass out.
6k mark and my fitness beshie Kelly & I had to brisk walk (because hello 200 bpm!) and so I took a selfie as a souvenir. Kinda like Instagram or it didn’t happen! Hahaha.
I was finally able to compose my thoughts and share with you all 10 things I learned after finishing my first 10k. I won’t state the obvious learnings for first timers like me because I’m pretty sure there are already a lot of blogs that gave tips for newbies (like wearing the right running shoes–you can watch The Fit Stop’s episode on that HERE–or have enough rest and hydrate) but instead I’ll share the thoughts that ran through my mind before, during and after running 10k. Please indulge me because as sad as I am that I didn’t do sub 1, I am happy that I learned a few things.
Running isn’t easy
If I weren’t asthmatic I would think running is easy peasy. I mean come on. It’s one of the basic movements human beings know how to do right? Totally wrong. There’s a lot to consider when running a race. Pacing, breathing, the way you move your legs and whole body, knowing when to slow down, take a sip of water and so on. O nga naman if it were easy everybody would do it no? 🙂 But I learned just like anything in life, it doesn’t get easier you just get better. So run lang ng run.
If you want something you have to put in a lot of work
Probably partly the reason why I was half-hearted at trying to do sub 1 because I know I didn’t work hard for it even though I badly want my first 10k race to be under 1 hour. My official time of 1:14 wasn’t so bad because I lacked training and sleep that I had to walk off a few times. I knew I should’ve trained better because consistency is key. I knew I should’ve made a little more effort but my schedule made it impossible for me to stick to my program. So my next race I’m gonna work hard for it na.
It’s not all in the mind
I’ve heard this a hundred times from different people. I guess this line is often said whenever something demands one to go beyond his/her comfort zone. Well running for me is waaaay beyond my comfort zone. A few weeks ago I hated running. I couldn’t imagine myself running 3k, 5k now 10k. Yet here I am now liking it. Though my mind likes the idea of running, my body isn’t ready for long distances. At least not just yet. So you have to excuse me if I disagree that it’s all in the mind. Maybe when I’m better and stronger, I can finally say that it is.
Do it with someone
Though I like the isolation running on a treadmill gives, running with a friend during a race is much more fun. So glad I did my first 10k with Kelly, my brother from another mother. Hahaha! We get each other so well that one look and we already know if we need to walk it off or take a sip of water.
It can be a rollercoaster ride
Weeks prior to the race, I was ecstatic! I was looking forward to it. Days before it I was scared. The night before I was anxious. Shortly after I finished it I was happy and heartbroken at the same time. Is it just me? Running is a rollercoaster ride. I haven’t felt so many emotions in a short span of time. NKKLK! Now I totally get athletes or those who are very serious and committed to their chosen sport. Not only do you invest time, energy and effort, you also put in different emotions to it. It’s crazy. But what’s crazier is I don’t mind experiencing it all over again.
I was too worried about finishing the race that almost the entire time so many things are going on in my head. I was checking my pace, my bpm, my breathing and even the way I run that it nearly overshadowed the fun in running. I realize I enjoy running on the treadmill more because I clearly don’t have to think. My mind is clear and I just enjoy the uniformity of my strides. I guess when I can practice this mindset while running outdoors or during a race can I fully enjoy it. Note to self: don’t overanalyze.
Congratulations to my fitness beshies Chappy & Sam for doing sub 1! Ginalingan nyo talaga e!
Find a reason why you’re doing it
Why? Why do you run? I had a hard time answering this when I started last January. I guess for the first part I wanted to try running because I was challenged by the people around me (shoutout to Jeff of Pinoy Fitness and Jaymie of The Bull Runner! Hahaha). When I realized that I can overcome my fear of passing out and getting asthma attack, running suddenly had a new meaning for me. It has pushed me out of my comfort zone and now I run when I feel like I need to clear my mind and because cardio din guys. Haha!
Focus on yourself
It’s easy to get frustrated especially when you see other people pass by you on the way to the finish line. I actually felt a wee bit heartbroken after the race because I know I could’ve done a better time. But there’s no point comparing myself to others. Instead of moping around (well I did for two days! Hahahaha) I decided to just stop and start over again. This race has taught me how to focus on myself. To see what I can improve on and to make sure that I don’t make the same mistake again. Running, like anything else is a progress and each race is different. I believe we all undergo progress and even though it’s not the same for everyone, in the end we just want the same result–to be better.
Don’t forget to have fun
Anything challenging is more bearable when you’re surrounded with people who uplift you while challenging you. I know medyo weird no? Hahaha. These people made my first race manageable and fun. And I honestly wouldn’t have done it without my Fit Stop beshies–Nikki, Jeff, Kelly & Chappy. I need to remind myself that on my next race I should have more fun.
There’s always a next time
I was hard on myself after the race but now there’s nothing left to do but move forward. There’s a lot of room for improvement for me. I have a lot of things I need to learn and my first 10k is just the beginning. Thankful that this race has paved way for me to understand running and learn more about myself. It’s really a process and one race at a time can definitely lead me to be better.
Here’s to more races, more runs, less heartbreaks more fun. Congratulations again to all the finishers of Pinoy Fitness Sub 1 10k Challenge! 🙂