It’s finally warming up and many of us are starting to get more serious about our training.

Expectations of a 5k Runner Our Total Health Systems team is made up of all kinds of different athletes. (we are all athletes in the game of life) Most of our team is doing the 5k. For some of you doing a 5k is something you can just decide to go out and do with very little training and then for some of you this a whole new exciting and maybe a little intimidating adventure. I want to share with you some things to expect as a you prepare for race day.

It is ok to start out walking more than you are jogging. You will gradually increase aerobic endurance,muscle endurance, and your muscle tissue will adapt. Your first runs should be at comfortable pace and effort level.

Most beginners start out too fast and work to hard. To really know for sure what kind of intensity you should be training at ask about metabolic testing. Metabolic testing allows us to prescribe what heart rates you should be running at for your easy days and what your heart rates should be at on your more challenging days. For our THS TEAM members I can make a specific Let’s Move training plan based off your metabolic test results.

Expect to have some discomfort after some of your training runs. You may feel some discomfort in your muscles and or your joints. Some discomfort is ok and to be expected. A common saying among athletes is “Pain is just weakness leaving the body” To some extent that is very true (although I don’t like the word pain). As your body is healing or rebuilding you will feel sore but your are rebuilding a stronger body.

Expect that there will be days you don’t want to go. As much as I enjoying running I even have these days. Try making a deal with yourself. Get changed into your workout clothes, and head out for 5- 10 minutes and if you still absolutely don’t want to be out there and HATE it go home. Take the day off. I can’t tell you how many times I have made this deal with myself. I can tell you though that only once did I turn around and go home. The other times I have made the deal, I don’t remember because I ended up finishing my run.

Expect there to be Self doubt- I hope you don’t , but you will likely have periods of doubt weather you can do the Race Day Preparation & Expectationstraining, whether you can do it on race day. Talk back, shout, yell. Then visualize yourself doing it, imagine how you will feel when you finish etc. Everyone has bad runs, that is what makes you appreciate the good ones. Even professionals have bad workouts and lack motivation some days. If you stick to your training you will do great!

Expect to feel great when it’s over! When you turn the corner and see the finish line you can expect to feel proud of your accomplishment. The sense of accomplishment will be as great as your commitment and dedication to your training.

Expect to be searching out other 5k races to race. Finishing a race typically drives your motivation to do another. After my first marathon, which was not pretty, I remember asking my Dad “When’s Chicago, cuz I think I need a flatter course?”