Here I am.
This is me right after I finished my first ever 10km race. Ok well it was a fun run but there were prizes and everything! It was the Wagga Lake to Lagoon run.
I was a bit nervous and unsure about how I would do, but it was great. I ran the majority of the course, with only a couple of stops through the water stations (one was a forced stop due to the person in front of me suddenly stopping without warning). I also took maybe 3 walk breaks between kms 7-9 but I kept an eye on my Garmin and only allowed myself to walk for 20metres at a time.
It was a great atmosphere, even though I didn’t know anyone there. In the starting area we were led through a quick aerobics style warm up before being sent off. I checked my watch pretty much straight away as I was aware of the tendancy to get caught up and start too fast and I was way quicker than my normal pace so it took a fair bit of effort to consciously slow down.
I picked a healthy looking lady near me who was going about the pace I needed and used her as a pace… But she stopped running after 500m!
So I had to rely on my watch as a guide, which was annoying because I’m bad a judging distance and every time I looked at it I had much further to go than I thought!
The most unhelpful person on the course was probably the man standing outside his house about 1km from the start, cheering people on with a “only 9 to go guys!”
My vibrams held up well. My legs did too. I took some dates with me and ate one at about 6.3kms for a little energy boost. All in all I felt great. I even found myself smiling for no reason at times.
I ran the final km without stopping at all, and had a great big silly grin on my face as I passed 3 people right at the end and stepped over the line.
I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face as I waited in line for my certificate (I was curious about my placing), because I had just run the longest race of my life so far and I felt fantastic. As it turns out I came 610th out of all participants (1497 people), and 71st out of my age and gender category (237 people).
Not spectacular results by any means, but I’m very proud of them.
Being vegan I was a little worried about whether or not there would be food around that I could eat. But one of the stalls were selling fruit salad and I tell you what – rock melon has never tasted so good. I never really liked it but man I loved that post run rock melon.
I hung about for a bit resting and enjoying the live band and the atmosphere before heading home feeling victorious.
I also thought a bit about my progress. Running an organized race and receiving an official time kind of gave me a sense of validation in what I’ve been doing. Running minimal with my Vibram five fingers, and eating vegan. Both decisions that have been questioned at times by those around me (and sometimes even myself). But the fact that I’ve gotten to a point where I can run a 10km race and feel so good at the end of it…. It’s all gotta count for something.
I know for a fact that minimalist running has strengthened my feet and calves, and it’s also improved my agility.
Eating vegan I feel stronger and lighter and feel like I recover easier – although how much of that is the placebo effect I’m not sure. But hey, if it’s working, it’s working. All I know is I feel healthier, and my running had improved.
I’m also thinking about taking this blog in more focused direction – maybe vegan recipes and running. Maybe that will help keep me on track with regular posts. If there’s any thoughts on the matter, let me know.
In the meantime, here’s the jumping castle I wanted to throw myself into but there were too many kids in there.