Last March 24, 2018, through the help and push of my fit-mates, I was able to finish my first 10K run ever! I have been in an on and off relationship with running since October last year. I know a lot of people would relate, running wasn’t my favorite thing. But somehow eventually, I felt like running helps ease stress caused by different factors. Plus, I was able to lose a lot of weight! It’s an effective fat burner and health experts could back me up on this.
Together with running, I’m also being coached to learn to swim and cycling by good friends. I was looking forward to join races but the ~race season~ usually happens during the winter. I thought I missed my chance and had to wait next year until a fit-mate had mentioned about Qatar Running Series . They conduct these seasonal races and luckily I was able to sign up for the last race of Qatar Running Series Winter Edition. Though there’s an upcoming Ramadan Edition also already open for registration, I was already itching to do a race because I have not tried it EVER. Curious about how it goes, there was no time for second guessing whether I should go for it or not when I found out that Race 5 was happening last April 13.
How I trained:
A program is given to me every week. I am able to run at least 3 to 4 times a week. And some days, I don’t finish my program 😐 Not proud of it! There’s an on-going battle between my brain and my body whenever I train. If my mind is set to conquer my program then surely the rest of my system will follow. My first 10K run was finished in 1 hour and 12 minutes while my 2nd was finished in a total time of 1 hour and 7 minutes.
Surprisingly, from the QRS Official Finish Time I finished in 1 hour and 5 minutes! It’s an improvement and no matter how little the progress is, progress is progress. I finished third to the last and I couldn’t be prouder of myself for being able to finish! That’s all that matters. Not bad for a first time, right?
The Race Experience
Since I don’t have much time in the morning to run because of work, I usually run in the afternoon when I come home before it gets dark. The race was different because it started raining then the sun came up. Despite the rain, all the runners were ready to take on the race. At around 6:40, we started the run. I started at a slow, comfortable pace because I was still reluctant that I’d be able to finish (don’t be negative like me, it doesn’t help). I tried not to look at my watch until I reached 5km because it’s always a struggle for the first 5k.
Here’s a tip, instead of saying “SHIT. 7 kilometers more.” Say, “Shit, 7 kilometers left!!! I’m awesome.”
I’ve kept convincing myself I’d be able to finish. The sun began to show after I hit 2.5 km, and that’s when I felt like I needed waterfalls to show up in front of me and indulge. It was warm. I kept distracting myself by observing people around me. I took breaths, inhaling and exhaling deeply. When I hit 7.5 km, that’s when I started to feel positive because of course, just a few more and I’ll finish my first 10 km race ever in the first race I’ve ever joined!!! I was being pushed ♥ And that also helped a lot.
At the end of the race, people were clapping and cheering me and the other finishers. I was handed my medal ♥
While I don’t have plans yet on taking it to a competitive level and getting on the podium (LOL of course I’m joking). I am even more challenged to shorten my time finish and be able to take longer distances.
I’m sharing this because I remember myself struggling to finish a 2-km run a few months back. Up until today, I still struggle to finish 5-km runs and long run programs. I tend to put myself in unnecessary pressure but I learned that *cue relatable quote*
If there is no struggle, there is no progress.
Though I used to hate the concept of process, dreading failures, mistakes and disappointments. I’ve learned to realize how more rewarding an achievement is when you know that no matter how hard the road is to attaining whatever goal you have, you got through it. And there’s reason to celebrate and love life even more.
Special thanks to the person who pushes me, never puts pressure on me and eases my mind when I feel like having a nervous breakdown. 😛 Everyone in Fit who’s nothing short of positive and supportive. Close friends who give me advice on how to overcome different challenges in my training. I’m blessed to be surrounded by amazing people.