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Mama Sweat Mission: Set a 5K Goal

Posted May 21 2012 12:00am
Mama Sweat Reader Ann Waterman, a contributor over at the blog, Slow Mama , emailed me recently:
RE: Running a Faster 5K

Hi Kara!

As I commented on your blog a couple weeks ago, my goal before my next pregnancy is to run a 5K in under 30 minutes. I've been running regularly since I was 18 and I'm embarrassed to say that that I've never broken 30 minutes in a race (well, I did run one race in 29:20, but it was rumored that the course was short). Currently, I only have time for three runs during the week and that involves throwing my shoes on and running as soon as I leave the threshold -- no time to get to the track. I do one long slow run that's at least 45 minutes, and two shorter runs that I push a little harder on.

I've been running injury free for about 12 years. Prior to that, something was always hurting until I got fitted with orthotics. I'd like to remain injury free so am a little scared of speedwork, but feel that may be the only way to speed up.

Any tips on how to cross the finish line in a faster time? I'll be running the Woodstown, NJ Firecracker 5K on July 4th so I've got two months. If you'd like to include my progress as a feature on your blog, I'd be game -- public humiliation is a huge motivator for me.
To be perfectly clear, I have no intention of exposing Ann to public humiliation. In fact, sharing her quest, I’m certain, will rally other readers to give her the support she needs. And I need. My goal, which I might have mentioned in passing, is running a faster 5K, too. And I’d be willing to bet there are others out there who aspire to either finish their first 5K, or better their 5K time. Yup, I’m looking at YOU.

(If you're someone who doesn't know where to begin or it's been a long time, here is my " Return to Running Recipe .")

As I've mentioned here before, signing up for a race seems like the goal, but sometimes it's only the head fake to get you into a regular workout routine. It's all good. End justifies the means. Means justify the end.

For those looking at putting a summer race on the calendar, I’m going to spend each day this week (I know, rare for me to post every day!) on something you can do to meet your goal to either finish your first race or run a certain distance in a goal time.

I know Mama Sweat readers aren’t particularly chatty in the comments, but if you’re one of those looking to set a goal this summer share it with us. Tell us what it is (doesn’t have to be a running race). Sharing your goal with others will make you that more likely to work harder to achieve it. Or, as Ann calls it: Public Humiliation.

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