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Took a month off, did a 5k, shocked at the results

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The short version of my long missive is this:


Even if you take time off, whether it's a week or month, DO NOT give up on yourself!  Your body WILL and CAN recover and you didn't lose as much ground as you might think!  


Here's what happened to me...February was a rough month for me...really rough.

First, I had emergency gallbladder surgery at the end of January.  I thought no biggie, I'll be back to the C25k App in a week and can do the 5k I signed up for way back when that was coming up in 2 weeks.  WRONG!  LOL  


Recovery from gallbladder surgery took longer than I expected.  To make matters worse, about a week after surgery, I came down with the worst cold/flu known to man that kept me in bed for days.  We won't even talk about the pain of coughing/sneezing while recovering from surgery.  So, 2 weeks, no training and there was NO way I was making that 5k on Valentines' day.  Bummer. I really, really wanted that medal.


Okay, recovered from the surgery and thought great! I can get back to training.  The universe had other plans for me.  I was hit with the worst stomach bug known to man that lasted for about 3 days then took another 3 days to get my strength back and get back to a normal diet. I couldn't even leave the house, let alone the bathroom. On top of that, my work schedule was thrown into chaos where I had a crazy schedule and there was a lengthy spell of cold weather (like 40-50 degrees, when it's normally 60-70 during the day).  So, another 2 weeks of no training.


Now it's March 1st.  No more flu, no more stomach bugs, full recovery from surgery and warm, spring like weather.  PLUS, I had a 5k scheduled for the first weekend in March and another the second weekend in March. I signed up for these in January thinking I'd be more than ready.  HA!


Fortunately, I had a week off from work so I could really get outside and get back to training.  That's just what I did.  Before my month break, I finished Week 3 of C25k.  After my break I knew there was NO WAY I could move onto Week 4, and even thinking about redoing week 3 was out of the question since I barely finished it the first time.  So...my first time out after a month, I went back to week 2.  It was harder than I expected, but by Day 2 I was feeling better about it.  


Fast forward to the day of the 5k.  It was also Day 3 of Week 2 for me.  My goal going into this 5k was to have a 50-55 minute time.  I didn't expect much since I was struggling all week with the runs/walks.  The last 5k I did at the beginning of January, I had a 47 minute time, doing the week 2 routine.  I figured matching or coming close to that time was out of the question, since I only had a week to "retrain".


Well, wonders NEVER cease.


First, it was FREEZING the morning of the 5k.  Keep in mind, I live in a warm state where the average annual temperature is 75ish and summers get up to 80's and 90s.  So to me, anything less than 60 or 65 degrees is COLD, like 2 layers of pants, hat and gloves cold.  Second, I only got 5 hours of sleep because I just was not tired the night before.  So the morning of the 5k, it was a "balmy" 40 degrees and I was dragging like I just partied all night.  FUN!! (NOT!!!)  Nevertheless, I was motivated to do this - I wanted my medal darn it!!  I was tired of looking at the same 3 medals hanging up, I wanted, no I NEEDED more!! 


So, the starting gun goes off for the 5k and I hit start on Wk2 D3 of C25k. My music starts playing and the lady starts talking.  I told myself okay, you can do this, it's "only" an hour.  You know you can easily do 2 miles in 35 minutes, walk the last mile if you have to.  Long story short, I finished in 49 minutes and some seconds - OMG!!!  Better than expected and only 2 minutes over my personal best!!!


I did Wk2D3 and when I got to the 5 minute cool down, I just stopped the app and using my watch, tried jogging every 2 minutes for about 90 seconds.  The way the course was designed, I couldn't see the finish line until I rounded the last corner.  All throughout the course I didn't think I was doing great on time since I was among about 20 other walkers/stragglers.  When I came around that corner and saw the finish line clock say 48 minutes I was ecstatic!!  I ran full out for the last few hundred feet (probably only about 30 seconds) because the clock already turned 49 minutes and there was NO way I was going to let it hit 50 minutes before I crossed the finish line almost tripping because I started crying from happiness.


My body was screaming WHAT did you just do? I was achey from the waist down, but, I didn't care - I GOT MY FINISHER'S MEDAL!  


A hot shower and a relaxing afternoon later, I feel great.  Aches and pains are gone and my plan now is to take a day off to rest then hit the ground running (pun intended :D) with Week 3 Day 1.  The next 5k is in 7 days and this time I want to meet (and hopefully beat) my best time of 47 minutes.  


The motto of the story is NEVER give up.  NEVER think because you missed a week, or two, or four, you lost everything you did.  You DID NOT!  


Keep going, one foot in front of the other, one step back and TWO steps forward will get you to the finish line!  I know, I've done it!



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