Last fall, I signed up for my last virtual 5K of 2020, to benefit the ASPCA. The 5K was meant to be done any time before December 31st. But as you might remember, I had some kind of injury in my foot (or hips? knees? I don’t know, honestly) last fall that made walking tough and running near-impossible. I had to take the last few months completely away from running. Technically, that means that I forfeited the 5K, but it’s virtual and I paid for the thing, not to mention I walked over 3.1 miles on multiple occasions before Dec 31, so I went ahead and did it. On Jan 14th, I went out to my running park and set out to walk/run eight laps (3.15 miles).
During each lap, I ran a specific section of the loop, about 0.1 miles per lap for a total of ~0.8 miles of the 5K (about a quarter of the distance). I wanted to ease into the process in case the pain in my hips/knees/shins/feet flared up again. Thankfully, I didn’t have any pain! Muscle soreness in my calves – as one might expect after taking several months off – but none of the clunky, painful gait that I was experiencing in the fall. Hurrah!
Again, I didn’t run much of this 5K. And I definitely didn’t push myself for pace or anything. I finished the 3.15 miles in 56:35, a 17:58/mi pace. Not bad at all considering that I walked 3/4ths of the time. It felt really nice to get back to my running park, which I haven’t been to since early November. It also felt really nice to walk/run for the fun of it, rather than pushing for time or intervals or any other measure.
Because I’m late in doing this 5K, I’m not counting it toward my Running Bingo. That’s my compromise in doing it two weeks past the deadline. I’m still happy to have done it, though. This was good for me, and I look forward to running more going forward. I especially look forward to in-person 5Ks again, hopefully sometime in 2021!