5 tips for your first 5k!

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Starting something new can be scary, plain and simple. Although going out of my comfort zone gives me the jitters, there is a big part of me that is extremely excited, or I wouldn’t have decided to take a chance in the first place! That’s exactly how I felt when I signed up for my very first 5k. I was a casual runner, but knew I had to make a real plan if I was going be able to cross that finish line. It took me a little longer than I thought to find my nitch but I eventually found it and have become a much stronger and confident runner. Anyone can become the runner they want to be, here’s 5 steps how to be the superstar you were meant to be!

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IMG_80981. Steel City Road Runners Club – This club is set-up to help beginner runners train for their first 5k race! It is directly affiliated with the well-known Dick’s Pittsburgh Marathon. Each participant can take advantage of a 5 month membership, weekly training runs around the city, coaching attention, workout logs, mentors and most importantly individualized training programs to have you running your first 5k in 8 weeks! Not to mention you get to meet an awesome group of people working towards similar goals (alright you also get the snazzy t-shirt pictured above). If you have no idea where to start and would really like some guidance, I don’t know why you haven’t signed up yet, It’s only $25 per membership! Check them out on Facebook HERE.

2. Good tunes – An important part of running long distance is keeping a consistent pace. I find it is easiest to do when I’m running to the beat in a song. I like running to really upbeat music, some people would describe it as EDM sound. Music can be a large motivator that will get you up that steep hill! I recommend making your own playlist with your favorite tunes on Spotify or playing a station on Pandora (Cash Cash and Icona Pop are my personal favorites)!

3. Day of – Most races start very early in the morning at a time I would usually be still in my bed sleeping! Going to sleep early ensures you will wake up on ON TIME (even if that means setting multiple alarms)!! Getting to the race an hour before it starts will give you time to properly stretch out your muscles, find your mark, run to the port-a-potty’s, and calm your nerves!! It’s okay to be nervous! Try to remember the race is about YOU, not where you fall in comparison to others.

4. Proper attire – A very important part of any event is what the heck you are going to wear!? Try to stay from clothing that is cotton, it takes longer to dry and chances are you’ll be sweating. I like to run in clothing known as “Dri-Fit”. It drys quick and gives you room to breathe, not to mention really comfortable. The right tennis shoes can make or break your race. Be sure to wear a sturdy pair with support and cushion. Taking care of your body plays a part in your performance! if the race you’re running has a theme, don’t be afraid to go all out!!

5. Stay Hydrated – Water really isn’t my favorite to drink but when it comes to running I can’t get enough! I used to drink sports drinks like Gatorade while running and I found out really quick that wasn’t helping and I was still thirsty. Drink it before you go to sleep, when you wake up, before you start, during, and after!

xoxo, Belle of the Burgh

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