Still finding yourself with a lot of free time (if not germs) on your hands? What better time to begin training for the return of 5Ks in 2021!
Thanks to staggered start times, masked volunteers and BYO water, the world has successfully figured out how to run 5K races during a pandemic. Many Gwinnett cities are seeing 5Ks return to their event calendars in early 2021, and many local nonprofits need runners for these popular, necessary fundraisers.
“No matter your current fitness level, completing a 5K is both doable and fun,” said Jason Miller, owner of Performance Race Services and race director for the Suwanee Old Town 5K on February 21, 2021 (and Suwanee Half Marathon on the same date, if you’re feeling really ambitious). “Even if you don’t consider yourself a runner (yet), almost anyone can be ready to run a 5K by following a smart training plan. The trick is simply being confident enough to register for a race!”
Three Simple Tips for Crushing a 5K
Potty early and potty often. Between pre-race nerves, coffee and just the general desire to “go” that running often brings, you’re going to want to be cleaned out. And don’t count on the portoilet situation at the race site: lines are often long, portoilets are often overused and it’s not a good feeling to hear the starting gun go off when you’re sitting in one.
Find your crowd and line up with them at the starting line. Starting too close to the front can cause newbies and seasoned runners alike to get caught up in the moment, run the first mile way too fast, and crash and burn for the final 2.1 miles. It’s not a good look. One of our DiGgers prefers starting in the back because she enjoys passing people, but you actually run a lot farther trying to pass walkers and strollers.
Pace yourself by effort rather than by time. Break a 5K into four manageable pieces. Enjoy yourself during the first mile; you should be able to run and talk, if you so choose. Pick up your effort a bit at mile two: you’re breathing a little harder, but not struggling for air. Go fishing in mile three: pick a runner ahead of you, and catch them. Then pick another. And another. (Mile three is awesome, because passing people is the best.) Finally, let it all out for the final .10 of the race and prepare for an awesome finish line photo!
RACES TO LOOK FORWARD To in 2021:
Chilly Willy 5K/10K/Half Marathon
January 16, 2021 – Sugar Hill, GA
Suwanee Sweetheart Sprint
February 13, 2021 – Suwanee, GA
February 13, 2021 – Norcross, GA
7th Annual Suwanee Half Marathon and Old Town 5K
February 21, 2021 – Suwanee, GA
Button Down Dash 5K
August 7, 2021