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Five ways to be unprepared for a 5k

Updated on March 4, 2013
Kacie A Ingram profile image

Health, happiness, & hobbies! A few of my favorites. Lover of life, self-improvement, big hair, leather, lace, & adrenaline!

Photos from The Color Run - Columbia, SC

In line, waiting to begin the race.
In line, waiting to begin the race.
Our Team - Pre-Race
Our Team - Pre-Race
Let the Coloring Ensue!
Let the Coloring Ensue!
Gamecock Nation!
Gamecock Nation!
Ryan and Kacie
Ryan and Kacie
Roslyn, Ryan, Kacie
Roslyn, Ryan, Kacie
Tim and Roslyn
Tim and Roslyn

The Race

This weekend I participated in “The Color Run™, also known as the Happiest 5k on the Planet.It is a unique paint race that celebrates healthiness, happiness, individuality, and giving back to the community.


Less about your 10-minute-mile and more about having the time of your life, The Color Run is a five-kilometer, un-timed race in which thousands of participants are doused from head to toe in different colors at each kilometer. The fun continues at the finish line with a gigantic “Color Festival,” using more colored powder to create happiness and lasting memories, not to mention millions of vivid color combinations. This is the best post-5k party on the planet.

There are only two rules, the idea is easy to follow:

  1. Wear white at the starting line
  2. Finish plastered in color”
  • from TheColorRun.com/About


This was my second 5k. My team was “Positive Mental Attitude” and it consisted of four team members, my husband Ryan, my best friend Roslyn, Roslyn’s boyfriend Tim, and I.We were happy to have a reason to wake up early on a chilly Saturday morning to exercise with a very large group of happy people.We were all motivated and pleasantly energetic the morning of the race.Everyone was early and we found a decent parking place easily.We slowly made our way to the center of the park where the festivities were taking place.We made a routine Porta John stop and quickly designated that as our meeting point after the race.


We then proceeded to get in line for the race to begin.We spent the first five minutes doing minor stretching and then observed all the happy people around us wearing lots of white and even more spandex, a people watchers dream.The race was set to begin at 9:00 am; we were in line by 8:45.We waited and watched patiently, I took advantage and took some pictures and video to commemorate our experience.Finally 9:00 rolled around and we did an awesome count down to the start.We got ready and began to jog, only to stop ten paces ahead of where we were.This lasted for the next twenty minutes.Apparently for an untimed race they start you in groups to allow for adequate and safe spacing between participants.Great idea, but a little annoying when you are unaware and get excited every time they count you down to start.Our turn finally came and we were off.


We were all at similar places in regards to effort and capability, albeit for different reasons.Needless to say, we were happy with the idea of walking, running or jogging.Throughout the race we completed a combination of all three with jogging taking the majority of the 5k.The race was not timed, nor did it focus on who came in first.The goal was for anyone and everyone to come and have fun!Now that’s my kind of race.Regardless, there are still some preparations involved when doing a 5k of any kind.


Here is a list of what not to do:

1 – Sign up only three weeks in advance


2 – Do limited distances of Cardio the weeks leading up to the actual race (and less than 3 miles)


3 – Complete an intense workout the day before that equates to being sore all over


4 – Stay up late and consume alcohol the night before


5 – Fail to properly warm up before the start of the race


We finished the 5k in a decent amount of time.We were all equally covered in color.With the color stations being at each kilometer you got a chance to come to a complete stop to ensure you took full advantage of all the color. Ryan and I took our time walking from the finish line to our designated meeting area.I took some more photos and relished in our victory.When we finally made it to our meeting area no one was there.Shortly after Roslyn walked up and immediately asked where Tim was.We had not seen him since the beginning of the fifth kilometer, where we all decided to run the last kilometer full speed.Tim, being the youngest was the first to finish.He thought surely he would see us pass through the finish line.Well apparently not.He waited there for a while, meandered to our meeting spot and no one was there.He then walked back to the finish line and ultimately the car.I was the only one with a cell phone, so there was no way to contact one another.In the meantime, we were discussing where he could possibly be.We decided that Roslyn would wait by the Porta Johns’ in the case he came there.Ryan and I went to look around for him.Keep in mind thousands of people participated and were now grouped together in the center of the park dancing and getting doused in more color. We walked the outskirts of the park and there was no sight of Tim.When we returned he was still not at the meeting spot.Ryan decided to go get the car and hopefully Tim would be there.Shortly after Ryan left, Tim showed up.He filled us in on his misguided adventures, we all had a laugh and then Ryan showed up with the car.On the bright side, I got lots of great pictures and got to do the wobble.We also hung around long enough that an intended brunch turned into lunch.


We had cause for celebration and had delicious Mexican food that we gorged ourselves on after the race.What’s a celebration without Margaritas’?Can you say food coma?I would’ve given myself a hard time had I not just jogged a 5k.We will write it off as a cheat meal.


When Ryan and I finally arrived back home he headed for the shower and I got straight in the bed.Stuffed and exhausted I proceeded to sleep for over four hours.Talk about a cat nap.I must say that I felt refreshed when I finally woke up.As I came downstairs I found my husband passed out on the couch.Guess I wasn’t the only one.


The rest of the day Saturday was spent relaxing and we stayed up late watching movies.When we woke up Sunday afternoon, I felt pretty good.Still a little stiff from my work out on Friday, Ryan however was very sore.I gave him a healthy dose of Glutamine, which I purchased on Friday after my personal trainer informed me it would be a good idea.Glutamine was the primary reason I was only stiff and not sore Saturday morning.Ryan on the other hand probably would have benefited more had he taken it Saturday night, guess it was better late than never.


Moral of the story, it is a great idea to participate in events that are fun, get you moving and involve your friends and family.However, I would suggest proper preparation and to avoid the five things we did or didn’t do prior to (and quite possibly after) the race.All in all it was a great weekend and a fun experience!


5 things you should not do before a 5k:

1 – Sign up only three weeks in advance


2 – Do limited distances of Cardio the weeks leading up to the actual race (and less than 3 miles)


3 – Complete an intense workout the day before that equates to being sore all over


4 – Stay up late and consume alcohol the night before


5 – Fail to properly warm up before the start of the race


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