Guest blog by Jessie Smith, Junior League of Little Rock member and Downtown Dash Chair
If you’re looking for a way to jump start your summer goals of improving your overall wellness or getting ready to be poolside, running a 5K or 10K is a great way to get moving. Running is a big part of my fitness routine for a really good reason, it is the only thing that keeps me in shape. I love lifting weights and being in the gym, but running works best for me. It’s another reason why for the last four years I’ve been on the Downtown Dash committee within the Junior League of Little Rock.
The Downtown Dash offers a 5K, which is great for beginners or someone who wants to work on speed, and a 10K for those who want to rack up some miles. The course has several great features, one being that it takes you on a great tour through downtown, and it is flat. Another great thing about running a 5K is there isn’t much training needed. Because our race is family friendly, feel free to take your time. Get out this week and start walking, and by race day you can build in short intervals of running. Just be sure to listen to your body!
Make sure to have the right gear! A great pair of running shoes is the most important accessory. Go to a local running store to get the right shoes for your stride. I have weak ankles, but thankfully there is a shoe specific to my needs to keep me pounding the pavement. As we approach summer, breathable clothing and socks are also a must. These fabrics will help keep you cool and dry quickly as your burning calories.
It’s also really important to track your progress. Whether it’s on a fitness watch or your phone, there are tons of gadgets and applications you can download to keep track of your distance and pace. I love finishing a good run and being able to look at my distance or see that I’ve improved my pace, even if it’s by 10 to 15 seconds per mile. Using your phone also allows you to bring along your music, it helps me to keep moving!
Come join us for the 2016-2017 Downtown Dash, and bring the whole family. This is our second year to include a kid’s 1K and our first year to give all runners a medal. The kid’s 1K will kick off at 8:00 am with the main races starting at 8:30 am. We will have lots of activities in the parking lot including a bounce house, fire truck, lots of games, and face painting. Get outside and start walking towards your first 5K!