Sunday, December 13, 2015

Santa Hats and Jingle Bells!

Sometimes, you just gotta put on the Santa hat and go!

My turn on the jolly old elf's lap

I have done several Christmas-themed races in my day. Actually, my first experience running in a holiday event was in December 2010, at the AIB Jingle Jog in Des Moines, IA. A group of co-workers and myself even had matching velvet skirts (adorned with jingle bells). This event also was my first-ever podium moment, earning first place in my age group.

Jingle Jog 2010

I returned to this event every year since (2011, 2012 and 2013), until the event was phased out (in 2014).

Jingle Jog 2013

What's significant about this event (to me, at least) is that I placed in my age group every time I ran it. For a middle-of-the-packer such as myself, that is, INDEED, a big deal.

Jingle Jog age group awards...1st in 2010, 3rd in 2011, 2nd in 2012, 3rd in 2013
Another event I have done a couple of times is the Jingle Jam, also in Des Moines and also no longer in existence (there seems to be a pattern here...). I was fortunate to place in my age group at that event one time as well. This event had really cool shirts...they changed out the colors of the logo each year.

Jingle Jam 2011, 2nd place (age group)

Last year, my friend, Barb and I ventured to Cedar Falls, IA to a new (to us) event, Santa's Snow Shuffle. This event is unique. It has a clock at the finish line, but no official timing mat to cross and no numbered bibs for the participants (they get bibs, to designate that they are legitimately registered for the event, but instead of an assigned number, the bib has the event logo on it).

Sharing Santa's lap...
2014 Starting Line Selfie
 Santa's Snow Shuffle, a 5K for runners and walkers, doesn't award overall "winners" or age group placings, instead all awards given are door prizes by means of raffle (and there are a few prizes for costumes, for individuals and groups, etc). Naturally, this doesn't attract a lot of competitive runners, but it has a limited number of available bibs (350) for participants....and every year it sells out. Everyone has an equal chance at winning. And, most of the participants are dressed in holiday attire (hello! It's a Christmas-themed event! Boo to the Scrooges who show up in regular clothing).

2015 Starting Line Selfie

I was on my own this year at the Shuffle (except for my sister, who came along and acted as my personal photographer). The weather was warm for December (low 50's) with some fog, but no precipitation! This is Iowa, don't forget, and I'm usually decked out in running tights at this time of year. For the first time ever, I got to run (bare-legged) in a Christmas-themed event!

Off and running!

Finally, on Sunday, I donned the Santa hat (again) and ran a 5K in honor of a race, Underground Polar Express Run, that I couldn't run in person. Rain was in the forecast, and it was coming down pretty hard when I woke up at 5:30AM. By the time we were ready to head out and face the weather, it had temporarily let up (coincidence?). None-the-less, we layered dry-cleaning bags over our colorful clothing, and all was good.

Got bags, will run!
Barb even brought along candy canes to hand out to any other runners (or walkers) we'd see along the way, and she had Christmas music cued up on her phone for some special holiday ambiance. Again, mild temps for Iowa in December (mid 50's), so this called for bare legs again (seriously, I could get used to this).

Our 5K "virtual" route

So, that's my experience with Christmas-themed running, and my Santa hat needs a bath (do you realize how much perspiration happens under that red and white fur?).

Have you ever done a Christmas-themed race? Did you dress in costume? Ever raced in a Santa hat?

I'm linking with Holly at HoHo Runs and Tricia at MissSippiPiddlin for their Weekly Wrap. I invite you to head over and check out their blogs, as well as all the other linked blogs for some great reading!
























28 comments:

  1. You have some cute running outfits! I actually went to college in DesMoines (Drake), although I wasn't into running back then. Which is a shame, I should have appreciated the Drake Relays for more than just a time to party and drink beer. I have done some holiday themed runs in the past, although this year I'm holding out for a New Year's 5K.

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    1. I live an hour east of Des Moines, so DSM is one of the "main drags" for races for me. I have done the Drake Relays-HyVee Road Races the past three years....the half marathon takes us up Bull Dog Hill around mile 12...UGH!

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  2. I love that you race all decked out. Yesterday was the most dressed up I have ever gotten for a race. I wore Christmas knee highs with my running capris and an older Santa tech shirt I had received at a similar race a few years back. Next year, I promise to be more festive. I love you pictures! The Santa shorts are too cute! Happy Holiday Running Kim!

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    1. Thanks! I got the Santa shorts on clearance after Christmas last year....and they left red/white "peach fuzz" everywhere underneath. The things we put up with! ;-)

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  3. Such fun and festive clothing! I have never raced in my Santa hat because it's usually too warm. But I want to because I have a leopard print one that I really, really like. Bare legs in December in Iowa...you probably won't see that again for a while. Thanks for linking with us Kim!

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    1. I have seen leopard print Santa hats! Yes, those Santa hats are great for keeping in the heat, and the bouncing pom-pom is a bit annoying! If it was anything further than a 5K, the hat would probably have been tossed...

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  4. I was so sweaty after the Underground Polar Express run today--between my Santa jacket and hat, ugh! But it was so fun. I wish you were there in person--altho we sure felt you in spirit! :)

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    1. It was great seeing all the pics! You guys all looked so cute & festive!!

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  5. I ran in the Run With Santa 5K last weekend and wore a red sparkly Christmas tree shirt. It was my third year running it, and it's always so fun! I've never gotten to sit on Santa's lap though!

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    1. Poor Santa! There were more adults than kids planting themselves on his lap at my race...

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  6. I don't do costumes. Sparkleskirts and a flag visor on the 4th are about as close as I get!

    The shuffle race sounds fun. At least I'd finally have a chance at a prize!

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    1. I think it's a neat concept, especially for new runners who are intimidated by "racing." Everyone pretty much has an equal chance of winning ;-)

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  7. I do love all you festive costumes you've run over the years and me being a middle packer too know how special it is to win an AG award so congratulations on all those you did! I do love the awesome Jingle Jam shirt, very cool! Hey I saw where you made a beautiful scarf too on Wendy's page. You are very talented! Glad you made it a fun race even if you couldn't be there in person! Thank you again for linking up with us. Have a wonderful week!

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    1. thanks!! I do like dressing up now and then for races. I'm not super competitive, and certainly don't want to ever give the impression I'm in it to win LOL Life is too short!

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  8. I love all the cute outfits over the years you wore, but this years is particularly cute! ha I have to wash jackets, gloves, headbands after every run, I sweat like a dude lol
    I didn't dress up this year much, but I went and had a blast seeing all the creative outfits. I will post tomorrow :) Your Sis got a great shot of you on the course.

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    1. Thanks! It was a nice change having someone else take my pic....I've mastered the selfies (mostly), but they do get a little over-done. It is a challenge to dress in this "warm" December weather, there was plenty of sweating going on under the festive clothing!

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  9. I did the Underground Polar Express run last year, but had to work this year so missed out. Great outfits!!

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    1. It's always fun dressing in costume and seeing what everyone else is wearing. This event also gave out Santa hats (along with the event t-shirts)to the people who didn't bring their own. It certainly was festive!

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  10. The Frigid 5K I ran last weekend kind of had a holiday theme, so that's about as close as I got this year! There were a couple of good runs in Chicago this past weekend but my schedule didn't really allow me to run one. I'll have to try next year!

    Isn't the 50s in December awesome! It's hard to believe that all of my December runs have been in shorts!

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    1. Yes, the weather has been interesting. I have been in shorts and capri's as much as possible because it may never happen again!

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  11. I love all the holiday races! I just wrote about one in today's blog post actually :) I'm all about making my own ugly sweaters and going all out with the outfits. Congrats on placing at a few of these races - as a middle of the pack runner I know how awesome and exciting that must feel!

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    1. Holiday races are fun!I also have St. Paddy's race each year that is over-the-top festive ;-)

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  12. Wow you are a festive race veteran! This newbie totally needs to up her costume game. How sweet of you to run virtually with us! Yay!

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    1. Well, I'm 5 hours away over here in Iowa...it's the least I could do ;-) Getting all costumed up is a fun way to enjoy a run, especially when it supports such a great cause.

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  13. I can't even imagine how sweaty I would get in a Santa hat! I usually run in Christmas colors, but haven't dressed up more than that. I missed our local holiday half this year, so maybe next year I can attempt a costume run!

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    1. Ha ha! Those red and white furry hats are like an insulated furnace ;-)

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  14. I love all the Christmas themed outfits in this post! How fun! I haven't done a Christmas themed run but this makes me want to do one. We don't really have a local one.

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    1. I'm in a small town, so I usually have to travel for a "real" event, but some of my local running pals dress up and do themed runs on occasion. We're usually do a Christmas light run some evening...we dress in ugly sweaters and run around town to admire the Christmas lights ;-)

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