2011 Jingle Bells 5K in Pictures

I wanted to share a few pictures taking by our local newspaper for the Jingle Bell 5k. First of all my favorite team. The won the Best Team Spirit Award for Santa and his raindeer.  I just love the tutus, I look at this picture and I just want to hug the reindeer, seriously, how much cuter can you be?

I think next year I want to wear a tutu!

Santa and his Raindeers

Photo: Margaret Hester

I hear a lot about the Team Sparkle and sparkly skirts. What  better way to use them than dress up as Santa’s Little Helper with bright red colors and a happy smile.

Santa's Little Helper

Photo: Margaret Hester

Now back to business, this is a picture from the beginning of the race. The girl in green to the left won First Female Overall. I stayed fairly close to her the whole time, but she had more in her than I did. The dude in blue also finished in the top. Obviously I’d rather fly than run 🙂

Start of the Jingle Bell 5k 2011

Photo Margaret Hetcher

And the great finale: me acting like a goof. I was actually trying to wave at the photographer and smile. Instead I look more surprised that someone was taking a picture. I go from being way too focus on the finish to well looking like that. Oh and it also happens to be the picture that my HR team picked to put on their door to congratulate me for my result on the race. Which means every single person I work with has seen it. Brilliant! I’m not sure whether to be proud or totally embarrassed.
At least I’m wearing a costume, I think it helps with the goofy look. But I need serious lessons on how to look and act in front of a camera during a race.

Running like and Elf

Photo: Margaret Hetcher

Any lessons to share? Are you usually happy with your racing pictures or do you feel like me that you always goof off?

The Clymb

I have to blame my husband for introducing me to this site. It’s a private sale site for the outdoor lovers. I get daily emails for special sales that last just a few days, sometimes a few hours on well-known brands of outdoor gear. Their deals are usually a 50-70% discount which is huge when you consider how much outdoor gear can be.

I’ve avoided splurging so far but I’m already gotten some GU gels at dirt cheap rates. I’ve been drooling over winter running gear but trying to refrain myself because our budget isn’t allowing it yet.

Well what’s in for you? If you sign up through my link you get a $10 credit and so do I, this is valid until January 31st. There is no cost to join and it is invitation only.

If you want check it out please click this link: Invitation to The Clymb

Have fun shopping.

Black Jack 5k

Black Jack

Most races are pretty similar: a distance, a time to start, sometimes costume. We know the drill. So I feel like I have to share this set of races which mixes Vegas with a 5K. You can race hard or just play and walk around. What a fun idea.

I won’t be joining either because I’ll be working until 8am (yes an overnight) that day so it would be a little tight to make it on time not to mention I’ll be dreaming of crashing in my bed by then. But it does look like something fun to do with friends.

Dates: Dec. 10, 2011 at Jackson Park (Hendersonville, NC)

and Dec. 17, 2011 at Fletcher Park, Fletcher, NC
Cost: $10
Registration DAY OF ONLY @ 7:30AM!
Race @ 8:30am
Distance: 5k

How it works:
You’ll receive a playing card at registration, and a card at midway. You can take one more card at the finish if you so choose. The object is to hit 21. Number cards are worth their face value. Jacks, queens, & kings are worth 10, & aces can be used as 1 or 11. However many entries we have determines the jackpot, which will be given away in Foot Rx Gift Certificates. If there are multiple winners, we will split the pot amongst the winners. Your finishing place does not matter in this race, so go as fast or as slow as you like!

Contact:
aaron@footrx.com

Source: FootRX.

Elves Can Run Too: a Jingle Bell 5k Race Report

Ever since I ran the Half Marathon, I’ve been wanting to do a 5K. I knew from my training that I had improved my speed, but the question was how much? I also wanted to run a race with my husband, so when he told me “his kids” (from school” were running the Asheville Jingle Bell 5K I knew I had to sign up. I also knew I wanted to wear a costume, after all with a name like that I needed jingle bells.

A $1 Santa hat, an Alabama tube top turned into an elf skirt with a pair of scissors and jingle bells, a cute pair of socks and some ribbon was all I needed. Right before the race I almost lost a bell, so I decided to secure them with safety pins, it was a good call.

The night before my husband was telling me he wasn’t going to run. I gave him a no nonsense speech and told him he didn’t have to do the timed race but that I expected him to run. After all I signed up because I knew he would run too. So he came. At the last minute I handed him a seasonal apron when he told me he didn’t have a costume and off we went.

The race was small, about 200 runners met at the Montford Recreation Center. Perfect sun and temperature in the low 40’s greeted us. There was tons of Santa hats and reindeer antlers. I met up with some colleagues from work and my running team as well. When the starting time drew near, I was surprised to find out we were starting on a randomly drawn line on the road. While the race was chipped, it is only based on the gun and your arrival under the gate. I even mapped the run and it looks more like 3.07 than 3.1 mile. Who cares the hills made up for the difference in my opinion.

2011 Jingle Bell Elf CostumeI was lucky enough to place myself toward the front, so when I started I probably only had 10 people or so in front of me. Two kids were flying up front, I had a few women around me. I wasn’t too worried about the first mile, it takes time for everyone  to settle into their pace.  The first mile was mostly downhill but I was still surprised at the mile marker when I glimpsed at my watch to see 7:15. Wow, I did not think I could keep up at that pace the whole time. But then again it was worth a shot. So I tried to keep it up as we hit the first uphill. I had about 4 girls around me at that point and easily passed one of them who had likely started too fast. I kept up with the other girl for a while until the next uphill.

As we hit mile 2, I was still under 8:00 pace with my time reading at 14:40 or so. There was only one girl with me at that point. I wasn’t sure who else was ahead of us but I could only see one other guy. She was ahead of me and putting some distance. I did almost catch up with her, but on the last hill to the finish she suddenly took off and finished really strong. At that point I felt close to puking and knew I couldn’t push much more. So I just let it go and ran my own race. I heard someone say: “You’re the first girls”. Wait? Say what?

I ran to the finish line, looking at the clock with a very pleasant surprise. I caught up with the other runner and gave her a high five. She smiled and told me how she heard me coming behind me and knew she had to give it a push to win. Oh yes because she did win, first place overall for the female, which made me 2nd female overall!!! I was lucky that she older than me which allowed me to finish 1st of my age group.
I finished in

22: 33.9

A whooping 7:15 pace. Needless to say I’m thrilled, a great PR even if the race wasn’t exactly accurate mileage wise.
I got the great fun to cheer all my friends arriving to the finish line as well as high five my husband who was running with the kids. Now first the amusing part, not only did I win first of the 25-29 age group but I also won best adult costume.

Two Happy RunnersOfficial Stats

Number of Finishers in this Division (5K Run/Walk): 157
Weather conditions at the start: 38 degrees F, 73%RH, calm winds, clear at 10:00am start
Age Group Division for this Race: Female 25 to 29
Overall Winner of this Division (Female): 22:31.5
Total Finishers in Age Group Female 25 to 29: 12
Your Finish Time: 22:33.9
Your Calculated Pace: 7:15/mile
Your Overall Finish Position within Division: 8
Your Overall Finish Position within Division & Age Group: 1
Overall Finish Position Percentile, all age groups: Top 5%
Overall Finish Position Percentile, your age group only: Top 8%

Elf Race Goal

I’m running my first 5k race since June tomorrow. It will actually be in the same area as the Chamber Challenge, so I know to expect hill. I don’t know the exact course because the website doesn’t give much information. My time for that one was 25:48 and it was a really hot day.

So for tomorrow I’m hoping to break under 25:00.

It should be a fun run too. The Jingle Bells 5k is one of many races organized by the Arthritis Foundation. Because of the theme people are encouraged to wear jingle bells and costumes.

So I found myself a red and white stripped Santa Hat, I’ll wear my dark green running group shirt, tights or a running skirt depending on weather with on top of it a homemade skirt with jingle bells at the bottom, fun socks and maybe a black buckle belt. I look forward to it.