Last weekend I participated in the Jingle All The Way 15K . Although it was the 22nd year for the 5K, the 15K is a new option. I have to
blame credit Deborah for getting me to sign up, and was so bummed when she had to DNS. (But I’d rather have her healthy for the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run too!)
Jingle All The Way 15K Race Recap
1. Easy Logistics. There aren’t many races in the D.C. area where you can register at the last minute, have a week to pick up your packet from a variety of locations, and leave your house 45 min before the starting time and still have plenty of time to park and warm up, but this is one of them.
2. Classic D.C. Scenery. Like the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run, the Jingle All The Way races start and end right by the Washington Monument. The 15K route goes past the Tidal Basin and Kennedy Center, so you get to see some of the classic D.C. sights before and after you have to slog around Hains Point. 😉
this view was worth taking off my gloves to capture
3. Festive Running Costumes. The race organizers encourage people to dress up by holding a costume contest. I didn’t take photos, but there were tons of Santas, Frotys, elves, grinches, and reindeer. I even saw a woman in a Christmas tree costume! A group won a prize for their Five Golden Rings costumes. My husband liked the Three Wise Men. You can see the post-race photo booth album here.
4. A Flat, Fast, Course. The route really is FLAT and with much smaller crowds than Cherry Blossom, you really can run your best race–although the sharp/hairpin turns tend to make your Garmin measure longer than the official 15K distance. I wasn’t planning to race this one–after all, I spent the ENTIRE day before on my feet baking cookies!–but once the announcer said “GO!” my legs took off.
There was a fierce headwind during that 8:30 mile
I managed to sustain a pretty even, comfortably hard pace. which turned out to be fast enough to place second in my (new) age group and earn a another medal.
5. A Festive Race Hat. Instead of a race t-shirt, the official race gear is a festive race hat! There also was the option to choose a $10 Pacers gift card (the running store associated with the race) or make a charitable donation.
Isn’t it so cute?!
Overall, it was a great race, and one I’ll considering doing again–especially if I can coordinate with more local running friends. I know the snowy scenery made the course prettier than it might be on a dreary December day, but I think the fun costumes would make the race interesting no matter what the weather.
Would you pick a race hat instead of a shirt? z
Have you raced in a costume?