Jingle Bell 5k Run Race Report

Sunday, December 18, 2011
This was my first race back as a runner! I was so excited to implement the Galloway run-walk-run method in my first 5k. I knew I wanted to finish as fast as I could, but I also didn't want to over-do it. So, I was hoping to do the 3.1 miles in around 42 minutes. 

Woke up at 6am to get ready for the race. Mom would be walking this one as well, so she was up (not necessarily happy about the hour though, she's not a morning person). I ate my bowl of oatmeal, got dressed and we were out the door just before 7am. The event was taking place at Baldwin Park in Orlando which meant it was about 40 minutes away. Leaving by 7am would assure we would get there with enough time to park, collect our registration packets and put everything but the bib in the car. 

We arrived at about 7:40ish, and easily found a parking spot. We then walked the half block or so to the packet pick up area. We got our packets and timing chips and headed back to the car. Made a stop at the local CVS to use the ladies room and walked back down to the race area. We still had a good amount of time before the 8:30am start, so I went looking for pre-race water which I thankfully found. 

We then gathered near the starting line for the National Anthem. Looking to my left, I realized that Mattia, a friend from dailymile was just a couple of feet from me. I was hoping to see him, so we said our hellos and gave one another a hug. Before we knew it, the race was beginning. The start was full of runners and walkers alike, so I was glad that I was going to be walking for a couple of minutes before I hit my Gymboss timer. I would have been weaving around people like crazy if I was running right from the start.

Once I hit start on my interval timer, I was off running. Before the race, I decided to go with 1:1 intervals, and figured if need be, I'd slow down to 30:30.  I soon realized that I was going a bit too fast on the first mile when I saw the time I hit mile one. I was under 13 minutes. I needed to slow down, my body wasn't used to sustaining that kind of speed for that long just yet. Alas, I didn't listen to myself, because I apparently ended up going even faster mile 2 hitting that mile marker at around 12 minutes. I then took mile 3 a lot easier than my body wanted to I slowed down my running intervals and walked some of my walking intervals a bit slower than usual. Rounding the corner to the finish line, I wanted to cross the finish line running, so I ended up running 30 seconds earlier than my normal interval. I crossed the finish in with a time of 42:09! So, I definitely PRed and made my goal. I felt good! 

After I finished, I met up with another dailymile friend, Lizabeth. This would be our first time meeting up even though we have done a couple of the same races. It was great meeting her. We talked for a few minutes, took pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus and went in search of fruit (which didn't exist! A race without fruit, I couldn't believe it). Then, my mom finished and Liz and I said our goodbyes. I hope to be able to run with her once I put in some more miles of training. 

All in all, this was a fun and festive race. I thought it was pretty well organized and put on. My only complaint would be that they didn't have any fruit like bananas. The only thing they had was junk donuts and bagels. The race organizers need to think about this for next year. A lot of runners want healthier options like fruit after a race. I always look forward to a banana once I finish. Also, they were giving out water bottles at the two water stops rather than cups of water. While it's easier on the volunteers to hand a runner/walker a bottle of water, it's also more wasteful. I saw many mostly full water bottles tossed to the side. Cups would have solved the wasting I think, it would just be a bit more work since they have to be filled up and ready to go. On a positive note, I hope the Arthritis Foundation did well in fundraising with this event.

(I'll post the couple of pics I have soon)


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