Sunday, December 14, 2014

It's a Wonderful Run 5K Race Recap

Ever since Mike and I started running we have raced the It's a Wonderful Run 5K every year.  Too bad we didn't start running in April 2010 instead of 2011 because then we would have been on the list of "die hards", the people who have raced it all five years.

 Previous It's a Wonderful Run photos

This race is special for me. It is the race where I first ran a sub-30 5K. It is a race where I have PR'd numerous times. Last year I was able to share it with my best friend, Crystal, and we ran the entire race together through the snow.

This year, it was our first (and last) 5K of the year. Training for an Ironman and marathon in the same year doesn't give you many opportunities to run short races.

After our Ironman, I was running a lot faster. However, after our marathon we hadn't run very much since we were still building our base back up. I was wavering between just running and seeing what happened and going all out. Even at the start line, I didn't really know what I was going to do.

Another thing that I love about this race is that it starts at 4:40pm. Seneca Falls, or should I say Bedford Falls, is about an hour away from our house. Packet pick-up ended at 4pm so we left our house at 2:15ish. This gave us enough time to grab some crackers at a gas station for some pre-race fuel, park and get our stuff. The shirts have the same design on them every year, but the color changes. This year it was blue and they added some snow flakes to the design.

 Part of Mike's outfit

Me and Sarah before the race

We went into the community center and waited for our friends Sarah and Rob. After their family arrived, we all hung out and then went outside to get in the port-a-potty line. It didn't take long to get through it and then we made our way to the bridge (yes, that bridge) where the race starts. We went right to the front, maybe a few rows back, because people don't line up appropriately for this race.

After a few minutes, Zuzu (from the movie) started the race with her famous line, "every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings!"

As soon as we started I said, "we should have been further up front!" It was a bit crowded at the start, but luckily once we made the first turn things started to spread out. I saw Mike TAKE OFF. He was booking it!

I tried not to go out too fast, my downfall of 5Ks, but of course I did. My first mile came in at 7:13, and I knew that I wouldn't be able to sustain that for the rest of the race. I just wanted to try to keep every mile under 8:00 pace, if I was able to do that I would PR (my previous PR of 24:52 is about 8:00 pace).

The second mile is a bit of a blur for me, I slowed down quite a bit and I wasn't sure if I would actually PR. I just focused on getting to the turns (a benefit of running this race multiple times). There was this one guy running near me at this point, and the majority of the rest of the race, and he was breathing extremely loud. It was bothering me, but I just tried to ignore it. My second mile came in at 7:54 pace, whoops.

I actually started to feel a bit better during the third mile, and after making one of the last turns I was able to pick up the pace a bit. Right after crossing the railroad tracks, I heard someone near me say, "we are at 21 minutes". I knew that I had about a half mile to go so I tried to pick it up. My third mile came in at 7:43 pace.

After making the final turn, which has a slight uphill, I made my way down the hill to the finish. Right as I got to the finish line, I heard Mike cheering me on from the sidelines.

I managed to PR by a little over a minute, with a finishing time of 23:48. After finding Mike, I found out that he had PR'd too (just by a few seconds, but a PR is a PR) with a finishing time of 22:00.

We found Sarah and Rob at the finish line, and after hanging out for a bit we all went home.

 I love It's a Wonderful Run!

I love this race so much, and I hope that we can continue to run it every year. It is a great way to end the racing season!


  1. Wow you are so speedy! Congrats on a great PR!

  2. Sub 24, NICE!! Happy Holidays & Stay Strong

  3. Ahhhh, PR-ing and wearing a festive getup?! Win, win!