Monday, December 28, 2015

San Diego Santa Run Race Recap

A few weeks ago was the San Diego Santa Run (normally I am better about getting my race recaps up sooner than this but with the holidays and all of our travels, this one got put on the back-burner).

I figured there would be a TON of santas, so I went the elf route. I hot glued
some felt onto a running shirt I had and made my elf shoes out of magazine
and KT Tape. The ugly sweater PRO Compression socks (that sold out in a
matter of hours) were a MUST!

The San Diego Santa Run includes multiple waves. The first of which is the 5K Santa Run. All participants that register for this wave are given a Sunny Santa Suit when they pick up their bib (it isn’t required that you wear it, but it is suggested). The second wave is for Santa’s Little Helpers (aka dogs and their owners). They release the hounds in groups of 15 or so, that way the owners don’t get all tangled up in the leashes. The third wave is for Santa’s Elves (meaning kids). Parents are welcome to run with their children along the course. The final wave is for Speedy Santas (complete with cash prizes!).


The first wave is a 5K (although I did hear that the course measured short), with the following three waves being a 1-mile course.


This is the second time we have participated in the Santa Run. The first time Ryan ran in the Speedy Santa wave and Walt the Wiener Dog and I ran in the Santa’s Little Helper wave. This go-around, the hubby wanted the Sunny Santa Suit (short sleeves and shorts, seeing as we are in SUNNY San Diego) so upgraded to the 5K run.


I do have to post a brief disclaimer: Walt and I were given a free entry to the Santa’s Little Helper wave (but we paid full price for Ryan’s 5K entry). Even so, all opinions are 100% honest and completely my own (you know me, I ALWAYS gotta keep it real).

Saturday morning came and we packed up the sleigh to head down to Pacific Beach. I love when races offer day of pick-up (free of charge). Although PB is only about 30 minutes south of us, it is much appreciated that we aren’t forced to spend an hour plus (depending on Friday traffic) in the car to head down to the same exact place the following morning.

After Ryan picked up his racing outfit and I picked up Walt’s bib, we walked around a bit and waited for the festivities to begin. There were plenty of port-o-potties for the participants and there were even tons of dog bowls around the staging area for the pups.

I wasn’t sure how my elf shoes would hold up, so I made sure Ryan snapped a picture of them before too long. (Just in case you were wondering, I made them by balling up some newspaper and trying to form them into an elf shoe shape, then covered the shoes with KT Tape and hot glued some bells I found at the Dollar Store onto the toe area.) I got quite a few compliments, even though I wasn't sure how well they would translate.

Before we knew it, the Santas were lining the streets and getting ready to take off. It was so fun to see a sea of Santas taking over the course. Walt and I hung out near the start so we could cheer on OUR Santa (and everyone else). The only hard part was trying to differentiate between all of the Santas - but thankfully ours was wearing PRO Compression Jailbreak socks so we could find him easier.

After Ryan ran by we made our way down to the next turn around point so we could try and see him again. The only issue was that someone was flying a drone to get pictures of the hundreds and hundreds of running Santas and drones are Walt’s nemesis. HE HATES THEM! We saw Ryan running by, but he got confused as to why Walt was barking so much (hence the photo of him asking Walt what was going on).

We made our way towards the finish line so we could cheer our speedy Santa on to a super awesome finish. Ryan did great and ended up finishing in about 26 minutes. (I told him that I think I hold him back when we run together, since he tends to run faster without me ;))

We had to wait for all of the 5K participants to finish before Walt’s wave could start so we walked around a bit. While we were perusing the vendors I saw Jenn, who had just finished the 5K (dressed as Elf on the Shelf) with a new, shiny PR.

You can't be a Scrooge or Grinch around these parts
when you see all of the Christmas cheer going on!

I made Ryan take a couple pictures of Walt and I before we had to go line up for the race. (I swear Walt loves us, even though his facial expressions often say otherwise.)

Walt's got his game face on!

There were quite a few dogs, which was fun to see. I love that this event is welcoming to everyone {and their mamas} - runners or walkers, adults or children (and even fur babies!)! There truly is something for the whole clan!

3, 2, 1… GO!

Who let the dogs out?!

Since this wasn’t Walt’s first rodeo, I knew what his game plan would be…. Sprint out of the gate and quickly lose steam. He gets so excited to chase the other running doggies that he takes off like a bat out of hades, but then his stubby legs catch up to him and he slows down.

Isn't the lab's face AMAZING?!


We were keeping good time until we reached the turn around part of the course. At that point, Walt wanted to call it a day and sat down… Oh, silly Walt! The rest of the way we sort of did a run/walk thing. We would run when another dog would go by because he wanted to chase them, but once they got out of reach we slowed to a walk.

And fun was had by all!

Towards the end I was trying to point out Ryan so that he would at least run to him, but I think it was a lost cause. We ended up finishing in under 12 minutes, which is pretty great for a dachshund with short legs and no official training.


Proud finishers!

We were 3 minutes slower than our previous race (in 2013), but
it's all about the fun, right?!

This is one of my favorite pictures from the day!

We would have loved to watch the other waves and the parade, but I had to work at 2pm so we had to head back to the car shortly after Walt finished. As soon as he got in Ryan’s lap, he was out like a light!


This is honestly one of my favorite races of the year. I love that we get to participate as a family and spread the Christmas cheer! This one is never about the time (unless you are running in the competitive wave and trying to win some moola), it’s all about the community, holiday season and love of running! I hope Ryan, Walt and I can return for many years to come!

Thanks to HP Movement for the entry for Walt and I and for putting on such an AWESOME event!

What's the best way to spread Christmas cheer?


SD Mom said...

Looks like fun! Maybe Murray and I will have to join you next year!

Lucie from Greener Niagara said...

I love how creative you were with your shoes. Looks like they held up too!

Sue @ This Mama Runs for Cupcakes said...

Seriously, you are the cutest thing ever! Love what you did with the shoes and I'm so bummed I missed those socks this year!!