Sunday, 7 December 2014

Santa Shuffle

I had on a numbered race bib, wore my new running shoes, and did 45 minutes of running, but wasn't intending to be in a race.  It surprised me when a race took place around me nevertheless. 
Always ready to go
The Santa Shuffle is a fund raiser for Salvation Army.  He said this is the 24th year that they have done it.  Jen and I signed up only a few days earlier when we found the time slot compatible with our work schedules.  They promote it not so much as a race, but a fun-run/walk.  They provide the horse track at Western Fair raceway for the venue.  So off we went for a fun morning run together.  There's no timing method provided.  The distance is about five kilometers or thereabouts, or as far as you feel like going within the hour that is available. Jen and I did 9 laps, which is a little over 6 km.  


However, Running Room is a principal event partner.  They made it into a race.  Everyone gets a race bib to wear.  There's prizes for the first finishers.  There's medals for everyone upon completion. The race is 7 laps which was considered to be almost 5 km.  Who knows.  There isn't even a finish line.  The race started and ended somewhere over there on the track.  

Shuffling with wings
Before we began, came a trip to Canadian Tire for some rope to secure the angel wings.  The included straps were fastened at the top, making them more of a backpack than wings.  Needing the rope cut to order, Jen fetched a clerk. He was startled to find the giant snowmonster in the aisle.  What to do?  Act natural and treat it like a regular customer.  The girl was talking to the snowmonster, so it must be okay.  After the race, we went to Costco.  There, I did them the courtesy of putting on pants.  It seems so much more civilized to wear pants in their store.

For us, the point of the day was the same as any other race we go into.  Have a good time.  Hang out with your friends and family.  Get some exercise.  Accomplished.  She dressed up in angel wings. I bought a couple Santa caps, then decided to make a snowman.  Most everyone had a red Santa cap.  Dogs and babies were welcome.  The weather was around freezing, with a light breeze, and no sunshine.  The track was dry, thankfully.  Even a bit of overnight snow could have turned the day into a muddy mess.  We ran laps in the gravel until most all of the runners quit.  I was surprised to get a medal.  What's a finsher's medal about when you finish whenever you feel like stopping?   

Santa came to shuffle
Anyone looks friendly when wearing a Santa cap, so the crowd appeared very friendly.  After running for a while we stayed to drink hot chocolate and coffee.  It was a good start to the holidays.  Jen and I are signed up for the Hypothermic Half in February, so we need to keep on running on into the winter.  The cold weather has just begun, and there's so much more running to do.

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