That’s 3 races in a row I had never done before… which seems crazy as I seem to have done any race 55 times! The Jingle Bell Jog is (now) a 5K in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, early December where EVERYONE dresses up (look) and we get bells for our shoes and there’s hot chocolate at the finish line and it’s the most wonderful time of the year (well, second to marathon week at least!).
HOW HAD I NEVER RACED THIS BEFORE??? Well for starters, I lived super super super super super far from Prospect Park. I still live in the same place but with the new Q line, we can get to crazy places like Prospect Park, or Hawaii, or the moon in about 20 minutes, which is totally inaccurate but awesome. I love the Q. The Q changed my life. I could end this post here.
So, I actually got to the race like two hours early, because that’s how I roll and also because the race starts at lunchtime, or what you all call 9:30 am.
I flipped out instantaneously with all the amazing outfits. People were soooo ready and on point. I felt like going home sad in my striped red and white socks and elf hat. It was like every Halloween every year: I always think about dressing up the day before and then I am too lazy to actually do anything about it so I pull out whatever I can find in 5 minutes or less before I lose my attention span. Loser. Even the volunteers were all costumed up better than me!!! UGH.
The weather was PERFECT! 40 degrees, crisp, jingle all around. Christine and I “warmed up” towards the corrals and parked in B, our spot. We got moving soon and the pace didn’t feel normal to me. Felt too hard. TOO hard. I told myself to hang on to her, and a second wind would come! WHY DOES IT FEEL SO HARD?!?!? Mile 1: 7:20.
Around then I see Martina right on my side, I say hey Martina, and she yells OF COURSE! Apparently, she had liked the “elf pace” and was pacing off me. We really need to get organized!!! About 2 minutes later, I drop off both of their paces. The Battle Pass Hill is coming and I knew I didn’t have it to keep going at that pace up the hill. Mile 2: 7:53. Well, that’s how I felt. I actually thought I was running like 10:00, that would have made more sense! I told myself I’d maybe have enough to speed up a lot in the last mile or something like that. I couldn’t find any of my gears and it felt just like the Abbott Dash to the Finish Line 5K a month before. Mile 3: 7:24. Last bit in 6:54 pace.
And here we go!
We all caught up at the finish line! They both did amazing!!! I am still trying to understand why I am running my 5ks about two minutes slower than a few months ago. So strange.
Finish time: 23:20 Average Pace: 7:31
Previous PR: 21:09 From: July 2012
Age Grading: 65.82%
Overall Place: 574 of 5240
Gender Place: 117 of 3128
Age Place: 11 of 329
You know what’s reaaaally interesting. I did a few 5Ks in the summer (SO SO SO HOT) and I was always around the same times (around 21 minutes). Now, the two 5Ks in the last month are also very close, but a bit slower. So, yes, consistency, as usual, I guess.
So, after the hot chocolate, Martina, Daniela and I run back to find Jacki. I did like 3 miles and I didn’t find her. Why is everyone also wearing red??? HA
Eventually, I found Jacki and Ted, my friends/coworkers who sit also on my row (we have a row team thing in the plans, but we need a name first) and they all looked more festive than me. Of course.
Also those socks are truly not a Xmas thing but more of a “whatever I found at Forever21” thing and they turned into leg warmers during the race, not cool.
I want to do it again already. With bells on this time. And a better outfit. And maybe some reason why my pace is this now? Still, for this one, it might be as fun to cheer than run, just because everyone looked so jolly…! Happy Holidays!