Santa on the Run

Written by Amy Miller O'Toole on . Posted in Outdoor Rec and Nature

Amy as Santa for the Ri Ra's Santa 5K Run.

So the last month or so has been a difficult and different one. My husband’s mother spent the entire month of November in the intensive care unit floor of Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington and then passed away at the way-too-young age of 63. Needless to say there were multiple trips to Burlington to visit and say goodbye. With the amount of light we have this time of year, by the time we would get home it would be pitch black. I am not a fan at all of the “dreadmill” so I did not run for 12 days straight. I had decided to take a solid week off after the Kingdom Challenge and then prioritized another five days off for family and visit time.

After that amount of time, which is the most time off I have taken in my three years of running, I started feeling sore and anxious. It’s weird how your body can feel sore after not working out when it has become so accustomed to working out. I needed to escape some mounting family tension so I laced up my shoes and braced for the cold. How refreshing that cool air felt. I was so happy and light as I descended the big hill from our village to the river.

After the wake and the funeral, I was exhausted. I had signed up to participate in Ri Ra’s Santa 5K Run on Dec. 2 in Burlington. When my alarm went off on Sunday I so wanted to stay in bed. I lay there and thought this is it; this is the last race of the this year’s New Years resolution. So up I went and I donned my Santa Suit. That suit is hot! And big! And not very comfortable.

I have a racing rule and that is if you are in a costume it is a “fun” run. The start was slow as there were a couple of thousand Santas. The first half-mile was spent zig-zagging through the mess. During this run, my favorite site was Battery Street and the sea of Santas in front of and behind me. Oh, and the smiles from all the drivers who were stopped waiting for us to pass, which were a nice change from the usually strained glances of drivers in a hurry. We did not stick around for the breakfast provided, because it is so crowded and I really don’t do well in crowds.

My last hurrah has been my entry into my 5th KeyBank Vermont City Marathon! I just snuck in under the first price hike and was able to register with a friend securing the newly mentioned pint glass offer! So no more racing till February’s Half at the Hamptons in New Hampshire. Maybe now we can get some snow so I can get in some skiing until marathon training starts!

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