Joyful 5k

This post is way overdue, but it wasn’t until last month that I got photos from my mom, and it was about that time that school exploded as such…


(I’m there…in the middle, in green + blue headband..freezing my derriere off.)

My first 5k was the Joyful 5k on Christmas Day in 2010 at Como Park Lake in Minnesota.  Its actually the largest Christmas Day race in the country (probably one of the only ones) – but it was pretty exciting!

The race started at 10am (perfect start time for Christmas Day), which allowed for it to ‘warm up a bit.’  Though it didn’t really warm up, that didn’t phase a few of the runners…Notice anything funny at the front of the running pack?


Just to clarify: the temp was in the low teens… And yes, if you thought you saw something off, you did:


There were two ridiculous guys  running in just boxer shorts – NO SHIRTS or TIGHTS!  And what did they write on their chests?  “Minnesota Dumb” & “India Dumber” – quite fitting, in my opinion Winking smile

My mom came on to cheer me on, as I made my way around the lake – 2x.  And I give her my many thanks for her photo taking skills, and for documenting my race.


I’m going to say this one last time: it was cold, ridiculously cold…And as the jolly green racer ran passed my mom on lap 1, I smiled and waved, but really I just wanted to run into the women’s bathroom and warm up!


After having run really only indoors and in California, I was not prepared for the cold weather.  My pants were too thin (I wore long yoga pants) and I could have definitely used another layer of long underwear on top.  I probably would’ve benefited from a hat, not just the headband (though at least my ears stayed warm – and on!).  And I was very thankful for gloves.  Gloves were a must.


But the cold didn’t stop me…in fact I surprisingly cruised along at an 8:03 pace, finishing the 5k in 25:08!  It was a PR (well it was my first 5k race) – but one I wasn’t expecting, especially not with the cold.  I guess I just wanted to get back into the warm car!

It was also awesome being home and running a race, because I ran into some folk who were on my high school cross country ski team with me!  It had been years since I’d seen them, and it was fun to catch up.

All in all, I learned:
(1) to not sign up for a race longer than a 5k anymore in ridiculously cold weather.  I don’t think I can handle it – nor could my lungs.  But, it was fun to do the Joyful 5k, and I would definitely do it again.
(2) that I can truly run at an 8 min/mile pace – it wasn’t just a fluke for my Turkey Trot.
(3) I prefer 10k to 5k, because 5k are too short, and usually cost too much to justify Mrunning them.  this one was luckily only $25, so it wasn’t too much of a burden to my wallet.

What is your favorite race distance?  For running, biking, triathlon?  I think mine is a 10k, but I’m doing a 12k this spring, and I’ll let you know how it goes (Bay to Breakers 100th Anniversay!).  I have also run a few 8k that I really enjoyed, but I think the 10k pushes me a little bit more, which is what I like to go for Winking smile


5 thoughts on “Joyful 5k

  1. My first 5K was the exact opposite – high 90s, hot, and humid!
    My favorite race to run would probably be the 5K because, well, it’s the only length I’ve ran. I’m hoping to complete a 5-mile race soon, then maybe a 10K, and hopefully a half marathon one day. 🙂

  2. A Christmas Day race sounds so much fun!

    Awesome job on the PR, first or not. I’ve actually never raced a 5k, but I agree – I’d generally have a hard time justifying the cost.

  3. This post made me laugh! The first time I ran outside in the winter in Minnesota, I wore yoga pants and froze my rear off! I had that terrible itch on my legs that comes after things are too cold!

    I love running Lake Como, I don’t get over there often enough. If you come this summer, you should do another race that’s in better weather. =) And let me know so I can come cheer you on!

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