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Santa Shuffle 5km

santa-shuffle-team.JPGSanta Shuffle 5kmDate: Saturday December 5, 2009Location: Sunnybrook ParkEvent: 19th Annual Santa ShuffleDistance: 5km (without time chips)This has to be by far one of my favourite recreational races.The money raised goes towards the Salvation Army (a total of $400,000 was raised across 35 cities).It’s one of the most relaxed ones out there with the fun Christmas themed costumes donned by many runners, the energetic music, the fun loving MCs, the jolly Santa Clause giving hugs, and the absence of Time chips!It’s a great event to invite friends out on a chilly day so that you’ll forever be able to laugh back at the day you froze your toes off together.The weather this year was actually amazing mild.  It was a beautifully sunny and warm zero degrees without any wind.The gun went off for the 1km Elf runs where armies of little kids ran out and back while the rest of us stretched and warmed up for the 5km Santa Shuffle take-off.As we waited, we danced and bounced around to some high energetic fun music.  There almost seemed to be a dance-off between different groups huddling behind the start (my friends and I were definitely not ashamed to bounce together and act as goofy as we could).You have the option of either signing up as an individual or as a family/group.  I recommend the group option since it’s A LOT of fun.  You get to be nervous about the cold weather together and also talk about the hot waffles you’re going to eat as soon as the race is over.So the gun goes off and away we go.  A lot of people are pushing hard for the first few hundred meters but several gradually fall back after the realities of our fitness regimen start to reveal themselves.There were tons of men ahead of me but I kept my eyes on the one girl ahead of me.She was wearing a Santa hat and had dangly red heart shaped earrings.  I hoped her casual dress-up was an indication of a recreational mood and perhaps a slower pace further down the race but she kept up an incredible speed and finished first place in less than 18 minutes!  I followed a lot further behind to finish second place with 21:55.I had recruited 11 other runners to participate in this race with me under the name “Team Frostbite”… Two of them had already finished the race by this point (Team RF alumni Paul Bregin finished in less than 16 minutes and another Team RF member Derek Virgo finished in less than 18 minutes).I ran to a bench where my friend Jenn Yip had made my running team a sign that read “Go Team Frostbite” and I took the sign to run back towards the race to find the rest of my friends.As I ran back holding the sign, I cheered and shouted words of encouragement to the other runners.  I was elated to see the smiling faces fed back to me as I pumped my sign and told them how awesome they were.When I ran into my “pack” I turned around and jogged with them towards the finish (some of them coming in around the 35-40min mark).We all had a wonderful time and shared some hot chocolate together while getting giddy over our goody bags (plasma wool socks, chapstick, activity books, Charlie Brown dvds, stickers etc.).After receiving our rewards, we headed to Golden Griddle for some hot pancakes and waffles while talking excitedly over the day’s events and what we have planned for the future.It was a wonderful day that we will never forget and we can’t wait to do it again!A big thank-you goes out to the volunteers at the race, the sponsors, the positive energy from all the racers, and my super fun race team (Paul Bregin, Derek Virgo, Angela Dagenais, Jenn, Veronica Stephen, Aaron, Matthew Fifer, Vanessa Yu, Adrian De Almeida, Daniela Boles, Luke, and our cheerleader Lisa Tong).

Author

I enjoy skating, rollerblading, dancing, poetry, doing volunteer work, training for triathlons, and eating an obscene amount of fruits/vegetables.

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  • I’m not sure why everything got squished together. When I drafted the template; I had lots of spaces in between certain paragraphs.
    Anyone able to provide some advice?

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