A few weeks ago I received a Groupon offer from the Ugly Sweater Run 5K happening at Piedmont Park. Surprisingly, I did not have a race on my calendar this day, so of course Momma K and I took advantage of the deal! After running the Atlanta Christmas 5K, we headed over to Piedmont Park to get ready for race #2 of the morning.
I knew right away that this race was for me! Christmas music, holiday inflatables, and "ugly" sweaters as far as the eye could see! I was in "holiday heaven" to say the least!
We got into the "corral" where we ended up running into our new friend Micheal that we met at the Atlanta Christmas 5K earlier that day. There were thousands of runners, so they sent off the runners in waves spaced a few minutes apart. We started in the first wave and by the time that we hit mile one the last wave was going off.
The Ugly Sweater Run is a very casual and non competitive 5K. If you have ever done the Color Run, it is a lot like that - no timing, no awards, etc. It is all about good fun with your family and friends. With all of that said, it was GAME ON for FUN!
The start of the race started off VERY congested. Due to the paved path in Peidmont Park being fairly narrow and this was more of a "fun run", the first bit of the course was pretty crammed with walkers and slower runners.
We also ran a little bit on the Active Oval which is a packed gravel travel in Piedmont Park. While I typically don't like "trails", this isn't really a trail.
The spirit of Christmas was abundant over the course of the 3.1 miles. From festive attire to Christmas music being played along the way (as well as some runners with it on their phones).
I squealed in total excitement when I saw the finish line. Not because of the fact that we were almost there, but what was greeting us.... HUGE INFLATABLE REINDEER! Sqeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
Some times it is good to just have a fun race. I could have easily ran this at my own pace, but instead it was fun to run with Momma K. While we run a lot of the same races, we don't actually run 'together' very often. It was great to just have fun, take selfies, and enjoy the Christmas spirit around us!
There were some great photo ops after the race including various inflatables and of course Santa Claus himself was on hand as well! It wouldn't be a true Christmas race without him, right!?!
My only "complaint" about the race was the positioning of the post-race food/beverages. There was a fenced off area to head to, but it was so crowded to try to get in there even that we just left. Runners 21+ were able to get a Samual Adams holiday brews and hot chocolate and water were also available from what I could see. To be honest, I don't like feeling "herded" after a race and after running two races, both Momma K and I were both hungry (and for more than race food), so we headed out to eat.
Overall, I would definitely do this race again - I mean, you saw the pictures and look at the beanie you get (see below). Momma K and I both had a lot of fun and really enjoyed the race. It is always important to know when these "theme" runs are essentially fun runs with no results and perhaps a more relaxed atmosphere than you might be wanting to run.
Question of the Day: Have you taken part in a holiday themed run this year?
I love to run and most importantly I love to have FUN while I run....I am the "Funner Runner"
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