Before I go into my race day description of the Jingle Bell Run (JBR) in Indianapolis I want to tell you a bit about the organization I ran for this past weekend. The Arthritis Foundation puts on the JBR and is a non-profit that supports research for all types of arthritis of which there are many. I run this event and take part in other Arthritis Foundation events since I have family who suffer from arthritis every day and because it is a very misunderstood chronic disease that afflicts not only senior citizens, but also children and people of all ages. Arthritis is not just something you get when you get older!
And back to the race! The day started out chilly as usual, but even colder than last year’s JBR as it was a brisk 19 degrees at the start. I waited as long as I could inside before venturing out to the start line. The event starts and finishes at Conseco Fieldhouse where the Indianapolis NBA team plays. The race started at 9:00am and nearly 2000 runners surged ahead for a quick run around downtown Indianapolis. After 2-3 blocks we came upon our first turn and came directly into a construction zone. The city is doing a lot of construction in preparation for Super Bowl 2012 and we got to run through the “progress” for that event. The pack of runners narrowed into one lane forcing everyone to slow and even some to walk…I was a tad unhappy at this since we all hope for a PR for any event whenever we can get it.
A few blocks later the road opened back up and we were off at top speed once again. The course takes runners through the Mass Ave shopping district to cut over to Meridian Street, back up to the City Circle where we made our final cut back over to Pennsylvania Street for the big finish in front of Conseco.
I wish I could say the day ended with a PR, but my 00:27:24.7 this year will have to do. Last year my time was 00:27:04.8 so just a little faster. I would loved to have seen what my time would have been without the construction zone delay, but I’ll keep this post positive and not go down that track of discussion. Still, missing a PR by less than 20 seconds is a tad disappointing.
This is my last race of 2011 and it was a good one for a good cause. My next three races all happen in one weekend next month when I travel South to tackle the Goofy Challenge (+5K on Friday) at Walt Disney World!
Hello race fans! Saturday morning was a balmy 39 degrees here in Indianapolis as several hundred people all showed up at the same place to run a 5K known as the Jingle Bell Run! This event supports the Arthritis Foundation.
My gf and I headed downtown to Conseco Fieldhouse where the event would start and finish. My gf was the Volunteer Coordinator for this year’s run/walk so we arrived at 6:00am to start getting the volunteers checked-in and sent to their assignments. I was in charge of volunteer t-shirts and lanyards and pretty much at my gf’s beck & call for a few hours. It was a good time helping get this awesome event underway!
With a 9:00am start, I ventured to the start line around 8:50am. If you read my blog regularly then you know I ran The Drumstick Dash with a buddy of mine on Thanksgiving and did great! So for this race I lined up with the 9-min/mile pace peeps and even stepped to the front of the group. It was chilly, but with Under Armour and gloves it was no big deal. It felt really good being an entire corral closer to the start line than “normal” too! It’s amazing what becomes normal since almost 12 months ago to the day I couldn’t run a single mile and started at a 12 minute/mile pace when I did run.
I flipped on my iPod to a little “Flo Rida: The Club Can’t Handle Me” as the race started. The first bit of the race was grueling as the wind picked up and the chill crept into everything. After I rounded the corner off Pennsylvania Street the wind was gone and things improved. The cold air was a challenge as it always is for me but I felt good as I finished Mile #1. Mile #2 whipped past in no time and the next thing you know I was crossing Penn again to head toward Monument Circle. After a quick three blocks or so I was rounding another corner onto Pennsylvania again and could see the finish line.
About that time “How Far We’ve Come” by Matchbox 20 kicked on the headphones and I took off. I could see the clock had just crossed the 27 minute mark and I really wanted to beat 28 minutes. As I approached the finish I realized I could potentially beat 00:27:30 so it was a race the last few feet to cross the line before the big three-zero went by.
I always forget about those few seconds between the official clock start and individual time based on crossing the start line. Official Time ended up being 00:27:04.8 which was good for a new 5K PR! I beat my last 5K time by 2 minutes and 39 seconds.