It is FINALLY the holiday season! It is my favorite time of the year: the
cold lukewarm, crisp winter air, the lights and trees everywhere, and Dear God – the FOOD. I needed to do a holiday themed run. The Ugly Sweater Run was the obvious choice! Not only is it festive and holiday themed, I get to dress up! On top of that, there are tons of runners and at the end there is hot chocolate (with Kahlua if you’re over 21!).
SO – this past Saturday (December 3rd), I grabbed one of my good girlfriends, a really awesome/ugly sweater and headed to Piedmont Park. We were not able to make the packet pick up on Friday, but the wait to pick up our numbers day of was not bad at all- maybe 10 minutes. The swag is super on point with the theme: a sweet winter knit beanie with a little poof ball on top! There were a lot of people – and everyone was pretty festive: SO many ugly sweaters… and onsies, matching outfits, and dogs wearing ugly sweaters! I tried to get a picture of the people running in a multiple person ugly sweater but it was way too blurry to share – it was very impressive to see them run though – major props. I will warn you: this is not a race to do if you’re trying to set a PR. There are a lot of runners and it is pretty congested in the beginning. There were lots of people walking and right at the beginning, the pavement gets pretty narrow pretty quick. People are just enjoying the park with friends and being festive, nothing wrong with that at all! Just know that unless you are able to get in the front at the beginning of your group leaving the start gate, you probably be ducking and weaving quite a bit if you’re a runner for the first little bit. After mile 1, the crowd thins out and it was really just a fun run through the park. Plus, it was B-E-A-U-Tiful on Saturday. There are water stations every mile. That was clutch because around mile 2, I was saying some pretty choice words about running in a knit sweater. It got warm… FAST.
That being said, Dear Ugly Sweater Run Race Directors – Thank you! You put on an awesome event – it was an absolutely fun, hilarious and sweaty time! Some definite positives – the race time started at noon so I had plenty of time to search frantically for my really hideous sweater and go to Target to buy a new one when my search was unsuccessful, you had SO many port-a-potties which is AMAZING, the inflatables throughout the run were super fun and festive, the hardware + swag is super on point, AND WE GOT TO SEE SANTA!!!!!! The picture would have been so much better if I hadn’t blinked but still – SANTA!Also – something really, REALLY SMART – your medal ribbon color was based on age: 21 years old + got the Red Kahlua ribbon and under 21 years old got a blue ribbon with snowflakes on it. It was a very clever way to separate the crowd for the delicious beverages shared post run!