Race Report: Ruislip Santa Dash | Eclectic Cake: Race Report: Ruislip Santa Dash

Monday, 9 December 2013

Race Report: Ruislip Santa Dash

WHAT:  1.8m run in a Santa suit
WHEN:  8th December 2013
WHERE:  Ruislip Lido, Hillingdon


Dear Santa,

I've tried my best to be good this year – training plans were followed, muscles were stretched and physio exercises were (mostly) followed. So I feel like I could maybe ask for something big for Christmas. But really, there's only one thing I want. A running partner.

To be clear, I don't want a runner to 'partner' me. I want my partner, my husband, to be a runner. I want him to finally 'get' it and understand why I want to wake up early on a Saturday morning and lace up.


We've tried running together before – I took Andrew out for his first run. He assumed he was faster than me, sprinted off, ran out of steam just a few hundred metres in, then sulked home as I overtook him. He didn't enjoy it. But who does enjoy their first run? It's horrible when you start - your legs don't work properly and your lungs are too small!

But what if the introduction to running could be more fun? The Ruislip Santa Dash was just that. No pressure of a time chip, a scenic route and the novelty of being one Santa in a crowd big enough to confuse a small child. Not the keenest of participants, I bribed Andrew with the promise of a medal and a short distance – just short of 3k. But no, he wasn't allowed to walk it.


And he didn't! After the most relaxed race start ever (I was still Instagram-ing at we set off) we took our "one size fits all" Santa suits round the lido, overtaking white-bearded runners; leaving behind bobble-hatted walkers; not letting a single red-suited jogger past.

His breath finally caught and medal in hand, I waited for Andrew's endorphins to kick in. Because, surely, that's why we all do this. It feels amazing to finish a run. Mixed in with a feeling of pride at finishing and relief that you survived, that rush of happiness is the best reward you can get. And once you experience it, you want more. I think it's at this point you forget any pain and discomfort, and consider signing up for another race.

Andrew's endorphins kicked in 23 hours and 32 minutes later...


...I'll make a runner of him yet.



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