Race reviews – Run The River and The Santa Shuffle



A twofer today as I will share the last two races that I ran this year; Run the River 5k and The Santa Shuffle 5k.

The Run the River race has only been in existence for 3 year but already has a good following, it’s fast, occurs towards the end of the running season, has a nice medal and is well supported by the community. I ran it during its inaugural year but missed it last year so was glad to be back. This year the local craft brewery, Big Axe, was offering hot, Thai soup after the race, which is my kind of incentive.


Nicola and I waiting for the start

Race day was cool and cloudy but was still warm enough for shorts, I traveled with my girlfriend to the race but we were running separate times. A number of our friends also made the 30 minute drive to the race. The race was also running a 3k for the people who wanted to be done quick and after they departed we walked to the start line part way up a hill and were off.

The race starts uphill, levels out basically then there are two or three long downhill sections. I wasn’t really warmed up so I ran the first bit a bit reserved then tried to run faster on the downhill sections but I was much too tight and I could never really get a good pace. After passing the finish area on a flat section we then ran a couple of sections uphill before we turned around and headed back to the finish line. I saw a friend ahead of me just before the turnaround and thought that maybe I could track him down but alas I just wasn’t in proper shape, puffing at the finish I crossed the line in 25:56, well off any personal best but with another successful race under my belt. This race is very much a community fund raiser so we received a small but nice medal and a water bottle. It was a tough day for a number of people as most of my friends fell short of their PB’s.


About 2.5km into the race




We hung around for a few minutes chatting but with the cool air settling in and our sweat drying up we decided to head to Big Axe for our Thai soup and to refill our growlers.

There, we ran into out friend Lloyd who is the organizer of the local craft beer ¬†festival and incidentally was the person I thought about catching in the the race. We chatted and ate our very yummy Thai soup; it wasn’t too spicy and hit the spot after the cool race. We filled up our growlers with my favourite Irish Red and a great Oatmeal Stout then we headed home. It’s always a fun race, with good support so I imagine that I will run it again next year.



For the last few years the Santa Shuffle has been the defacto last run of the year. We dress up in holiday garb and run an easy five kilometres with friends. The run is supported by The Salvation Army and while people may have a problem with this organization, we try to leave the politics aside.

Once again my girlfriend Nicola and our friends Rod and Joanna joined us to run. Unlike last year when it was cold, this year was mild, with sunny skies and the trees displayed a beautiful covering of snow.

We all met at the race, picked up our  bibs and chatted and laughed while we crossed the street to the running path. The racers must have been a sight as nearly everyone dresses up for this race.


Start of the Santa Shuffle

We don’t try to run fast, just enjoy the costumes and the scenery and the company of many friends. People were taking photos and laughing and just enjoying the day. I’m not even sure what our time was when we finished but we had a great time and everyone was smiling.


Nicola, Joanna, Rod and I

Afterwards we had a quick cup of hot chocolate, received our nice medal and then met another couple for brunch before calling it a year for racing. This race is always a great way to end the year, no pressure, lots of laughing and smiles….speaking of which a photo that we took of us four was included in the Canadian Running magazine story on the internet, some of us must be somewhat pretty!

That’s it for 2015, I will be posting a year review a bit later on plus a peek at the races that we will be doing next year, we’re picking a few different ones to continue to keep things fresh and of course to explore different places.

Until then, thanks for reading!


One foot in front of the other

Photo of the Week

It’s been a while since I have posted a photo of the week, I have been shooting, life just has been wonderfully, happily busy.

But without further ado, I present a shot I took a couple of weeks ago near sunset at one of my favourite places to shoot, Swan Creek New Brunswick. It always has the right combination of light, water and shadows.



Sunset at Swan Creek


I was very happy to catch both the oncoming pink and departing yellow colours at the horizons.

Post processing took place in Lightroom.