Friday Five and Race Recap: Northern Lights Resolution Run

Hi everyone!  It’s my first blog post of 2015!  Woohoo!  I’ve had a pretty busy week and I’m excited it’s over honestly.  My friend was in town from Bethel and we did lots of post-Christmas shopping, running, and other fabulous Alaskan things.  One more day of work and then I have the weekend to recuperate!  New Years Eve was definitely different out here in Alaska than in Philly.  First of all, it was 43 degrees!  It was only 21 degrees at my parent’s house which is pretty crazy.  I had to work, but I left at noon and went shopping with my friend. We found ourselves in the gun section of Walmart…and I ended up buying my very first gun!


We’ve been thinking about getting one for a while – I felt really weird doing it in Philly where I felt like it was totally out of the question to ever shoot at a range for fun, but up here it’s totally normal.  My students go to the range on the weekends, and it seems like everyone has at least one gun.  I’ve been talking to a lot of people about what I should get, and it turns out that this is the “starter gun” of almost everyone in Alaska.  And it’s the first gun my dad ever shot (when he was 12) so I think it was a good choice!  There’s a shortage on .22 ammo up here so we’ll see if I can ever get a chance to use it.  Sorry if you’re anti-gun, that should be the last time you hear about it but I was too excited to not mention it.

After we finished shopping we got dressed in some obnoxious neon clothes for the Northern Lights Resolution Run AKA my 14th race in 2014!  The run is at night and the course was lit up with lights every half mile (sadly, no actual northern lights made an appearance).  We decided to go overboard and cover ourselves in lights too.  I also ran my first race with my new headlamp and it wasn’t too uncomfortable.

IMG_3923Clearly spelling out “15”.  Except that my knees don’t bend that way!

Since it was over 40 degrees, we had rain instead of snow.  And since the ground is frozen, that rain turned into ice when it hit the ground.  So it was a slippery mess of a race course.  It wasn’t my slowest 5k, but there was so much time spent walking just for our own safety.  At one point everyone stopped and there was a huge wait time for us to move forward because there was a super slippery spot on a hill where everyone had to take it really slow.  But honestly, it was such a fun race!  I loved seeing everyone’s awesome outfits and crazy ways they were lit up, and I had so much fun running through all the different light stations along the course.  Since we were out in the woods for half of it I was glad I had my headlamp too.  It was definitely a fun race and I wish we hadn’t been timed because there is no way someone can race through a fun slippery course.  Also, it was SO HOT running in above 40 degree weather!  We took our gloves off after it stopped raining and I was dying in my short sleeved shirt and lightweight rain jacket.

IMG_3926Lighting up with tons of glow sticks wherever I could stick them, and a super obnoxiously reflective neon jacket!

IMG_3932Running through a light station on the course!

After the race we celebrated with Chipotle!  Oh wait, we don’t have Chipotle in Alaska, right?  Well Andrew spent all day cooking a recipe for fake barbacoa tacos and it was so good!  At 8:00 pm we watched the ball drop on the east coast, and it was really overwhelming and strange.  I didn’t expect to get homesick, but I definitely cried a bit when I realized that everyone I love was celebrating in 2015 and I was just eating dinner in 2014.  Hopefully my homesickness is all out of my system by now!  We had a fun night at home playing drunk Mario Party, and re-watched the ball drop at midnight and pretended it was live.  I never thought about what people on the west coast do at midnight, but it’s so bizarre that everyone watches a 4-hour-old celebration!

Now for the fun part!  I had a blast recapping 2014 (go here if you missed it!) and now that it’s 2015 I’ve got to make some new goals!  So I decided to join everyone in the Friday Five linkup with Mar, Courtney, and Cynthia in sharing 5 goals for 2015.  I’m sure that if I really thought about it I’d have a ton of goals for this upcoming year, but to fit it into this post I’ll make it 5:

new years goals 2015

I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about these goals in future posts.  I hope you all had a great New Year’s celebration and are enjoying 2015!

How did you celebrate this year?  Any fun resolution races?  And what are your goals for 2015?

35 thoughts on “Friday Five and Race Recap: Northern Lights Resolution Run

    1. Haha yea, those are things I couldn’t do too much back in Philly! It’s really hard since there’s barely any snow left now, but if it ever snows again I’ll definitely try skiing!

  1. I’ve got a race tomorrow…in the rain probably. No ice! Northern Lights sounds like it was a lot of fun. Good luck with your goals. Here’s to a successful 2015!

  2. Ambitious goals! Here’s to a good 2015 🙂 I did a New Year’s Day 5k here yesterday and it’s crazy that it was colder here in DC than in Alaska.

    1. That’s awesome! And yeah, I believe it. It happens more than people think! It’s nice too because when it’s the same temperature in Alaska as it is in Philly, it actually feels colder in Philly because of the humidity! A little secret people in Alaska don’t share with the rest of the US 🙂

  3. Your goals sound challenging yet awesome! The race you ran also sounded like it was challenging, but it looked like you still had a good time. I would definitely have been alright with running in snow over running in ran (that froze) any day! Happy 2015 🙂

    1. Yeah snow is fun, but ice is so scary! I really don’t need an injury during half marathon training. Happy new year!

    1. Thanks! I love how easy it is to get into my new hobby up here! That is, if we ever get a shipment of ammo 😦 Happy new year!

  4. Happy New Year! That sounds like a pretty fun race. Pretty awesome that you got your 14th of ’14 on the last day of the year. 🙂

  5. Happy 2015! They sound like a bunch of fun goals – especially embracing the Alaskan winter. And that race sounds crazy – maybe you should have worn skates instead of running shoes.

    1. Haha now that would have been a good idea! It was definitely the iciest conditions I’ve ever run in, and studded shoes don’t really do much on ice. Hopefully we’ll get some snow soon so it’s less icy!

  6. happy new year! mar, cynthia and i had lunch today and we all commented on how much we love your blog 🙂 your goals are great – ironically i went to my first hot yoga class today. whew!

    1. What!!! That’s awesome! Half the time I feel like no one could ever care about the stuff I write about on here so that makes me feel really good 🙂 And I love Friday Five, it’s great to always have something fun to write about every Friday! Can’t wait to hear about the new topics!

  7. ummm.. I can’t imagine running on slippery icy streets. That sounds extremely difficult and scary. Love your goals for 2015, especially the PR in all race distances. That’s definitely something we’d all like to do this year. Good luck.
    BTW, First time visiting your blog and I must admit that I can’t wait to read more. Happy New Year.

  8. Kristen! I love your running goals – very challenging stuff! What makes me sad though is you keep mentioning this gun stuff as if it’s the plague! Don’t apologize for writing about something on YOUR blog that YOU want to write about!! Screw anti-gun people. If they get mad at you for that then that is their problem! Not yours. Plus, if you didn’t write about anything that people could possibly get offended about then you wouldn’t have anything to write about. If someone really likes your blog, but is anti-gun, they might actually be able to learn something from someone like you because you have already reached them on another level. I don’t celebrate Christmas, but did I stop reading because you posted about Christmas? nope. was I offended? nope. And if I was..who cares. The haters gonna hate! You go have a blast with your new gun whether anti-gun people like it or not!

    1. Haha thank you for that! You’re right, I am tiptoeing around it for sure. Back in Philly I noticed that when I mentioned how much fun I’d had at the range that weekend, people sometimes got really upset, tried to argue my stance on guns, or stopped talking to me altogether. I know that everyone is coming to my blog with a different background and values, so that’s why I’m so hesitant about it. I also now work at one of the most liberal non-profits in the US and I’m used to people judging me based on that too. Liberals shooting guns is usually not a thing haha. Anyways, you definitely make a good point! No one has unfollowed me yet so I guess I’ll keep on writing about it (as soon as I can get some ammo!). Thanks for being supportive!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s