Renegade Santa 5k

On Saturday I ran the Renegade Santa 5k, which is a part of the Renegade Race Series — I had never participated in their 5k before, and it turned out to be a great race!

This race actually started out as a work event — we were going to have a group together to run.  As it came down to the wire, everyone else decided they wanted to sleep in on Saturday, instead of getting up early to run.  Still trying to wrap my head around that logic.  I, on the other hand, LOVE race day, so I went by myself.

Laid out “Flat Melissa” the night before, and I typically post these on IG because I get quite a few inquiries on things that I use for training/race days.  IG makes it really easy to tag all the companies you are warm and fuzzy with, so people can tap the picture and go right to their pages.  If you don’t follow me on IG, you can check out that post here to see what I mean.


This race took place in Irvine, CA, and started at Hick’s Canyon Elementary School.  There was a packet pick up the day before, but since they offered it on race morning too, I figured I would just do it then.  Bib pick-up started at 6:00am on race morning.   I arrived at 6:15am and was shocked to see the parking lot already full (for an 8:00 am race), and everyone being redirected to a school a little farther away with extra parking.  I will say that was the first time I have ever had to shuttle to a 5k race, which was unexpected but didn’t cause issues.

I picked up my stuff and then used the gear check-in they offered, which was perfect because I had brought a bag of unnecessary crap from my car to entertain me on the shuttle.


All ready to run!


This was the 10th year for this race and there were over 2,000 people — which shocked me.  I was not expecting that many.  Race morning weather was perfect..probably in the 50’s and cloudy the whole time. That’s my favorite running weather, I was in a t-shirt and shorts, and was just fine.

The only real issue I saw was that the 5k and 10k started together and it was a funnel start of sorts, which is always scary.  Below you can see the path choices right past the start line; Both race distances could go either left or right here because we all met back up on the dirt.  The problem was everyone’s instinct was to go left, and when that jammed everyone up, some hurdled the bushes onto the dirt.  In the first 50 feet, I watched four people slip and fall.


The turn around point for the 5k was 1.5 miles in — and ya’ll know I love the turn and burn on an out and back course!  I must have been excited, because I picked up pace in my 2nd mile (which was my fastest one by a few seconds).

Once the finish line was in my sight, I saw that I was likely going to PR.  That shocked me.  Until this race, the Carlsbad 5000 in April this year held my current PR (you can read that re cap here) — but I honestly didn’t think I was ANYWHERE close to that shape.

When I crossed the finish line Santa was waiting right there to high-five me.  That was another fun touch on the race!


I ended up having a 35 second 5k PR and I placed 2nd in my AG and was the 9th OA female!


I ended up winning a cute Renegade Santa Glass mug and a $25 gift certificate to a compression and triathlon shop!


There were some great vendors like Honey Stinger (which I love) set up for the post race festivities, and some good samples along with the free t-shirt!


The medal was really cute too!


I thought this was a great race and just may add it in again next year.  I typically don’t race at this distance, but I gotta admit — a couple times a year,it’s kinda fun to just let the leggies fly at those 5k and 10k speeds!

Did anyone else run this race?  I always love to hear what everyone else thought.


7 Comments on “Renegade Santa 5k”

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