It’s the final full week of the Holiday Running Challenge, a part of Runner’s World’s Holiday Running Streak, and I’m looking forward to a few rest days in the near future! But while I was home for the holidays this week, I got my whole family in on the action— with more than a few runs around town wearing Santa hats and jingle bells. Thursday: I was definitely not dressed properly for today’s three-mile run. And by that, I mean the shorts and long-sleeve hoodie I was wearing in December were too much! Not that my inner summer child is complaining about mid-50 temps the week of Christmas, but remember when I was bundling up two weeks ago? Mother Nature, make up your mind!

Friday: Before picking up some last-minute gifts and officially kicking off the holiday weekend, I paid the treadmill a quick visit first thing in the morning for two miles. This running challenge has certainly helped me accept the “dreadmill” and learn how to make it way less boring.

Saturday: Santa Claus is coming to town… but first, he’s going for a run around the neighborhood! This year marked the inaugural Faherty Family Christmas Eve Run around our hometown of Ewing, NJ. My sister Maura was in charge of getting Santa hats (some with more sequins than others) for the siblings and friends who dashed around a 5K loop mapped out by my brother Mike. With my parents leading the way on their bikes, let’s just say a dozen “Santas” running around (including my pregnant sister Claire and friend Nick on roller skates) was enough to literally stop traffic on some roads. I can’t wait for an even jollier run next year. I’m thinking we need to sing some more carols.

Sunday: My brother joined me for a Christmas Day run up to our grandmother’s house to deliver a special Christmas treat. Mom Mom is a fan of the TLC show “Cake Boss,” so I stopped by the Hoboken bakery before leaving town to pick up crumb cake for her. Surprisingly enough, Mom Mom even shared the crumb cake with my aunts, uncles, and cousins who arrived for the weekend. The run itself was a little less than two miles, but I think my extended family is starting to wonder if I ever walk or use a car anymore.

Monday: Mike wants you all to know he has been streaking (Santa-hat included) for three days now. (I’ve been streaking for, well, 33 days, so I win.) Today’s family jog with Mike, Uncle Tim, and cousins Katie, Christie, and Jake went through Mom Mom’s hilly neighborhood. It’s amazing how funny stories and corny uncle jokes can help you up some of those tough climbs. We rewarded ourselves with extra helpings of the never-ending Christmas cookie platters in the kitchen.

Tuesday: Is Christmas really over? With some heavy rain in the forecast for today, I packed up my pile of presents and headed out for one final Ewing Township run before heading back north. And yes, I left my Santa hat and jingle bells at home this time for the four miles. I don’t want people to think I’m completely crazy!

Wednesday: It’s back to the daily grind and that means it’s time to pay some extra attention to the half marathon training schedule I so conveniently ignored over the weekend. I’m planning to do a very short one mile warm up today and then do some cross training on the bike. And hey, maybe some strength training, too. I want these legs to look extra toned in my New Year’s Eve dress and sparkly shoes this weekend!

Check back next Monday to read about the final days of this Holiday Running Challenge! I’ll be forcing my friends to go for a New Year’s Day run with me sometime in the late afternoon— hopefully post-hangover!

This week, I got my family in on the running fun. How does your family help (or hinder) your health and fitness goals?

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