Rattle Me Bones Race Recap

29 Oct

Sunday, October 28th was the Rattle Me Bones 10km, 5km, 2km and 1km race. I participated in the race for the first time this year and must say, it was a great race to be a part of!

The race is in support of the Ottawa Hospital and is a popular race in this city. As it is always around Halloween, runners of all ages dress up for the race. A friend let me know about the race as her daughter had previously participated in the 1km and we both decided to sign up for the 5km this year and then run with her kids in the 1km that immediately followed.


The week leading up to this race, I hadn’t determined if I was going to be running for a PR or if I was going to take it easy and run with my friend who had also signed up. By the night before the race, I had determined I would just run the race strong and at my own pace and see how I felt.

Usually, I spend the evening before a race going through the same pre-race rituals – selecting and laying out my race outfit, packing my race bag, and planning out a morning pre-race schedule. I don’t leave anything to chance the morning of the race, and almost always set 2 alarms to ensure I am up in time (or up at all if it’s really early)

This time, I struggled planning a race outfit for a race that was forecast to be very rainy. After some research, I decided it was best to dress for the temperature and not for the rain – I didn’t want to have too many heavy, wet layers weighing me down. Earlier in the week, I had purchased some Dollar Store ponchos to keep dry pre-race and then toss at the start line, so I hoped those would be good enough rain protection.

The morning of Rattle Me Bones involved a little bit of extra coordination (and a little less sleep) as I had to drop my husband off somewhere early that morning. After dropping him off and having my usual pre-race meal (a banana, 1/2 a bagel and water) I headed off to my friend’s place to pick her up and drive to the race site.

After arriving at the race site, parking and getting ready, we headed towards the crowds to scope out the bathroom situation and find the 5km start line.

Me pre-race

My runner friend pre-race

We found the bathrooms but only had 10 minutes to spare before finding and getting to the start line. With a stroke of luck, the line for the bathroom got cut in half and we were able to get in without missing the start of the race. We jogged to the start line just in time for the 30 second count down, I ditched my poncho and after quick a “good luck” and “see you at the finish” exchange, we jumped in amongst all the other runners and started our race.


Kilometer 1: As with most races, the start was fast. With over 1300 runners in the 5km, it was also a little crowded to start. I was near the front and so spend the first kilometer being passed on all sides. I typically have no problem with being passed in that first kilometer, and actually tend to enjoy it because I know that by maintaining my pace, I usually end up passing a lot of those people by the end of the race anyway.

I started a little fast myself and when I glanced down at my Garmin and saw I was running a 4:15 pace at one point, I knew I couldn’t let the excitement and speed of the crowd get to me and slowed myself down to more of a maintainable pace.

Kilometer 2: By 2km, the crowd wasn’t as tight and I was settling into a decent pace. The race course took us through the Ottawa Hospital property for most of the first two kilometers and then out onto some nearby routes to complete the 5km loop.

Kilometer 3: The third kilometer had a decent elevation loss to it and was about the time when I started to pass people. Maybe not sprinting out of the gate is my way of providing myself with extra motivation on the course when I end up passing people? What I do know is that it certainly provides me with extra drive and confidence to finish strong, so I don’t think I will look to change it anytime soon!

Kilometer 4: By 4km, I found myself still feeling strong and actually surprised at how quickly the kilometers and minutes were passing. The elevation loss that I had enjoyed in kilometer 3 was countered with a gradual elevation gain here.

Kilometer 5: Most of the final kilometer of the race was back on the Ottawa Hospital grounds and was probably one of the fastest kilometers I have ever run in a race (average pace was 4:16) – I was surprised I had so much speed left in me to finish so strong, but took advantage of it and finished the race with an official time of 22:43 (only 12 seconds off a PR).

My Garmin splits:

Split Time Distance Avg Pace
Summary 22:45.6 5.04 4:31
1 4:41.3 1.00 4:41
2 4:35.1 1.00 4:35
3 4:29.4 1.00 4:29
4 4:34.8 1.00 4:35
5 4:16.3 1.00 4:16
6 :08.7 0.04 3:32

Finishing statistics: 

Age Group:  4th/99

Females: 30th/815

Overall: 127/1320


After my race, I waited at the finishing line to watch my friend finish her 5km. I somehow missed her finish (she ran an awesome race too) but we still managed to find each other.

One of my favorite things about races is the post-race food. This race offered one of the best post-race food selections I have seen in terms of the amount and quality of post-race food – cookies, bananas, bagels, chili, popcorn, water, coffee. I definitely stocked up!

Kids 1km Race

My friend has two adorable daughters who took part in the 1km race. I stuck around to run along side them and cheer them on.

They were happier to be at the race than this picture makes it seem – both girls had fun and finished the race (3 1/2 years old and 1 1/2 years old).

All in all, I really enjoyed Rattle Me Bones and hope to participate again in future years. I got a long-sleeve race shirt, which is a nice change from all of the short sleeve shirts I have received in race kits, and with this one, I know that if I ever need to glow in the dark, I will be covered! 😉

Next race is the Cookie Run 5km this Saturday -it’s  not going to be a PR race, but hoping to have a fun recap to post afterwards anyway!



11 Responses to “Rattle Me Bones Race Recap”

  1. runstephrun11 October 30, 2012 at 9:29 am #

    Well done! Sounds like an awesome race. That’s a brilliant time to run 5k in. Good luck in your next one 🙂 x

  2. Rebecca November 1, 2012 at 9:21 am #

    Good job!! 🙂 We were probably really close to each other right before the race, as I had to hit up the bathrooms too!

    That last KM is pretty fast – I wish I had brought my Garmin with me because I think I went fairly quickly during that last K.

    You are very right about the t-shirts – they are so bright!

  3. Emily November 15, 2012 at 12:16 pm #

    Great race! I really like the logo on the shirts – and the fact it is bright will be a help for darker runs.

    Since I think in miles rather than kilometers, I wonder if one would seem faster than the other… would I rather have a 5k be “only three” (point one) miles, or would I rather each kilometer go by more quickly? I suppose I shall have to run a metric race to find out! I’ve considered a couple Canadian marathons in the past, so who knows.

    • Mary November 15, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

      Interesting point Emily! My treadmill is in miles, but I have a quick conversion chart into kilometers taped right beside it so I rarely think in miles when I am running. Thinking in kilometers definitely moves by quicker, but when you start getting into longer races, I think the sound of 26 miles sounds better than 42 kilometers!

      You should definitely consider a Canadian marathon – there’s a really big one where I live (Ottawa – end of May). Ottawa’s gorgeous city to visit too and Race Weekend is always a good time in the city.

  4. honeytonguedharpy November 21, 2012 at 10:22 am #

    Rattle Me Bones and the Cookie Run, what interesting and fun race names! I wish we something similar over here.

    • Mary November 21, 2012 at 10:50 am #

      They were fun races to run in too!

  5. oidassin November 27, 2012 at 4:42 am #

    Sounds like you had a lot of fun. Congrats on that fast pace! Keep running. =)

    • Mary November 27, 2012 at 9:05 am #

      Thanks! It was a fun race for sure!

  6. therealmince December 11, 2012 at 9:45 am #

    Good work. Love the attention to detail in the race report. A dying art.

    • Mary December 11, 2012 at 9:47 am #

      Thank you! It was my first race recap and I had a lot of fun writing it and reliving race day.


  1. Cookie Run 5km Race Recap « Running in Transit - November 5, 2012

    […] Run 5km on September 16th) and two races in October (the Fall Colours 10km Race on October 7th and Rattle Me Bones 5km on October […]

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