Mile Matters with J&A Racing
In the summer months, all it takes is one step out my front door to get a hug from Mother Nature. A disgusting, sweaty, humid hug that leaves even my mouth feeling gross. My times get slower and I feel as speedy as a baby rhino running through quicksand.
After riding the struggle bus for months, it finally happens: the weather turns, the humidity drops and it feels like I am free from the shackles of the summer heat.
The leaves have started falling, which means my favorite holiday is right around the corner: Halloween! The perfect way to kick off the best holiday in the universe is the Wicked 10k.
For anyone who knows me, they know that I am OBSESSED with Halloween! Ever since I was a kid, I would spend hours and hours coming up with creative costumes each year. I remember sitting down at our kitchen table, on November 1st, coming up with a giant list of what I wanted to be for the next year, desperately trying to top what I had just done. My parents were never ones to buy a store-bought costume and it forced me to be creative. I. Went. Nuts. For YEARS.
When most girls in middle school were dressing up as pop stars, a few friends of mine went as “Dead football players”. We found discounted practice gear, spray painted our names on the jerseys, squirted fake blood all over our clothes, and inked up a truck tire to drive over the jersey to make it look like we were killed by a truck driver… So you could say I go all out.
The following year, I visited my local library [before the internet existed] and studied how to do Halloween makeup to be an Evil Queen. I think my parents wondered when I would get out of the Halloween phase. Well, decades have passed and I am still obsessed.
My favorite Halloween Hacks to make your costumes epic for Wicked 10K Race Weekend:
- You don’t have to hit up Halloween stores to find Halloween costumes! My first Halloween in Virginia, I was an “awkward middle school portrait”. I hit up Michael’s craft store, bought a giant art canvas, painted it bright yellow, wrote “Lifetouch” in the corner, punched holes in it, strapped rope through it and wore it like a backpack so I looked like I always in front of a backdrop. For my outfit, I swung by Target for floral leggings, keds and a side ponytail. None of my items were in a Halloween section. There’s no need to go way out of your way to find a random Halloween pop-up shop after a long day of work, when Trusty Target is there for you!
- Use Props! Last year, I was invited to a Masquerade Party, and instead of going in a gown with a mask, I played on the word “mask” in masquerade and went as Hannibal Lector. Not like a “sexy Hannibal Lector”. But Creepy. So creepy my boyfriend could barely look at me all night. I ordered orange scrubs from amazon, bought a white sweatshirt from a thrift store and borrowed a work dolly from my employer’s warehouse. Stepping through the dolly halfway allowed me to steer it with my knees. To appear as if I were strapped and getting wheeled away, fake legs were made using orange scrubs stuffed with newspaper. I duct taped a pair of shoes to the base of the dolly. Lastly, I wrapped a few belts around my shoulders and legs to make it look like I was strapped in (thanks, Michael Kors!). The dolly was free and it the best prop I have ever used! It took my costume to the next level.
- Use items in your own closet! For years I have incorporated items from my own wardrobe into my Halloween costumes (I’m not sure what that says about me). One year, as Cruella de Ville, I wore a floor length black and white striped, faux fur Trina Turk jacket, black slip dress and red heels… I literally owned all of it. All I had to buy was the black hair paint and white SPRAY PAINT from Home Depot to dye my hair (it felt like wicker, and I thought it was all going to break off leaving me half bald but that’s a story for another day). After long days in the office, and managing kids I know that many of you aren’t mapping out your costumes months in advance — use your own resources. I’ve seen awesome costumes like Risky Business where people wear oversized button down shirts, tube socks and sunglasses. Get on Pinterest, take inventory of your own closet and let your imagination go wild.
- Tweak store bought Halloween items! Sometimes (or in my case literally every time) the DIY costumes end up costing more than store bought packages. To cut back on cost and time, buy a store bought item and tweak it. When I went as Bob Ross, I knew I wasn’t going to hand make a wig. I bought all of the accessories for the costume. That included a “70’s Afro” and spray painted it light brown and white to show Bob’s more realistic hair color. A “bob ross beard” didn’t exist, so I bought a “duck dynasty” beard and gave it a big trim. The two pieces ended up matching and looked like one accessory. Lastly, I hit up the art section of the store to buy a wood palate, used some colorful sharpies to draw paint splotches, and there you go, I was Bob Ross.
- Riff on a Trend! The 90’s are back, and if you have logged onto the World Wide Web, read a Buzzfeed list-icle, or talked to anyone with kids, you are acutely aware that scrunchies, puka shells and basically anything you can find at an overpriced surf shop are all the rage. Instead of dressing up as a VSCO girl (Ahem! You can steal your daughters stuff and go as this!). I am creating a 90’s sports throwback costume and dressing up as Dennis Rodman for the Wicked 10k. This probably goes without saying, but it’s important to make sure you can actually run in your costume. Athlete costumes are easy to run in, and you can be just as creative as other costumes by incorporating their personality, quotes or side hobbies. My boyfriend and I are huge NBA fans, and we recently watched the ESPN documentary about Dennis Rodman. (It’s amazing, if you haven’t seen it). He’s loud, unpredictable, colorful, wild and anyone who watched basketball knows him. To create the costume I ordered a Bulls jersey, athlete friendly tattoo sleeves, multiple fake silver lip and nose rings, and several colors of hair paint. I felt like with all of that it still wasn’t enough. (More is more and less is a bore, I say!). So I purchased a nerf basketball hoop to make it look as though he is going up for a rebound. Right now it looks like a hot mess on my dining room table, but that is part of the fun. Halloween is about being creative and forgetting about your crushing adulting responsibilities.
So sharpen your scissors, and your creative minds to make an epic Halloween costume! These are memories your family and friends (and Facebook) will remember forever!
- J&A Racing Ambassador
- Originally from Oregon
- Training for the Norfolk Harbor Half Marathon
- Loves hiking in National Parks, visiting art museums, and hanging out with her boyfriend and our dog