SWAG – I have no idea how this acronym  got started, but it refers to all the “free” stuff you get for registering for a race.  Things like shirts, Band-Aids and other products, race brochures, etc. In the past few years, I have done a number of races ranging from the marathon down to smaller 5K.  Each race gives you a bag of stuff at Packet Pick-up.  This bag includes your racing bib, timing chip (if the race is chip timed) as well as your t-shirt and other race related stuff.

In my humble opinion, Team Ortho has some of the best SWAG ever!

Team Ortho’s SWAG is really useful stuff like –

This hat was quickly confiscated by the young model wearing the hat!

While the monster hat has found a new home, I still have the one from the Polar Dash as well as the gloves!  Even though at first glance they seem really thin, they keep me very warm on my long runs.

My amazing model with the SWAG from the Polar Dash!

Some of the best SWAG that have come from these races have been  the fleece jackets and lighter weight sweatshirts that I have gotten.  These work well for layering when I run in the cold or just for a light cover on a cool day!


The amazing 2011 Polar Dash Fleece

But there is more to Team Ortho than the SWAG that they offer to each runner.  What they really do as an organization is give hope to families with children that have children with orthopedic issues.  They support research and hospitals like the Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Minneapolis.  Part of the race fee goes to support this work and my youngest daughter has benefitted from their support!  Without the Shriner’s Hospital for Children, I am not sure Giovanna would be where she is today.  The doctors at this hospital are amazing and are not in the field of medicine for the money but to improve the lives of children and they do it very well.

If you have a chance to run one of the Team Ortho races, I highly recommend it.  Not only are they fun, well-organized and you get great Stuff – you are supporting a great hospital and research to help children with orthopedic issues.  Check out their website by clicking here.