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Chicago Marathon - Run

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Chicago, Illinois
United States
Chicago Marathon
60F / 16C
Total Time = 5h 26m 13s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

This was my 2nd year running Chicago but my first time fundraising for an official charity. I got a late charity spot with Oasls for Orphans, an organization that helps orphaned children in Kenya. My sister and her husband were also raising for them. I struggled a bit to raise the $1000 minimum, but a last minute anonymous donor helped me get there. Okay I know who it was, and thank you :)

Flew to Midway Friday night and met up with Tony/Monica, Marilyn/MrMEH and Cheri for dinner. It was wonderful, and great to chat with BTers! Then I drove to my sister's place in Libertyville.

Saturday was devoted to the Expo (so many people!) and relaxing afterwards with some grilled cheese and tomato soup. Ate dinner at Noodles & Co, perfect. We were all in bed early, I think after a melatonin I was asleep by 9 p.m.

Up at 4 and out the door by 5 - I ate oatmeal and coffee before we left. We met up with the Oasis group like we did last year, but this year I felt a comforting sense of belonging, since I had fund-raised and met the minimum goal. I was really proud to be wearing the jersey. Some VERY encouraging words reminded us to "Be Courageous and Strong" - that stuck with me throughout the entire race.

  • 5h 26m 13s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 12m 27s  min/mile

I was a little nervous about not doing the 10:1 run/walk I'd practiced with, but Marilyn and I decided to start off walking the aid stations since there were 20 of them. We would re-evaluate if necessary.

The race was exciting at the start, except there were NO spectators for the first mile due to increased security. That was kind of a bummer, but understandable. Finally we started to see people and signs and cowbells and it was nothing short of awesome. I LOVE big races! Around mile 2 we'd planned on meeting Monica so she could run a few hours with us (CHEATER! ;)). I was only slightly worried she would get arrested for jumping in the race unauthorized, but we decided that was on her, not us. Right on queue, we found her and she hopped in - wheee! Apparently Laura was there but her hair was covered with a hoodie so we didn't see her.

The three of us jogged comfortably and chatted - it was SO much fun to have people to run with! I announced around mile 7 or 8 that I could pee, but we decided to wait as the lines were still 10 people deep. At mile 10 we all decided we could stop and the stop took exactly 3 minutes. I was nervous that I would have to go #2 as I felt like I had to poop the whole time already. Managed to just pee a lot and felt better.

Monica and Marilyn were hilarious - prancercizing and dancing at every aid station. I tried, but was super worried I would trip myself so I just laughed at them - those two are so cute. Monica peeled off around mile 13, sad face, but I'm glad she didn't get arrested. We saw my nephews around either mile 12 or 14 (earlier than expected!) and I gave them lots of high fives - fun!

And apparently I like to give "thumbs up" in all my pics - ha!

My legs started to talk to me (mostly IT Band) around mile 15/16 but we were still running everything and only walking aid stations. I was taking in Gatorade at every aid station and loving it. Miles 18-22 were pretty grueling for both of us. MEH was hitting her longest run after 18, and we both got quiet. Not as many people and it was a little tedious. But after 22 we both seemed to perk up and were getting excited about finishing.

We counted down the miles and a girl from Oasis latched onto us in the final few. I couldn't believe MEH was making me run everything between the aid stations - if I would have been on my own I would have definitely walked a LOT. So glad she was there!

About 1/2 mile from the finish, the crowds disappeared and were fenced off. I know that the increased security warrants this, but it was kind of sad for such a big race. Police officers and bomb dogs were stationed literally every 10 feet on both sides, and an army of surveillance helicopters buzzed over our heads.

But still - we were finishing a marathon! Woo! Marilyn zoomed ahead in the final stretch and I took everything in. I was ecstatic that my time was 12 minutes faster than last year- YEAH!
What would you do differently?:

Not a thing. I loved running with Marilyn and Monica and they really helped keep my spirits up and keep me running. I did take 1000mg ibuprofen from start to finish, which helped mask my knee pain. It is what it is.
Post race
Warm down:

Met up with MR MEH, my family and the Oasis crew - yay!

  • What limited your ability to perform faster:

    Left knee "injury" in the 6-8 weeks prior to the race. It's always something. I am just thankful it did not bother me too much during the race.

    Last updated: 2013-08-07 12:00 AM
    05:26:13 | 26.2 miles | 12m 27s  min/mile
    Age Group: 0/
    Overall: 0/
    Performance: Good
    Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
    Post race
    Weight change: %
    Overall: Good
    Mental exertion [1-5] 5
    Physical exertion [1-5] 4
    Good race? Yes
    Course challenge Just right
    Organized? Yes
    Events on-time? Yes
    Lots of volunteers? Yes
    Plenty of drinks? Yes
    Post race activities: Average
    Race evaluation [1-5] 5

    2013-10-15 9:27 AM

    User image

    Atlanta, Georgia
    Subject: Chicago Marathon

    2013-10-15 10:25 AM
    in reply to: #4877317

    User image

    Raleigh, NC area
    Subject: RE: Chicago Marathon
    2013-10-15 11:03 AM
    in reply to: jmkizer

    User image

    West Chester, Ohio
    Subject: RE: Chicago Marathon

    Nicely done!!  Sounds like you all had a good plan and hung well with it!

    2013-10-15 3:00 PM
    in reply to: QueenZipp

    User image

    Austin, Texas
    Subject: RE: Chicago Marathon

    HUGE congrats to you and Meh for running a great race, pushing each other to keep running, and having a good time... even if fun isn't allowed at races and they're supposed to be nothing but seriousness.  Dangit, I don't think talking was allowed either... 


    2013-10-15 8:20 PM
    in reply to: blueyedbikergirl

    User image

    Subject: RE: Chicago Marathon

    What a great race! I think this might have been your most consistent marathon ever!

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