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Showing posts from May, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend Running - Ridge Run Challenge

As I said in my last post, this past weekend included Memorial Day and the celebration was all about freedom. After running the Soldier Field 10 Mile on Saturday and resting on Sunday I got up early again on Monday to head down to south Chicago for the Ridge Run Challenge.

The Ridge Run is a race in Beverly that has been around for nearly four decades but that I just found out about last year. And after loving it last year (despite dealing with an injury) I couldn't pass it up this year (now that I'm not dealing with an injury). Basically, it's a normal race day with two separate distances: a 10K and a 5K. The unique thing here is that the races are spaced out enough so that you can do both of them. And they actually have a name for doing both of them: the Ridge Run Challenge.

On Saturday morning, Fuzzy and Erica picked me up at 6:00 and we headed to Beverly. Turns out there's no traffic at that time so we actually got there pretty early and had some time to walk aro…

Memorial Day Weekend Running - Soldier Field 10 Mile

As you are well aware, this past weekend was Memorial Day, which is all about celebrating freedom and remembering the men and women who have died serving the country. Like every other holiday, there are plenty of races in Chicago to help those who are so inclined celebrate appropriately: by going running.

Because of the long weekend I was able to make a double-header race weekend out of it (perhaps it can be classified as a triple-header, but more about that later) while still getting a rest day in between the races; I ran the Soldier Field 10 Mile on Saturday morning and the Ridge Run Challenge on Monday morning. Both races celebrate Memorial Day and both are races that I've done in the past (past Soldier Field and Ridge Run reviews) and knew I would enjoy. And I did: the weather was nearly ideal (it got a little warm on Monday morning), the races were well-organized, the themes were solid and inspirational and I felt great during both of them.

Saturday morning I took the CTA to…

Operation Pink Sky: I'm Going to Jump Out of a Plane!

I've done a lot of races and promoted a lot of stuff, but I'm really not sure what else there is to say about this particular event I'm about to take part in, other than:

I'm Going to Jump Out of a Plane!
Now, I know that skydiving is a thing that people do. One of my friends (she flashes a thumbs up at 0:40) almost got hit by a meteorite doing it even - (okay, turns out it was just a lowly earth rock, but still). Anyway, I know people do it but it has never been something that has interested me. Honestly, it just sounds too scary.

But when representatives from Operation: Pink Sky - put on by Chicagoland Skydiving Center - asked me to join this event... I was still pretty scared. But I'm going to do it anyway because they're raising money to help fund breast cancer preventative research and access to care and if me jumping out of a plane can help even a little bit then I'll do it (but I'll still be scared).

So, if you can, please take a minute and donat…

Tough Mudder Chicago - Fun in the Mud

Two years ago, after reading about the growing popularity of mud runs, I signed up for the Warrior Dash. And while I ended up being disappointed at the relative easiness of the course, I also ended up having a great time and getting a clearer understanding of why these races are so popular: they're so much fun.

This weekend I headed out to Richmond, Illinois for the Tough Mudder Chicago (no, it's not in Chicago... or even Chicagoland). I was joined by my friend Logan, who decided to take a break from doing easy sports all the time to try a sport that actually requires some intense training and skill: running.*

*Immediate follow-up to anyone who does jiu jitsu: I am joking. Please don't hurt me.

Anyway, we met up with our other team members in a Super 8 parking lot and made all kinds of pre-race plans, including how we were going to get to the race, meet each other and check in and whatnot... did a team circle hand-raise thing and then drove to Country Thunder to park.

And…

Spartan Up! An interview with Spartan Race founder and author Joe De Sena

In case you hadn't heard, Joe De Sena, founder of the Spartan race series, has a book coming out next week about how to be hardcore (and other stuff too, judging from the lengthy title):

Spartan Up! A Take-No-Prisoners Guide to Overcoming Obstacles and Achieving Peak Performance in Life
I little while ago I got a chance to conduct a mini-interview with De Sena via email about the upcoming book (and other stuff too) and today seems like a good time to post it since his book comes out next week and I'm running the Tough Mudder in a few hours (which we talk about very briefly in the interview).

I've looked into the Spartan Race series but haven't attempted one yet. Perhaps after reading this book I'll be inspired.

Anyway,  check out the book when it hits the shelves and (more importantly) check out this little interview:

10th Annual Run to Remember - Part 1 of a 2-Race Saturday

On Saturday, I did another double-race 10K (two 5Ks in a row), though it didn't have the same continuity as the previous one.

This one coupled two very different races that started almost exactly twelve hours apart: the 10th Annual Run to Remember at 8 in the morning and the Glo Run at 8:15 at night.

For the Run to Remember, I got to Soldier Field early Saturday morning and met up with Kate from fit-ink and after stretching we headed over to the starting line. The pre-race announcements were very heartfelt (this race is to benefit Chicago police officers killed in the line of duty) and after a really impressive fly-over by a police helicopter during the National Anthem the race started. The helicopter swooped over the course a few more times during the race - sometimes with the siren going - which was always cool.
It was a great day for running and I liked this race even better than I did when I previously ran it in 2012. They said this was the largest participation they've …