Rock ‘n Roll Chicago (Day 3, Part 1)

For some reason, I always forget that there’s the possibility of rain when I travel. And for the most part, the weather has cooperated pretty well in all my adventures. Not the case in Chicago…Today was race day! My sister and I talk a real big game when it comes to racing in bad weather. But just like in Washington, D.C., it was all talk. The weather kept showing rain all morning on Sunday and my sis and I kept saying that we were absolutely not running in the rain. When we woke up and checked our apps and the weather channel…not a sign of rain until noon. We were feeling good.

We got to the start line and started prepping our music and Nike run apps and then…monsoon. I would give anything to have a picture or video of us when the rain came pouring down. But when you’re squished into a corral surrounded by thousands of people, there really aren’t a lot of options. So off we went.

I had pulled my lower back at Crossfit the Wednesday before the race, so I wasn’t even planning on running very much. I hadn’t trained very well either because it’s just so dang hot here in the summer. I think I had been able to run three miles at the most leading up to the race, so my goal was to run at least three miles and walk the rest. I definitely wasn’t concerned about my time, so I even stopped in the first mile to snap some pics!

Once I got to mile three I was feeling ok and challenged myself to make it to mile four. I had passed the four mile marker and was preparing to walk the remainder when it started pouring rain again. Hard. I was so annoyed and over it that I just kept running. All the way to the finish line.

One of our friends had a pretty intense emergency the weekend before, and I’m still amazed and impressed that she walked the whole 10k (you’re amazing, C!).

And I have to tell this story. One of our other friends gets super focused when she’s working out. At around mile 2 there was a split in the route – half marathoners went left and 10k runners went right. Yep, you guessed it. She missed it. We were standing at the finish line (under a tent because it started pouring again) wondering where she could possibly be. A woman overheard us and offered to look her up and found her…on mile 8 (a 10k is 6.2 miles). Before we located her she’d been sending texts asking where the finish line was and commenting on how lame the ending looked. We informed her that she’d missed the split and was on the half marathon course. She somehow found her way back to the finish without running the remainder of the half, and we definitely gave her a hard time over it (but we love you, N!). In her defense, the split wasn’t marked very well and if you’re an in-the-zone, head down runner, it’s super easy to miss, so make sure you’re aware of that if you plan on running Chicago.

I think the only reason I look this happy is because I’m done and not being rained on.

Between my back and the rain, the course was kind of a blur, but I do remember that it was mostly flat. Around the five mile mark we ran through a tunnel that was kind of creepy and had some slippery spots due to the rain.

But we survived and are already talking about our next one! What’s your favorite Rock ‘n Roll race? Has anybody done the New Orleans or Montreal ones? Let me know in the comments!

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