Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon July 2015

Happy Monday friends! Over the weekend I decided to update the blog layout a little, what do you guys think? And secondly, thanks to one of Mattie’s post I decided to join BlogLovin’ it’s so genius to have all the blogs you read in one place. I’m so new to it, I’d love any tips you guys have. You can follow us here or by clicking on our bloglovin’ graphic on the sidebar.

Last week I went home to Chicago for a few days from Thursday July 16-Monday July 20th. Later this week I’ll do a full recap of the trip, but I thought I’d start with the half marathon I ran on Sunday with one of my best friends. This was our second time running the half marathon, last time we did it was July 2013. Since then we’ve also run a full marathon in Hawaii last December (something I still have to blog about!)

The race started at 6:30am but I woke up at 4am because my cousin Zack and running coach, told me to eat two pieces of toast and a banana 3 hours before the race to give my stomach time to digest. So I was up at the crack of dawn while it was still dark out. Dave drove over to my parent’s house at 5:15am and we took off for downtown. The streets were blocked off but we luckily found parking in a lot for $30 for all day.

For those of you who know Chicago, or are just curious, here is the route we took.halfWe started walking over to Grant Park and met up with Melissa (one of my best friends who ran the half with me) and her boyfriend Nico. We all went to the bathroom before the race started and started walking over the starting line. I took a before picture with my dad and stepmom. I was born and raised in Illinois and we are Chicago Bears fans but my dad loves wearing jerseys and just happened to pick a Green Bay Packers jersey today, made me laugh. He said he felt some people giving him looks. πŸ™‚

Like I said, I ran a half and a full marathon before, but this one was special to me because my parents came to support me and it meant a lot! 071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-2Here we are around 6:30am waiting for the start line. It was already a little humid at this point. For those of you who don’t know, when you sign up, you predict your finish time and then they put your in corrals (like a cow) and you wait in the group to start. So the crazies who finish in an hour/hour and a half start way ahead of us normal folk. This time and in 2013, it took about a half hour to get to the actual starting line because it’s literally thousands of people running. 22,000 this year to be exact.

Another thing to notice is on our shoes, we have little red tags. That tracks our time when we hit certain check points and logs our final time.

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-6My boyfriend Dave is a cinematographer/camera operator/director of photography who works on TV for major networks like Discovery, Animal Planet, and National Geographic, so it’s pretty awesome to have my own personal photographer for the race. πŸ™‚ His pictures are always amazing but this one has got to be my favorite!Β I need to frame this one. IΒ love the Chicago theater sign and this picture just makes me happy.

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-13Most races I do I usually spot a few people dressed up, this guy was dressed as Elvis obviously, but the crazier thing to me is that he’s not wearing any shoes! That has gotta hurt.

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-15I know I say it all the time, but come on, Chicago is gorgeous!

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-22Our blurry action shot, check out those guns (not really!)

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-30The first 7 miles we felt great. We were talking almost the entire time, which is new to me since I train by myself. It was so nice to catch up and take in the streets of Chicago. Made me miss home a lot more actually. But then it started to get hot and really humid. We really looked forward to the water stations. We had to stop and make a bathroom break, which took about 10 or 15 minutes! Which got added to our time. And of course a few feet ahead of us was a whole row of porta potties. (We waited in line for two.)

There was a section of the race where we overlapped and had to turn a corner. It was really fun and motivating to high five the other runners and encourage one another to finish strong. That’s always one of my favorite parts of the race day environment. How positive and supportive everyone is. πŸ™‚ I keep telling myself one of these days I’m going to go to a half or a full marathon and just cheer on random strangers.

I also started to get stomach cramps toward the end like around mile 11, so we had to walk a little (which I didn’t do for the first half) anyways even though it got a little hot towards the end we were SO happy to be done and finished strong sprinting in. My favorite way to finish a race!

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-32I also love the runner swag we get at the finish line. They had bananas, chocolate milk, beer, bagels, and popsicles!

Because I had my phone on me the entire time, I was able to text Dave and my parents my whereabouts so we had no trouble meeting up at the end of the race. And that’s also how Dave was able to catch us at so many different points throughout the race. We met up 4 different times, it was so motivating and uplifting to see him. πŸ™‚

Here is our after picture with my shiny new medal and the Buckingham Fountain in full effect.

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-37Melissa and I have been best friends for 10 years this August. We met our freshmen year in college and have been close ever since despite me moving to Washington DC and California. She’s been my running buddy through the 5k Color Run, the 2013 Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon, 2014 Honolulu Marathon, and now the 2015 Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon. We volunteered for the Chicago Marathon while we were in college years ago and ever since then wanted to finish a full marathon and now we have. It’s been an awesome journey running with her and whether we retire our running shoes or run again next year is still to be determined. πŸ™‚

 

071915 Julie's Half Marathon & House-40For all you fellow runners in the blogging world, you know what the high of running and finishing a major race feels like.

For people who want to run a half or a full or some distance in between for the first time, YOU CAN DO IT! Just stick to a training plan and be consistent. And I’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have, leave me a comment

And for people who don’t like to run and think we are crazy, we probably are. πŸ™‚

6db23b20941cf37438d041ddfa378c28

And for Monday I’m linking up with: Meghan @ Champagne + Suburbs, RunningnReading, Marvelous in My Monday and

weekend-snapshotsmmCaptureMingleMondayBIG

 

Advertisements

29 thoughts on “Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon July 2015

  1. Wow talk about a serious blog look change! And congratulations a half marathon!!! That’s tough! I haven’t even done one and here you’ve done two and a marathon! And that’s so great that your parents were out there to cheer you on. You go girl.

    liz @ sundays with sophie

    1. Thanks Liz! I haven’t updated the blog look in the 3 years we’ve had it, so I figured now was a good time πŸ™‚

      I’m a reluctant runner, I can do it, but I don’t always enjoy it. But the feeling of being done and accomplishing something big is pretty awesome! Thanks for the kind words, I really appreciate it!!

    1. I’m so happy if I can inspire you in any way Sophia! Running can be fun but I totally understand that it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. I don’t always love running either on the long months of training. πŸ™‚ And yes Chicago is just the besttt

  2. Ahhh this makes me want to go to Chicago!! I’ve never been, but I bet it’s great! I just started running in January and I’m definitely not a distance runner, but we did a 5K in March and the feeling of finishing was AMAZING!

    1. Mattie you HAVE to get to Chicago one of these days! It’s so pretty! Not the same kind of pacific northwest pretty, but it’s a gorgeous city.

      Yay for you starting to run and doing a 5k! There are so many fun ones! I never thought I was a distance runner either but if you really wanted to and committed to training you could totally do it too, I promise! πŸ™‚

  3. Pingback: National’s Girlfriend Day August 1st | Say Yes to Happy

  4. Pingback: Friday Favorites: Bachelorette, Hiking, & Vacations | Say Yes to Happy

  5. Pingback: July Monthly Faves Link Up! | Say Yes to Happy

  6. Pingback: Friday Favorites: A Week Away & Guest Bloggers | Say Yes to Happy

  7. Pingback: I’m Baaack! (Well Sort of) | Say Yes to Happy

  8. Pingback: What’s Up Wednesday Link Up | Say Yes to Happy

  9. Pingback: Emily’s Guest Post! | Say Yes to Happy

  10. Pingback: simply me FINISH | Say Yes to Happy

  11. Pingback: Four Facts Survey – Say Yes to Happy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s