Memorial Day is the kick to for summer and despite the cold temperatures here in Chicago, that is exactly what we did! For the second year in a row, I booked a back to back weekend with the Soldier Field 10 Miler and Bike the Drive.
Saturday morning, the BOY and I were up super early (think 5am). We loaded up the car and made a quick stop at Starbucks for some back tea before getting on the highway.
Last year, I almost missed the race due to traffic, so we left a little earlier this year. I was in the purple corral scheduled to close at 6:45am. Since last year we came in from the south, this year we tried the north. Again, we were met with massive amounts of traffic. The good news is that we were able to map out our route for next year (we’ll come from the west) even though we didn’t arrive as early as I would have liked.
It felt great to be back at Soldier Field!
By the time we made it to the corrals, it was close to 6:45am, and I really needed to pee. This year I stayed much calmer than last about the whole running late thing. I had a close friend who I have been training with who was waiting in corral 12, so I was able to use the port-a-potties and meet up with her before the race.
It was so fun to have a friend with me at the start of the race, and we were able to chat before we finally made our way to the starting line 45 minutes later. We ran together south down Lake Shore Drive for the first 3 miles and then split up. After mile 3, I sped ahead. At the half way point, my time was right about 44 minutes. When I turned back north towards the stadium, I felt strong and kept a steady pace. I think that my slower first few miles allowed me to conserve some energy, so my last 7 miles averaged just above 8 minute/miles. I’d say this was pretty good considering I have been sick and my nose was running for most of the race (note to self..bring Kleenex next time!).
I finished slower than I had in years past, but it was well worth running with my friend! Plus, this might be my first ever negative split race. Now that is an accomplishment! Of note, my new shoes were fantastic! They were light and supportive, and handled their first long run without any issues. I heart Brooks running shoes!
I felt great when I was done (although pretty cold!), and I easily found the BOY waiting for me in the stands. This race continues to be one of my favorites. It is well run and organized perfectly! The volunteers are friendly and fun, and you know I love getting a medal. This year, we even got reusable bags with our post-race snacks. I had to take my annual post run picture in the stands (you can see the other two in last year’s post) before heading to the post-race party for a beer.
This is the first year that runners have earned a free beer, and I was super excited that it was 312! As you can see, I was pretty sweaty and since the sun wasn’t shining, I started to get cold. I sipped half of my beer alternating between that and coconut water for hydration.
We didn’t stay at the post race party too long since I desperately needed a shower and really didn’t want to get more sick. We drove up to my brother’s condo on the north side of the city. I showered which really warmed me up, and then the BOY and I walked over to Wishbone to meet his grade school friend who is in town for the weekend.
Wishbone has unique and incredible food, so it was the perfect post-race meal. After lunch, I dragged the BOY over to Southport for a quick shopping trip to Lululemon and David’s Tea. And then we crashed for an afternoon nap. I was reluctant to wake up after an exhausting morning, but we had dinner plans with the BOY’s friend, his brother, and wife. I enjoyed a cold beer and delicious food while catching up over dinner. It was a super laid back and fun evening!
After dinner, the BOY and I watched a little hockey before falling back into bed.
I had another early morning on Sunday! Despite my family bailing on me this year, I was excited to head back to Lake Shore Drive for my 4th year of Bike the Drive!
Did you race this weekend?
How did it go?
Soldier Field 10 Miler Results
Age Group 204/1614
Mile 1: 9:46
Mile 2: 8:54
Mile 3: 8:56
Mile 4: 8:25
Mile 5: 8:01
Mile 6: 8:14
Mile 7: 8:18
Mile 8: 8:08
Mile 9: 8:08
Mile 10: 7:51
Average 8:44 min/miles
Last 7 mile Average 8:03 min/miles