Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Rock 'n' Roll Chicago 5k Recap

Part One: Road Trip and Expo

Saturday morning was the first part of the Chicago Remix Challenge. Originally I wanted this race to be a goal race for me. Since I broke my 5k PR a few weeks ago, I wasn't going to be heartbroken if I didn't get it. Especially after the travel and a not so comfy bed. I was hoping to negative spilt (7:45 7:30 7:15). 

Flat Steff!

Gloria, Allison and I made our way down to Grant Park. We were going to meet Brandi and Momma K. Brandi was participating in a video for RnR so we knew we wouldn't see her very long. 

We ended up seeing Kathleen and chatted a little bit. It was so nice seeing her! 

L to R: Kathleen, Allison, Gloria and Me

It was time to get into the corrals. I was moved into corral 2 and it happened to be right by where Brandi was! 

Yay Brandi!!!

As we were standing and chatting David found us, and then GB and Kristen! It was a fun Rock 'n' Blog meet up!!

L to R: Me, Kristen, GB, David, Ashley and Brandi. (Photo Courtesy of Brandi)

Ashley told Brandi she was going to start in corral 2. Since that's where I was we were standing together. Then all of a sudden we were pulled to the front. Like the start line. Ashley told some super serious dude to move over and we stood on the start. Brandi was freaking out. I grabbed her hand to calm her down. I hoped it helped. Guess I'm going to race!

Bottom right corner! That's us!
Joe, Kelsey and Charles said they would be located in the first half mile on the left hand side. They weren't exactly ready for me to be in the front. Plus, they were on an overpass which was awesome! 

We went down the same road and through a "tunnel" (kinda covered road but not a tunnel) and I knew my watch would be off. I looked down just to see and it said I was running a 6:20 pace. Crap, this isn't the plan. 

Just out of the tunnel GB passed me and tried to pull me along. I thanked him and told him to go. I already screwed up, I didn't need anyone seeing my crash. Also, the sun really started to come out after the tunnel. Shock to the system after the dark. 

My first mile went off at 7:10, but I never saw a one mile marker so I'm not exactly sure. 

Mile two was along the bike path near the lake. The cool thing was we ran past the start line and could still see people starting. Also, when people say Chicago is flat, they aren't kidding. My legs were not ready for it. I was cramping. Thank goodness I packed some emergency chews. I saw David around this point and man he looked good. Probably how I should have looked if I stuck to the plan. 

The two mile marker came up and said 14:5x. I knew I evened myself out a little bit, but didn't feel good at all. 

Mile three had a lovely "hill". We went down a little bit and then right back up. My legs were so happy. This is a reoccurring thing for me. I'm not good on flat, since there is not a lot of flat places to run it Pittsburgh. It's also getting warm out. 

Kristen and her hubby came up by me really close to the end and it made me smile. Just a little bit of energy from a smiling face was seriously wonderful. 

I made the final turn to the finish and saw Joe. 

I look like I know what I'm doing!

I crossed the finish and checked my time. 23:45 which was WAY better than I expected. 

Only 11 seconds off my PR after a complete lack of consideration for my plan. 

I cannot say enough about these two!

Joe and I ended up in the beer garden (or as I called it, the carbey water) while we waited for everyone else. 

Three of my friends PRed the race. I was so excited for them!

L to R: Brandi, Kathleen, Me, Momma K, Allison and Gloria

If you are planning on running this 5k, do it. It's flat and fast and a really nice course. The medal is also really awesome. 

Awesome shirt and medal

Here is the elevation chart and course map. 

Disclaimer: I received entry to this race as a part of the Rock 'n' Blog program. All opinions are my own. 


  1. Steff, love this recap. Joe, awesome shots from above bro! So cool. This weekend was awesome on so many levels. Can't wait to hang at another one soon.

    1. I agree! Loved the whole weekend. Can't wait to do it again!!

  2. I live about 4.5 hours south, in a small town, and that's how my elevation always looks. I'm talking, in town the hills are the train tracks at about a 6 foot climb! Haha. I am not ready for the hills at Rock n Roll St. Louis!

  3. I totally agree! I really enjoyed the 5K course this year!

    1. It was a great course! It was my first RnR 5k, I was really impressed!

  4. Great recap of the 5k race! How fun to start right at the front - I bet that was super exciting :) I hope to add this race next year to do the Remix!