Race Recap: Michelob Ultra Chicago Spring 13.1
It’s time for my race recap! If you’ve been reading my blog or following social media, you know that this race was a bit different than the dozens of half marathons I’ve previously run. This time I was running for those who can’t. I was running with Team Momentum which raises funds and awareness for muscle disease. (You can read my story of why I signed up here.)
My friend Elaine and I did this race together. I was glad to have a local friend who was very familiar with the Chicago area to go to the big city with! We left Shelbyville on a rainy Saturday to head to sunny Chicago. Not far from home, Elaine mentions that she may have forgotten her running shoes?!?! For most people this would have been a big deal, but for Elaine who was long overdue for new running shoes, this may have been a blessing! (She got new shoes at packet pick up, and they served her well on race day!)
We stopped about halfway there at Fair Oaks Farm for restroom break and ice cream! Yum!!
We made it to Chicago and went straight to Fleet Feet for packet pick up. It was busy time in the city. Elaine knew exactly where we were going and how to parallel park (that in and of itself was why I had to bring her along! lol!).
We stayed in the host hotel and loved it. Very nice location, not only the view from the window, but all the race activities were right outside the door.
Saturday evening we finally got to meet up with Team Momentum for dinner. It was a wonderful evening where we got to meet other team members and hear their stories of why they were doing this event. We had a delicious Maggiano’s dinner.
The dinner location was about a mile from the hotel, so Elaine and I opted to walk each way. It was a nice way to see a bit more of the city. But we were ready to crash when we returned to the hotel.
We had beautiful weather for race day. Team Momentum had a tent in the start/finish area. It was great to have our own bag check and port-a-pot! We hung out with everyone prior to the race and took pictures. What an amazing group!
The race was an out and back course along the water. What a beautiful course. Couldn’t complain about the weather. A bit sunny and warm at times, but the breeze off the water came at just the right times. Plenty of water and aid stations along the way as well as people cheering us on.
I took a gel at 4 miles, and it was all downhill from there. My stomach got a bit upset. My legs were heavy. I just wasn’t feeling it. I tried to convince myself that I could push through and run this thing. My last few half marathons have been sub-par according to my standards. Times have plummeted over the last few months, and I’m not quite sure why. I soon realized I wasn’t going to redeem those times at this race. So I ran. I walked. Basically I did whatever I needed to do to finish the race.
There were smiling faces along the way. My Team Momentum coach was there. I saw others in Team Momentum shirts, and we encouraged one another as we passed. This race wasn’t about me. It wasn’t about my finish time. These kids, these families didn’t care what the clock said when I finished. They loved me for who I was and for what I was doing for this cause….for my efforts to raise money and awareness so that one day we could kick this disease in the butt!
I hate to compare, because my recent race struggles are nothing, absolutely nothing, compared to what those with muscle disease face on a daily basis. However, I’m learning to be grateful. I’m learning that the things I complain about would be things that others would do anything to have. I saw young children using walkers or already confined to wheelchairs because this disease has stolen their ability to walk…..I was maybe walking in a race that I would’ve preferred to run, but I was walking. They can’t.
For those who can’t.