Happy Tuesday!  I hope that everyone had a great weekend.  It finally cooled down in Chicago but we are expecting more HOT weather tomorrow.  I hope it cools down for the RnR Chicago Half Marathon on the 21st.

This week’s Tuesday Topic:  What are your tips for a strong training cycle?  You can write about this topic, or feel free to post any running related blog post.  Remember to link-up with Kim and Zenaida!  Visit at least two of the other linked posts – the more the merrier!  Remember to come back for later linkers!

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For this week I am going to write about my race on Thursday – Elmhurst 4 on the 4th.  It is one of my favorite races and highly recommend it race to everyone.  It is cheap, plenty of free parking, and somewhat in a central location for those living in the Chicago area.  

I got home later than I wanted to on Wednesday night and I didn’t not want to get up.  I thought about sleeping in and missing the race.  I guess I must have been feeling guilty because I couldn’t go back to sleep and so I quickly got up, got ready, and drove to Elmhurst.  Google Map said I would arrive around 6:45am.  Yikes, that was the time for the Oiselle group photo.  Oh well.

Somehow I made it to Elmhurst about 6:38, found a parking spot, and sent a message to one of the girls letting her know that I was on my way.  I found the group and while waiting for a minute or two in case someone else showed up, I picked up my bib since packet pickup was located next to us.  I got number 23.  I was happy!  It is Michael Jordan’s number so it must be a lucky number, right?

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After the photo I went to use the port-a-potty and then lined up to wait for the start.  I saw a few friends and chatted with them for a bit.  I was happy to meet/see Becca.  We both looked at each other and stopped because we recognized one another from reading each other’s blog.  

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I remember hearing the National Anthem and then still waiting a few minutes for the start.  The race director had a countdown going.  Finally it was a minute to go and we all got ready to run.

Finally at 7:15 it was time to run.  I started close to the front knowing that many people would pass me.  And yes they did.  The beginning of the course has a slight downhill and coming back it is an uphill leading to the finish line.  Definitely no bueno.  It was humid and I was sweating already, but surprisingly I was feeling good. 

My 1st mile was my fastest.  I thought I could run the whole race at that pace but soon realized that I couldn’t.  

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The first water station was 1/2 mile into the race.  It was much needed.  The next one was about a mile later under the underpass (??).  I got two cups of water, one to drink and another one to dump over my head.  I walked to catch my breath and then continued running.  I was slowing down and I could not make my legs go any faster.  I saw Kathleen at the turnaround point and she encouraged me to keep going.  

I am smiling because I saw some friends but inside I was struggling.

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Halfway through the race I had a headache and was shivering.  Definitely not a good sign.  I was dehydrated and overheated.  I just wanted to be done.

With a mile to go I picked up the pace a bit.  Not much but anything to get me closer to the finish line.  The volunteers were encouraging.  I knew I was close to the end but I had to go up a little incline.  Right before the incline there was an ambulance and a girl on the stretcher.  I think I remember seeing that girl on the course ahead of me but I’m not sure.  I hope she is OK.

Almost done!  I ran as fast as I could.  Smiling because I was almost done.

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I did a bit better than the year before.  

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After the race I got some water and then went to get my bag at gear check.  The only thing I had there was my shirt.  Not sure why I picked up the shirt since I don’t keep them anyway (I gave it to my mom).  I saw a coffee company giving out free iced coffee and got a cup.  Yeah, coffee after a HOT race is probably not the best idea but the ice was so good and the coffee was delicious too.

As I’ve mentioned before, I love this race.  This is the only 4 mile race I run since not many are available.  It is a competitive race but I know I will never win nor place in my age group.  🙂  It is cheap ($25 then $30 after the price increase) and easy to get to.  Perhaps one day we will get a medal?  

Tuesday Topics

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12 Comments on Tuesday Topics: Elmhurst 4 on the 4th Race Recap

  1. We don’t have any 4-mile races around here, not even to commemorate the 4th of July. I bet it is competitive…four miles is basically an “extended” 5K. You gotta love those finish lines with a hill right before them 😉

    • A 4 mile race is unique. There should be more races with 4 miles. Who thinks it is a great idea to have a finish line with a hill? I remember running the Mississippi Blues Half Marathon and there was a LONG hill to the finish line. The worst!

  2. Great Job! I feel you on getting dehydrated on the run. It gets so hot in Texas! Luckily, our summer has been mild this year but, dang! It’s like running in one of the 7 layers of Hell! Lol! I’ve had to start carrying Tailwind with me on even the short runs. Glad you had a good race!

  3. I’m glad you’re ok! Headache + shivering is not a good sign. But it sounds like you did great anyway! I know at mile 4 I was thinking why can’t this be a 5k, LOL! I’m sure I think that every year.

    The race I did is also quite competitive, and yup, I don’t even think about AG awards (not that I’ve ever won one, but I have come close a time or two in the small races).

Thank you for your comment!