I’ve run this race before (2009, 2011, 2013).  The last time I ran it, I swore I would never do it again because it is always HOT on race day.  I remember in 2013 I almost passed out because of the heat.

Never say never, right?  Thanks to Erica at Erica Finds I won a FREE race entry so you bet I signed up.  The plan was to run it as a training run (16 miles on the calendar).

The expo was not fun at all.  You can read about it HERE or just skip it.  

Saturday morning was the 5k.  I went to the lakefront to run 4 miles and saw the runners.  I was hoping to see Kathrine Switzer since at the expo I found out she was running the 5k.  I did not see her.  But Wendy got to see her TWICE!  Lucky girl!

Sunday morning my alarm went off at 4:15am, got ready, ate breakfast and drove to the train station.  While there I saw the most beautiful sunrise.


Once downtown I dropped off my bag at gear check (I felt bad for the volunteers because there weren’t enough of them but lots of people were waiting to drop off their bag) then got in line to use the porta potties.  Ugh, people were taking too long.  I moved to another shorter line but they were taking too long there too.  Finally it was my turn and I was in and out in about 15 seconds!  

I went to get in my corral but there were so many people.  That’s what I get for being “late”.  Finally I got in and just when I was about to cross the start line, I saw Kathrine Switzer! It happened so quickly and I was shocked to see her.  What I wanted to do was call out her name to get a picture but the line was moving and she was walking in another direction so I lost my chance.  Later I found out she was on the course giving out water and at the finish line giving out medals.  I did not see her.  🙁


It wasn’t as hot as it usually is and it was shaded.  Thank goodness because it is known to always be HOT on that day.  As you can see from my splits below, I did good for 7 miles.  I drank water at every water station and had two water bottles filled with Generation UCAN Hydrate.  I also took a salt tablet every 4 miles.  Prior to the start of the race I drank 12 ounces of water with 2 scoops of Generation UCAN.


Even though it wasn’t very hot, it was still hot enough for me to run through this fire hydrant. One of the best feelings!


These pictures made me cry.  I missed the beginning but went back and walked to look at every single picture.


Before mile 7 I saw Charlene.  Seeing her made me smile.  Then past mile 7 I saw the Oiselle girls and they also made me smile.  And then my feet began to hurt and I bonked.  I was exhausted.  I wanted to take off my shoes and walk.  I didn’t.

I did not cringe when I saw these photos.  No underpronation at all.

I kept running determined to finish the race.  I loved the crowd support and the volunteers. I let out a big sigh when I reached mile 10.  Three more miles and I would be done.  Easy peasy, right?  Nope.

The last mile felt like forever.  The finish line looked so far away.  Why, why?  Can you see it? Trust me, it was there.


Overall, I enjoyed the race.  I didn’t do as well as I expected but I know that not every race will go as expected.  I loved running on the streets of Chicago.  I rarely go downtown anymore so this was a nice treat for me.  

My next Rock ‘n’ Roll race is October 15 in Denver.  My niece lives there so I am excited to see her and to run in another state.

Have you run a Rock ‘n’ Roll race?  Fan or not a fan?

I am linking up with MarciaErika, and Patti for today’s Tuesdays on the Run.


34 Comments on Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon 2017

  1. I’m a total fan of RNR races! I’ve done my hottest race ever (VA Beach) and my coldest race ever (Las Vegas) at RNR races.

    The last 5K of a long distance race always seems like the toughest. Good job for hanging in there. You did great!

    • Thank you! I remember Virginia Beach and it was HOT too. Las Vegas is fun as well.

      I agree that the last 3 miles are the hardest. I have yet to find a way to get through it and not crash.

  2. I think I’ve run this race 6x and yes. Always hot. This year’s conditions were about the best they could be, and that’s not saying much. Still warm and humid but thankfully overcast. Good on you for winning an entry! Congrats!

    • Thanks Marcia. I was surprised but thankful for the weather. I love that it was shaded for most of the race. I think it was sunny around mile 9 or 10.

  3. That was a tough one. I fell apart after mile 9. But I had such a wonderful experience! Congrats on your finish and you look so strong in those photos!

    • Thanks Wendy! And congratulations to you too. You did amazing well and had a wonderful experience.

      I read your recap and also read the one from ZOOMA. I was there too! Now that was painfully HOT.

    • Chicago is definitely fun to run. However, you never know how it is going to be during the summer.

  4. Totally understand what you mean about the heat for this race! When I did it in 2015 it was SO hot, but when I did it last year it wasn’t hot (thankfully), but it was SO humid!!

    The last 3-4 miles of a half marathon are always the most difficult for me. The photo of the finish line in the distance made me laugh because I felt the same way last year – so close but so far away, lol.

    Congrats on another half marathon finish!

    • Thanks Kim! Yes, I remember 2015 because I was training for the marathon. We were out there on Saturday for a long run but had to change our pace because of the heat.

      Last year I was planning to spectate but missed it because I overslept. 🙂

      Isn’t it crazy about the finish line? I think I almost cried. That won’t happen for the Chicago Marathon. You run up on Roosevelt, turn left on Columbus and you will definitely see the finish line. I am getting for you for October!!!

    • Thanks! I had posted another photo in a different post and there you can see my underpronation.

  5. Congratulations on the Chicago RnR Half!!

    It does sound like a really cool route, but a hot month for it! Out of all the other months they could do a half in Chicago, they pick the hottest!

  6. I almost signed up for the Denver RnR 10k but I talked myself into Vegas. That’s the one I really wanted to do. Even though Denver is 20 minutes away, and Vegas needs an airplane, I skipped Denver.

    • I understand that decision. I’ve never run in Denver so that’s why I signed up for it. Have fun in Vegas..that is a fun race!

  7. Summer races are HARD. And you’ll notice I don’t run a lot of them!

    I’ve done several RnR races. They have their pros & cons.I wasn’t even aware they had one in Denver, though!

    As to form, some of my photos definitely make me cringe. And don’t forget: finishing = winning.

  8. Congrats on the finish! Your splits look really good. Most people (including myself) slowed down over the last few miles.

    • Thanks Pete! You did amazing well too. I know I need to work on my pacing as I always staff off too fast in the beginning and then slow down towards the end.

  9. As you know, I ran Chicago in 2014, and prior to that ran St. Louis in 2013. I’m excited for Las Vegas! I loved the Chicago event because most of the course was actually downtown…I loved seeing all the buildings

  10. I haven’t run an RnR race…they are just too big for my preference. I don’t think I would consider running a half during summer at all though! Congrats on finishing!

  11. Congrats on your race! Running a half in mid-July is just a little too tough for me to handle, so kudos for getting it done. I love RNR races, still haven’t made it to Chicago but I have a couple on deck for the fall!

Thank you for your comment!