Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bank of America Chicago Marathon closing in....

I apologize for the huge lag between blog posts here. It has been a very busy summer for sure...

Today I attended the Bank of America Chicago Marathon Charity Operations meeting with Mike Reninger and Terri Devine-Ford. I tell you what - You would never believe how much work something like this is. The planning, the details, the last minute curve balls, the amount of people.... It's just mind boggling. We are truly grateful that the people at Bank of America, and the countless voulnteers, have dedicated their time and effort to such a huge undertaking.

So we went over many many details. Necessary as they are, it did become a bit monotonous.But we got to a point in the meeting when we began to discuss the effects of the crowd, different sections set aside for special groups in certain locations, and Charity Mile. This is when I snapped back to attention.

I have only run one other official marathon, and that was the University of Okoboji Marathon out in Okoboji, IA. There were barely any spectators whatsoever. I have run many training runs on my own of 26.2 miles or more, but never another official marathon.

In fact, in most of the ultras that I run, I can go for hours without seeing one person. Then, when I do, it’s usually my crew and the same 10 other people that are crewing for the other runners that are running near my pace. Not that I would ever get sick of seeing their ugly mugs, but c’mon!! A little variety wouldn’t hurt!! Haha….Just kidding of course.

So needless to say, I am most excited about just experiencing the crowd at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon this year. I am almost certain that I began my speed work too late in my training to realistically keep my goal of a sub-3hr finish in my sights. So today, I made a promise to myself to just run at a pace that I feel comfortable at, try to evangelize UFD along the way to anyone who will listen, and just take it all in. I think the crowd will really make the experience exciting for me in particular.

So we’d love to hear - How are you feeling? What are your goals? What are you looking forward to the most? Let us know!

We are very excited and ready to make this another successful race for everyone involved….


  1. Hi team from Washington State. Training for me continues to be going great. Completed a half marathon race on Labor Day with a 11 minute PR. My time of 1:33 was fast enough to place 122 out of over 1200 runners.
    My goal in Chicago is to go out and have fun while qualifying for Boston (need a 3:30 or less). If everything goes well, I hope to average a 7:15 pace (3:10) and scoop up an auto entry in to the NYC marathon in 2010.
    Time is flying and I look forward to seeing you all in 4 weeks at the pasta party. Gosh, I remember when there was over 100 days (where did the time go?)

    My coach said he would rather get to a race 90% in shape but 100% healthy than the other way around.

    Take care and see you soon

    Bob Schwieger

  2. Ran my FIRST 20 miler yesterday -- YIKES! BUT, I did it much too slowly (the field was packed, narrow streets and lots of people from the Twin Cities run it for their 20 mile prior to the TC marathon). So, my average pace was a good 45 sec longer than usual for my long runs (it is actually the pace I should have been running the long runs, but I'm bad about that!!) Anyway, ran slowly to ironically avoid injury -- and managed to make my IT band act up again (it tends to act up when I run slowly!) ARGH! Hopefully a couple of unscheduled rest days, ice, foam roller and my good sports massage therapist will get me going again. Am a little scared about the marathon now though. I'd felt really confident after last weekend's 18 miler -- shaved 10 minutes off the time it took me to run 18 miles just 3 weeks prior! Now, I'm nervous again!

    Think I may do the marathon at my 18 mile pace and hope I don't bonk at mile 20. Although, bonking from exhaustion would be preferable to the pain-bonk I had yesterday. I kept thinking of all my little guy, Robert has accomplished with so much effort -- like taking 2+ years to learn how to walk ... used him as my motivation to get through those last 2 miles. Good thing is that although my knee/IT band hurt -- legs feel GREAT after 20 miles yesterday -- could easily do a 6 mile recovery today if knee weren't killing me... so, at least I know the fitness is there!!

    My, I've got the gift of gab today!

    I'm really looking forward to meeting all of you at the pasta dinner -- just made reservations for the family and myself. We decided to rent a condo near WaterTower place vs. staying in Arl. Hts with the in-laws for marathon weekend .... so should be fun for the boys to sight see while I rest and carb load!!