Monday, August 3, 2015

Holly's 2015 Chicago Rock and Roll Half Marathon Report

Hopefully you read my post about coming back to races after surgery. This would be my first race back and I was both excited and very nervous. I was hoping to get a decent time for this race and use it as a proof of time for a better corral at the Star Wars Half Marathon at Disneyland coming up in January. My training times were going well so I was optimistic. Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate. The forecast was looking like a typical summer July day, hot and humid. The forecast was correct so I threw out the time goals and just wanted to finish the race and not feel horrible.

Dave and I got up at 4:30 am and headed over to the Palmer House to meet up with the rest of our friends (we got a Hotwire deal for the new Virgin Hotel - loved it!). Soon we were on our way to the start corrals (Dave and a few friends trekked farther south to the 10k start).

It was quite humid and we all said we would just slow it down and today was all about survival. It took forever to cross the start line but finally we were racing. I was so excited to be finally out on the road again. Julie, Stan and myself started off together and stayed together most of the race. We lost Julie at a bathroom stop but Stan and I managed to stay together for the entire race. I felt pretty good except for some normal effects of the heat and humidity. It’s amazing how much that can really drain you.

We had our savior Laura, at Mile 9 or so. She had delicious cold orange slices for us and that was enough to get me to the finish. It was too warm for gels and I was able to stomach only one for the entire race. The dreaded tunnel was as hot and stinky as always, but Stan did a great job of leading the way though it and I was happy to get it behind me. The bands on the course were lacking and I really miss the old days of this race when there were so many bands along the way. They really kept you going.

Finally the finish line was in sight and we saw our friends, Molly, Tom, Jan, and Dave (who missed us completely) (Dave here: We heard that another member of our party was at mile 12 and Holly was just ahead of them. Didn't think they meant that much ahead. I got a picture of her shoe.) cheering us in to the finish. I was very happy to cross a finish line again. I got my medal and my streak of perfect finishes in this race is intact at 7. I was very thankful for the icy cold towel and they brought back the popsicles this year, so good. A special thanks to the Chicago Fire Dept. for having a very nice cooling/misting system set up. It was great. We then headed over to the park to hear Andy Grammar sing and drink a few beers. A great morning. So happy to be back!!!





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