CARA Ready to Run 20 Miler

This weekend we didn’t have a Saturday training run for good reason – the CARA Ready to Run 20 Miler.

In my head this race was the big salami before the actual marathon, but always seemed so far away in the summer months.   Run the entire lakefront?  Madness.  The race started at 6:30 AM up north, but left in waves as there were 4,000 participants.   We were in wave 46 which left at 6:52.

At approximately 6:47 I had a bit of a bathroom emergency, but came out of that port-o-potty like a race horse and made it to the start line just in time to join our training group.   In our weekly pep talk e-mail our leader emphasized that this was just a training run, however to treat it as a practice run for the marathon.   We wore our race shirts to make sure of no chafage or discomfort.    It was really nice to not have an out and back training run today as the course was a point to point, ending at the cultural center.

Miles 1-7 flew by, and the light drizzle and cool temps were a welcome distraction. 

Around mile 8 we passed our apartment which is always so tempting but we gave it a wave and carried on.  

Mile 11 is where BMB had to use the facilities, and Sara, Ella, and I kept moving at a slower pace waiting for him to catch up.   Somehow he flew by us while we were collecting as many free GU’s at the mile 12 aid station and we never saw him again. 

I felt like I lost my child.   I was so worried – didn’t know if he was behind and something had happened or up ahead.   We waited a few minutes and then went on our way.   Miles 12-18 were uneventful and our chatter helped to move them along.   

After the mile 18 aid station we started running and I felt like my feet were on crooked.   Nothing seemed to be working properly, but we put one foot in front of the other and eventually the 19 mile sign was in sight. 

After this I put my head down and eventually the cultural center was in sight, signaling the end of the race.   I crossed the finish line and immediately saw BMB, who had finished about 4 minutes ahead of us.   I was so proud of him for running those last 8 miles on his own.

We stood in line for our shirts, where it started to downpour.   We also ran into Kate M., another team member of Team Hoagie, who also killed the 20 miler after a couple weeks off due to a back injury.

After a blue lipped, shivering wait for the shuttles we headed back to the city.

BMB & I stopped for ice and came home for the dreaded ice bath.

I dread the bath tub more than the ice.   Ugh.   Works miracles, however.   

Besides some soreness, we are relatively unscathed.  Thank goodness for Body Glide, especially on my feet.   The ultimate blister protector.  

I still find it kind of hard to believe we ran 20 miles.  I never ever in my life thought I would be able to do something like that, and I’m so proud of BMB, Sara, and Kate for making Team Hoagie proud.   Sara and Kate both wore their Team Hoagie shirts and got so many cheers.   

DSC07738 DSC07739 
Welp, gotta go eat some pizza and take a nap.   First day at the new job tomorrow, I’m excited!!!

Who else ran the 20 miler today??? I know there are some fellow CARA runners out there!


13 Responses to CARA Ready to Run 20 Miler

  1. Congrats on the run! 3 weeks from now we will be celebrating our finishes!!! :)

  2. Nice job! I ran it today too. Looking forward to the marathon!

  3. I am stationary on the couch for the rest of the night after EIGHT miles. YOU ARE A ROCK STAR!!!! Congrats on 20 miles!

  4. Congrats on your 20-miler! I did the CARA 20-miler two years ago and loved being able to run the whole lake path. It got me totally geeked up for the marathon!

  5. I just wanted to say that your blog is such a HUGE inspiration to me. I doubt I ever get up to 20 miles, but my first half isn’t going to run itself so I will be getting it together. If you have any advice for an out of shape snail runner, I would greatly appreciate it. :)

    Have a great week at the new job!


    • thanks so much!! I NEVER thought I could run 20 miles… and up until a year and a half ago even a 5K didn’t appeal to me. Finding fun running partners and changing up my routes really made training fun, and I learned never to take it too seriously. Time doesn’t matter, and even one mile is better than none. I’ll try and pull together some better advice for ya when I’m not so sleepy, thanks again for the nice comment!

  6. Nice job to you and BMB!! Doesn’t it feel awesome to accomplish that and know that the only thing left you have to do is 26.2? :) Body glide on feet huh? I never even though of that but I’m so going to try that since I’ve been having some blister problems as well!

    • thank you!! it feels SO good. i’m going to try and do a few casual runs before the marathon but that was the last big guy. Yes, it’s amazing, it changed my life when someone told me to do that!

  7. Pingback: final training run. | Fitting into the Windy City & My Clothes

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