Sea of green

Today Chicago kicked off running season with the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle 8K. We were amidst 22,000 runners hitting the pavement throughout the heart of downtown Chicago.  This was our very first Shamrock Shuffle!  The hubby and I have completed half-marathons and marathons in our lovely city, but never ran this popular race.  To be quite honest, I prefer quiet runs along the Chicago lakefront or running through trails and wooded areas offered by some of our surrounding suburban races. However, I must admit that this was a fun race.  First off, the hubby and I are accustomed to running races together – never in a group. This time around a friend of ours invited us run to this race followed by brunch.  We couldn’t pass that up.  Additionally, my cousin from Indiana recently started running and this was our very first race together.   We all just wanted to have a good time and enjoy each other’s company.

three of us shamrock

We had a perfect 45 degree weather without the atypical windy Chicago day. As we waited in our corral, I was pleasantly surprised that I wasn’t cold or jumping up and down to get warmed up. It was nice. The hubby, cousin and I joked and laughed as we waited in anticipation for the race to begin. In no time, we were off.  The race went by so fast, although I experienced some knee pain quite early.  I have been running for almost 7 years and I think it has definitely taken a toll on me.  I enjoyed every stride and tried not to focus on it, but this was just a reminder that I have to take it easy and really prep my body if I want to complete the Chicago marathon this year.   As I crossed the finish line on Roosevelt, it brought exciting memories of the marathon as it was the exact finish line.  The race is 6 months away but will be here in no time!

As I ended the race I looked around to see if I would find the hubby and my cousin. I turned back and the hubby was right behind me. We walked further down, got some snacks and collected our sweet medals (our first 8k medal too).  My cousin found us quite quickly and eventually met up with the rest of the group.

We headed to our brunch spot – Brunch. We were seated immediately and enjoyed a delicious meal with good company.  I couldn’t ask for more.  Great Sunday!

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