Today was the Chicago 10K, and it was just as awesome as I expected, and then some.
First of all, I LOVE the 10k distance! I’ve run just about every distance there is, I think (5k, 3.5-miler, 7k, 8k, 10-miler, half marathon, marathon), but until today, I’d never run a 10k. I think this is kind of the ideal distance, and now I want to run more of them!
But the Chicago 10K itself was also pretty awesome.
Here are some highlights:
- The weather! Finally a race that was under 80-degrees. I had forgotten what it’s like to run when you’re not on the verge of heat stroke.
- The shirt. I’m actually very pleased with my cotton shirt, and I am glad I didn’t upgrade to the tech shirt. It’s a nice soft cotton and will make a perfect lounging shirt. (I did hear a few complaints from runners who upgraded that the tech shirts ran very large.)
- The course. I have a feeling some people might complain about this because it was along the path near museum campus and around the Shedd. I’ve run several races on this course and it does get extremely congested. But today’s runners were courteous enough to move to the side, or weren’t so jam-packed that it wasn’t too difficult to get through the crowd.
- The volunteers. There were loads of younger volunteers from a Bradley Volleyball camp (I think, I can’t remember if that’s right), and they were by far the best race volunteers I have EVER seen in a race. So friendly, so peppy, lots of cheering…As someone who ALWAYS appreciates race volunteers, these put all other race vols to shame.
- The medal. This is actually one of the nicest medals I’ve gotten. It ranks up there with some of my favorite half marathon medals!
- The after-party. I didn’t stick around too long, but the band Ear Candy was playing, and there were a decent number of vendors and spots to relax.
I have to say, for an inaugural race, or any race for that matter, this was a great race.
The only con I can think of is that in all the aid stations along the course, I’m pretty sure there was only water, and no Gatorade. I didn’t mind too much, but I think if it had been hotter, Gatorade would have been pretty important.
There was one other thing that sort of bothered me about this race. Not due to the race itself, but with the whole concept of race shirts.
I tend to be pretty superstitious about not wearing my race shirts until after I run the race, with a few exceptions where the shirt is designed for wear during the race (like the Color Run). I guess I just don’t want to jinx myself and end up not actually earning the shirt.
I understand that not everyone feels this way, and lots of runners are proud to wear their shirts during the race. But what if the shirt says “Finisher” right across it? Don’t you think you should wait until you’ve actually finished, or else the shirt is a lie?
I just couldn’t believe how many runners I saw wearing their finishers shirts BEFORE the race.
Am I crazy? Am I the only one who thinks this is wrong?