Monday, July 9, 2012

I Run Because ____ 5k (Guest Post)

Fiiiiirst, have you entered my SpiBelt raffle yet?? Your odds of winning are really good! I've extended the deadline until Monday, July 16th!

I heard rumors about a Lululemon sponsored run and I didn't know much of the details. luckily my friend Nicole Fritz agreed to do a race recap/guest post! Thanks so much Nicole for such a great recap including all these great photos! :)

A few months ago, a friend of mine (Dave Mari) told me about this 5k that Lululemon was having at Fullersburg Woods in Oak Brook. The “I run because ________ 5k” was the first 5k of its kind. Its purpose was to show that everyone has their own reason for running. Some run to relieve stress, others run just for fun, and others have countless other reasons. All I know is that, if Dave was going to be there, and Lululemon was hosting it, I just had to be there too! Plus, it was FREE!!!The race was co-hosted by the Lululemon Athletica’s in Oak Brook and Naperville and was held on a Tuesday morning (July 3) at 7am… I’m still not sure why it was held on a Tuesday, but it worked for me! I woke up early and was on the road by 5:15am. I arrived to the race site in record time and was able to park at the forest preserve.

I picked up my packet and found my friend Jill. Our “packets” consisted of just our bib # and lots of paper. I was secretly hoping that we’d all get white Lulu tanks, but no such luck! :) After dropping my stuff off at my car, Jill and I did a little warmup. While running, we found Dave and of course he snapped a pic!

After our warmup and a quick bathroom break, we headed to the start line, which was just a short walk away. There’s Dave in his trademark monkey shirt!

Once we got to the starting line, I of course, had to retie my shoes. Dave took this as an opportunity to take a picture of the white flower in my hair! Last weekend, Dave gave me this flower from the Fellow Flowers. Fellow Flowers is a new group that encourages unity while running and training for races. They all wear flowers in their hair and each color represents something different. It’s really neat! Dave is probably their greatest supporter… he is always handing out flowers to the ladies lately!! :) You can find more information about them here.

If you have done just about any half marathon in Chicago, you have probably seen the Lululemon ladies at an aide station with their great signs! Of course, we had to snatch this one up and take a photo!!

The race started right on time, at 7am! It was not chip timed, so I tried to line up towards the front

The course was gorgeous!! We turned and twisted all throughout the woods. We ran paste the Graue Mill and a pretty waterfall. Much of this 5k course is included in the Oak Brook Half Marathon held on Labor Day every year. The mile markers were all accurately marked and my final Garmin distance was 3.12 miles. I finished in 22:58, which is slower than I usually run, but it was hot, humid and a little bit hilly too. Besides, I was just there for a fun run with friends… not to race! :)

After I finished the race, I walked back to find Dave. He always has so much fun at races! He takes pictures of EVERYTHING and says hi to EVERYONE. Dave is the best!! He is a celebrity in the world of running!! We were right by mile 3 when we spotted some Half Fanatics (another group we are a part of) and in true Dave style, we NEEDED a photo!! :) He definitely wins the award for taking the most photo’s on course!(For info on Half Fanatics, visit this website)

To see all of Dave’s photo’s, click here.

Lululemon offered FREE post race yoga as well! At 8am, Jill and I participated in a great 20 minute session and Dave was there to document just about every pose! Haha!!

Immediately after yoga, awards started and we had to be there since Jill won overall female!! She won a great Lulu yoga towel, valued at $48! Not bad for a race with no registration fee! I also walked away with a voucher for a free 90 minute yoga class in Hinsdale and a 30 minute sports massage in Naperville. I’ll take it!!

I will definitely be back next year! As much as I loved that it was free, my suggestion to Lulu would be to charge a little bit next year. They let 500 people “register” and my guess is that half that many people actually showed up. I bet a lot of the registered runners just rolled over in bed when their early alarm went off. Maybe if they have some money invested in an event, they would be more likely to show up. Regardless if it’s free or not, I will be at next year’s event!! :)


  1. I ran that too and I wish I could have stayed for yoga, it looked like a blast!

  2. Markemmanuel RodriguezJuly 9, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    Hmm... looks like I should have done the yoga as well. The race was definitely smaller than 500. I was supposed to run with a friend but she rolled over in bed and I ended up running solo that day.