Thursday, November 29, 2012

Guest Post - Run 3 Race Series

Resident fastie, Nicole Fritz, runs a lot of local races. There is a local series of races of various distances put on by the local park district. It is quite popular among local folks as you can sign up for all three races for 1 price.

Joliet Park District’s
Run3 Race Series

            Joliet Park District offers a great series of 3 races throughout the year.  All 3 races are held in or around Joliet, IL, which is approx 1 hour southwest of Chicago.  All 3 races are also located just a few miles off of Interstate 80, so they are also easy to get to.  The first race is held in the Spring, the second is in the Summer and the third and final race is held in the Fall.  For completing all 3 races, participants receive a fabulous hooded sweatshirt.  This year’s hoodie was a charcoal gray color and 2011’s was a basic black.  I wear both of mine ALL THE TIME.


Race #1: Rockdale Ramblin 10k

            The first race of the series is held in April in Rockdale, IL which is right off of exit 131 on I-80.  This 10k is declared the “toughest course in the Midwest” because of some major hills.  The weather was perfect though, with some chilly temps and overcast skies so the hills didn’t seem so bad (to me at least).

Pre race with some friends!  (Mag Mile Runner)

            During the race, I somehow forgot that this course was TOUGH and I wasn’t supposed to be running as fast as I was.  I was on track to cross the line with a PR if I just held onto my 7:15 pace…  Sure enough, I got to the finish line and my Dad snapped this pic of me…

Crossing the finish line with a shiny new 30 second PR! J

            At the completion of the 10k, finishers are awarded a “dog tag” as a token of their achievement.  That’s one of my favorite things about JPD’s races… there always have finisher’s medal’s! 

 Age Group awards with Mag Mile Runner

Notice the gray hoodie that I’m wearing in the above photo… this is the official race shirt for the 10k!!  Down the left sleeve is written “TOUGHEST 10k IN THE MIDWEST.”


Race #2: Sundowner 5k

            The 2nd race of the series is held in mid July, on a Thursday evening at 7pm.  For this years race, it was extremely hot and humid and race organizers encouraged participants to simply run for fun.  I listened to what they said and therefore finished with my worst 5k time in many years… because of this, I finished just out of contention for an age group award.  L 

The course itself for this race is very pretty.  It is basically just 2 loops through a pretty forest preserve.  There are a few rolling hills but nothing too challenging at all.

Basic white tech tee (unisex sizing)

 Finisher’s medal for a 5k?  Yes, please! J


Race #3: Red Eye 8k

The 3rd and final race of the run3 series is the Red Eye 8k.  Held on a Sunday in November, this race starts super early, at 7:15am.  It begins at Inwood Memorial Stadium on Jefferson Street in Joliet.  The course winds on streets, down a path, around St. Joseph’s hospital and then back to Inwood, where the finish is on the blue running track. 

Frankfort/New Lenox runners post race

 Age Group Awards

            JPD gives out age group awards for total time to complete all 3 races in their series.  I was lucky enough to earn first in my age group (25 – 29) and got to take home the pint glass in my right hand (above).  Also, I am wearing this years run3 sweatshirt in the above picture.

Run3 Goodies:
·         Rockdale Ramblin – Great quality gray hooded sweatshirt, finisher’s dog tag medal and yellow age group coaster
·         Sundowner 5k – White tech tee and finisher’s medal
·         Red Eye 8k – Black long sleeve tee shirt, finisher’s medal black age group coaster
·         Run3 series – Charcoal gray hooded sweatshirt and age group pint glass


More information can be found @  The dates for next year have already posted, so be sure to mark April 13th, July 18th and November 3rd  down on your calendar!!


  1. Super cool, Nicole! Great job running and guest blogging!!

  2. I really loved the Rockdale Ramblin Run 10K! The hills were challenging, but my favorite kind of challenge!

  3. Congrats on getting your pr on the toughest 10k in the Midwest. Wow!

  4. Good job / post. I only got to run the Sundowner but it was a nice change of pace since it was at night, gave out a sweet tech shirt / medal, and had a nice cookout. These races are nice because I live in the Lockport area and look to run all 3 next year.

  5. Sounds like a great series of races, just my length too - 5-10km, what a great idea! Enjoyed your guest post:)