Thursday, May 2, 2013

Throwback Thursday: Shamrock Shuffle Edition

As I've mentioned many, many times before, the Shamrock Shuffle is my favorite race in the city of Chicago. (I'm not the only one. Too Tall Fritz agrees with me too.) This past year was my 7th Shamrock Shuffle and I thought it might be fun to share some old photos from years' past.

The year was 2007. I was a born again runner and my first race ever had been in the previous summer. My roommate at the time convinced me to sign up and I thought it would be a fun time. I started training in whatever old tees and shorts I had lying around. I didn't know what dryfit was and the sports bras I owned were probably too old to be wearing during physical activity. I laced up my old high school running shoes and got on the treadmill with my newly acquired gym membership. I was an adult now; college was over.

This race was kind of a big stepping stone in my life. I made a lot of big decisions on the day of this race and it turned my life around for the better. Perhaps this is why the Shamrock Shuffle always holds a special place in my heart? :)

I was going through some old photos last week and I found some shots that I was really excited about. They were from my 2nd ever Shuffle in 2008. I ran it with my friend Kate and it was her first race ever. I was still living in the city at the time, and she had come down to spend the night at my place before heading to the start. I remember these photos being taken, but I couldn't remember what I did with them. After finding them in a photo album (instead of in a Facebook album), it was fun to look back and reflect.

We look so young! I was wondering why I didn't have any professional photos from this race. It is because I covered up my bib like a noob! Haha. Things to note: I still wear this headband all the time in the winter. I also still have this jacket that I keep around specifically for the Shamrock Shuffle. This race also started the tradition of us (me, Kate S. and Kate LF.) doing the race together  Some years we don't see each other, some years we've crossed the finish line together, and some years we've met up afterwards for the post-race beverage. Either way, this race is something we always make time to do. I really do hope to continue this tradition in the years to come, even if I need to leave Baby Wilson at home with Dad. :)

This year was a year in which I debated whether or not to run the race. The night before, I traveled from the city to the suburbs to hang with my friends (the Kates) so we could carpool to the race together. If I hadn't been with them, I probably would have stayed in my nice warm bed instead of lacing up my shoes to head out into the snow. BUT, we got out there, and we did it!
This year, the Shamrock Shuffle only had about 13,000 finishers (compared to 40,000 registrants and usually 38,000-40,000 finishers). My friends and I were some of the crazy few that got out there and ran, despite the snow. Also, you may note that this headband may look familiar. :) The shirt I'm wearing says "Everyone Loves an Irish Girl." I still own this shirt specifically to wear to the Shamrock Shuffle. I don't think its weird that I keep around specific pieces of clothing to wear just to 1 race per year.

For more old race photos of me, check out the "Previous Races" link at the top of my blog. There are definitely some gems in there. Lol.

Is there a race that you love so much that you've done it multiple years in a row? Do you have certain clothing items that you keep in your running wardrobe specifically for a particular race?


  1. Awe I love this! Baby Kelly in this previous pics! The ones in the snow scare me-looks miserable!!

  2. I also PRed the race that day! It really was all about getting to the finish line as soon as possible!

    My next question is, how do you not have some shamrock/green gear if you run this race every year too?? ;) You know I'm just messing with you! :)

  3. Haha, thanks for saying I look the same now! Maybe that is why I always get carded at bars. In New Orleans, one of the guys didn't believe my ID was real. He let me in with a comment saying "I guess this is good enough." Um, that is my real; and if it was a fake, why would I say I was 29? Lol

    I'm so glad you got the chance to run the Shuffle! Hopefully you'll start your own tradition as well! I think this might have been the only year I didn't use my beer ticket. Although, it did get used, just not by me. :)

  4. Haha! I know you are messing with me and it's true! I actually never cared about wearing green for this race. Probably never really ever have! I used to run this race alone (minus the first year and a few of the later years).

  5. Thanks! The snow race WAS miserable, but that was my PR race for a long time. The race was so miserable, I wanted it to be over so quickly that I ran as fast as I could to the finish. Whatever works, right?!

  6. I love throwback posts :) gives more insight into each others lives before we all "knew" one another! That 2009 shamrock. Holy moly! I've heard About it, but never actually saw photos until now. OMG.

  7. This post made me tear up a little. Sniff, Sniff, Sniff. Cheers to the BEST.RACE.EVER.

    And in 2009, the snowy year, I was preggo with Michael and couldn't run. I gave my bib away cuz I had already registered but I went down anyhow to support my out of town friends. I'm pretty sure my feet were soaked thru my boots before you even left the start line. And I was sooooo cold. However, I did get to the finish in time to see Deena Kastor take the win!

  8. Your throwback post on XC totally inspired this post! :)

    Despite the weather, I felt they were actually prepared for it. There were warming busses at the finish, warm beverages to drink (coffee and hot chocolate). Yet another reason why this race is so great; they are prepared for whatever type of weather Mother Nature throws our way!

  9. Is there a race that you love so much that you've done it multiple
    years in a row? I've never entered a race yet! Just against myself, womp!

    Do you have certain clothing items that you keep in your
    running wardrobe specifically for a particular race? If i did race, Vaseline, medical tape, and liquid skin for any race!

  10. The United Run for the Zoo 10K and The Pumpkins in the Park 5K are my two fav races that I do every year. Don't have specific clothing for them though.

  11. Are you interested in entering a race?


  12. Nice! For the Pumpkins In The Park 5k do you usually wear something Halloween themed?

  13. Oh nice! I remember I was really good about keeping my feet dry before the race. Then, when we were walking to the start line, I stepped in a GIGANTIC puddle and my feet were soaked for all 8k miles. It's all good though, these are the memories we'll cherish... being a bad a** out there! :)

  14. I've played around with the idea, but am afraid once I start, I'll enter too many and be addicted. I definitely end up crashing through a race every few weeks on the lakefront by mistake.

    I am registered for the Chicago Marathon, so all my training right now is geared towards a BQ time (pie in the sky goal time for me, but I have hope!)

  15. Oh, man, the 2009 Shuffle. I didn't run but I volunteered at the gear check tent and was SO COLD.

  16. Britt @ Chicago Runner GirlMay 2, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    Yes...this race;)

    2009 was a rough one, I think I finally got feeling in my toes around mile 4. Then the race was over. But, rain or shine this race is always a hoot!

  17. You are such a dedicated volunteer! I bet a lot of folks didn't show up that day due the conditions. Yes, it was pretty freezing cold that day...

  18. I don't think I regained feeling in my toes until after I had gotten home, changed clothes, and had several cups of coffee! Lol. Love this race!

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