July 17-19, 2015 - Chicago, IL
On our move from the Midwest we had planned to stop in Chicago for the weekend to run the Rock 'n' Roll Chicago Half Marathon. It was kind of our last Midwest hurrah before heading back to the East Coast. We headed to town on Friday midday after packing up and leaving Stevens Point behind. After arriving at our hotel nearish to the airport, we hauled everything out of the car and then proceeded downtown to visit the race expo.
I love RNR race expos as they are always full of vendors I'm excited about! This one did not disappoint. After grabbing our race numbers, we headed thru the official merch to visit the other vendors. I stopped off at the KT tape area to ask about taping up my hip for the run- they were doing applications but because mine was under my clothes no go for me. I made purchases from Sparkly Soul, found some pain rub as well as a RUN NC shirt despite being in IL. Then we made it over to the Nuun area where I sampled all the flavors, picked out a few tubes and got a free water bottle. We also got Jon a few running tanks since it was so unbelievably hot that weekend.
After spending enough money we were famished and headed over to the West Loop to the Haymarket Pub and Brewery. We sampled some of their local creations and then sat down to stuff our faces. I had a delicious grilled cheese. After eating and relaxing, we headed up the blue line to visit the Map Room- one of the better beer bars in town. As always it was good and we had a couple of tasty beers before it was time to head back to our hotel for the night.
Saturday, we went out for a quick three mile run in the nearby park. We had run their before we stopping through for the Notre Dame game. This time however it was so humid and muggy that it was difficult to run- plus I had the hip to contend with. Slow goings for me but it was a chance to test out the pain rub. It worked great even though I felt like I was sweating to death. 13.1 was not going to come easy for me on Sunday.
After our run, we decided to head downtown to be tourists. First we walked around Grant Park and saw the Buckingham Fountain before stopping in the Art Institute. Thank goodness for air conditioning!! We wandered the halls for awhile until I got hungry. :) We found a Good Stuff Eatery and stuffed our faces. Unsure what to do with our afternoon- we first stopped in Miller's Pub- an old stomping ground for Jon when he used to travel to Chicago for band association meetings. Then it looked like it was going to downpour so we found a nearby sports bar to wait out the storm and Jon got to watch soccer. After that it was time to eat some dinner!! We found an italian place for pasta and then it was time to head back and prep for race day.
We were up ridiculously early to travel from the end of the blue line to downtown. We lined up ready to roll and took off. Jon was a few corrals ahead of me and I knew he was going to do well while I shuffled along to the end. It was a long race for me- but you can read more in my recap here.
After it was over we got to meet up with Ali in Old Town for lots of beer and lunch. We were starving and after that race needed a drink. It was delicious and fun to catch up with an old friend!! She had a show to get to but we found a place near our dinner spot to hang for the afternoon. More soccer for Jon and relaxing for me. Then we walked a few blocks to meet up with Greg and his wife Amy, as well as Ali for BBQ dinner. Such a great dinner and loved seeing everyone.
We had a wonderful last time in Chicago. We'll be back at some point but it'll be awhile!