2012 Chicago Shamrock Shuffle 8K – 37:01

I gotta start somewhere.

That was the post-race motto assessment on my part. Of course I would wanted for a faster race, but my legs just wouldn’t have it. I’ve lost fitness and I have to work to get it back, so I have to start somewhere, but let’s start at the beginning.

Rob and I did not stay in Chicago the night before the race. Instead we choose to stay home and make the drive up in the morning, which without any traffic is just over 2hrs. We got up at 3:30am and got ready and were on the road by 4:45am.

I added some green to my running outfit to be festive. I had my green gummy ring that lights up, Zensah green compression calf sleeves and green adidas adios.

My stomach as been rock solid normal now for coming on two weeks. It has been crazy good. I really hope that my stomach troubles are behind me. My doctor did advise me to try taking an Imodium on race day just to see if that ensures that things stay good during the race. This was just under a 5 mile race, so it wasn’t a big test, but things did go well in that department.

The drive was relaxing and easy with the traffic being so light. We got parked in Millennium Garage off of lower Randolph Street with no issue. We then made our way over to Starbucks on Michigan Avenue that is between Monroe and Randolph. We got a couple tall soy mistos and took a seat at the window and chilled for 45 minutes before making our way to the car one final time and then to the start corral. Something funny that happens it seems every time we go to a big Chicago race is we run into our friends without even planning it. I don’t think we could plan it better if we tried. Ryan and Melisa were there to race, Ryan as an elite no less and Mike and Erin (also runners) were there for race support for them. Such a rockstar group and so good to see them before getting into the race.

Rob and I didn’t get into much of a warm up before we were lined up and ready to go. The weather was outstanding for the race. Overcast, mild temps (50s) and the lightest breeze. Ryan gave us the great advice of making sure to start slow for this race. He warned that even more than other Chicago races like Chicago Marathon people take off super fast and drop off after mile 2 or 3. He warned that it’s a tricky distance and many people go all out like it’s a 5K. Rob and I took the advice to heart. In my case, I’m out of shape so I would just start off easy and then try to add speed if I could find it.

The race did move quickly and with 8 turns durning less than 5 miles the time flew by quickly. Here are my mile splits to show that I have a lot of work to do.

Mile 1 – 7:35 pace (this is in the range that I planned)

Mile 2 – 7:23 pace (okay at least I picked it up, hope I can the next mile)

Mile 3 – 7:20 pace (okay, faster, but not I felt like my effort was harder so I was hoping for better)

Mile 4 – 7:39 pace(uh oh, I feel like I’m adding more effort, but clearly I am not)

.97 – 7:03 pace (I tried to force myself forward and it worked, even with the incline that’s before the finish. Just need to keep working at it)


7:27 Pace

Rob had a great race and ran exactly as he had planned. He finished with 33:50. PRs for both of us, since this was our first 8K! I’ll take it! 🙂

Only wish for this race would be a finisher medal. It wouldn’t need to be anything major, but for the price of the race a little something is nice. I like having a medal to wear around the city to explain why changing clothes and wiping my face is about the only cleaning up I will do before heading out to have a breakfast or lunch. It seems like people are more forgiving of a runner’s appearance when you have a medal draped around your neck, plus I love me some running bling. 🙂

I would recommend this race to those who plan to run Chicago Marathon or other Chicago races. It gives you an idea of the logistics for the morning. Since this race has two waves make sure to have a meet up location selected ahead of time with any friends or family. The barricades are different than other Chicago races we’ve done because of the multiple wave start. We never saw a “family meet up area” with the letters on pillars (A-Z) for people to find each other so I’m glad we had a meet up plan ahead of time and we had no trouble finding each other.

17 thoughts on “2012 Chicago Shamrock Shuffle 8K – 37:01

  1. yes! I loved this race too!! And I agree! A finisher medal would have been nice, considering it’s like such a famous race… 🙂
    Anyways I am glad you Pr’d! 🙂 I PR’d too and am pretty thrilled!


      1. Most half marathon training plans for first timers build to 10 or 11 miles. Keep up the training and it’s totally doable! Soldier Field 10 Miler is also supposed to be good, but I haven’t done that one yet.


      2. haha the one i did worked up to 12…this time I’m jus tgoing to train super slowly..cos im lazy.. ;P and I hate using plans!! But I have heard about the Soldier Field 10-miler and that one looks interesting also…my two doubts about the RocknRoll, is that it’s in July so it’ll be HOT and also it starts at 6:30 which would mean i’d have to get up at like 4:30 to get there in time…


  2. Nice job girl. I’m glad you had a decent race despite everything you have been through-you deserved it! I have heard so much about that race-I’m actually really surprised there was not a finisher medal!


  3. Excellent job holding back – your final mile shows you have some in the tank (Pass along my congrats to Rob once again , I truly believe he has great things in his future if he can get the pacing nailed down). Glad to hear you enjoyed your first 8k – one of the most painful distances in my opinion.

    Glad to hear the stomach is doing better – keep up the training and good luck in beantown.


  4. Excellent job CJ – Good pacing results in great races (the piece of the puzzle far too few figure out). Glad to hear the stomach is doing better! Good luck in Beantown –

    Pass along my congrats to Rob – i was so excited to hear the pacing made a difference. He has the fitness to run some solid times, just needs to get the pacing down first.


    1. Ryan, thanks for all the kind words and well wishes! I know Rob appreciates your encouragement as well! It’s been enjoyable for us to watch your success and cheer you on, your racing is on another level! Keep it up!!


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