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2015 Chicago Marathon Weekend : We #OwnChicago!


What a weekend! By now, most of you know how things ended up (serious Live Beyond Expectations moment), so we are going to Tarantino things and head back to the beginning. I’ll get into the race recap and review tomorrow, but today’s post is about all the “other stuff” leading up to and following the race! Today I am going to be out and about with the Mom 😀 Who knows what kind of trouble we’ll get into!

But for now, let’s go back to Friday. It was simply marvelous!

Actually, first, I want to say congratulations to all that ran and or raced this weekend. A smattering of newly crowned marathoners, PRs, and a few hard-learned lessons, but regardless, you should be so proud of yourselves, regardless of time or distance!

Ps, if you ran, are running, have run a big goal race, you can’t miss out on my JHill Marathon Map Giveaway. And don’t forget that you can get 15% off sitewide using code SUSIEXJHILL. That means you save on everything from race maps to maps of states, countries, and other gorgeous graphics!

2015 Chicago Marathon Weekend

I took Friday off from work in order to try to accommodate all of the other plans for the weekend. Even so, I woke up early to do some blog work–by the way, thank you all so much for your comments about the new layout! I honestly was still shopping around some options when I found this layout, I loved it, and I purchased and installed it Thursday mid-morning. I am really happy with it, though still tinkering with it a bit. But thank you! Suzlyfe got a long overdue spitshine!


I honestly didn’t know what to do with myself Friday. Typically, Friday before a marathon is a travel day for me, and thus a rest day. I wasn’t sure if I was going to walk down to the expo, walk some of the way, run down there, go get on the spin bike, go do some strength training… I really couldn’t decide. Ultimately, I decided to wear workout gear, head down to the expo, and see what the day brought!

2015 Chicago Marathon Expo

I’ll provide more technical details about the expo in my review of the race tomorrow, but I will say that if you are going, go early and on Friday–I had no lines, everything and everyone for the vendors were there and representing, and I quickly got my things and then meandered around trying not to spend money or eat too many bars 😀

The 2015 Chicago Marathon Edition Nike Pegasus 32 are just beautiful Find out more about the marathon weekend at!

I met up with my girl friend at Nike and she helped me pick up the BEAUTIFUL Marathon edition Nike Pegasus. which I have been coveting. I can’t wait to wear them. OBSESSED with the color. Seriously. I love me some jewel tones! #ownchicago? I will OWN THESE SHOES. Totally wished I could wear them Sunday… but no! Thank you, Lisa and Nike!

Meeting Wendy aka Taking the Long Way Home was one of the highlights of my time at the 2015 Chicago Marathon Expo. Find out more at

BIGGEST highlight of my expo time was getting to meet Wendy. We have become good blog friends and #VRF (virtual running friends) this summer, and it was high time to meet. We only got a little bit of time together (she needed to go and do her expo things), but our short meeting left me wanting more! Oh, and I ran into Miss Lauren on the way out! I normally never get to see her on a regular basis, but I popped in and saw her at work the day before, so that was awesome to see her again!

Lunch with Lauren and Scott at Howells and Hood

After the expo, I headed home to drop off my spoils before meeting Lauren and her boyfriend Scott for lunch! I took them to Howells and Hood because it is just about the perfect location, central to so much, and there is something delicious for all. And 114 beers on tap. You all know this. I speak of it often. I had such a great time with them–I mean, when you get around people that speak your language of food, running, and city living, well, it just kind of works, you know? Also, she forever won my heart by bringing me a giant chunk of her pumpkin beer bread. 

After the Marathon Expo, I got to have lunch with Lauren from Breathe Deeply and Smile! More on my 2015 Chicago Marathon Weekend at

Lauren, you may now have my first born child.

Home for the Rest of the Day

I had to hurry home, though, because we were getting our apartment cleaned! I had been planning on having it overhauled since July, and with how ridiculous Alex’s and my schedules have been of late, things have gotten a bit out of hand. Mom was arriving Saturday and staying with us, so it gave me the perfect exscuse reason to splurge on the service a little. So. Worth. It. While that was happening, I popped downstairs to take care of my pre-marathon business.

The rest of the day was spent trying to get some blog work taken care of ahead of time and trying not to eat everything (Taper Crazies). I was boring, I ate, I watched TV. It was another (this time headache-less) complete rest day. 


Saturday dawned and it was time to do a little running and get my life in order before I saw Mommy! I just so happened to be running with some pretty cool people. I joined Fleet Feet (my South Loop store) for the shakeout run with Deena Kastor and Bart Yasso (like I did last year). But what was even more fun was seeing so many of my friends there.

Coach Suz and her Chicago Endurance Sport Summer Marathon Training charges at events during the 2015 Chicago Marathon weekend! MOre about the marathon and marathon weekend at

I opted to not wait in line for pictures, but instead grabbed a creeper one, lol.

Deena Kastor and Sara Hall at the 2015 Chicago Marathon Shakeout Run hosted by Runner's World, Asics, and Fleet Feet Sports South Loop. Find out more about marathon weekend at


Yep, then Mommy came 😀 I was starving, because traffic was terrible and it took quite a bit longer for her to get in than we planned! We got her things settled in the apartment, and then I chased her out of the apartment and took her to Yolk for noms. I wanted to eat a bigger lunch and smaller dinner, so I went with the Iron Man (my go-to there), a five-egg white omelette with all sorts of veggies and salsa (it comes with avocado in it, but I opted for it on the side), and I got fruit and an english muffin. Mom got the Irish Benny (corned beef eggs benedict).

A late brunch at Yolk Cafe Streeterville. The Iron Man egg white omelette and Irish Benny eggs benedict. Excellent pre marathon fuel! For more on Chicago Marathon and places to eat in Chicago, check out

You may or may not recognize that we got the same thing the last time that I took her there! Then we went out to cause some trouble.

I wanted to walk down and check out exactly where we would be going the next morning, so we walked down to the Loop and around there a little bit, before I dragged her back uptown to our hood and we decided to get a drink (at 3:30, because why not) at Howells and Hood so that we could sit outside and so that I could get a beer that I had spied on their specials list the day before. And Spectator Strategy sessions require craft beer and rose, do they not?

Howells and Hood in River North is the perfect place for a Chicago Marathon spectator strategy session! Greenbush Brewing Unicorn Killer Pumpkin beer and rose helped. More on places to eat and on the Chicago Marathon at

We went back home after that, and Alex reminded me that he needed his laundry, so I put that in and Mom and I got dinner at Lyfe while it was in the dryer. After all of my talk with my trainees about not having ruffage the night before, I went with my kale Caesar with mahi (for a slightly lighter choice, I was still feeling lunch!) and then helped Mom with her chicken penne, which was DELISH. And a glass of cab for us to share, because again, why not.

Ice cream, a few more carbs, and then relaxing were the name of the game for the rest of the night!


I want to say that I ran really far on Sunday, but I could be wrong….

Meeting Hellyl of Helly on the Run outside Gate 3 at the 2015 Chicago Marathon! More on Marathon Weekend at

Sunday was an amazing day, from start to finish. The morning was, like the day to come, clear and beautiful, and I was so happy to get to see Helly before we both went to our respective pre-race festivities. And girl ran a great race! Such a treat to meet her, and I so wish we could have had more time. 

I went to CES’s Race Day resort, but they didn’t let Mom upstairs because she wasn’t a runner (I wasn’t expecting that, probably should have read the fine print…), so I went up so that I could check on everyone and check my bag, etc. Then it was time to go to the corral! 

Race details tomorrow, people! But huge shout out to Wendy (different Wendy) one of my training buddies from this past winter, who got my rear into gear for 14 miles! We both surpassed our goals, and I saw her right as we finished and we walked out together. 

My original plan was to go up to Nike’s Club of Zoom, but it was far, and my ass (literally) was tired, so I head up to CES, which was right outside the first gate. Up there, I saw Mom, took pictures, ate foods (holy cow, you guys, the spread they had!!!), and then went to go get some massage work done. CES has an AMAZING Race Day resort. Seriously. We even have people who sign up for training just for the resort! They had stretching by Athletico, incredible massages, finisher’s shirts for sale, and medal engraving!

My massage therapist was truly fantastic, and I told her to go whole hog on my glutes, which were locking up. She obliged, and it was AWESOME. She even worked on my lower back and feet, and afterward, I felt like a new woman. A tired woman, but not sore or tight at all anymore. I LOVE YOU.

Food at Chicago Endurance Sports Chicago Marathon Race Day Resort. The CES Resort party was incredible with massages, stretching, food, medal engraving, and more. Find out more about the Chicago Marathon at!

After that, I started to see my trainees, and hugs and race reports were necessary. Some had a great day, others learned lessons the hard way (don’t go out too fast, and with the wind, you still need to hydrate!) but overall, they were happy. 

After a while, it was time for me to get home, but first I swung by the 27th mile party (the big race after party) to meet Auggie, a fantastic Instagram friend. He had some of the same problems the trainees, did, but overall happy. Then it was home for showers, part 2 of recovery, and blogging! 

Procompression sleeves, CW-X Compression shorts, Siggi's yogurt with sprinkles, water, my 2015 Chicago Marathon Medal.... part 2 of my marathon recovery! More at!

Dinner was earlyish and easy, but nonetheless delicious, and I took Mom to the Windsor for my crab toast, gigantic salad, and Boulevard Wheat. Then back for ice cream. Mom and I have today to ourselves! My plan is to take her out of the city and have some fun at a pumpkin patch or something. 

And this might be the longest post I’ve ever written. If you skimmed it, I don’t blame you. If you read it, congratulations, you just completed a marathon of your own!

A truly epic recap of #chimarathon weekend. Can't wait for race details! #fitfluential #sweatpink #Chicago Click To Tweet

Something that I want to say really quickly, and some of you may have seen this on my social media (do you follow me? Get on that! @suzlyfe on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook, @the_suzlyfe on Instagram). 


Live beyond expectation. 14 years ago today, I was diagnosed with #crohns. Today, I ran my second sub 3:30 #marathon. Thank you @wendycurry for kicking my ass for 14 miles, thank you mom for believing that I could be my own person regardless of what anyone else told us, my doctors for keeping me healthy, my trainees for showing me a passion I never knew, @ericaagran for being my running fairy godmother, my friends all over for cheering me on, and of course Alex for listening to my running talk, giving me foot rubs, and dealing with running stuff everywhere. Life is for living people. Go out and f***ing live. #iamcapable #dreambig #livebeyondexpectations #likeasuz #chimarathon #ownchicago #chicagomarathon2015 @chimarathon @wmmajors #ces

A photo posted by Susie @ Suzlyfe (@the_suzlyfe) on

Sunday marked the 14th year anniversary of my Crohn’s Disease diagnosis. Live Beyond Expectations, people. And live on your own terms.

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