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Chicago Running Blog Lyfe Marvelous Reviews Sweat Pink The Long Run

A Rock and Roll Weekend #MIMM

A freaking lot happened this weekend. Buckle up, guys, it is going to a big one.

Thanks, Katie!

Thanks, Katie!

This weekend was fantastic, start to finish. Let’s break it down into pieces, because otherwise, my head will not be able to handle it, to be perfectly honest.


Yoga Sculpt at CorePower! I really, really liked it! Am I going to get all buff and whatnot from it? No, but it will be perfect during marathon training (that, plus this Challenge that I am doing with Sara!)–it combines the stretching of yoga with some weights, with cardio (think yoga-fied burpees), and MASSIVE amounts of sweat pouring off my face. Like, slipping on the mat sweat. At 6:00 AM. Talk about waking you up.

sweet potato tvp suzlyfe

Alex called me to say that he was going to be slightly later, and that he was craving Chipotle, so I told him to pick me up some guac but I was going to make my own trouble for the evening. I like trouble. It is tasty.


Bib pick up. I wanted to be there earlier so that I wouldn’t get caught in the nonsense of 40k people. Glad I went when I did, as I had to go back and forth a bit to get everything. Perused the expo, loaded up on samples, said hi to the Team Challenge people, seriously contemplated trying on some Brooks but decided I didn’t want to deal with it (I was in a weird mood–I didn’t even stop to talk to Dorothy Beal, who was there and I even tweeted about going to see her to connect because I won the entry through her and Mazda as the #gamechanger), and then, after being there about an hour, cabbed back up to our place so that Alex and I could go on an adventure!

I am certain I forgot to mention this, but for the first time since I started my job, Alex and I had the same day off! SCORE. So, after my excursions up to Lincoln park over the past few weeks, we decided to make that our destination, and we started walking up. In Gold Coast, we came across one of the many Farmers Markets around the city on Saturday mornings, so you know that I had to get us to walk through. And sample. We did make a purchase, but for Alex. I just ate people’s food. NOT. SORRY. Lunch was at a new place in Old Town that will have to become a regular–Benchmark. Definitely anticipate a review of this one ASAP.

benchmark bloody mary bar


old town spice market

Then we kept on walking north, but not before checking out the place right next door to Benchmark, The Spice Market. CAITLIN THEY SOURCE FROM THE SAME PLACE AS PENZEY’S. In short, if you are a cook, this is your heaven. I had a legitimate conversation with one of the employees about black vs. green cardamom and the merits/differences of 4 types of cinnamon. Yesssshhhh.

As I was saying, we continued walking north, up through Lincoln Park (via Wells, the main drag of Old Town, where we had lunch) then cut over to the park, right at the opening of the zoo. I, as usual, had to use the facilities (I drink a lot of fluids), and we ended up having to go into the park to use said facilities, which then led to me wanting to see the giraffes, which led to Alex and I nearly coming to fisticuffs over a map, which led to us seeing the giraffe, a black bear getting  a SERIOUS scratch (this was him after), and the polar bear who was actually doing laps.

zoo suzlyfe

After taking a wrong turn and basically getting trapped, we finally escaped and waltzed ourselves home. Probably about 6ish miles total. Oh and my heel hurt the whole time, making me super paranoid (thus all the whining about it on instagram). After all the food and exhaustion, I think we both had some version of pb & J with other odds and ends for dinner, and I tried out this:

watermelon chobani

My verdit? Meh. Neither here nor there. It tasted a bit more strawberry-ish, with a faint hint of Jolly Rancher watermelon. I wouldn’t throw down and rush out and get it, but it isn’t bad, so if you see, give it a whack. I would suggest their others (except I don’t eat the flavored ones, except for the vanilla, because of the sugar content, and the Simply 100 kind of blow. IMHO). But as always, to each their own!!!

Definitely didn’t say this, but Alex and I were WILD Friday night (post Chipotle Guac gorge fest) and I fell asleep on the couch just after 8 and we got in bed for the night at 9. GLORY. Saturday night we fared a bit better, but I think we called it quits around 10, or whenever The Hunt for Red October ended (thank you Netflix).

Good Gravy, this getting long.

SUNDAY (Finally) Also my Personal Holiday–National Ice Cream Day 😀

I woke up bright and early (4:20, a bit before my alarm) and commenced my ritual of drinking/eating/stretching/getting dressed/hoping to go to the bathroom. Then I headed out the door about 5:45 because I had to get in some extra miles before the half!

What, you don’t do a 4 mile warm up for your races? (well, there was that time I did 9 before…). I actually had someone (I think he worked for the race) yell that the start was “that way” as I was running the opposite. I shouted back “Yep.” And kept on. The race started on time, swiftly moved through the corrals (I was in 9), and I would say that my time spent not running was a max of 15 minutes.


Rock n’Roll Chicago Half Marathon Race review (in brief): Perfectly run, expertly executed, plentiful aid, well-marked, GREAT medal, GREAT food/etc for finishers, crap course, little to no entertainment.

rnr chi suzlyfe

Honestly, several times throughout the course I had the thought to myself, well, I’m glad I didn’t pay to run this, because the course was so boring, kinda weird, and the only entertainment we had for the first 6 miles was a few jugglers and a few people on stilts. And I didn’t bring headphones because I assumed otherwise.

I did see a 10 week old black lab puppy around 5.5, which totally made my day. (I know my dog ages, thank you). And the part running under McCormick place was cool–it’s dark, they put up lights–but there is no music. And to be honest, about 10 miles of this was a total mental race. I was running alone, my legs were fatiguing, and I needed my music. But my foot felt fab!

Afterwards, I grabbed allthefoods, ate a Larabar sample, banana, chugged a water, and sat for a bit before deciding that a #ProteinFrappuccino was necessary, as was a bag for my spoils.

rnrchi suzlyfe protein frapp medal


I totally lost track of time, and honestly, was exhausted–I ran this a lot harder than I anticipated, and I did great–I would say I averaged 8:15-30 over the whole thing (my GPS went in/out due to the buildings and tunnels, etc) and I made one bathroom stop hoping for some success (minimal, tmi–deal with it). I ended up starting to walk back and then OMGIMUSTGOTOTHEBATHROOMNOW so long story short, I missed my window to make it to yoga with Sara and her mom, I didn’t get to see Mo and her friend, and I Suz-failed. Luckily, I think I might be able to make one of those up this weekend, and the other in the near future.

Showering may have been the best thing ever. And then I realized that my apartment was filthy so I vacuumed, swiffered, clorox-wiped, and did the laundry (and ate in between loads). And got some Bravo TV in. I almost didn’t go to Kayla’s C1 class, but I knew that I needed to, so I went, and well, you know how it is–she made everything better again. I’m writing this a bit early in the afternoon, but the remainder of my plans involve not moving, editing pictures and trying to get some post ideas ironed out, talking to 2 of my best friends, eating more, and petting my kitty kat.

The hand curl = happy cat.

The hand curl = happy cat.

I’m going to shut up now.

Obviously, this was quite the weekend. It was awesome, and the only things I would change is being less of a spoilsport next time (Ie with Mo and Sara). Other than that, I Rock n’Rolled it.

Ever had a race where you thought either “Thank god I didn’t pay for this!” or “I wish I hadn’t paid for this”? The Chicago Half (in September last year) was pretty much a let down as well. Oh, and Zooma last year was just kind of weird, though the course was fine.

What is your fave animal to see at a zoo? (I’m a sucker for giraffes, polar bears, penguins, and aquatic mammals–otters, seals, sea lions etc). Again, I do not do monkeys.

Do you talk to everyone at expos, or do you clam up and just wander, unless something in particular catches your eye? I definitely clam up. I think it is the leftovers of my social anxiety.

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