Running the Boston Marathon two years ago was one of the best running experiences I’ve ever had.
The runners are thrilled to be there, the spectators are incredibly supportive and the communities from Hopkinton to Boston are so welcoming.
I’m officially tapering now, in preparation for the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon. If you’re also in taper mode but still want to race, there are all kinds of 5Ks in the area this weekend. Here’s the list:
Weekend of April 13-14:
— Illinois Veterans Memorial 5K Run/Walk
Tony Hillen will pin on a bib number for the first time in late April and run the 5K and the half marathon at the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon.
They’ll be his first-ever races. And the runner lining up at the start line will be a leaner, fitter Tony Hillen.
This is the weekend for the new Allerton Trails Half Marathon and 10K. If you’re running one of those races, I’ll see you at the finish line, where I’m volunteering. And if you’re looking for a race in the upcoming weekends, here are a few suggestions:
Weekend of April 6-7:
— Allerton Trails Half Marathon and 10K Race
The Fit List is back from vacation, and the race calendar is filling up! Here’s what’s coming up in the next few weekends:
Weekend of March 30-31:
— April Fools 5K
One of Bridgett Wakefield’s favorite moments as a volunteer for the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon came when Memorial Stadium was nearly empty. Most of the racers had finished, and race officials were packing up their equipment.
The cyclists on this bike ride might be riding in central Illinois, but they are negotiating courses with a couple thousand feet in elevation change and hills with up to a 15 percent grade.
They have varying levels of speed, but they ride next to each other, chatting throughout the one to two hours on their bikes.
I’m looking forward to the race calendar starting to pick up steam for the spring. Here’s what I’ve got for the next couple of weekends:
Weekend of March 2-3:
— Miller Park Zoo Stampede
When Randy Stearns ran an 8-kilometer cross country race earlier this month, he was competing against some of the best over-40 runners in the country.
Runners, if you are training for one of the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon races, you might want to stop by the Christie Foundation's Runners' Symposium this weekend.
The symposium is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Hilton Garden Inn in Champaign, and it will provide information to runners competing in any of the Illinois Marathon races on the weekend of April 26-27.