Sunday, February 6, 2011


So I'm eyeing a marathon and I want YOUR opinion!!

Well there ya go! It's the Chicagoland Spring Marathon and Half Marathon on May 15 2011 in Schaumburg Illinois. I bet you didn't get all that from the banner there... :D

I need your help because I just can't make the last "for sure" commitment decision here. I'm 95% sure I want to do this race but I want to hear what you guys think first!

Because I'm a nerd this will be organized as "pros and cons"

  • Small Race (half marathon capped at 1000, full marathon capped at 2000
  • Half marathoners split at mile 5 so it should thin out fairly early in the race (as opposed to mile 13)
  • Inaugural year so maybe fewer people?
  • More "nature" than urban
  • Cheap entry fee
  • Near relatives
  • Don't have to rent a car (see reason above)
  • Plane tickets are pretty cheap there
  • Good time of year (though chance of being too hot)
  • Portillo's Hot Dog House right near park! (see pictures below :D)
  • Inaugural year so maybe some first-year mishaps?
  • Trail seems narrow, first 5 miles may be a bit jam packed
  • Chance of being hot that time of year. If weather fits the "average" it'll be perfect but any warmer could be bad.

Course Map:

Video of Race:

Photos of the Course:


  1. Looks beautiful...I say DO IT....It seems that your gut is telling you to do so....that was a detailed post...It is important to follow your gut!

  2. I've run at Busse before. It is a really nice preserve. The trail would maybe be a little crowded at the beginning but I would think it would thin out and if it would be hot that weekend, it would just be bad luck. It shouldn't be too bad that time of year! I think it would be a good race!

  3. It looks beautiful, Lauren! Do you think you're ready? How have you been feeling? I say go for it if you feel like you can finish it!!!

  4. That trail looks awesome!! I say go for it!
    My first marathon was also small (around 1000 marathon runners) and along a scenic route. Not much crowd support except from volunteers at the water stops. If that doesn't matter to you, then it should be a great race. I did all my long training runs solo, so it didn't bother me.
    Also smaller = less stress before the start, which is a nice plus since the marathon start anticipation is stressful enough on its own!

  5. I'm over from RustBeltRunner and I say DO IT!! It looks beautiful. I'm from northern IN, I don't think someone from Orlando should worry about it being too hot on 5/15 - not likely. It's likely to be perfect - maybe even a little cool. My birthday is 4/30 and it has snowed 21 of my 35 years on my birthday! Do it and have fun!

  6. I'd race that based on the pictures alone. And cheap entry fee? I'd be all in. Go for it. :)