Friday, June 11, 2010

What's to Love This Weekend

What a week! For me, anyway, between work, play and what always seems like a million other things. Chicago's celebrating after the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup. Festival season is in full swing. The weather's nice--almost all the time. Marcus Samuellson, the underdog I was rooting for, won Top Chef Masters, and Landon and Carley, deemed the underdogs as the teams whittled away, won $100,000 at The Challenge: Fresh Meat II in an endurance adventure I totally would have loved. But that's not to say that all good things happened during the week and that the weekend means wind-down time. Sure, we'll be getting some R&R from the office, but there's plenty to look forward to. Last weekend may have been the weekend of the half Ironman with 70.3 races in Hawaii, Kansas, and New Hampshire in addition to triathlons of all distances, Rock 'N' Roll San Diego, century rides and 5K/10K races, but this weekend promises to have just as much excitement. Check it out:
  • Thirsty on the run? If you're running along the Lakefront Path in Chicago, forgot your hydration and can't fathom another sip of water from a water fountain, look for the Fleet Feet hydration stations. Fleet Fleet Sports Chicago sets up three stations along the heavily trafficked parts of the path that are fully equipped with friendly volunteers, water and Gatorade. You have to get out there early as they usually shut down by 10:30 but those stations make running in the heat so much less worrisome. And it's far easier to tackle those 20-milers when you have a hydration source to rely on for your needs--personal experience taught me that one.
  • For some reason I like to escape Chicago the weekend of the Old Town Art Fair--I do it every year. It's an easy excuse to go to Michigan and get in the first tri of the season, the Motor City Triathlon. It's not as large as the Chicago races, which I love, a fun course, and if you stick around for the raffle, you're most likely to go home with something.
  • Kara Goucher and Paula Radcliffe will be bearing their baby bumps at the New York Mini 10K on Saturday. I'm so curious as to how fast they'll still be able to run with their extra baggage--bets are on that they can still beat me.
  • Hy-Vee Triathlon...where the big names in the sport come to race. It's only in Iowa, but I think because of the celeb status at this race--with the likes of Emma Snowsill, Laura Bennett and Hunter Kemper appearing in the past--that made me think that way. And I remember watching it on TV on a random weekend afternoon a few summers ago, right around the time I was getting into triathlon.
  • More half Ironman action in Boise and Maryland (Eagleman)
  • Or if those races aren't in the schedule, tune in to watch the 2009 Ironman 70.3 World Championship on TV come Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m. Eastern. You'll see how the race unfolded for the pros and a few fan-favorite stories like Rocco DiSpirito's. I already have the DVR set for this one.
  • Half marathons around Chicago that I still haven't had a chance to race for one reason or another--North Shore Half and 13.1. And the North Shore Half had an awesome goody bag this year that included a race backpack.
There's definitely more to look forward to, and I know I'm missing a few that were on my list, just that I have to pack and hit the road for my Motor City adventure.

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