The Lincoln Marathon, Brewers Mini, and the Green Bay Half. All stadium runs I’ve done in the past, but none compared to the Soldier Field 10.
I signed up for the Soldier Field 10 kind of on a whim. As in, the Thursday afternoon before the Saturday morning race.
All in all, it worked out well. I needed a 10 mile long run, and needed to get to the city on the weekend for a different race’s packet pickup (which was then cancelled on Friday…oh well).
That all being said, this was a great experience! It was an early day for me as the race started at 7, and we were encouraged to arrive to Soldier Field by 6am because of parking. But it could not have been easier, mainly because no one is driving around Chicago at 5 in the morning.
The race started and finished inside of Soldier Field, which meant we had to jump into the corrals a little bit before the start. I’ll be honest, walking to the start is probably the one time I wish I had my camera with me. To get to the start, we walked through the tunnel that the players walk through to get on the field. If you’re like me and are a football fan in general, this was SO COOL.
The race also has a remembrance for Memorial Day before the race, which hits you even more being inside Soldier Field.
At 7, we were off through the concourse of Soldier Field (which throws your GPA watch for a loop) and out onto Dearborn Dr and then Lakeshore Drive.
I probably got out a little too quick, especially since the temperatures were already well into the 70s. Plus, we came blazing through the 5k in a 6:46 pace. The temperature, coupled with my recovery from being sick, and a killer stadium workout on Thursday made this a recipe for disaster.
At the turnaround, the heat really started to settle in on me, and a lot of other runners (based on some Strava stalking). So I suffered a bit on the way back to the stadium.
We ran the Lakefront Trail back to Soldier Field. Nearing the stadium brought back shades on F3 memories along that same path. Just, you know, 40 degrees warmer.
Just past the 9th mile marker, we turned off of the path and back toward the stadium, running back down through the concourse. After weaving through there, we made the last mad dash to the 50 yard line of Soldier Field.
I think the only negative to the finish was that it was a decently long walk to get back to the Gear Check and the post run area. Of course, it was only a 10 mile run, so it isn’t that bad.
We picked up our medal, gear, and then hit the post race area for the all important free beer.
I didn’t have the best race, personally, but that’s ok. It was a good test of fitness, plus all the other things influencing my race. Still, the Soldier Field 10 was a phenomenal race, and the most epic stadium race I’ve done.