Newsletter Highlights 2016

The Marriage of Running and Whiskey

by Julie Mills

The Mills family vacations are usually centered on visiting family in various parts of the U.S., but this past winter our girls started planning a big trip to the U.K., initially for just the two of them and later including the whole family. While (dad) Pat was concerned about the time away from his work and the cost, I knew he had bought into the idea when he showed me a website for the Fort William Marathon in Scotland, held on one of the last days of our scheduled trip. Having never done an international marathon, I was thrilled with the idea. So this July, Pat and I and our three adult kids headed for the U.K. for two weeks, culminating in the marathon.  




Happy Birthday

by David Schug

Ten years ago, en route to running my fastest-ever marathon (but failing to qualify for Boston), I won a race: The 2006 Sam Costa Quarter Marathon on my 32nd birthday. It was the only race I had ever won besides high school track relays with a bunch of teammates faster than me.  




Clinton Lake Ultra 30 Trail Run - Photostream

Photos by Roger Smith

Running with a legend

by Michele Marcus

My favorite race is the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon and I have run it for three years now. The city shuts down the strip, it’s at night, the lights, the people, it is just such a cool race. I signed up for this year’s race the day after I ran last year’s race…yep, it’s that cool. My excitement for the race increased exponentially when I received an email from the Rock n’ Roll people in September. Meb Keflezighi would be a pacer for the half and he was going to pace the 1:45 group. Are you freaking kidding me? That’s my pace! I spent the next two months telling everyone that I was running with Meb. My friends heard it about a thousand times…Meb, Meb, Meb. Okay, Michele, we get it, you’re running with Meb.

Marathon debut, by the numbers

by Bruce Butler

0 times that I have run more than 14 miles in my life before August 2015. It only took me 58 years and 10 months to reach this plateau. 

1st is where I placed in the Indianapolis Monumental  Marathon, according to my four grandkids in attendance.

2 people I knew in SWRC before I joined. Jodi Heckel’s husband and one of my best friends work together and organize an annual trip to Wrigley Field.  I met Jodi several years ago on one of these trips. The second, Brian Moline, has broadcasted 10 or 15 Little  League games over several years on WDWS that I  was umpiring. We knew who each other was. 

Stone Mill 50-Miler

by Pat Mills

On one of the fine closing days of what has been a beautiful fall, I received my requested glass of milk. One can’t avoid the wise sequential logic of the children’s book, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, He’ll Want a Glass of Milk.” Earlier this fall I began plotting the season’s race calendar. As I typically enjoy doing, I searched out both a road marathon and a trail ultra, with the ultra to precede the marathon by about a month. This allows me to enjoy both types of competitions and to incorporate the ultra as my longest training run before tapering for the marathon. What better way to avoid yet another 20+-mile training run around the streets of Champaign-Urbana? With 49 marathons and 30 ultras (excluding the many full Riddle Runs and KRR Fat Asses) over the past 20 years, the local roads have become far too familiar.



Second Wind and First Gale at the 35th running of the Hood to Coast Relay

by Stephen Long

After running the Boston Marathon, next up on my running bucket list was Hood to Coast, the iconic annual overnight 198-mile relay from Mount Hood to Seaside – the Mother of All Relays. My chance came when a team headed by Tim Ulbricht, an Illini now living in Portland, was short of runners. His team has been predominantly C-U and former C-U runners for the past eight years. It included two very successful local distance runners, Peter Goldsmith and Shane Cultra. Luckily Tim had two places to fill. This meant that my youngest son, Patrick, also an Illini and former Second Winder now living and working in D.C., was able to join me. He was in training for the Marine Corps Marathon and the D.C. Ragnar, so the timing worked well. 


Rock 'n' Roll

by Doug Armstrong

This race report is proof that “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” isn’t always true. For anyone considering a “Rock ‘n’ Roll” series marathon or half-marathon, I can report that it was, in fact, a rocking good time! The “Strip at Night” race takes place down the famous Strip in Las Vegas, all lit up at night.