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CHICAGO IS FOR RUNNERS- MARIO ALVAREZ

 
As a preschooler, my class of about twenty-five 4 year olds were walked to Gil Park and allowed to race from the side walk to the play ground. At the time it seemed like it was about a half mile, in reality about 50 meters. There were two really fast runners and I would always finish third about 4 or 5 steps behind them. When the three of us turned around at the playground the rest of the class would be about at the half way point, which happened everyday of preschool.

That was my intro to running.

A few years down the road at high school freshman orientation. Two students, juniors going into their senior year, gave a speech about joining the cross country team. They were kids only a few years older than the rest of us reading off a crumpled up sheet of note book paper but their passion for the sport left an impression on me. I met them after orientation and later that week received a phone call from the coach to show up for practice. I went on to run cross-country and track all four years.

After taking a running hiatus for a few years in 1999 I decided to run the Chicago marathon on a whim. With almost no training I was able to run and finish but in a lot of pain. It was then I decided to give the 26.2 mile distance the respect it deserves and work harder. Now after 11 marathons and 2 full Ironman triathlons I’m chasing after the Boston marathon. With the help of the 3Run2 crew it’s just a matter of how soon.
— Mario Alvarez