We Got A Story To Tell

Nike Run Club - Speed Run


Words: Nicolas
Images: Micaela

"I remember when I used to have a two way and now I make the track go up on a Tuesday."

Got word a while back from our friends over at Nike Chicago that Nike+ Running Global Head Coach Chris Bennett was going to be in town. The purpose of said visit was to give runners a taste of some upcoming programming and expert coaching that's going to be rolling out this summer. To be honest, prior to Tuesday's track workout I didn't know too much about Coach Bennett, but apparently this dude is the real deal.

Peep some of his credentials below: 

  • 4-minute miler on the Nike Farm Team
  • Former Captain of the UNC Tarheel XC & Track Team
  • Former Coach of the number one ranked Christian Brothers Academy (CBA)

Yeah dawg, you definitely get props over here. 

The Speed Run took place at the Wilson Ave. Track and Field located in Uptown along the lakefront path. Start time was 6:36 pm. Kind of odd, huh?

Word on the street is that the legendary Bill Bowerman used to start his workouts at odd times like so to prevent tardiness. Much love to Bill but you know how we do,right? I mean, Kanye's "Late" might as well be our theme song.

"Not even electives?!?" "Not even prerequisites?!?"

Sorry, I digress.

The session started with a slow jog to warm up, followed by stretching and drills.

Somehow our girl Amanda managed to execute high knees while lookin' flawless like Beyonce.

....While Jason did his best Michael Jackson circa Moonwalker era.

Kahee on the other hand... Looks like she has the Irish Jig down cold!

During registration we were instructed to self select our pace groups for the workout according to a previous 5k time.  Below is the green group, the "green machine" if you will. All of the runners pictured below have ran or desire to run somewhere in between a 20:XX - 23:XX 5k. 

The workout of the evening was 16 or 20x200's at 5k, 10k and mile pace. In between each workout we'd recover on the sidelines and make room for the next pace group to finish. I found this to be a good time to socialize and overall act a fool.

At one point I rapped that I was "running through the six with woes." Unfortunately, no one sang along. Maybe next time. :(

Things were a bit choppy at first. However, after a few repeats and recoveries everyone seemed to fall into a rhythm. I was personally impressed by our pacers and coaches. They managed to get ~75 runners or so to start and stop on a dime, while hitting their respective paces. Salute!

Our pacers instructed us to put our hands on our heads at each recovery. I believe this helps to efficiently deliver oxygen into the lungs and ultimately slow your heart rate down. I on the other hand was really just doing my best to look good at all times. Paparazzi was out in full force and you know that "I'm be fresh as hell as if the feds watchin'". 

Coach Bennett pictured below doin' his thug thizzle and the squad were all ears. 

Everyone was given the option to run 16 or 20x200's. After the 16th repeat, pacers and coaches gave everyone an opportunity to gracefully bow out. We ain't no punks though, so 20 repeats it was.

The evening culminated in a sit down, with reflection and the introduction of this summer's Nike Run Club Coaches. 

  • Robyn Lalonde - USAT Level 1 Coach 
  • Emily Hutchins - USA Tri & Cycling coach, Nike Master Trainer
  • Andrew Adelmann- Jones College Prep XC & Track Coach. Former Loyola Rambler.
  • Chris Wehrman - Top Chicagoland area runner. This guy's a boss but ya gotta dig for it.

Nike Chicago plans to offer marathon training for all levels of runners (beginner, intermediate and advanced) with expert coaching to go along with it. All jokes aside, I personally had a blast and look forward to taking part alongside all of you in some future events. Looks like this could be a valuable resource for anyone looking to improve as a runner this summer. 

That's all I got folks, peace!!!