Fox Valley Winter Challenge Trail Series 

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This is definitely not my typical running race; living in the Chicagoland area, trails are changing, and you don’t know what the trail condition will be until the day of the race.

I arrived at 9 a.m. for packet pick up and was greeted by amazing volunteers. Since race was to start at 10 a.m., I returned to my car to keep warm … it was 16 degrees outside.

According to the director, 150 runners gathered to conquer the tough course despite of the weather and trail condition.  Most of them were triple challenge participants.

It was a tough course; most of trail was covered with snow and ice. Some parts were covered with thin ice that broke instantly when we stepped on it, while there were many sheets of solid ice where we were forced to stop and walked to avoid falling.

Frozen toes, wet shoes and wet pants aside, I managed to run, walk, stumble and ice skate through the hilly 8K loop. There was no aid station or medical tent during this race. There was no timing chips either, just bibs.

At the finish line, water, hot tomato soup, banana and granola bars were available to help us warm and fuel up. I highly recommend this race if you are looking for something different and challenging.

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