Windrunner 10K

Windrunner 10K (8/21)

The best way to describe the Windrunner 10k is by saying it is kind of a throwback race. It is not overly complicated nor does it come with a bunch of ballyhoo that some events feel they need to add to attract participants. It is a “race” in the most simple definition of the word and that is what makes it enjoyable.

Actually, scratch that. The Lisle Windrunners, that group that puts the on the event, is what makes the race enjoyable. Over the past 29 years, they have created a race and a race environment that is friendly, welcoming and void of a lot of the typical race day pressure runners sometimes feel when they toe the line. Walking around the race site before and after the race, one feels like they are part of the group, almost like 300 friends just decided to meet at the Danada Forest Preserve, threw up a start/ finish line and  said, “let’s see who was the fastest.” On the out-and-back sections, front runners and back-of-the-packers often complement each other as they pass and many participants were seen heading back onto the course after their race to encourage their friends that had not yet finished.

The course itself can be described as “fun and frustrating.” The grassy start, limestone trails and constant rolling hills don’t always make for automatic-PR style speed, but it is a great change up from the typical flat, asphalt routes typically seen in Chicagoland. It is a good race if you want to teach yourself to push harder through hills and properly run tangents as the winding course could add a lot of seconds to your time if you decide to take wider turns.

The best kept secret from the event might be the post-race food tent. Aside from the traditional bagels and bananas, finishers are greeted with Rosati’s pizza and homemade cookies, making the whole morning feel like a big picnic.

The Windrunner 10k is an event for runners that enjoy racing and pushing themselves to do their best without always worrying about if their splits are one second fast or slow each quarter mile. It is a laid-back event where you push yourself for 33 to 116 minutes, grab a slice of pizza and pat your friends on the back for a job well done.

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Jonathan couldn’t run a mile before his sophomore year in high school but went on to run at Hope College. Now, he runs with the Fast Track Racing Team and races in almost 30 races a year, still managing to run some PRs. He couldn’t win a 100 meter sprint if his life depended on it, but still has a pretty good kick at the end of a 10k. He is the Local Advertiser/Sales employee on Chicago Athlete's staff, and also volunteers as an Assistant XC Coach at Elk Grove High School and has done that for the past 11 years.