October 2019

October 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Declan McDonnell

The Psychology of Negative Splits

Most of the folks on this team are coached by Dan Walters, so odds are you've been told a few dozen times to aim for negative splits in your races. Dan’s a smart guy and you should listen to him. He also happens to be right. Just about all of us are here because we’re training to run PRs, and running negative splits is the best way to do it.

It's pretty intuitive that spreading your effort about equally across the entire race leads to the best results. I want to throw a little more weight behind that because I think there's an additional reason to subscribe to this philosophy, and it has to do with the psychology behind how we perceive fatigue.

Over the years, there’s been quite a bit of debate about the factors that influence performance and fatigue (I’m stealing a lot of this from Alex Hutchinson’s book ‘Endure’, which is excellent). Historically, physiologists leaned towards the philosophy that our body was like an engine, and we can only go so fast before it begins to fail. More recently, a competing school of thought emerged that placed emphasis on the role of the brain as a sort of “central governor” for our effort. In distance running, the truth is likely somewhere in between. My non-scientific explanation based on my experience is that my brain wants my body to be comfortable. I find that it will use any excuse it can trick itself into believing to convince me to stop doing difficult things. When we’re tired or stressed or hungry or not confident, those excuses become much more powerful and realistic sounding, and we’re gullible enough to believe them causing us to slow down.

One of the ways to combat this during a race is to engineer positive events. These events run counter to the argument your brain is trying to make, and it quiets the early alarm bells going off in your brain. Once you do that, you give yourself a longer leash to work with. There's lots of recent research out there about this effect. This paper found that subliminal positive messaging increased the amount of time cyclists could ride a bike. This article mentions research that found male athletes being observed by an attractive woman allowed them to score higher on a treadmill test. This is why running smart and closing hard in a race is such a great strategy - not only do we spend our effort wisely, but late in the race when our minds are extra gullible we can engineer positive events like passing people and running faster splits. This is good juju!

When it comes down to it, you still have to dig in and be uncompromising when your body does start to flag. Negative splitting doesn't change or even make easier the ultimate task of maximizing your effort on the day. It just gives us a little more mental juice to work with. Your job is to take advantage of that boost and use it when you need it most at the end of a race.

Team News

  • Interested in competing at the Pettit Indoor Marathon relay? Sign up here!

  • Racing Indy Monumental Marathon/HM? Add your plans here

  • Use code DWrunning2020 for $10 off Illinois Marathon/HM registration

  • If planning on racing Grandma’s Marathon in 2020, we’ll be receiving a 10% discount code starting 11/1

An “Illustration” by Coach Dan Kittaka

Chicago Marathon is just around the corner!

The Chicago Marathon more than any other race has taught me not to ease up based on how I feel. My fastest efforts have come not from the days I’ve felt my best, but from taking the race one step at a time.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

Original photo by Tom Root

September Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s 5k:

  • Emma Grimes - Itasca Oktoberfast 5k - 17:46 (2nd place!)

Women’s 10M:

  • Julia Buford - Buffalo Stampede Run - 59:07 (3rd place!)

Women’s Half Marathon:

  • Emma Grimes - Chicago HM - 1:19:39 (PR & 2nd place!)

  • Erica van Heerden - Chicago HM - 1:22:43 (PR & AG champ!)

Men’s 5k:

  • Brendan McDonnell - Itasca Oktoberfast 5k - 15:47 (Champ!)

Men’s Half Marathon:

  • Chris Porst - Hidden Gem HM - 1:11:41 (PR!)

Personal Bests

  • Matt Stanesby - Hidden Gem HM - 1:13:27

  • Michaela Spannaus - Hidden Gem HM - 1:23:09

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Hidden Gem HM - 1:23:17

  • Anando Naqui - Hidden Gem HM - 1:23:49

  • Will Biancucci - Hidden Gem HM - 1:24:35

  • Danyelle Dron - Hidden Gem HM - 1:38:37

  • Maggie Gabrek - Souix Falls HM - 1:34:25

  • Steve Spangler - Erie Marathon - 2:47:10 (BQ!)

  • Brian Robertson - BQ.2 Marathon - 2:49:24 (BQ!)

  • Kwang-Youn Kim - Alpine HM - 1:28:09

  • Brett Joseph - Alpine HM - 1:41:10

  • Dan DeRosa - Fox Valley HM - 1:22:43 (AG champ!)

  • Dan Kapinus - Chicago HM - 1:31:03

  • Katie Dudek - Chicago HM - 1:34:18

  • Stacy Nigrelli - Great Race 10k - 44:32 (AG champ!)

  • Sergio Moreno - Berlin Marathon - 2:50:25 (BQ!)

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Stacy Nigrelli - Gatorate Steelers 5k - 22:27 (AG champ!)

  • Brian Lesiewicz - Last Fling Mile - 5:03 (champ!)

  • Sierra Scanlan - Last Fling Mile - 6:21 (champ!)

  • Julie Bruns - Itasca Oktoberfast 5k - 22:06 (AG champ!)

  • Jeremy Downs - Mag Mile 5k - 19:26 (AG champ!)

  • Erica van Heerden - Mag Mile 10k - 39:16 (AG champ!)

  • Paul Erickson - El Grito 5k - 17:18 (champ!)

  • Sarah David - Race Judicata - 18:15 (champ!)

  • Moira Ryan - Alphine HM - 1:28:02 (2nd place!)

  • Yuki Hirao - Alpine HM - 1:37:01 (AG champ!)

  • Julie Crutchfield - Rochester Run MI HM - 1:37:59 (AG champ!)

  • Kim Weiss - Fox Valley HM - 1:32:38 (Champ!)

  • Sam Greenwood - Lifetime Fitness 5k - 19:11 (Champ!)

  • Caleb Kadera - Berlin Marathon - 2:48:55 (BQ!)


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 10/5 - LR & path cleanup @ Prairie Path

  • 10/5 - Chicago Marathon e-‘Fireside Chat’

  • 10/12 - LR @ the Morton Arboretum

  • 10/13 - Chicago Marathon & post-race party @ Goose Island

  • 10/17 - Goose Island Pint Night (1800 N Clybourn)

  • 10/19 - LR @ Busse Woods

  • 10/26 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

October Birthdays

  • 10/8 - Sarah Koelln

  • 10/9 - Dan Walters & Declan McDonnell

  • 10/11 - Curt Hansman & Pete Jaros

  • 10/12 - Dan O’Keefe

  • 10/15 - Jess Wallen

  • 10/18 - Damon King

  • 10/19 - Nimrod Gutman

  • 10/20 - Melissa Urban

  • 10/25 - Julie Bruns

  • 10/30 - Aaron Agustin

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

September 2019

September 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dan Kittaka

Experiencing an injury that keeps you from running can be one of the most painful things you can experience as a runner. It is cruelly ironic that being unable to jog can be more painful than ripping a 400m repeat or toughing out a 20 mile long run. The silver lining is that an unplanned break from running can help you become a better runner and hopefully a better person, too. So as much as possible, keep an open mind as we walk through my guidance for dealing with injury. To be clear, this guide is not meant to replace medical advice, please consult a medical professional if you are experiencing physical pain.

Once you’ve received the proper medical advice, take some time to appreciate your pain and loss. The loss you’re experiencing would not be painful if you really didn’t care about running. You should appreciate and celebrate your passion for running. It is truly a privilege “to have loved and lost (temporarily).”

Next, accept that for the near future you won’t be running to allow your body to heal. Commit to your break from running with the same passion you’d apply to training for a goal race. Riding an emotional rollercoaster of “test” runs every week or three keeps reopening the wound of being unable to run, disrupts your body’s efforts to heal, and keeps you from focusing on the work you should be doing. It might take some time to come to a point of acceptance so be patient with yourself. Just because you aren’t running doesn’t mean you are no longer a runner. Respecting your body and allowing it to heal on its own schedule is a way to practice a deepening understanding of what it means to be a runner.

Shift the way you allocate your time and focus. View the freedom from the demands of running as an opportunity to apply your limited resources of time and focus towards other activities. Some of these other activities might be ancillary to your running. For example, you may spend time building a routine that includes physical therapy exercises to address the issues that led to your injury. You may also spend time maintaining muscular strength by lifting and aerobic fitness by performing some sort of alternative like swimming, biking, or deep water running.

Resist the temptation to dump the time and focus you spent running directly into these ancillary activities. Unless you’re training to make an Olympic team or podium, an unplanned break from running should be viewed as an opportunity to invest in other aspects of your life. Not only will your life be enriched, but this break from running and ancillary activities will allow you to return with greater focus and resolve. Just like in the midst of a repetition workout we include recovery breaks to allow for more focused faster running, breaks in training, planned or unplanned, are an opportunity to allow our bodies and minds to grow into the next level of focus and fitness.

In my running, when I experience an unplanned break, while it is frustrating, I celebrate my commitment to resting from running as the path of the runner. I shift my time and focus towards building relationships outside of running and my artistic pursuits of illustration and comics. As for ancillary activities, I do my best to address the root cause of the injury and spend a moderate amount of time on strength and flexibility work. When I return to running, may feel a bit out of shape, but I also feel a refreshing level of gratitude for each pain-free step. I hope you experience the same!

Team News

  • We’re looking for volunteers to help at the Chicago Marathon Expo. If interested & available Friday or Saturday, let Allie know!

  • Racing Indy Monumental HM or Marathon? Enter race weekend deets here

August Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s 10k:

  • Kristina Aubert - BTN B1G 10k - 35:36 (PR & 3rd place!)

  • Emma Grimes - BTN B1G 10k - 36:38 (PR!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - BTN B1G 10k - 38:27 (AG champ!)

  • Michaela Spannaus - Beach to Beacon 10k - 38:37

Women’s 10M

  • Kristina Aubert - Crim 10M - 57:11 (debut & 2nd American!)

  • Sarah David - Crim 10M - 1:00:31

Women’s Mile

  • Sarah David - Nike Pop-Up Mile - 5:11

  • Amanda Porter - Nike Pop-Up Mile - 5:27

Men’s 10k:

  • Chris Robertson - BTN B1G 10k - 31:37 (PR & 3rd place!)

  • Brendan McDonnell - BTN B1G 10k - 31:52 (PR!)

  • Chris Porst - BTN B1G 10k - 33:08

  • Dan Kittaka - BTN B1G 10k - 34:28

Men’s 10M:

  • Damon King - Crim 10M - 52:11 (PR!)

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Stacy Nigrelli - St. Barnabas 5k - 38:37 (AG champ!)

  • Chris Robertson - Beer Mile World Champs - 4:47 (2nd place!)

  • Jess Sokolowski - Balboa Park 8M - 58:02 (AG champ!)

  • Dan Stanton - BTN B1G 5k - 17:10 (2nd place!)

  • Jamie Hershfang - BTN B1G 5k - 18:57 (Champ!)

  • Curt Hansman - BTN B1G 10k - 56:49 (AG champ!)

  • Eric Cale - Old Plank Sunset HM - 1:18:13 (Champ!)

  • Kaitlyn Clark - Butterfly Dash 5k - 20:39 (Champ!)

  • Bri Rohne - Bluff Tuff 20M - 2:50:20 (Champ!)

  • Katie Dudek - 13.Wine HM - 1:37:06 (Champ!)

  • Jess Bird - Brooklyn Wildlife 24 Miler - 3:45:09 (2nd place!)

  • Julie Crutchfield - Tour de LaPorte HM - 1:31:14 (2nd place!)

  • Allison Koch - Fort2Base 11.5M - 1:24:43 (3rd place!)

Personal Bests

  • Sergio Moreno - Nike Pop-Up Mile - 4:52

  • Steve Spangler - Nike Pop-Up Mile - 5:08

  • Sascha Edge - Nike Pop-Up Mile - 5:25

  • Steve Spangler - BTN B1G 10k - 37:02

  • Sascha Edge - BTN B1G 10k - 38:23

  • Varun Praveen - BTN B1G 10k - 39:59

  • Katie Dudek - BTN B1G 10k - 42:57

  • Brett Joseph - BTN B1G 10k - 46:13

  • Melissa Urban - BTN B1G 10k - 1:03:06

  • Sergio Moreno - Strider HM - 1:19:44


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 9/8 - LR @ Chicago Recovery Room

  • 9/12 - Easy run & Fireside Chat

  • 9/14 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

  • 9/19 - Goose Island Pint Night (1800 W Fulton)

  • 9/21 - LR @ Busse Woods

  • 9/28 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

September Birthdays

  • 9/1 - Katie Dudek

  • 9/7 - Blake Renaud

  • 9/8 - Erica van Heerden

  • 9/10 - Valere Guertin

  • 9/11 - Jeannie Sullivan

  • 9/18 - Sam Greenwood

  • 9/19 - Kristina Aubert

  • 9/23 - Sarah David

  • 9/24 - Dan DeRosa

  • 9/25 - Dan Stanton & Emma Grimes

  • 9/27 - Anthony Molinaro

  • 9/28 - Lauren Zumbach

  • 9/29 - Jessica Bratko

  • 9/30 - Alex Nordin

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

August 2019

August 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dave Walters

Choose your goal, then BECOME your goal!

Very few great performances in running happen by accident. We, as a group and as individuals, need to always make sure we stay focused on both the long range and short range goals. Once we have established our LONG range goal we commit everything we have to ensure that goal becomes a reality. Everything. We BECOME our goal.

Way back, when I was preparing for my senior year of XC in High School, my coach sat down with me in June and asked what my goal was for the end of year State XC meet. I responded — “somewhere in the Top Five”. Coach declared — “I believe that you can WIN.” It seemed a pretty big reach but I ‘bought in’ and BECAME THE STATE XC CHAMPION.......6 months before the November race. From that day in June onward I did everything possible to ensure that the goal became a reality. Every run had a segment (or 3) that mentally included a part of the State Meet course. Every day included extra flexibility and strength work. Every workout was dedicated to ensuring that I crossed the finish line in first place.

On that first Saturday in November the Goal became Reality. It became reality because I set a goal and BELIEVED IT WOULD HAPPEN. I set a concrete goal.....not a nebulous one. I BECAME that goal six months prior to the race. I did everything possible to achieve that goal.

The take away is this: set a FIXED goal (example - 2:59 Marathon) — not a nebulous one (I will run the best that I can). Use your goal to inspire and motivate you to do the flexibility and strength work that you need to get done. Evaluate all areas of your life and ask yourself “ where can I make an adjustment(s) in my daily routine that will get me to the finish line faster?” As an example.....I stretch at every opportunity — hourly in the cockpit, standing at the elevator, before hitting the sack, etc. Proper nutrition and hydration come to mind. Getting 7 to 8 hours of sleep? Doing the prescribed strides and form work? These are just a few areas that we all have to constantly evaluate.

Bottom line......be brutally honest with yourself and ask (as an example) “does a 2:59 Marathoner do this....or neglect that?” If you believe in your goal and have BECOME your goal you will already know the answer.

We are ALL capable of outstanding performances. By working together and applying ourselves with ruthless determination we can ACHIEVE GREAT THINGS.

Choose your goal......then BECOME your goal!!

Team News

  • Our summer Brooks/NRC day is our Aug 24th LR - come on out for nice discounts and a good team day

  • Photos from our June photoshoot can be seen here - feel free to take any and all!

An “Illustration” by Coach Dan Kittaka

Fueled by one part excitement from this past weekend’s US Track and Field Championships (particularly Dalilah Muhammad’s world record in the 400m Hurdles) and one part anxiety around hitting the track myself this week, here’s a representation of a track featuring crooked lines and crazy colors! (Video of the race seen here: https://youtu.be/ZdfDJN4sPbI)
— Coach Dan Kittaka

July Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s Half Marathon:

  • Julia Buford - San Francisco HM - 1:19:32 (PR & 2nd place!)

Men’s 5k:

  • Brian Lesiewicz - Chinatown 5k - 15:17 (PR & champ!)

Men’s 10k:

  • Brian Robertson - Barrington 10k - 35:59 (PR & 2nd place!)

Men’s Mile:

  • Chris Porst - Elmhurst Distance Festival - 4:45 (PR!)

Personal Bests

  • Pam Orvis - Freedom Five 5k - 21:28 (AG champ!)

  • Rene Duquesnoy - Elmhurst 4 on the 4th - 31:05

  • Brian Robertson - Barrington 10k - 35:59 (2nd place!)

  • Sergio Moreno - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:14

  • Varun Praveen - Burgers & Beer 5k - 18:50

  • Dave Alvarez - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:25

  • Maggie Johnson - Burgers & Beer 5k - 20:21

  • Nakul Girdhar - Burgers & Beer 5k - 20:22

  • Brett Joseph - Burgers & Beer 5k - 21:25

  • Dan Kapinus - Burgers & Beer 5k - 21:30

  • Malla Seljeseth - Burgers & Beer 5k - 24:38

  • Steve Spangler - Chicago Rock ‘n’ Roll HM - 1:22:53

  • Dan Kapinus - Chicago Rock ‘n’ Roll HM - 1:37:30

  • Danyelle Dron - Chicago Rock ‘n’ Roll HM - 1:40:47

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Brian Lesiewicz - Liberty Loop 5k - 16:19 (champ!)

  • Paul Erickson - Elmhurst 4 on the 4th - 23:29 (AG champ!)

  • Dave Walters - Elmhurst 4 on the 4th - 24:13 (AG champ!)

  • Brooke Wilson - Elmhurst 4 on the 4th - 25:09 (3rd place!)

  • Bri Rohne - Afton 25k - 2:10:35 (2nd place!)

  • Valere Guertin - 415 5k - 22:19 (AG champ!)

  • Tim Hird - Burgers & Beer 5k - 16:01 (2nd place!)

  • Loren Newman - Burgers & Beer 5k - 16:26 (AG champ!)

  • Paul Erickson - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:07 (AG champ)

  • Sarah David - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:50 (champ!)

  • Amanda George - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:22 (3rd place!)

  • Sam Greenwood - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:43 (AG champ!)

  • Larry Kravets - Burgers & Beer 5k - 20:03 (AG champ!)

  • Jess Sokolowski - Burgers & Beer 5k - 20:31 (AG champ!)

  • Katie Dudek - Burgers & Beer 5k - 21:27 (AG champ!)

  • Kathleen McAuliffe - Burgers & Beer 5k - 23:06 (AG champ!)

  • Curt Hansman - Burgers & Beer 5k - 27:59 (AG champ!)

  • Shujaat Sultan - Ron Gummerson Mile - 4:59 (2nd place!)

  • Erica van Heerden - Chicago Rock ‘n’ Roll HM - 1:25:59 (AG champ!)

  • Damon King - Elmhurst Distance Festival 2M - 9:46 (2nd place!)

  • Bri Rohne - Wy’East Howl 50k - 5:42:49 (3rd place!)

  • Jess Sokolowski - West Bend HM - 1:38:46 (3rd place!)


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 8/3 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

  • 8/10 - LR @ Swallow Cliff

  • 8/17 - LR & path cleanup @ Prairie Path

  • 8/22 - Goose Island Pint Night (1800 N Clybourn)

  • 8/24 - LR & NRC Shoe Day @ Naperville Running Company

  • 8/31 - LR Canceled - team @ camp!

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

AUGUST Birthdays

  • 8/11 - Dave Walters

  • 8/12 - Maggie Graham

  • 8/17 - Kelsey Seiler

  • 8/18 - Kathleen McAuliffe

  • 8/20 - Jess Sokolowski

  • 8/21 - Pam Orvis

  • 8/23 - Sean Packard & Tim Hird

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

July 2019

July 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Shawn Lucas

“Love hurts.  Love scars. Love wounds and marks.  Any heart not tough or strong enough to take a lot of pain, take a lot of pain; Love is like a cloud, it holds a lot of rain.  Love hurts, Ooh love hurts…”

We have all experienced a loss of some kind or another.  A loss of a job, a loss of a pet, a loss during a race – maybe due to injury or lack of preparation, a loss of a loved one – family or friend.  It’s not easy. We sometimes numb ourselves and “move-on”, without fully acknowledging what was fully lost in the first place. Earlier in June, our running community lost a true champion, Gabriele Grunewald – AKA Gabe - #bravelikegabe.  

For those that don’t know who Gabe is, what she accomplished, why this loss hits at home for our community and for me personally, let me give you a little quick blurb on Gabe’s story – in her own words…

❌2009: First diagnosis of Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma (very rare cancer), PR in 1500, surgery, radiation.
❌2010: PR in 1500, Runner-up at NCAA Champs, sign professional contract with Brooks Running. Second diagnosis of Thyroid Cancer, surgery.
❌2011: Radioactive iodine therapy, 3rd in mile at US Indoors, PR in 1500.
⭕️2012: PR of 4:04 in 1500, 4th at US Olympic Trials.
⭕️2013: PR of 4:01 in 1500, 8:42 in 3000, 2:01 in 800, Fastest mile on MN soil 4:21 (road).
⭕️2014: US Champion Indoor 3000, 5th place US Outdoor 1500.
⭕️2015: PR in 800, PR in 5000.
❌2016: 15:19 5000m, US Olympic Trials Finalist in 1500m. Recurrence of ACC. Major liver surgery.
❌2017: Another liver recurrence. Ran 4:12 1500 before racing USA Champs on chemotherapy. Immunotherapy clinical trial, radioembolization.
❌2018: No races but I tried! Oh wait I won the Silo District 5k in Waco! 🤩 Immunotherapy and radioembolization.
❌2019: No races (yet)! ERCP with stent procedure, new drug Lenvatinib. Still hopeful 🙏

Wow, what a beast!  What an inspiration!  What a warrior!  

As I dove more into Gabe’s story, what impressed me more beyond the amazing successes she had were two things:

  1. She accepted life’s curveballs and ups and downs. She accepted the challenges of cancer and faced them head first, just like she would face her fellow competitors.  She faced the literal battle for her life with grace and with a huge smile. She wasn’t going to let this battle define her.

  2. The Love story that she created with her husband Justin.  This is something, as a husband and father, that touches home most.  These two have an incredible bond. The love of running, which brought the two together during their years of running for The University of Minnesota Gophers, was a center of their life as individuals, but beyond their love of running, was a love to share their journey with ALL.  This has been showcased no better than in the in the co-creation of the “Brave-like-Gabe” campaign, which raises awareness and money for rare cancer research.  

I pray that all DWrunning team members can continue to compete like Gabe lived her life.  Life is going to throw you battles that you may not be prepared for, so surround yourself with positive fighters in your life that can help you through life’s ups and downs.  When we learn to love something, like running, or someone, so hard, Nazareth was correct in their song, Love does hurt, sometimes. But like another favorite artist of mine, if you love hard, love fully and continue to tackle life with spreading joy to EVERYONE, no matter your battle or their battle, you’ll conquer it this life and your goals with grace. 

“Hurt so good, come on baby make it hurt so good, sometimes love don't feel like it should, you make it, hurt so good”

Here’s to Gabe and all those like her in your own life <3

Coach SJL

Team News

An “Illustration” by Coach Dan Kittaka

When you see a literal or proverbial hill, do you see something to be endured or an opportunity to get better?
— Coach Dan Kittaka

June Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s Marathon:

  • Kristina Aubert - Grandma's Marathon - 2:40:48 (PR & OTQ!)

  • Sarah David - Grandma's Marathon - 2:50:32 (PR!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Grandma's Marathon - 2:53:22

Women’s 50k:

  • Bri Rohne - Wy'East Wonder 50k - 4:57:17 (debut & champ!!)

Men’s 10k:

  • Dan O'Keefe - Naperville 10k - 31:41 (PR & 2nd place!)

Men’s Marathon:

  • Cam Rieger - Grandma's Marathon - 2:27:33 (PR!)

  • Chris Porst - Grandma's Marathon - 2:34:58 (PR!)

Personal Bests

  • Jess Sokolowski - Cosley Zoo 10k - 43:16 (Champ!)

  • Varun Praveen - Run for the Zoo 10k - 40:23

  • Rudy Valenta - Summer Speed Series 5k - 19:31

  • Rene Duquesnoy - Race Against Gun Violence 8k - 38:04

  • Rudy Valenta - Speed Series 5k - 18:50

  • Pete Jaros - Steamboat Classic 4M - 22:00 (AG champ!)

  • Brett Joseph - Race Against Hate 5k - 21:55

  • Dave Alvarez - Gary Bjorklund HM - 1:29:11

  • Sam Greenwood - Grandma's Marathon - 3:10:36 (+ BQ!)

  • Dan Kapinus - Grandma's Marathon - 3:39:17

  • Amanda Porter - Proud to Run 5k - 18:31 (Champ!

  • Ren Harn - Proud to Run 5k - 19:12 (AG Champ!)

  • Steve Spangler - Proud to Run 10k - 38:35 (AG Champ!)

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Kaitlyn Clark - Trot Against Trafficking 5k - 20:52 (champ!)

  • Jessica Sokolowski - Loyola Medicine 5k - 20:45 (champ!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Clarendon Hills Daisy Dash 5k - 19:05 (champ!)

  • Pam Orvis - Father's Day Breakfast 5k - 22:14 (AG champ!)

  • Sascha Edge - Race Against Hate 5k - 18:40 (AG champ!)

  • Julie Crutchfield - Charlevoix Marathon - 3:17:21 (AG champ + BQ!)


Boston Qualifiers

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Grandma's Marathon - 2:53:22 (2nd fastest ever!)

  • Jamie Hershfang - Grandma's Marathon - 3:09:27

  • Larry Kravets - Grandma's Marathon - 3:11:12 (2nd fastest ever!)

  • Yuki Hirao - Grandma's Marathon - 3:22:04 (2nd fastest ever!)

  • Catharine Carlin - Grandma’s Marathon - 3:34:58


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 7/6 - LR @ Morton Arb

  • 7/11 - Beer Mile

  • 7/13 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

  • 7/15 - Burgers & Beer 5k

  • 7/18 - Goose Island Pint Night (1800 W Fulton)

  • 7/20 - LR @ Swallow Cliff

  • 7/27 - LR @ Salt Creek Trail or Busse (TBD)

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

JULY Birthdays

  • 7/5 - Amanda Porter

  • 7/6 - Catharine Carlin & Chris Robertson

  • 7/7 - Malla Seljeseth

  • 7/11 - Mark Catania

  • 7/12 - Allison Koch & Rene Duquesnoy

  • 7/21 - Mary Tobin

  • 7/23 - Laura Houghton

  • 7/25 - Matt Thor

  • 7/26 - Stacy Nigrelli

  • 7/28 - Chris McGarry

  • 7/30 - Brad Simmons & Kim Weiss

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

June 2019

June 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dan Walters

It's time for Dan's regular reminder that the weather is changing! We've already had some hot, sunny, sticky runs and we have a lot more on tap. BUT NO PITY PARTIES. It's time to embrace the heat and use it to jump a fitness level this summer!

Let's first understand what's happening inside our bodies when running in the heat.

During a hot run, our bodies use blood for three big tasks (amongst others): to bring heat generated deep within the body to the skin's surface, to transport oxygen from the lungs to the working muscle, and to transport waste away from the working muscle. Our blood has a lot to do when running in heat and in the end, it ends up doing these major tasks (dissipating heat and transporting material to/from muscle) at a mediocre level - just enough to keep us running and to keep us from (completely) overheating. However, do a few of these hot runs and our body starts to get the idea - it needs to do these tasks better. Our body adapts by increasing blood volume so that it can better cover all its bases.

Now, running is a bit more than just getting out and training in the heat. We still need to run for various distances and paces to logically work towards our goals. But we have to be flexible with these assignments on hot and humid days and instead of being attached to pace, we must run by perceived effort. Nothing is wrong and we are not getting out of shape when heat forces us to slow down! It's good to have loose paces in mind for harder efforts but we must understand what each run should FEEL like in case we must adjust due to heat. It's also crucial to know how to adjust your workout in the event that conditions are particularly extreme - should you lessen workout volume, pull back pace, add extra rest, etc? Work with your coach to understand this prior to diving in. Remember that working hard while being smart is what matters in the summer - your body will adapt to the heat and create that extra blood.

Well look at us with all this fancy extra blood. We certainly will feel stronger at the end of the summer than at the beginning, much in part due to that extra blood. And then when the temps start to drop in September and October, we have all this extra blood and not nearly as much heat to dissipate, meaning our blood can devote itself more completely to running! Boom, fitness jump.

So the next hot sweaty run you're on, adjust your game plan and forge on - your fall racing season will thank you!

Team News

  • DWRunning has adopted a mile along the Prairie Path - we’ll be picking up trash again after the 6/15 LR

  • We have two spots remaining for our Ludington team camp - if interested, sign up here

  • We’ve acquired discounts for some Chicagoland races:

An “Illustration” by Coach Dan Kittaka

Recently, I participated in a letterpress workshop titled “Mottos, Mantras, and Movable Type.” The first mantra that came to mind was this quote of Juma Ikangaa which my high school coach put in our summer training logs. Igankaa, a Tanzanian athlete, won the 1989 NYC Marathon in what was then a course record time of 2:08:01 and finished second in Boston three times (1988-1990). A summer of running in Chicago will temper and test your will to prepare. There may be days or weeks when your watch won’t show any improvement, but slowly by slowly you will be building the fitness to make winning a reality.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

May Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s 50M:

  • Bri Rohne - Ice Age 50M - 8:15:12 (debut & 3rd place!))

Men’s 50k:

  • Alex Nordin - Bunk House 50k - 5:19:02

Men’s 50M:

  • Connor Matheson - Ice Age 50M - 6:53:23 (2nd place & PR!!)

Personal Bests

  • Chris Porst - Flying Pig HM - 1:14:06 (3rd place!)

  • Jess Vogl - River Bank Run 25k - 1:59:10

  • Chris Porst - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 18:00

  • Matt Stanesby - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 18:54

  • Eric Cale - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 19:10

  • Blake Renaud - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 19:24

  • Anando Naqui - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 20:51

  • Dan Kapinus - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 24:10

  • Dan Kapinus - Soldier Field 10M - 1:18:53

  • Malla Seljeseth - Soldier Field 10M - 1:28:16

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Erica van Heerden - Wisconsin HM - 1:29:51 (AG champ!)

  • Paul Erickson - Wisconsin Marathon - 2:56:23 - (AG champ & BQ!)

  • Bri Rohn - Go Spring 7.5k Trail Race - 35:25 (3rd place!)

  • Allison Koch - Quarryman 10M - 1:10:30 (2nd place!)

  • Kaitlyn Hartman - Mountain Laurel 5k - 20:59 (champ!)

  • Curt Hansman - Run for the Roses 5k - 27:21 (AG champ!)

  • Sascha Edge - Chicago Spring HM - 1:26:38 (AG champ!)

  • Yuki Hirao - Chicagoland Spring HM - 1:42:06 (AG champ!)

  • Kristina Aubert - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 19:10 (Champ!)

  • Julia Buford - Chase Corporate Challenge 3.5M - 21:00 (3rd place!)

  • Paul Graessle - Salute 5k - 19:35 (3rd place!)

  • Jess Sokolowski - Westmont Race to the Flag 5k - 20:39 (Champ!)

  • Curt Hansman - Tower Trot 5k & 10k - 33:50 & 1:00:48 (AG champ in both!)

  • Paul Erickson - Soldier Field 10M - 1:04:05 (AG champ!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Soldier Field 10M - 1:06:31 (AG champ!)

  • Dave Walters - Soldier Field 10M - 1:07:00 (AG champ!)

  • Amanda George - Soldier Field 10M - 1:09:15 (AG champ!)


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 6/1 - LR @ Busse Woods

  • 6/2 - DWRunning annual photoshoot!

  • 6/6 - Run & Fireside Chat

  • 6/8 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

  • 6/13 - Pint night @ Goose Island

  • 6/15 - LR & Prairie Path cleanup @ Prairie Path / Dan & Allie’s

  • 6/22 - No formal LR - team @ Grandma’s HM/Marathon

  • 6/29 - LR @ Swallow Cliff

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

June Birthdays

  • 6/2 - Danyelle Dron & Kyle Somerfield (twins!)

  • 6/5 - Jess Vogl

  • 6/8 - Allie Walters

  • 6/12 - Cam Rieger

  • 6/15 - Paul Kwak

  • 6/25 - Anando Naqui & Kwang-Youn Kim

  • 6/26 - Sean Gill

  • 6/27 - Amanda George

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

May 2019

May 2019

Coach's Corner

An Alternative Approach to Goal Setting

By Coach Declan McDonnell

One of the great things about running is that it’s easily measured. Times don’t lie! Racing our past selves and coming out on top is one of the great thrills of the sport. This can also be a trap.  There are a couple of features of this fact that can be problematic for goal-setting.

  1. Things that are easily measured often are just a convenient proxy for the things that are really important, and sometimes don’t quite capture what we’re really after (losing weight doesn’t necessarily mean you’re healthier.)

  2. Because it’s easily measured and gives us an idea of how successful we were, PRs are glorified above all else, while the hard to measure but more important things get ignored.

I’m not totally against having a time goal. It can be really motivating to be close to a time goal late in the race. It can be also be counterproductive. Too far off your goal, and you get discouraged and slow down even further. Too far ahead, and you get complacent, happy to just cruise it in for a big PR.

When you think about your next big race, I challenge you to instead set goals that are not time based. A better approach is to set some decision-making goals for yourself. These should be centered around two parts of the race - early on, where you have to make decisions to be smart, and late in the race, where you have to make decisions to be tough. To figure out how to do this, think back to past races. Where did you struggle mentally? Do you go out too fast? Or perhaps late in the race you too often give in to the voice that tells you it’s okay to slow down? Give these things some thought, and write down the decisions you want to make in your next goal race.

The real measure of a good race is not your time – it’s whether you got the most out of yourself on the day. The only person who knows whether you did that is you. If you write these decision goals down, vocalize them to your coach, and visualize overcoming them in your mind before the race, you’re much more likely to make this happen.

When Eliud Kipchoge ran the Berlin Marathon in 2018, he was expected to set a new world record. Anything else would have been viewed as a failure. But when asked about this before the race, he demurred. His only stated goal? “I hope to run a beautiful race.” Not a bad example to follow!

Team News

  • Our team camp will be this Labor Day in Ludington, MI. Interested? Sign up here.

  • Save the date! The 2019 DWRunning team photoshoot will be 6/2 in the city

  • Want to get some bloodwork done? Use discount code ‘DWRUNNING’ for 15% off at InsideTracker

  • We’ve obtained team discounts for Burgers & Beer 5k, B1G 10k, & Chicago HM - check your email for details

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

The last 10 miles of the London Marathon, I would touch my singlet to remind myself that our team stays tough when it hurts. We’re very fortunate to be able to draw such inspiration from our teammates! Thanks!
— Coach Dan Kittaka

April Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s 10M:

  • Julia Buford - Lakefront 10M - 1:00:52 (2nd place!)

  • Moira Ryan - Parkway Classic 10M - 1:05:20

Women’s Half Marathon:

  • Sarah David - Illinois HM - 1:19:20 (3rd place & PR!)

Women’s Marathon:

  • Julia Buford - Eugene Marathon - 2:52:12 (PR!)

Men’s 10M:

  • Chris Robertson - Lakefront 10M - 52:25 (champ!)

Men’s Half Marathon:

  • Dan O’Keefe - Illinois HM - 1:07:16 (3rd place & PR!)

  • Cam Rieger - Illinois HM - 1:10:01 (PR!)

Men’s 50k:

  • Connor Matheson - Yamacraw 50k - 4:03:17 (3rd place & PR!)

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Chris Robertson - Good Life 5k - 15:03 (champ!)

  • Julie Crutchfield - Morris Superhero HM - 1:32:46 (champ!)

  • Paul Graessle - Get Burbed Challenge 5k - 19:05 (champ!)

  • Katelyn Draths - Sly Fox HM - 1:32:32 (AG champ!)

  • Loren Newman - Ultra-Trail Mount Fuji 100M - 20:40:14 (3rd place!)

  • Allison Parker - Nashville Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon - 3:15:27 (3rd place!)

  • Sean Gill - Foodie 5k - 19:30 (2nd place!)

  • Chris Robertson - Ravenswood 5k - 15:05


Personal Bests

  • Katie Dudek - Good Life 5k - 20:06 (+ AG champ!)

  • Maggie Jones - Good Life 5k - 20:22

  • Kwang-Youn Kim - Paris Marathon - 3:06:02 (+ BQ!)

  • Varun Praveen - Champion of Trees 10k - 40:42

  • Sascha Edge - Illinois HM - 1:22:30 (AG champ!)

  • Brad Simmons - Illinois HM - 1:24:50

  • Rutger Stache - Illinois HM - 1:28:39

  • Sam Greenwood - Illinois HM - 1:28:55

  • Joanne Molinaro - Illinois HM - 1:57:41

  • John Brassea - Illinois Marathon - 2:59:30 (BQ!)

  • Renner Winston - Illinois Marathon - 2:59:39 (BQ!)

  • Aaron Agustin - Capital Health HM - 1:40:19

  • Melissa Urban - Capital Health HM - 2:20:16

  • Rene Duquesnoy - Kentucky Derby HM - 1:47:07

  • Brett Joseph - Crazylegs Classic 8k - 37:14

  • Steve Spangler - London Marathon - 2:56:55 (& BQ!!)

  • Amanda George - Ravenswood 5k - 19:07


  • Matt Stanesby - Paris Marathon - 2:36:07

  • Eric Cale - Boston Marathon - 2:46:54

  • Dan Stanton - Boston Marathon - 2:49:41

  • Jamie Hershfang - Boston Marathon - 2:51:28

  • Kyle Somerfield - Boston Marathon - 2:56:33

  • Caleb Kadera - Boston Marathon - 2:58:36

  • Erica van Heerden - Boston Marathon - 3:09:48

  • Anthony Molinaro - Boston Marathon - 3:09:48

  • Adrienne Eynon - Boston Marathon - 3:09:51

  • Jess Bird - Boston Marathon - 3:12:12

  • Kim Weiss - Boston Marathon - 3:14:34

  • Jess Sokolowski - Boston Marathon - 3:20:42

  • Bri Rohne - Boston Marathon - 3:22:04

  • Kaitlyn Hartman - Boston Marathon - 3:23:43

  • Brooke Williams - Boston Marathon - 3:36:05

  • Dan Kittaka - London Marathon - 2:32:52 (6 Star Finisher!)

  • Chris McGarry - London Marathon - 2:50:52 (6 Star Finisher!)



Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 5/4 - LR @ Morton Arb

  • 5/11 - LR @ Busse Woods

  • 5/16 - Pint Night @ Goose Island

  • 5/18 - LR + bRUNch @ Morton Arb

  • 5/25 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

Check out the calendar (& add it to your own calendar!) here.

May Birthdays

  • 5/5 - Tim Maier

  • 5/18 - Yuki Hirao

  • 5/19 - Alex Weems

  • 5/26 - Carol Villegas

  • 5/30 - Caleb Kadera

  • 5/31 - Matt Stanesby

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

April 2019

April 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dan Walters

We did it! We navigated running through another winter - well done y'all! Springtime means lots of things for us runners - time to bust out the t-shirts, get off those treadmills and reclaim some morning sunlight. And best of all, time for spring racing!

This spring racing can be tricky though. Running through the winter (for most of us) required even more 'trusting of the process' than usual. If we're training outside all winter it's cold, dark, windy, icy and we're in many pounds of extra clothing. Hitting consistently fast workouts (and feeling good doing them) is hard, sometimes impossible. So instead, we play the hand we're dealt and trust that working hard (even when resulting in slower times) is giving our bodies and minds the stimulus they need to adapt and improve. Workouts can be slow, grinding, and frustrating; we've all been there.  The same goes for running on treadmills inside - although gyms are climate controlled, many times they’re hot and the repetitive nature of treadmill running can really wear on us mentally and physically. The winter grind exists whether inside or out and if we're not careful, it can appear like we're working hard and not improving as we'd like.

Then the weather turns. It gets warmer and brighter. We can wear less clothing outside and we emerge from our treadmill hibernation. These outdoor runs allow us to start feeling like ourselves and actually run fast consistently. And we feel good doing it! That said, an issue can arise as we charge into our spring racing. If we let how we felt (and the splits we hit) during our winter training affect how we attack our spring races, our goals can seem impossible. "That pace was so hard in February and March, there's no way I can do it for so much longer in April and May. How will it even be possible?"

We can't look at things that way. Comparing winter training to spring racing is comparing apples to oranges.

Pouring in miles and workouts during those dark, cold winter months while wearing all those clothes is HARD. Getting on the treadmill over and over and over is HARD. But you and your coach laid out a plan that allowed for these difficulties and you put in the work. Your heart, lungs, and muscles worked at the proper effort levels for the proper durations all winter. You don't have sexy splits to show how fit you are, but you do have a mountain of WORK at high effort levels.

If you shape your confidence with the individual splits you hit this winter (and how you felt hitting them), you'll have shaky confidence this spring.

If you shape your confidence with the work you poured in and the effort levels you worked at, you'll know your body and mind are calloused and ready for the spring. Trust your work over your exact splits. Trust your body over your watch.

Lean on your work. Lean on your consistency. Lean on your ability to persevere, to adapt to crappy conditions, to work through fatigue. It's why we saw such fantastic racing at St Paddys Day 5k, Shamrock Shuffle and the March Madness Half Marathon. Conditions were finally great, we trusted our bodies and we RAN HARD.

Hard winter work + race day magic = spring PRs!

Team News

  • DWRunning has adopted a mile along the Prairie Path - if you’re available to help pick up trash after this Saturday’s LR, let Allie know

  • Save the date! The 2019 DWRunning team photoshoot will be 6/2 in the city

  • Interested in a backpack, a team jacket, or some casual gear? Place an order here by 4/8

  • Registration for the Atlanta Marathon, HM, & 5k, hosted the same weekend as the Olympic Trials is now open! See email from Allie for more details

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

The people of Boston celebrate marathon runners unlike any other town I’ve observed. It seems to me that they see the sweat and struggle as a sacrifice in their honor and respond with shouts of encouragement and thanks. I certainly would have faltered more without them. It is this celebration of the culmination of the runners’ dreams that I believe makes the atmosphere so intoxicating.
— Coach Dan Kittaka
Small Boston 2019.jpg

March Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

Women’s 5k:

  • Kelsey Seiler - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 17:20 (Champ!)

  • Sarah David - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 17:23 (PR & 2nd Place!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 18:01 (AG Champ!)

Women’s 8k:

  • Kelsey Seiler - Shamrock Shuffle - 28:03 (PR!)

  • Sarah David - Shamrock Shuffle - 28:04 (Debut!)

  • Julia Buford - Shamrock Shuffle - 29:25

  • Erica van Heerden - Shamrock Shuffle - 29:51 (Debut!)

  • Katelyn Draths - Shamrock Shuffle - 30:28

Men’s 5k:

  • Dan O’Keefe - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 14:47 (PR & Champ!)

  • Chris Robertson - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 14:57 (PR & 3rd Place!)

  • Chris Porst - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 15:58 (PR!)

  • Tim Faith - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 16:00

Men’s 8k:

  • Dan O’Keefe - Shamrock Shuffle - 24:06 (Debut!)

  • Chris Robertson - Shamrock Shuffle - 24:16 (PR!)

  • Cam Rieger - Shamrock Shuffle - 25:05 (PR!)

  • Tim Faith - Shamrock Shuffle - 26:13

  • Chris Porst - Shamrock Shuffle - 26:16 (Debut!)

Men’s 10k:

  • Matt Thor - Mardi Gras Chaser 10k - 34:50 (2nd Place!)


Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Sam Greenwood - Sombrero Beach 10k - 42:15 (Champ!)

  • Jamie Hershfang - Road to Gold 8.2M - 49:42 (Champ!)

  • Loren Newman - Hangzhou Trail Marathon - 5:36:32 (Champ & CR!)

  • Kaitlyn Hartman - Asheville HM - 1:35:41 (3rd Place!)

  • Ryan Jaskiewicz - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 15:22 (AG Champ!)

  • Moira Ryan - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 18:39 (AG Champ!)

  • Katelyn Draths - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 18:50 (AG Champ!)

  • Kristina Aubert - March Madness HM - 1:18:21 (Champ & CR!)

  • Adrienne Eynon - March Madness HM - 1:27:52 (3rd Place!)

  • Curt Hansman - March Madness HM - 1:58:43 (AG Champ!)

  • Paul Erickson - Bolingbrook St. Paddy’s HM - 1:17:51 (3rd Place!)

Personal Bests

  • Julie Bruns - USATF Masters Champs 3k - 12:27 (3rd Place!)

  • Jess Vogl - Laker Loop Challenge HM - 1:39:46

  • Malla Seljeseth - Asheville Half Marathon - 1:58:11

  • Sarah Koelln - Get Lucky 21k HM - 1:37:51

  • Rudy Valenta - NYC Half Marathon - 1:25:53

  • Connor Matheson - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 16:34

  • Brad Simmons - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 17:39

  • Rutger Stache - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 18:52

  • Aaron Agustin - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 21:03

  • Melissa Urban - St. Paddy’s Day 5k - 27:33

  • Dan Stanton - March Madness HM - 1:16:04

  • Eric Cale - March Madness HM - 1:17:01

  • Anthony Molinaro - March Madness HM - 1:24:50

  • Jess Sokolowski - March Madness HM - 1:33:50

  • Amanda George - Atlanta Marathon - 3:13:35 (3rd Place!)

  • Connor Matheson - Shamrock Shuffle - 27:02

  • Brad Simmons - Shamrock Shuffle - 28:28

  • Alex Nordin - Shamrock Shuffle - 28:56

  • Steve Spangler - Shamrock Shuffle - 29:09

  • Renner Winston - Shamrock Shuffle - 29:16

  • Anando Naqui - Shamrock Shuffle - 29:19

  • Sascha Edge - Shamrock Shuffle - 30:19

  • Rutger Stache - Shamrock Shuffle - 30:25

  • Will Biancucci - Shamrock Shuffle - 30:48

  • Sam Greenwood - Shamrock Shuffle - 30:58

  • Dave Alvarez - Shamrock Shuffle - 32:23

  • Katie Dudek - Shamrock Shuffle - 34:30

  • Aaron Agustin - Shamrock Shuffle - 34:56

  • Malla Seljeseth - Shamrock Shuffle - 41:02

  • Melissa Urban - Shamrock Shuffle - 46:24


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 4/4 - Virtual Fireside Chat on the Boston Marathon

  • 4/6 - LR @ Prairie Path (from Dan & Allie’s), followed by Prairie Path cleanup

  • 4/18 - Easy Run & Pint Night @ Goose Island Clybourn

  • 4/20 - LR @ Barrington

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

April Birthdays

  • 4/4 - Will Biancucci

  • 4/5 - Dan Kittaka & Gina Rumore

  • 4/9 - Julie Crutchfield & Loren Newman

  • 4/12 - John Nguyen

  • 4/13 - Ren Harn

  • 4/15 - Paul Graessle

  • 4/16 - Chris Porst

  • 4/21 - Joon Park

  • 4/22 - Maggie Jones & Paul Erickson

  • 4/23 - Joanne Molinaro

  • 4/25 - Rudy Valenta

  • 4/27 - Steve Spangler

Meet the Newest DWRunner!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

March 2019

March 2019

Coach's Corner

‘Why I Coach’ By Coach Shawn Lucas

I was recently asked by a recruit’s parent (UIC recruit) why I coach, especially when I am not full-time.  Could I possibly be giving enough of my time to the athlete?  That was their concern at least, that their child wasn’t going to get the care they felt was needed.  Before I answered their question, I posed some questions of my own.  “What qualifies as enough time in your mind?”  “Does a coach have to always be present or can ground work be laid out and expectations of an athlete be made?”

Back to the question on hand though…my response was this.  “I coach to relay knowledge to an athlete, knowledge I wish I knew when I was in their place years ago, knowledge from learning from mistakes, knowledge from continuing to learn new and innovative ways to train, especially when lack of resources forces you to be creative.  But, most of all I coach for that glimmer of light you see in an athlete’s eyes after a PR, that smirk after crushing a workout, the doubt turning into faith.” 

I often associate coaching to being a parent.  I have 2 very young kids, Graham 3 and Charlie 8 months.  They are literally like a sponge and absorbing so much every single day.  Sometimes you don’t even know they are listening and then days or weeks later you become WOW’d.  I can remember when Graham took his first steps, the feeling that you had something to do with it, but literally he did that all on his own, he took something brand new and did it and his confidence grew and grew each and every time he would walk and fall down.  But, he got back up every time and is now a running machine.

That is why I coach.  I have learned a lot in my 20 years of running and now 8+ years of coaching.  My old modo was “Quality over Quantity” but as any good professional I keep learning and tweaking and now have come to understand that that term is too basic, it isn't good enough.  It’s quality in the quantity you can sustain.  Specifically for distance runners, the more quality miles within our quantity, the better our workouts will become and thus the more yearly PR's we will attain.   As coaches, our job isn’t to give the athletes the answers, it’s to put them in a place to figure it out on their own.  We write workouts, we help put together pre and post run core and strength routines.  It’s up to the athlete to put in the work and challenge themselves every day to break through to unchartered waters.  For us coaches, when our athletes crush a workout or PR beyond where they believe they could or on the flip side, are able to recognize why a workout or race didn’t go so hot, but are able to bounce back and be resilient to defeat, well, that’s why I love coaching, much like I love being a Dad.

Team News

  • Dan Kittaka is the 2018 Chicago Athlete Magazine Athlete of the Year!

  • Team kits are in! Come to a long run or team event to get your gear!

  • Our newest team partner is the Chicago Recovery Room. Learn about them here.

  • New training schedules and strength & flexibility routines have been created. For information & FAQs, look here.

  • Racing the Boston Marathon? Fill out your plans here. Racing the Grandma’s Marathon or Half? Fill out your plans here.

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

During rough patches, I like to think about my training as slowly cleaning an obscured mirror. Like a foggy mirror, my performances and workouts may not yet reflect the person and athlete I am, but slowly and surely my belief in who I am helps me persevere in the hard work of uncovering a truer reflection.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

February Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Dan O’Keefe - 5k; Pat Heenan Invitational - 14:52

  • Chris Robertson - Mile, Margaret Bradley Invitational - 4:22

Personal bests:

  • Renner Winston - New Orleans Rock n Roll HM - 1:26:11

  • Rutger Stache - Margaret Bradley Invitational Mile - 5:17

  • Sean Packard - Ft Lauderdale HM - 1:42:44

  • Dan Kapinus - Lost Dutchman 10k - 47:49

  • Rudy Valenta - Al Gordon Brooklyn 4M - 24:36

Screen Shot 2019-02-27 at 1.59.40 PM.png

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Steve Spangler - Cupid Love Dash 5k - 18:02 (2nd!)

  • Chris Robertson - Margaret Bradley Invite Mile - 4:22 (Champ!)

  • Chris Robertson - Margaret Bradley Invite 3k - 8:44 (Champ!)

  • Brian Robertson - Rehab 5k - 17:25 (2nd!)

  • Chris Robertson - Illinois Club Relays 3k - 8:36 (Champ!)


Things We're Vibing

Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 3/2 - LR @ Lakefront Path / Chicago Recovery Room

  • 3/6 - WoW @ Morton Arboretum

  • 3/9 - LR @ Algonquin

  • 3/14 - Goose Island Pint Night @ 1800 W Fulton

  • 3/16 - St. Paddy’s Day 5k + Brunch

  • 3/20 - WoW @ Morton Arboretum

  • 3/23 - LR @ Barrington

  • 3/24 - Shamrock Shuffle + post-race party

  • 3/30 - LR @ Morton Arboretum

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

March Birthdays

  • 3/1 - Bri Rohne

  • 3/4 - Brian Robertson

  • 3/10 - Brooke Williams

  • 3/16 - Connor Matheson

  • 3/22 - Dave Alvarez

  • 3/25 - Dana Klein

  • 3/27 - Adrienne Eynon

  • 3/31 - Ren Taylor

Meet the Newest DWRunner!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

February 2019

February 2019

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dave Walters

Think about the last marathon that you ran.  You passed several photo stations where photographers were snapping away, sometimes yelling at you to ‘smile’!  As you approached the station you got yourself ready for the photo of a lifetime — shoulders back, arms pumping, head held high, natural (?) smile.  You ‘checked in’ with yourself and altered or corrected your form.  Did you notice that by doing so your pace picked up imperceptibly?  That your effort may have been a little less for the real estate gained per stride?  Wonder why?

Disengaging your mind from your body - checking out - occurs to everybody on every training run.  We think about all sorts of things to make the miles pass quicker.  Wearing headphones during training adds to that.  Checking out is fine to a point……as long as we check back in on a regular basis. 

Checking in means that you are paying particular attention to your body and form.  I encourage EVERYONE to develop the habit of minding their form at certain intervals in training and racing.  Self awareness and self correction can mean the difference between a 3:10 marathon and a 2:55 finish…..it’s that critical.  Totally disengaging your mind from your body for the entire race can lead to a poor and unnecessarily slow result.  

Checking in correctly is a simple process.  At each corner, hill, or other rhythm disruptor — check in.  Ask yourself…..are my shoulders back (and opening up my lung capacity) or hunched forward (diminishing it)? Are my hips forward and abs engaged?  Am I actually USING my arms to propel me forward for extra inches per step, or am I carrying them along for zero help?  Am I engaging my glutes for extra real estate per stride or are the glutes coasting?  Am I pushing off with my toes for even more inches per stride? How’s my breathing — big deep (and relaxed) belly breaths?  And don’t forget the brain!  Positive thoughts or negative ones? Smiling or frowning?  Smiling athletes run faster!

As for headphones, I personally only use them in the gym while on the elliptical.  There are a dozen (or more) reasons to NOT wear them while running outside.....but the number reason is they distract you from the task at hand: checking in.  

One final thought.  I’ve had the pleasure of running large segments of my last two Chicago Marathons with the super fit DWRunner Sasha Edge.  We are relaxed running together and feed off of each other’s energy.  When you are relaxed and confident in your pace and teammate it is SO much easier to stay checked in.  One of the massive advantages of training with a large group of motivated runners is that you can feed off that energy and learn to trust your teammates which allows for more self awareness ie checked in state.  

Checking in is a practiced art.  Rededicate yourself to excellence and make this a part of your daily routine!

Team News

  • Last Chance! Vote for Jamie and Ryan J or Dan K for Chicago Magazine Athlete of the Year!

  • If you’re interested in the Big 10 10k, let Allie know! She’s negotiating a team discount.

  • We’re a Hüma sponsored team again in 2019! The code for 25% off is Humabeing19

  • New Team Portal password - 2019DWRpw

  • Check out our 2018 Year-End Review

  • We’ve got a new logo for this year! Check it out throughout this newsletter

  • Racing the Boston Marathon? Fill out your plans here. We’ll also be hosting Wednesday workouts at the Morton Arboretum on specific Wednesdays between now and Boston - check the cal!

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

Sheer willpower alone is a cold companion for winter training. A strong belief in our process is like an ember that will warm you in the nastiest conditions. Lean into your coaches and teammates to keep your coal of belief glowing.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

January Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Paul Graessle - Frozen Gnome 50k - 6:03:26

Personal bests:

  • Matt Thor - Houston HM - 1:12:15

  • Anthony Molinaro - Houston Marathon - 3:06:13 (& BQ!) & our 500th team PR!

  • Malla Seljeseth - F^3 HM - 1:58:02

  • Melissa Urban - F^3 HM - 2:26:56 (46 min PR!)


Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Chris Robertson - DBO 4k - 15:28 (Champ!)

  • Katelyn Draths - DBO 4k - 23:52 (2nd!)

  • Julie Bruns - DBO 4k - 24:43 (3rd!)

  • Jamie Hershfang - F^3 HM - 1:24:40 (2nd!)

  • Pettit Indoor Marathon Relay:

    • Men’s 1 - 2:15:54 (Champs!)

    • Mixed 1 - 2:30:58 (Champs!)

    • Women’s 1 - 2:36:26 (Champs!)

    • Mixed 2 - 2:40:57 (2nd place!)

DWRunning - Pettit

Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 2/2 - LR @ Barrington

  • 2/6 - WoW @ Morton Arboretum

  • 2/7 - Fireside Chat @ Alex G’s - 225 W Huron

  • 2/9 - LR @ Algonquin

  • 2/16 - LR & bRUNch @ Morton Arboretum

  • 2/20 - WoW @ Morton Arboretum

  • 2/21 - Easy Run & Pint Night @ Goose Island

  • 2/23 - LR @ Barrington

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

January Birthdays

  • 2/3 - Katy Cranfill

  • 2/8 - Kristi Huisinga

  • 2/10 - Sascha Edge & Varun Praveen

  • 2/11 - Katelyn Draths

  • 2/14 - Mischa Rihm

  • 2/16 - Christian Madridejos

  • 2/24 - Erin Chenoweth

  • 2/25 - Jamie Hershfang & Yelena Koldobskaya

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

January 2019

January 2019

Quote of the Month

"If you want to be in charge of the pain, you have to let it in. That’s the key to being able to endure a lot of pain - it’s to know it intimately, it’s coming along for the ride but it doesn’t get to drive and sure as sh*t can't pick the music." -Scott Fauble (2:12 marathoner + 7th place at 2018 NYC Marathon)

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dan Walters

I’ve always had an old school view on pain and discomfort, clearly introduced to me by my father. That view summarized as follows: if you’re doing something difficult and you want to succeed, you’re going to have to pay the price of admission. The challenge will hurt, it will knock you down, and it will frustrate you. I was taught to be ready for this pain and to fight back. I was taught that if I wanted to overcome the challenge badly enough, I could withstand anything and get what was mine.

But how do we actually develop that fight and toughness? Does it just happen by willing ourselves there? If I say I want it bad enough, will I come through when the chips are down? Just because I say I’ll run through a wall 20 miles into a marathon, will I actually do it when I’m tired and my brain is begging for respite?

I thought about a lot of this on our recent hike in Patagonia - 5 days covering 80 miles of rocky, hilly terrain. We each carried a 30+ pound pack with all of our food and gear. And while we did get pretty darn lucky with the weather, we faced quite a bit of cold, wind, and some rain. We were sweaty, smelly, hungry, tired and sore for five days. I’ve tackled a fair amount of physical challenges, but this one was difficult in its relentless grind.

Don’t get me wrong, it was all worth it. We saw some of the most breathtaking mountains, lakes, and glaciers imaginable. However, no matter the scenery, I found myself with aching feet and depleted energy midway through each of the last few days. And as is human nature, I immediately felt sorry for myself. “If I’m this tired now, how the hell am I going to make it 4 more hours? This hurts and it sucks.” I’m not sure if any of us can ever rewire our brain to avoid this gut reaction; instinctual emotions are nearly impossible to avoid. But we DO have control over how we react to these emotions once they arrive.

So on this trip, in those moments of pain, I worked to identify when I was having a pity party and consciously decide to just sit with my pain. Not dodge it, not wish it away, not wiggle out of it. And I didn’t grit my teeth to bully right through it. But instead, I welcomed the pain. I invited it into my house and let it sit down with me. I decided to calmly and quietly have a discussion with the pain and with my body. “My feet hurt, really bad. But that’s all it really is, it just hurts. Nothing is wrong, just my feet sending signals to my brain. All is good, I will deal with this.” I was able to calm my mind and diminish the power the pain previously had over me. I worked to turn off the alarms blaring in my head and calmly walked myself through the discomfort.

And you can practice this in your life without loving the outdoors, climbing mountains or wrestling with grizzly bears. We so often get caught in normal unplanned situations where we’re downright uncomfortable.

  • Waiting outside for the bus in the freezing cold?

  • Getting a blister on your run?

  • Get caught in the rain with no umbrella?

  • Need to climb a bunch of stairs after your run?

All of these things suck. You can either lean away from them or lean right into them. Don’t throw away these opportunities to harden yourself mentally. If you lean away from these uncomfortable moments in daily life when your mind is clear, how will you ever lean into pain when your mind is compromised during training and racing? As you gain better control over your emotions in life, you’ll be able to bring these skills over to your big workouts and races. You’ll have loads of practice staring down pain, calmly pushing it aside and continuing to take care of your business.

And let’s not confuse this development of toughness with bullishly working through everything. If it’s not safe to run outside, if you’re sick, feeling an injury coming on, or are mentally overwhelmed by the stresses of life - it’s important to listen to those signals and back off. 

But if you are faced with ‘normal’ running discomfort or crappy weather that’s still safe to run in - calmly stand up to the challenge and work through it!

Team News

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

"Hunger is the best sauce in the world." - Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

Cervantes Bar, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The glow of this late night, walk-up sandwich shop draws a hungry crowd like moths to a flame. I pushed through the discomfort of my limited Portuguese language ability to order the “Cervantes Especial e cerveja.” Hunger for a unique experience and a tasty snack helped me overcome the discomfort of the situation just like our hunger to be come better athletes drives us into the throes of training and racing. As we step into a new year, stay hungry!
— Coach Dan Kittaka
Coach Dan Kittaka Illustrations - January 2019 - DWRunning

December Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • No new updates in December!


  • Sarah Koelln - Rehoboth Beach Marathon - 3:27:42 (2nd fastest ever!)

Personal bests:

  • Rutger Stache - Cal International Marathon - 3:19:27

  • Kurtis Conkel - Cal International Marathon - 3:22:19

  • Jessica Sokolowski - Frigid 5k - 20:05 (& 2nd female!)

  • Rudy Valenta - NYRR Ted Corbitt 15k - 1:01:52

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Catharine Carlin - YMCA Santa 5k - 21:28 (2nd female!)

  • Erin Chenoweth - Santa Monica Venice Christmas Run - 19:28 (2nd female!)


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 1/5 - LR @ Morton Arboretum

  • 1/5 - Self Defense Workshop

  • 1/10 - Easy Run / Pint Night @ Goose Island

  • (Sun) 1/13 - LR @ Algonquin

  • 1/19 - LR, Gear Day, & Team Event @ Naperville Running Co.

  • 1/26 - No formal LR, team at Pettit Indoor Marathon Relay

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

January Birthdays

  • 1/3 - Shawn Lucas

  • 1/5 - Alex Gonzalez

  • 1/7 - Moira Ryan, Molly Barnes

  • 1/12 - Ryan Gooding

  • 1/14 - John Brassea

  • 1/19 - Rutger Stache

  • 1/20 - Dean Orvis, Kaitlyn Clark

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

December 2018

December 2018

Quote of the Month

“Geology is the study of pressure and time. That’s all it takes really... pressure... and time...” - Shawshank Redemption

Coach's Corner

By Coach Declan McDonnell

December is here, folks. It’s probably the best month during the worst season, which is a bit like the inflatable football field beer cooler I won at the family White Elephant last Christmas. I was pretty fired up at the time, but there wasn’t anyone handing out iPod videos either. That being said, now is the time to take advantage of the early season holiday cheer and roll right through those first few first sub zero days.

Every challenge brings opportunity, however, and there are two that come to mind with winter training - the first is a perk and the second is a habit to reinforce. The perk is that we don’t get to run in ideal conditions very often. It’s dark, there’s snow on the trail, we’re wearing more gear, and there’s somehow always a headwind from the north and south on the path. This can be useful! It means that it becomes that much more difficult to compare our present self to our past achievements. Learning to listen to your body and to understand your effort is so valuable. Our bodies adapt best when we learn how to stress it based on where we are today, not on where we have been in the past or where the GPS says we should be. Take advantage of the chance to put your head down and put in the work. When you look up again in the spring, you might surprise yourself.

The habit I challenge you to practice this winter is persistence. Persistence beats perfection any time of the year, but it’s something I have to remind myself more often during the winter months. Perfection is unsustainable, and often leads to a binary on/off mentality. This can manifest itself within a workout, or within a week of training. Just because you didn’t hit the times on the first few reps doesn’t mean you should skip the rest of the workout – refocus, reassess what’s attainable on that day, and achieve what you are capable of.  In the same vein, just because you skipped your run Monday and your mileage is off for the week doesn’t mean that the rest of the week is a loss – refocus, reassess what’s attainable, and get out there the next chance you get. 

Looking forward to getting some tough miles in this winter! 

Team News

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

Illinois Club Cross Country Championships, - November 2018

There is nothing quite like a cross country race! This past month, the ladies of DWRunning placed second at the Illinois Club Cross Country Championship.

Our next opportunity to race over hill and dale is at the 10th annual Daniel Burnham Open, January 20th, 2019. If you’re interested in participating, mark your calendar and talk to your coach! More details to follow!
— Coach Dan Kittaka
Coach Dan Kittaka Illustrations - December 2018 - DWRunning

November Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Women’s Marathon:

    • Amanda Porter - Indy Monumental Marathon - 2:55:57 (PR!)

  • Men’s 5k:

    • Matt Thor - San Antonio Food Bank 5k - 15:55 (& 3rd place!)

  • Men’s Marathon:

    • Kyle Somerfield - Indy Monumental Marathon - 2:40:46 (PR!) (was on list briefly before Loren's race the next day!)

    • Loren Newman - Hangzhou Marathon - 2:36:47

Caleb Kadera & Chris McGarry Indy Marathon 2018 DWRunning


  • Lana Macnider-Lazaridis - Indy Monumental Marathon - 3:14:41

  • Yuki Hirao - Indy Monumental Marathon - 3:23:35

  • Alex Weems - NYC Marathon - 3:04:04

Personal bests:

  • Alex Nordin - Indy Monumental HM - 1:20:47

  • Moira Ryan - Indy Monumental HM - 1:24:23

  • Adrienne Eynon - Indy Monumental HM - 1:25:44

  • Brett Joseph - Indy Monumental HM - 1:42:48

  • Chris McGarry - Indy Monumental Marathon - 2:44:12

  • Caleb Kadera - Indy Monumental Marathon - 2:47:22

  • Dave Alvarez - Indy Monumental Marathon - 3:13:46

  • Maggie Jones - Indy Monumental Marathon - 3:24:03

  • Joanne Molinaro - Indy Monumental Marathon - 4:15:22

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Hot Chocolate 15k - 58:03 (3rd overall!)

  • Kwang-Youn Kim - Hot Chocolate 15k - 1:01:31

  • Molly Hill - Hot Chocolate 15k - 1:22:29

  • Laura Julien - NYC Marathon - 3:19:50

  • Rudy Valenta - Race to Deliver 4M - 25:26

  • Eric Cale - Mighty Gobler 5k - 16:56 (2nd place!)

    Katie Dudek - IA Turkey Trot 5k - 20:48 (female champ!)

  • Rudy Valenta - Prospect Park Turkey Trot 5M - 32:46

  • Jessica Sokolowski - Schaumburg Turkey Trot HM - 1:33:58 (& AG Win!)

Top Placings & Age Group Wins

  • Stacy Nigrelli - Indy Monumental Marathon - 3:26:58 (AG win + record!)

  • Brian Robertson - Tyranena Beer Run 1/6 Marathon - 25:49 (2nd overall!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - IL Club XC Invitational - 19:12 (3rd overall!)

  • Katy Cranfill - Waco Turkey Trot - 20:38 (champion!)

  • Matt Stanesby - Batesville Turkey Trot 10k - 37:43 (champ!)

  • Jeannie Sullivan - Ann Arbor Turkey Trot 5k - 18:47 (2nd place!)

  • Dan Kittaka - Flying Turkey 5k - 16:50 (3rd place!)

  • Stacy Nigrelli - PNC Turkey Trot 5M - 37:13 (AG champ!)

  • Adrienne Eynon - W&S Thanksgiving Day 10k - 39:39 (AG champ!)

  • Curt Hansman - Detroit Turkey Trot 10k - 54:58 (AG champ!)

  • Allie Walters - Naperville Turkey Trot 5k - 19:06 (AG champ!)

  • Christian Madridejos - Schaumburg Turkey Trot 5k - 18:49 (AG champ!)

DWRunning Chicago Mag AOY Nominees 2018


Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 12/1 - LR @ Morton Arb

  • 12/8 - LR @ Busse Woods (weather permitting)

  • 12/15 - LR @ Algonquin / Huntington Hill

  • 12/15 - DWR Holiday Party @ Dan & Allie’s

  • 12/22 - LR @ Waterfall Glen (weather permitting)

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

DECEMBER Birthdays

  • 12/4 - Brian Lesiewicz

  • 12/5 - Ryan Jaskiewicz & Stephanie Miller

  • 12/21 - Eric Cale

  • 12/25 - Lana Macnider-Lazaridis

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

November 2018

November 2018

Quote of the Month

“We compete not for the sake of defeating others, but in order to bring forward our own capacity. Our best capacity comes forward only when there are other people around us. They inspire us to bring forward our utmost capacity, and we inspire them to bring forward their utmost capacity.” - Sri Chinmoy

Coach's Corner

By Coach Dan Kittaka


A few startled anglers crane their necks, not the least among them, a great blue heron who subsequently took flight, soaring over the source of the joyous cry, our teammate, Paul Graessle. This expression of excitement and joy was contagious. I found myself startled into another level of appreciation and celebration of the run.  

This moment reminds me of the importance of cultivating community highlighted in Brad Stulberg’s excellent piece “It's Okay to Be Good and Not Great.” If you haven’t read it yet, do so now! I’ve been ruminating on its map towards long-term success on a near daily basis since I first read it a few weeks ago. In the piece, Stulberg calls out the dangers of sacrificing community on the altar of productivity in our pursuit of success. He urges, “The extra effort it takes to regularly be with others ‘in real life’ is worth it.”

I’d like to address a couple stumbling blocks associated with this concept. First, you don’t need to have Paul-like levels of charisma or a certain level of success to contribute to the DWR community. None of us have “arrived” so let’s journey together. Second, while physical proximity is important, if you’re not local, that doesn’t automatically exclude you from benefitting from and contributing to our community. Let’s replace “in real life” with “real in life” whether local or not. Stulberg highlights that research has shown “the more you can bring your entire self to everything you do—the good, the bad, the sad, and the ugly—the better you’ll feel and the better you’ll be.”

Let’s keep getting better together!

Coach Dan Kittaka Illustrations - November 2018 - DWRunning

Team News

  • We’re having an inner-team “competition” to see who hits the team’s 500th PR! The person to do so will get a pair of shoes from NRC paid for by DWR!

  • We’re sending a group to the Illinois Club XC meet Nov 11 - if interested in joining, let Allie know!

  • We have a new partner, RXBAR! Check out details here.

  • We’re heading back to the Pettit Indoor Marathon Relay on Jan 26 for the 4th straight year. If interested, sign up here!

  • DWR is hosting a Self Defense Workshop with IMPACT Chicago Sat, Jan 5. The class is full but if you want to be on the wait list, let Allie know

  • DWRunning pom hats and winter headbands are back and for sale! $10 each - let Allie know if you’re interested!

  • We’re no longer able to offer Google Wallet as a payment method. See available payment methods here.

  • Welcome to the team assistant coach Shawn Lucas! Read more about Shawn here.

  • Workout Wednesdays will be on a break for the winter. Look for them to start back up in the spring!

October Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Women's Marathon:

    • Erica van Heerden - Chicago Marathon - 2:57:40 (PR!)

  • Men’s Marathon:

    • Eric Cale - Chicago Marathon - 2:41:51 (PR!)

Race Wins:

  • Jess Bird - Glacial Trail 50k - 5:12

Age Group Wins / Top WMM Placings

  • Dave Walters - Chicago Marathon - 2:55:34 (2nd in AG!)

  • Sascha Edge - Carerra de los Muertos 5k - 18:24


Personal bests:

  • Laura Julien - Montgomery 10k - 41:57 (race win!)

  • Gina Rumore - Twin Cities 10k - 42:34 (AG champ!)

  • Sarah Koelln - Twin Cities 10M - 1:15:15

  • Chris Porst - Chicago Marathon - 2:43:10

  • Alex Weems - Chicago Marathon - 2:51:49

  • Sascha Edge - Chicago Marathon - 2:51:11

  • Connor Matheson - Chicago Marathon - 2:48:38

  • Dave Alvarez - Chicago Marathon - 3:14:19

  • Tim Maier - Chicago Marathon - 3:15:53

  • Kurtis Conkel - Chicago Marathon - 3:30:48

  • Katie Dudek - Chicago Marathon - 3:43:42

  • Aaron Agustin - Chicago Marathon - 3:48:08

  • Jess Vogl - Chicago Marathon - 3:49

  • Joanne Molinaro - Chicago Marathon - 4:25:04

  • Sarah Koelln - Halloween HM - 1:40:44

  • Sean Packard - Dublin Marathon - 3:42:55


  • Jess Bird - Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon - 3:19:26

  • Mark Catania - Chicago Marathon - 2:54:59

  • Brian Lesiewicz - Chicago Marathon - 2:53:30

  • Kyle Somerfield - Chicago Marathon 2:50:52

  • Amanda Porter - Chicago Marathon - 3:07:34

  • Kim Weiss - Chicago Marathon - 3:08:53

  • Katelyn Draths - Chicago Marathon - 3:13:46

  • Meg Sullivan - Chicago Marathon - 3:23:53

  • Sam Greenwood - Chicago Marathon - 3:24:32

  • Yuki Hirao - Chicago Marathon - 3:30:46

  • Blake Renaud - Marine Corps Marathon - 2:54:39 (debut!)

DWRunning Chicago Marathoners

Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 11/3 - Indy Monumental Marathon & HM + post-race party

  • 11/10 - LR @ Morton Arboretum

  • 11/17 - LR @ Waterfall Glen + bRUNch

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

November Birthdays

  • 11/4 - Alex Miller

  • 11/5 - Kate Ander

  • 11/8 - Annie Conway

  • 11/22 - Laura Julien & Morgan Lesiewicz

  • 11/29 - Rich Calvario

  • 11/30 - Larry Kravets

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

October 2018

October 2018

Quote of the Month

"There is no avoiding pain, especially if you’re going after ambitious goals. Believe it or not, you are lucky to feel that kind of pain if you approach it correctly, because it is a signal that you need to find solutions so you can progress. If you can develop a reflexive reaction to physical pain that causes you to reflect on it rather than avoid it, it will lead to your rapid learning and evolving." - Ray Dalio

Coach's Corner

Happy October all! I'm so pumped up to be right in the thick of racing season. The Berlin Marathon crew got the ball rolling nicely; let's keep the pedal down!

I really like the above quote from Ray Dalio, and with the fall racing season upon us, it's a fantastic reminder of what's in store for us when we toe the line. All racers have similar doubts as race day approaches - "Am I ready for the challenge of race day? It's going to hurt a lot! Am I ready for that?" First, the answer is YES. Second, pain is often twisted into something bad. Something that means you're doing poorly. A feeling that should be avoided. However, the only way you are going to accomplish a goal (a PR, placing well, etc) is by going through pain. A lot of it. If you refuse to acknowledge RIGHT NOW that you will go through pain, you will not be prepared for it on race day and in the compromised mental state that accompanies late race fatigue, you will back off and give pain power over you. If instead you view pain as a GOOD thing (since on the other side of pain is success!), you will be ready for it. When pain comes, you will calmly identify it, embrace it, move it aside, and continue executing and competing.  

There is nothing wrong with pain.  It is supposed to be there and it actually lights the path towards victory.  Make sure you follow along!

Team News

  • We’ll be hosting our 4th annual DWRunning Ludington Team Camp Labor Day weekend 2019 - hold the date!

  • We’re hosting a post-Chicago Marathon party - come celebrate if you’re racing and come celebrate our racers if you aren’t! RSVP here.

  • Reminder that we have a team calendar accessible from the Team Portal or on Google Calendar (which you can add to your own calendar!)

  • We’re updating strength/GS routines and our Training Docs - if you have any feedback for us, submit it here!

  • Allie & Dan are volunteering at the Northern Illinois Food Bank November 7 and 14 from 1-3pm. Let one of us know if you want to join!

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

Refuge Les Mottets, - September 2018

Coach Dan Kittaka Illustrations - October 2018 - DWRunning
Welcome to Refuge Les Mottets, a remote hostel on the Tour du Mont Blanc. On the tour, it became routine to climb thousands of feet only to immediately unravel that work with a rapid and equal descent. Both the peaks and the valleys were fleeting reminders to find value and joy the in-between times. Not every run, race, or even training cycle will be a peak and, with perseverance, valleys will pass, too. Finding value and joy in the in-between has made running so rich for me and I hope the same for you.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

September Race Highlights

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Men's 10k:

    • Ryan Jaskiewicz - Mag Mile 10k - 32:54 (PR!)

  • Women's HM:

    • Lauren Zumbach - Chicago HM - 1:18:21 (PR!)

    • Amanda Porter - Chicago HM - 1:23:54 (7 min PR!)

  • Women’s 50k:

    • Jess Bird - North Face Endurance Challenge WI 50k - 4:41:12 (PR and champ!)

DWRunning Alpine HM 2018

Personal bests:

  • Chris Porst - Half Madness HM - 1:18:25

  • Jess Vogl - Half Madness HM - 1:44:21

  • Gina Rumore - Labor Day 5k - 20:39

  • Anando Naqui - BQ.2 Marathon - 3:02:15 (BQ!)

  • Melissa Urban - Mag Mile 5k - 30:01

  • Katy Daker - Mag Mile 10k - 47:21

  • Malla Seljeseth - Naperville Trails HM - 1:59:02

  • Kwang-Youn Kim - Berlin Marathon - 3:11:57 (BQ!)

  • Rudy Valenta - Berlin Marathon - 3:16:13

    Moira Ryan - Chicago HM - 1:25:4

  • Lana Macnider-Lazaridis - Chicago HM - 1:26:09

  • Adrienne Eynon - Chicago HM - 1:28:08

  • Stephanie Miller - Chicago HM - 1:31:45

  • Katy Daker - Indy Women’s HM - 1:41:24

  • Malla Seljeseth - Bucktown 5k - 24:46

Race Wins:

  • Sean Gill - St. Pet's 5k - 18:43

DWRunning Chicago Half Marathon 2018

Age Group Wins

  • Chris Porst - Half Madness HM - 1:18:25

  • Curt Hansman - Half Madness HM - 2:10:07

  • Stacy Nigrelli - Gatorade Steelers 5k - 21:52

  • Dave Walters - Alpine HM - 1:21:58

  • Kim Weiss - Alpine HM - 1:27:50

  • Sean Gill - Naperville Trails HM - 1:25:33

  • Ryan Gooding - Race Judicata - 17:11

  • Stacy Nigrelli - Chicago HM - 1:37:46 (90% AG rating!!)

DWRunning Ludington Camp

Things We're Vibing

Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 10/6 - LR @ Waterfall Glen

  • 10/7 - Chicago Marathon & post-race party @ Anando’s!

  • 10/13 - LR @ Busse Woods

  • 10/20 - LR @ Waterfall Glen & bRUNch

  • 10/25 - Fireside chat

  • 10/27 - LR @ Prairie Path

Check out the calendar (and add it to your own calendar!) here.

October Birthdays

  • 10/3 - Colleen Baker

  • 10/8 - Sarah Duffy & Sarah Koelln

  • 10/9 - Dan Walters & Declan McDonnell

  • 10/11 - Curt Hansman

  • 10/15 - Jess Bird

  • 10/18 - Damon King

  • 10/19 - Nimrod Gutman

  • 10/20 - Melissa Urban

  • 10/21 - Katy Daker

  • 10/25 - Julie Bruns

  • 10/30 - Aaron Agustin

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!

September 2018

September 2018

Coach's Corner

Happy (almost) September all! Coach Dan Walters here and welcome to our first monthly team newsletter! I'm super excited to use this as a platform to share DWRunning Team news, the first installment of illustrations by our talented artist (and coach) Dan Kittaka, standout team race performances and upcoming events with you.

This past week I was watching an episode of Jerry Seinfeld's show "Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee" with Dave Chappelle.  I've only seen a few episodes but this one caught my eye since, well, Dave is the best.  Not only because he's a brilliant performer, joke writer and social commentator, but because he's fearless.  He understands that in order to go into uncharted waters on stage and get monster laughs, he needs to be willing to fail.  And not only willing to fail, but excited to fail, since this is where true growth lives.  This line from Dave about having a tough time on stage really showed that:

"I'm a real upside oriented guy.  If I start tanking, even if I'm bombing, THAT'S fun.  'Can I get out of this?'"

As we are all working towards big races this fall, we are all training HARD to get there.  With big training comes risk as we push ourselves harder than ever; some sessions will go great, others won't. If your goals are big enough, failure is not an anomaly, it is a given.  Everyone goes through it and it's part of the gig. What I really want all of us to aim for (this includes myself both as an athlete and coach) is that WHEN we're in the middle of a workout or race that on the surface isn't going well, to think "can I get out of this?" and "how can I learn from this and what silver linings can I find?".  Not after the fact, but right then and there, right in the middle of the struggle.  Can you run with good form? Can you control your breathing? Work on hydration/fueling? Work on staying positive and becoming tougher? Can you compete hard with those around you? Re-frame your thinking so you're always on offense, always willing to learn and embrace the hand you've been dealt!

Team News

  • We've started up Workout Wednesdays on Instagram where we'll be featuring a new DWRunner's workout each week!
  • For those racing Indy Monumental, please record your plans in this Google doc
  • Available the Friday/Saturday of Chicago Marathon weekend? We need volunteers for the expo - email Allie if you're free!
  • NRC accidentally gave us a 5% smaller discount on Brooks items at our NRC/Brooks day in July. They've given us some Brooks goodies to make up for it - see Allie at a LR if you made a Brooks purchase that day!

An Illustration by Coach Dan Kittaka

"Ecola State Park near Cannon Beach, OR - July 13th, 2018". The described run can be seen here.

Coach Dan Kittaka Illustrations - Sept 2018 DWRunning Newsletter
These tenacious trees reminded me of the saplings we plant each day in our fitness forests. They bear evidence of the winds off the Pacific while still standing tall and proud. After completing this sketch, I added to my own fitness forest by running on the neighboring Lewis and Clark trail.
— Coach Dan Kittaka

August Race Results

Updates to the DWR Top 10 Lists (Men / Women):

  • Men's 5k:
    • Chris Porst - Burgers & Beer 5k - 16:47 (PR!)
  • Men's 10k:
    • Alex Weems - BTN B1G 10k - 38:21 (PR!)
  • Women's 10k:
    • Lauren Zumbach - BTN B1G 10k - 36:43 (PR!)
    • Erica van Heerden - BTN B1G 10k - 38:30 (PR!)

Personal bests:

  • Anando Naqui - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:48
  • Sascha Edge - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:56
  • Mischa Rihm - Burgers & Beer 5k - 18:48
  • Stephanie Miller - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:23
  • Sam Greenwood - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:24
  • Dave Alvarez - Burgers & Beer 5k - 19:50
  • Kate Ander - Stan's Donuts 5k - 20:55
  • Annie Conway - BTN B1G 10k - 46:03
  • Brett Joseph - BTN B1G 10k - 47:04
  • Laura Julien - BTN B1G 5k - 20:17
  • Sarah Koelln - Tunnel Vision Marathon - 3:25:37 (first time BQ!)

Race Wins:

  • Lauren Zumbach - Burgers & Beer 5k - 17:26
  • Bri Rohne - Bluff Tuff 35k - 3:08:02
  • Julie Crutchfield - Panda Bear Rail Trail Night Run HM - 1:30:47
DWRunning Burgers & Beer 2018

DWRunning Team

Things We're Vibing

Upcoming Events & Major Races

  • 8/31-9/3 - Ludington Team Camp
  • 9/1 - LR @ Waterfall Glen
  • 9/2 - Half Madness HM
  • 9/8 - LR @ Prairie Path
  • 9/15 - LR @ Busse Woods & bRUNch
  • 9/16 - Berlin Marathon, Fox Valley Marathon/HM
  • 9/22 - LR @ Waterfall Glen
  • 9/23 - Chicago HM
  • 9/29 - LR @ Salt Creek Trail

September Birthdays

  • 9/1 - Katie Dudek
  • 9/4 - Bess Ritter
  • 9/7 - Blake Renaud & Kurtis Conkel
  • 9/8 - Erica van Heerden & Laura Woodbeck
  • 9/10 - Valere Guertin
  • 9/18 - Meg Sullivan & Sam Greenwood
  • 9/19 - Kristina Aubert
  • 9/27 - Anthony Molinaro
  • 9/28 - Lauren Zumbach
  • 9/30 - Alex Nordin

Meet the Newest DWRunners!

Have a witty or punny 'name' for a section above? Like something that's included or feel that something's missing? Have a recommendation for a recipe, article, or podcast to share next month? Please feel free to leave any feedback you may have on how to make DWRunning's monthly newsletter better!