LOUIS TRUFFA    EVENT:  Paliozoic Trail Run  DATE:  03/25/2017  DIST:  25k  TIME:  2:34:27  AWARD:  AG 1st.  PR?:  yes     JIM BRUCE    EVENT:  March Madness 1/2 Marathon  DATE:  03/19/2017  DIST:  13.1  TIME:  1:35:11  AWARD:  No  PR?:  no     JIM BRUCE    EVENT:  Running-O-Green  DATE:  03/05/2017  DIST:  8K  TIME:  34:12  AWARD:  Yes  PR?:  yes     JOSEPH WERNER    EVENT:  running o the green  DATE:  03/05/2017  DIST:  8k  TIME:  39:27  AWARD:  no  PR?:  no     MEGAN BREWCZYNSKI    EVENT:  Oak Forest Fleadh 5k  DATE:  03/04/2017  DIST:  3.1  TIME:  20:38:09  AWARD:  Yes  PR?:  no     JOSEPH WERNER    EVENT:  Frosty 5k  DATE:  01/14/2017  DIST:  3.1  TIME:  23:26  AWARD:  yes  PR?:  no  
announcements banner

Joe's Announcements

10/11/16

Congratulations to all runners who had the courage to line up and start the Chicago Marathon.

Our annual banquet will be on Friday October 21, 2016. This is the Yankee Runners banquet; it is not just for the marathon. Everybody is welcome. Come and catch up with your friends. Details are on the web site. Get your pictures to Jim Bruce soon, and the story of your year to me. I often use parts of your stories of the marathon and year in my comments.

There is still time to sign up and attend. You need to contact me ASAP at gokarts@juno.com subject line marathon banquet.

For the next couple weeks the group will be split up, some of us recovering, some taking family time. We do have a sizable group getting ready for Indy or New York; at this time I’m not sure where they will meet for Saturday’s run. Watch Yankee Runners face book page for the latest info.

10/05/16

The time will come when we can’t do this, but this is not the time. We finish the training and on Sunday we will finish the race. It has been a treat to share the past 18 weeks with you. It will be a privilege for me to share the racecourse with you on Sunday. I hope to see many of you before the race and all of you after.

If you have any issue with your shoe tag or lack there of, let me know. I may be able to help.

Don’t forget the bus will leave Running for Kicks at 4:45am arrive at the CARA compound around 5:45am.

Write your name and Yankee Runners on the back of your gear check. This will help me keep track of who may still be out.

I will have tickets to the post marathon banquet with me after the race on Sunday.

Okay people 'Let’s run'.

09/27/16

Don’t you love the taper? I know I do. Just stick with the program. There is nothing you can do at this point to help your race. Well maybe running the last four or six with us on Sunday will help. You can hurt yourself much easier then you can help yourself.

God gets pretty busy around mile 22. On Saturday Vincent will lead us in prayer to get a head start. Vincent is studying to be minister. I would come on Saturday just to hear him speak.

Don’t forget to bring $25.00 and purchase your banquet ticket. Purchasing you tickets early will make my job much easier.

On race morning a bus will leave from Running for Kicks at 4:45am and go to the Palmer house. I hope we arrive while the bathrooms are still clean and the lines are short. No need to sign up, just bring $10.00. All are welcome.

If you are checking gear in the Cara compound write your name and Yankee Runners in BOLD letters on the back of your ticket. This will help me keep track of everybody.

A friend of ours is collecting new and gently used men’s athletic shoes to be donated to a VA hospital’s men’s closet. This is an on going need. If you have nothing now maybe weeks or months in the future you will. I’m always easy to get in touch with.

09/19/16

I was hoping this week’s e-mail would be one word TAPER. Unfortunately there are a few more reminders we need to send. Great job running your 20 this weekend. Whether you did it on the lakefront with us or made other arrangements, you dug down and got it done. Conditions were not perfect but better then other runs we’ve had this year. You never know what we will get on race day that is why we train in whatever conditions we encounter.

We will be collecting for our post marathon banquet the next two Saturdays. Cost is up to $25.00 this year. I’ve always found the food and service to be good. Then there is the company it doesn’t get any better. If you have no pictures of your year, you better take some. Jim Bruce will put together a slide show that will be shown at the banquet. We will let you know how to get them to him soon. PLEASE purchase you ticket on the next two Saturdays.

On Sunday October 2 we will gather and run the final six miles of the marathon course. If this is your first it should be required, if you’ve done it before it is still FUN to run the final miles feeling fresh. I hope you join us. Cost is $5.00 for the bus. Details on the web site.

There will a one-way bus on Marathon morning leaving from Running for Kicks. Cost will be determined by attendance. I won’t let it go over $10.00.

09/13/16

We have entered the week that those of us who are training for the Chicago love to hate. This week we will run higher mileage then any other week in the program. While we may not like the high mileage, it will give us the confidence and last little bit of training we will need on October 9. I want all of you to respect the mileage but DO NOT FEAR it. YOU are ready. On Sunday when you are eating a delicious burger prepared with love, you will have entered the TAPER. The taper will allow your body to heal and will make you better on race day. There is little or nothing you can do after Sunday to improve your race. The fact is it will be much easier to hurt your race then to help your race. Don’t overdo it. Remember what Mike told us “treat this event like what it is, a training run, not a race.” I can’t wait to cook for you on Sunday.

Our sponsors will provide burgers, buns, tomatoes, lettuce, ketchup, mustard and if I remember onions. Many times in the past, runners have brought snacks to share. Feel free to do this if you want.

If you have any questions about how this run works consult the web site and if you’re still not clear please feel free to call me 708-870-6350. DON’T call me Saturday evening call me earlier in the week.

If you have any issues with your bib CALL me ASAP.

I will be collecting for our post marathon banquet on Saturday September 24 and on October 1. The banquet will take place on Friday Oct 21. The cost this year will be $25.00. This is a Yankee Runner event all people are welcome. Please bring your support crew. All the details will soon be available on the web site.

Don’t forget our last six-mile run on October 2. Cost is $5.00 for the bus. All are welcome. See web site for details.

09/06/16

We are getting there. It is exciting to use the word we instead of you, now that I will enter the battle with you. We only have a few more long runs before the taper begins. I won’t waste your time so just a few reminders.

Saturday we start at the ball fields which are located off RT 83 around 7700 west which is between Harlem and Southwest highway. We will start at 7:00am.

Packet pickup for the R2R 20 mile run will also take place Saturday. We can pick up our packets at Nova Care located at 17517 80th Ave, Tinley Park, IL. While it is unfortunate this week we will start in Palos and packets need to be picked up in Tinley, it is still better then going to Naperville. No whining.

Don’t forget we are collecting for the troops Saturday. It was suggested to allow cash donations to assist with the shipping. In would rather have supplies but can see the need for help with shipping. If you can’t get to the store and collect some supplies I will graciously accept help with shipping.

If you are not planning on joining us on Sunday as we bike the course you should reconsider. This is a fun, yet informative event. I love seeing the course from a bike and am always happy to tell you what to expect where. See the web site for details.

Saturday September 17 sleep in and enjoy your day because on Sunday the 18th we will join together will runners from all over the Chicagoland area and get a taste of what race day will be like. Get up early, drive to the bus, get to the starting area, wait to get started, all the time worrying about all the things you have to worry about on race day.

On Sunday Oct 2 we will provide you an unique chance to see the final six miles while you legs and mind still work. If you do nothing else YOU SHOULD DO THIS. This is very beneficial. See web site for details.

It is still to be determined if we will have a bus on marathon morning. I will wait for input from you guys.

Our post marathon banquet will be on Friday October 21 at Micadoons. Details will be coming.

08/29/16

The rain could not stop the run and certainly would not stop Astronaut eggs. Thanks to everybody who made an always-challenging event work out nicely. Special thanks to Terry Finn, Rusty Kruk, Russ Johnson and seems like I can’t thank any Yankee Runners without having Jim Bruce’s name mentioned. My daughters and granddaughter made and delivered the pancakes. The weather conditions added a little stress but in the end it was all good.

Jim Bruce not only made the coffee, put up the changing tent, ran the mileage, stayed until everything was cleaned up, he went out on Sunday and took first place in his age at Fort to Base race on Sunday.

Saturday is a long run of 18-20 miles. We will start at 6:30am. Come strong or stay at home. The following Saturday September 10 is a cutback week and we will start at 7:00am and meet at the ball fields on RT 83 in Palos.

Don’t forget we will Bike the Course on September 11. Details on the website.

08/23/16

The run started like too many. Temperature was too high, humidity was too high and storms were predicted before we finished. The only thing that was good was the company. We weren’t too far into the run when I realized going out would be okay but coming back would get hard. Then the rain and wind came; inexperienced runners thought the rain would make things worse. Truth is the rain cooled us off and since we could not get any wetter then we were from sweat, the rain was a blessing. It allowed me to finish with the group right on pace. I’ll take rain over heat and humidity any day. We were lucky there was no lightening with the storm.

Don’t forget Saturday is our world famous Astronaut egg extravaganza. Allow plenty time after your run and bring $10.00. Yes that is more then in past years but this year we are using it as a fundraiser to help with whatever our group needs. This event is open to ALL Yankee Runners not just those taking part in Cara’s marathon training program. If you are not currently training with use us this as an excuse to stop by and catch up with us.

Remember September 10th we will run the opposite direction starting by the ball fields in Palos. This is also the day we can pick up our R2R 20 packet at Nova Care in Tinley. Bad timing but it is still better then going to Naperville.

September 11 we will bike the course. Please plan on attending.

08/15/16

“We choose to do these things not because they’re easy but because they’re hard.” That also is why we run marathons. This would make no sense if it was easy. Stay strong don’t worry if you struggle. Many of us are struggling with the weather this summer. One foot in front of the other, left, right, left right. We’ll get there. Some sooner then others but in the end it won’t matter.

Don’t forget to register with CARA for the 20 mile run. If you signed up for the program it is free. Sign up for our bus also - you can email John at jjconley80@gmail.com or respond to the Facebook event Jim Bruce created. We only have about 10 seats left.

Saturday Aug 27 be sure to allow extra time for your run. That is our Astronaut egg breakfast following our run.

September 11 join us as we bike the course. This is a fun way to see the course for the first time or just join us for a leisurely morning ride.

08/09/16

We enjoyed a nice cut back run Saturday, now the mileage ramps up. I’m sure some of you will be joining our Captain Kirk club. 15-17-19 coming this Saturday with wet weather in the forecast. We’ve run in rain many times, it is not an excuse to miss an important run. Only if you’re the Wicked Witch of the West will give you an excused absence. I think the rain will be over and cooler air will filter in by 6:30am anyway.

Don’t forget to register with CARA for the 20 mile run. If you signed up for the program it is free. Sign up for our bus also - you can email John at jjconley80@gmail.com or respond to the Facebook event Jim Bruce created. We only have about 10 seats left.

We had a new runner in our group last Saturday running her first marathon. I casually inquired why a marathon. She gave me her reason. There is only one reason for running marathons. I will share that reason with the overall group before our run Saturday.

With the heat and humidity coming during the week be careful. I want to see all of you this weekend."

08/03/16

Before I say anything I need to thank our wonderful group leaders for not only handling our water stops but for making sure we had COLD water the past couple weeks. The past couple weeks have been beyond warm. The Enemy has tested our will and now he understands we're for real. We understand we are training for a marathon not a sprint. We know this will not be easy, but then we never expected it to be. That reminds me of a story. Since I don't tell stories on cut back weeks I'll save it for later.

We are nearly half way through the training on the calendar but not in the mileage. Enjoy the cut back run on Saturday because it gets real after that. Our will, will be tested. This training will ask for more then you think you have, but less then you do. Stick with the program, encourage your friends when they struggle, accept encouragement when you struggle. I have been asked many times if I could train for a marathon alone. My answer was always the same "yeah, but why would I want to". I'm not sure that answer is correct any longer. I now accept the fact I need you guys. I hope in some way I can repay you for the encouragement and inspiration you have given me in the past.

Remember you need to sign up for the Ready 2 Run 20 miler with CARA. You need to sign up for the bus with the Yankee Runners. If you don't sign up with CARA you won't get a bib and won't be allowed to run. If you don't sign up for our bus you will need to drive all the way up north run 20 miles south then have CARA bus you back up north to drive back home. If you sign up for our bus you can park in a pay lot at the finish. Pay a fee for the bus, ride up north, run 20 miles south and then do what the Yankee Runners do, picnic. Our sponsors will provide burgers and the trimming. I'll cook and some people will bring snacks to share.

07/18/16

The most important thing this week is to know we will be starting at 6:30am for the next 6 weeks. In an attempt to keep the group together we have changed our starting time to 6:30. This is what we call a compromise - we all give a little.

Dates have been set for biking the course and running the last six miles. We will bike the course on September 11 and run the last six miles on October 2. Check the web site for all the details.

As the mileage ramps up along with the heat and humidity, Jim Bruce will continue to set up a changing booth for us to use. This will allow us to spend a few minutes socializing after our run and driving home in dry cloths. Thanks Jim.

The reports I have say the Yankee Runners performed very well at the Jim’s Bridge to a Brighter Future aid station, handing out water and cold sponges.

It seemed everybody who attended our Ice cream Social enjoyed a very pleasant evening. I would be lying if I did not say I was a little disappointed with the turnout. We’ll have to consider if we keep this event on our calendar in the future.

07/05/16

The good weather we enjoyed for our training run on Saturday held out for our races on Monday July 4th. Many of us raced in a 5k Tinley Park. The Yankee Runners did what they normally do. They ran like the wind from start to finish. While we were waiting for many of you to get your trophy’s we did what we do after we run, we ate. Thanks to my daughters and granddaughter for making pancakes and delivering them right on time. Jim and Linda Bruce provided fresh coffee.

On a personal note, my 10 year old grandson Zach, ran his first ever 5k and ran a 29:06. Good job Zack.

You won’t be getting weekly e-mail all training season. I hope by now you are familiar with the web site and will keep up with coming events there.

We should be settling into a routine for training. You can change pace groups whenever want but should start to feel comfortable with your group. If you’re not contact me and let’s see what we can do to fix the issue. I want all of you to enjoy your training so if there is anything I can do, let me know.

Saturday Leah Bohr, Cara’s new director of training will join us for our run. As we do for any new runners let’s make her feel welcome. If you have any issues with Cara this is your chance to make your opinion known.

06/28/16

With our first cutback week in the books things should start falling into place. Some of you will still need to find your correct long run training pace. We have group leaders every 30 seconds so you should be able to find the right pace without too much effort.

If you go to the web site you will see we have descriptions of a few coming events. All the dates have not yet been set but things are starting to take shape.

On Saturday July 2 we will have Yankee Runners shirts of assorted sizes available for sale. The cost is $15.00 on Saturday July 2 and at the Tinley Park 5k on the 4th of July. After that the cost will go to $20.00. If you think you will need to try one on get to the run on Saturday early. We can’t have a bunch of sweaty runners trying on shirts after a run.

Stay strong.

06/20/16

Nothing I ever did before or after was as rewarding as finishing my first marathon. If you stick with this program you too will know what it is like to finish a marathon. There will be a price to pay. There will be obstacles to overcome, sacrifices that need to be made. All I can tell you is it will be worth it.

At some point you may wonder if you can do this? My answer is always the same “You can, will you?”

Don’t sweat the small stuff. For now keep your eye on the big picture. There will be time to worry about the little stuff.

Cost of the 5k race we do on July fourth goes up on June 24. Sign up now. My family will provide pancakes after the race while we wait for many of our friends to collect the Awards they will earn.

Let's gather for a toast and fellowship as we bid farewell to Mark Miller and Jolene Miller, as they are starting a new chapter of their life in SC.
Thursday June 23
6:30-
Trio Bar
11845 SW Highway
Palos Hts

DON”T FORGET our Ice cream social the evening of July 16.

Stay strong I’ll see you Saturday.

06/13/16

Week one is in the books. I always like it when we get everybody back, especially on the first week. It was a little warm; if you think that was bad think about that on an 18-20 miler. We’ll show you how to survive, stick with us.

Remember last week was the only week I will wait until 7:00am to start announcements. Some weeks they will be longer but I will never finish past 7:00am. That means at times I will start like the book says, at 6:50am. If you want to hear them be on time.

Saturday I will speak briefly about pacing. It is as important for you experienced runners as it is for the new runners.

In the next couple weeks I will get the dates, times and descriptions of events coming up to John to put on the web site.

First thing will be our July 4th 5k in Tinley Park. It is on July 4th. (That’s a joke) It now appears that the competition will get harder. I heard that Zachary Thomas Gordon will be taking part. I will check this out and keep you informed.

See you Saturday. If I don’t I will talk about you the whole way.

06/06/16

Thanks to all the Yankee Runner who came out to Mokena on Saturday. Not only did we defend our first place team speed finish we were able to welcome a group of Boston bombing survivors.

I want to congratulate the Yankee Runners who mentored cancer survivors and took part in the Hope 5k on Sunday. Training and running is one thing but mentoring and showing kids a healthy lifestyle takes your game to another level. GOOD JOB!!

Speed workouts will take place at Chicago Christian High School on Wednesdays at 6:00pm.

Our first long Saturday run for 2016 summer marathon training will be this Saturday. There is still time to sign up. If you are not doing a marathon this you are still welcome to join us. Maybe to help out you would be willing to help our group leaders with water stops. Contact me at gokarts@juno.com

Jerry Davis from Nova Care will be there to see we get off to a proper start.

06/02/16

There is still time to join us on Saturday in Mokena’s Summertime Stride 5k. They do day of registration.

Dave Fortier a Boston Bombing Survivor along with three other survivors will join the Yankee Runners and take part in the race. Dave is involved with The One World Strong Trek, which is a group crossing America thanking people for the support they showed the Boston Bombing victims. I won’t put any words in their mouths I will let them speak for themselves on Saturday. I think it is pretty cool that they reached out to us and asked to join us on Saturday. I look forward to speaking in person with them.

Marathon training starts on June 6 with the first long run on Saturday the 11th. There is still time to sign up. I hope to see you at the race and if not then on the 11th.

05/24/16

Marathon training has not even started but things are starting to take shape. Speed work will start Wednesday 6:00pm at Chicago Christian High School. Our ice cream social’s tentative date is the evening of July 16. Astronaut eggs will be served on Aug 27 after our morning run.

Don’t forget to sign up for Mokena’s Summertime Stride 5k. You can sign up morning of the race but won’t be on our team. We want you on our team so sign up now.

Monday July 4 we will join forces and make our presence felt at the Tinley Park 5k. I am trying to arrange our normal pancake breakfast immediately after race.

This weekend when you take part in whatever you and your families do, remember the reason for the holiday. Spend some time thinking of the men and women who gave so much so we enjoy the freedoms we still do.

With many people doing their own thing this weekend I am going to run close to home. A new 5-mile loop has been completed with the parking lot one block west of Lagrange on 167th street. The loop is 5 miles of rolling hills with no streets. I plan on doing two loops starting at 7:00am, you are most welcome to join me.

05/09/16

The efforts put into the Quarryman races in Lemont over the weekend paid off. I heard of many great times and even some awards won. I did not see any results posted to our web site. Make my life easier and post your result so I don’t have to look them up. If you are unsure of how to post them, just go to our home page click on running. I bet you’ll figure it out from there.

Saturday May 14 we will run at Waterfall Glen starting at 7:05am.

Saturday May 21 we will join Running for Kicks and Brooks and do their trail run at Swallow Cliff. Run kicks off at 7:30 from parking lot west of LaGrange at 119th street.

Saturday Jun 4 don’t forget to sign up for Mokena’s Summertime stride 5k (see attached). Last year we won largest and fastest team. I expect to defend both titles. On the registration form there is a line to sign up as a Yankee Runner. This race is a gun start and chip finish.

We still need a couple group leaders for summer marathon training. 9:00 and 10:30 are in need. If you are even just a little curious call me 708-870-6350 and let’s talk.

05/02/16

Congratulations to everybody who raced or paced this weekend. I heard some times from Illinois on Saturday and Mel’s ½ on Sunday and they seemed good to me. Not everybody hit their goal, I know the people who did not and they will regroup and come back with another great effort. I also heard of some PR’s this weekend. When you do races you can make it easy on me by posting your results on our web site. I love to look at the scroll on the top and see who raced where. Remember we still plan to once again take over the Mokena Summertime stride 5k in early June. Watch for more details.

Thank you to all who volunteered in any way at Mel’s race. Without Volunteers and sponsors races could never happen. Special thanks to all the pacers who not only worked packet pickup on Saturday but gave up a great weather day to help other runners meet their goals. I heard only great things about the job they did.

With this years race over it is time to think about next year. Sponsors are as important as volunteers. To help ensure the support of the race's main sponsors it would be helpful to phone them and let them know you enjoy the race and are thankful for their support. The main sponsors are CBN Bank and Trust 708-293-0121 and Palos Hospital 708-923-4000. Call them it will only take a minute of your time.

I now will turn my attention to summer marathon training. I have been in touch with CARA and they seem to finally be getting it. I expect their full support with this years training. They have already agreed to pay for the port-a-john. I know they will keep us supplied with Gatorade. Beside that all I really want from them is to leave us alone. Let me say now that I intend to take part in CARA’s 20 mile run on the lakefront and will not support doing the last 20 around here.

I hope to bring back our world famous astronaut egg breakfast. It will be later in the year than in past years.

At first look we are in need of another 8 minute leader, two 9 minute and two 10:30 leaders. If you want the program for free, earn the respect and admiration of many runners along with my gratitude contact me and let’s talk about it.

Saturday, May 7 we will run at Rubio woods beginning at 7:00am. Rubio is on Midlothian turnpike between Ridgeland and Central.

4/20/16

On Saturday we will return for one week to where it all started, Yankee Woods. I’m not sure how many of our friends who just returned from Boston will join us but I would not want to miss the stories if they do.

We also have some friends who will be racing in Lowell Indiana on Sunday. I hope the weather is better there than it was in Boston.

Next week on Saturday (April 30) many of us will be working the expo, picking up our packet or racing in Champaign. I can’t keep up with you guys. You’re all over the place. Like the saying goes “We run the world”.

Whether you are running in Mel’s ½, 10k or not running at all remember I will be cooking burgers on Sunday (May 1) after the race. We will have a table if you want to bring something to share.

4/11/16

Congratulations to all the runners who took part in the Shamrock Shuffle. We entered two male and one female team. Our men teams finished 6th and 13th. Our female team finished 4th. If you look at the result you will understand the very stiff competition our teams faced. Good job everybody.

With our Boston bound friends in Boston this weekend and the bathroom in the hills gone it was decided to meet by the ball fields off of RT 83 in Palos. This is the 8.5-mile mark of our summer training route. You will have two options. You can run the summer route backwards or do what I am doing and run to the Sag Cal path and finish your miles there. I will drop water at 86th Ave and the path.

Once again, as a small way to repay Mel for all his support over the years the Yankee Runners are organizing volunteers to take care of packet pick-up on Saturday April 30. This year the expo will take place at Shepard High School. I would not turn down help on the 8:00-11:00 shift but the greatest need is on the 11:00-2:00 and 2:00-4:00 shifts. Please contact me if you can help.

Remember we need your help in defending our fastest and largest team awards from Mokena’s Summertime stride 5k on June 4th. More details will be coming soon.

3/15/16

Spring is here; it’s time to put the Yankee Runner teams back together. The first thing I am working on is filling our rosters for the Shamrock Shuffle. All you need to do is to e-mail me your name as it appears on your registration form. I’ll do the rest. I’m not worried about pace. E-mail me at gokarts@juno.com.

Then we have Mel’s ½ marathon followed by our picnic on May 1. I’ll be cooking burgers.

We have two titles to defend in Mokena’s Summertime Stride 5k on June 4. We had the largest and the fastest team last year. Let’s do it again this year.

More details to follow.

2/22/16

I want to thank all of you for making our Hot Chocolate Run & Breakfast a success. We raised enough money to pay for the bathroom all winter and provide Gatorade in the hills. I should have enough for burgers following Mel’s ½ in May as well. That would not have been possible without Mel’s continued support for our group. Not only did he arrange the facilities but along with Karen, Terry and Claire cooked the pancakes we all enjoyed. As he has for many of our events Jim Bruce made sure we had hot coffee to drink. As in past years many of you brought snacks to share. That is what makes our group what it is. Thank you.

With many of us training for different events I’m not sure when we will have the whole group together again. In past years the Yankee Runners have had a presence in the Tinley Park Running O the Green 8k. This year it will take place on Sunday March 6. Tinley does a nice job with all their races. The cost is reasonable and there is plenty of inside space before and after the race to relax and socialize with friends. It would be nice if we turned out in numbers at this race. I plan on making my return to racing in this event. Not really sure how I will do since I have not raced in over a year but I plan on being out there. I hope to see many of you.

I am starting to put together a list of group leaders for summer marathon training. There is a greater need for leaders then in any year in memory. If you want to give back to our club and get the program for free I can’t think of a better way. If you want more information please feel free to contact me.

1/11/16

Our annual Hot Chocolate Run and Breakfast is on Saturday January 23. Once again Mel has arranged the Palos Rec Center for us to use. It is located at 8901 w. 123rd street.

Building opens at 8:00am, I hope to have pancakes ready to serve by 8:30. We will keep the griddle hot and cooking until 10:00. Building closes at 11:00.
The cost is $10.00. This is the only fundraiser we will have and will pay for the port-a-john and Gatorade for winter training.
We will provide pancakes with all the toppings, hot chocolate and coffee. I’m never sure but an additional table always fills with wonderful desserts and snacks.
All are welcome. Join us after your run or just stop by for breakfast. This is a great chance to catch up with friends you may not have seen in a while.

I never know how the day will go but a special guest may show up.

11/29/15

As most of us know life can change in a fleeting moment. My life changed on June 17. It has been a struggle at times but with the support of my family and YOU one day has led to another. I sit here today in the best place I have been since that fateful day. Don’t stop praying, while I’m at the best place I have been in a long time I still would not wish it on anybody. I am ready and I believe able to start running again. It is my plan to run with the biggest group I can put together on Saturday December 5. We will start at 7:00am from my brother’s farm. His farm is located at 22460 s. 88th ave, about one mile from Old Plank Trail. I plan on running about 5 miles total and return to the farm to start a blazing fire to keep you warm on your return.

Please consider joining with me as I return to your group in a more active manner.

11/02/15

If you were able to attend our post marathon banquet I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. Once again I want to congratulate all of you, not for finishing your marathon but for having the courage to dream, the dedication to train, and the heart to toe the line.

As in all years we experienced joys and sorrows. Running only played a role in our lives. We have dealt with sickness and with death. Our good friend Tony will be moving to another state. I’m sure he will stay in touch but we will miss his smile and can do attitude. On a more positive note there were children and grandchildren born. The miracle of life and the love that only parents can feel was all around us.

Nobody knows what the future holds for any of us but tomorrow we will rise, take care of all the responsibilities we have and if time allows, lace up our shoes and go for a run. If we’re lucky in the coming weeks we may have the opportunity to share some miles with good friends.

I wish the best for all of you who are doing races in the coming weeks.

This Saturday the Yankee Runners will be scattered. Many are racing in Indy or Naperville. Let me know how you do.

Saturday the 14th we will take part in Mel’s trail run. Hope to see you there.

Keep on eye on the website for details about our Hot Chocolate Run and breakfast which will be in January.

Once again I need to thank Jim Bruce for ensuring most of the extras the Yankee Runners do as part of marathon training went on without a hitch. We biked the course, we ran the last six-mile, we tailgated after the Ready to Run 20 miler. The only thing that was missing was our world famous astronaut egg extravaganza. I think if we had more time Jim would have found a way to pull that off also. I hope and believe astronaut eggs will return next year.

10/13/15

The theme of this week's update is CONGRATULATIONS.

CONGRATULATIONS to all of the Chicago Marathon runners (as well as the Prairie State runners who ran the day before). While so many people talked about what a beautiful day it was (and it was!) the weather was clearly not the best for distance running. There are some things you can control, and some things that you can't. As far as I know, the weather is one of the things you can't. Some of our goals had to be reevaluated.

CONGRATULATIONS to all of the first-time marathoners. This was an awesome accomplishment. Remember that not all fall marathons end in summer-like conditions. Your NEXT marathon may be EVEN BETTER than this one.

CONGRATULATIONS to everyone who ran the best race that they could, on that particular day, in those particular circumstances, with your particular injuries and issues. You are a success and we are all proud of you.

CONGRATULATIONS to everyone who ran about as well as they'd hoped, who found the right combination, when everything clicks into place --- and met their primary goals.

CONGRATULATIONS to Ric Nielsen, who PR'd with an incredible 2:38:24 and placed 167th overall (#27 from the state of Illinois).

CONGRATULATIONS to the best water-station volunteers, street-side cheerers, and momentary-bandit-running-partners that any group could ever hope for.

It was really great to see everyone on race day, especially JOE. There are lots of great stories out there -- let us know if we didn't hear yours. If you took some great pictures, please send them to Jim Bruce, or post them on our Facebook page.

GOOD LUCK to the folks whose marathon is still ahead - the Marine Corps, Detroit, or another race.

Dates to remember:

Saturday, October 24, 7:00 a.m. at Rubio Woods. We will have a 9.3(ish) mile victory lap. (If you are new to the group, remember that we run all year. Stay tuned to the website or Facebook for details.) Friday, October 30 - Yankee Runners Banquet at Mickadoons in Orland Park. You can still buy tickets (from Jim Bruce, or at Running for Kicks, from Gail or Mel).

09/30/15

The running of the Last 6 Miles (or Last 4 Miles) was a great success. Everyone had a good time and the hope is that the memories of those miles, while fresh and strong, will be in your minds as you run them on Marathon day.

We are almost there. Please remember to respect the Taper. Don't leave your race out on the trails. Gather your strength so that you can fully attack on race day.

Remember to check the website for details on the bus TO Chicago on Marathon day departing Running For Kicks at 4:45am sharp (this is a one-way bus trip) and don't forget to purchase a seat for the banquet (October 30, $20) if you plan to attend. Seats can be purchased from Jim Bruce, or at Running for Kicks from Mel or Gail.

Those who are driving into the city check out www.parkwhiz.com for parking.

Enjoy the cooler weather and see you on Saturday!

09/23/15

So, the Yankee Runners managed to run 20 miles on Saturday, or 20 miles on Sunday. We are nothing if not overachievers.

Congratulations to everyone who ran their "practice marathon" over the weekend. If you have any remaining questions about a race-day tactic, please ask. Someone in the group is bound to know the answer. Not only did we have two great runs but we had two great celebrations afterward. Thank you to everyone who took care of the water stops, set up the picnics, moved cars, brought food, etc. I think we all had a great time. Now it's time to enjoy the taper. Don't be tempted to do more than scheduled during this time. The taper is helping your body be at peak condition for marathon day.

As usual, we have some reminders:

Last 6 Miles: Meet at Illinois School bus Company, Cicero & Midlothian Turnpike. We will LEAVE at 7 a.m., so please give yourself plenty of time. Please note that there is a "Last 4 Miles" option as well, for those who will be running at a slower pace. The bus will drop that group 4 miles from the finish.

Marathon Day: We are considering a school bus that will depart Running for Kicks for a one-way trip to the CARA Compound on Marathon Day. If you have not already done so, please vote YES on the Facebook group page or email Jim Bruce (jabbq2012@gmail.com) ASAP if you are interested in this option. Please note that the CARA Compound is a ways away from the Start this year (About 3/4 - 1 mile), so plan accordingly in terms of throwaway clothes, etc. Note: this would be a one way trip, so you would be on your own to get back home. Cost would probably be $5.00 to $10.00 (depending on how many passengers).

Yankee Runners Banquet: October 30, 7:00 p.m., Mickadoons (8601 W 159th Street, Orland Park) If you plan to attend, please purchase a seat from James Bruce, OR from Mel or Gail at Running For Kicks. ($20??)

Don't forget first time Marathoners - please email your name to John Conley (jjconley80@gmail.com) if you have not already done so.

09/16/15

Hi Team YR,

For those of you joining us for the Yankee Runner local 20 miler this Saturday:

- The run starts promptly at 6:30 from The Palos Baseball Fields (the YR 8.5 mile mark).

- We will head North into Lake Katherine, then East through the parking lot and onto the Cal-Sag trail for about 1.5 miles. NOTE: There are portable bathrooms at the parking lot.

- I will have the path marked to point out where we need to turn around.

- Once we turn around at 1.5 mile mark, we will run the path to Yankee Woods and return (20 miles total).

- Special thanks to the group leaders (Jim, Christine, Vicki, Ray, Shannon & Mel) who have generously agreed to work and extra week. We will have water stops at all of our normal locations.

- And the best part…We will tailgate at the end! Joe will be cooking burgers. Please bring whatever you care to drink (or share)…

- Also, if you are running the CARA “Ready to Run” event on Sunday, YOU ARE STILL WELCOME TO JOIN US FOR THE TAILGATE! Please feel free to come join our YR friends!

- If you have any questions or need further information, please e-mail: kwerner@hayesbeer.com

LET’S RUN PEOPLE! J

Don't forget first time Marathoners - please email your name to John Conley (jjconley80@gmail.com) if you have not already done so.

09/07/15

Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible - Francis of Assisi

We have completed week 13 and are heading toward Ready to Run. This will be your best chance to practice your marathon. Sort out your plans and decide if any minor adjustments are needed. After that, don't make any changes in your clothes, socks, shoes, or nutrition prior to the marathon. This is also a good time to start looking for your oversized throwaway clothes. Odds are it will be chilly on marathon day and the CARA compound is a mile or so away from the Start. You will want to stay warm and comfortable while you are walking and waiting.

There is a lot going on! Here are some reminders:

Saturday, September 19th: Local 20 miler, followed by a picnic. If you haven't already, please let someone know you plan to run (who to notify or whatever). The water stops are being taken care of by your pace group leaders, including those who are actually running the lakefront event, and Mel from Running for Kicks. So, a group of people will be waking up early and getting the water stops set up for no reason other than the fact that they are Yankee Runners, happy to help the group. Many thanks to them, and to everyone who will be helping with the cookout, which is planned for after the run. We will be grilling (add specifics?) after the run at the ball fields. Although it's not necessary, you are welcome to bring something to share. It's also suggested that you bring a chair or blanket to sit on, and maybe a fresh shirt and - based on the current weather report - maybe even a light jacket.

Sunday, September 20th: Cara's Ready to Run, Lakefront 20 miler. Luckily, these water stops are taken care of! This event will also be followed by a picnic. A few people have volunteered to help out. If you or a family member want to join the crew, please let Jim know. IMPORTANT: One bus is already full. About 12 additional people have indicated that they want to take the bus but have not yet purchased a ticket ($5 to Jim Bruce). We may be able to get another bus but in order to lock this down, please contact Jim if you plan to ride the bus. Contact James Bruce via Facebook or email jabbq2012@gmail.com.

Sunday, September 27: Run the Last 6 Miles. A Bus will leave from 143rd & Cicero at 7:00 a.m. two stops one for 4 miles one for 6 miles, We expect to begin the run at 8:00 a.m. $5.00 collected at the bus, only one bus for this.

Friday, October 30: Celebrate the season at the Yankee Runners' Banquet. More details will be available soon. It's our custom to have a slideshow after dinner, and this is always a highlight of the evening. It's MOST FUN when everyone is included. Any pictures that you've already sent to the Facebook page are already available but if you have other pictures to share, please send them to Jim Bruce. Cost is $20.00 in advance.

First time Marathoners - please email your name to John Conley (jjconley80@gmail.com) if you have not already done so.

David Mauger (Frogger) is running a raffle to raise money for the Yankee Runners. The raffle is for a case of beer "Zombie Dust" Anyone interested see Frogger after the run on Saturday.

08/31/15

You learned today that running in the rain can be refreshing. The rain may not be good to hang out in but it's not bad to run in. I’ll admit it was just about the perfect type of rain for running.

With the mileage being so high next week we will stay with the 6:30AM start.

I wish things were different but as they are the Yankee Runners will split for the last 20 mile run. Make no mistake, if I was able to devote the time I normally do, we would be running together and doing it with CARA. As things are, you will have the choice of running with CARA on Sunday or running on Saturday from the ball field (mile 8.5). Check the Yankee Runners Facebook page for details and please let us know if you plan to come. We need a good headcount so we know how much water to put out and how much food we need for our tailgate afterwards.

If you run on Sunday and want to park at the finish you need to purchase a ticket in advance from Jim Bruce. There will be one bus and once it's full all others will be on their own. I won't be there cooking burgers for you at the finish. Pack a lunch for yourself and maybe something to share. Don't forget a chair or blanket to sit on. There is an event posted on Facebook for this event as well. Be sure to let us know if you plan to participate.

If you run on Saturday you will need to park off Rt 83 by the Palos ball fields. It is my hope to be present at this run and cooking burgers after.

We need to get some idea of what kind of turn out we can expect for each of these events. Please reply on Facebook or e-mail Kevin Werner (kwerner@hayesbeer.com) or Jim Bruce (Jabbq2012@gmail.com) as soon as possible. We also are looking for volunteers to help with water stops for the Saturday run.

08/24/15

This week's announcement brought to you by Jim Bruce

Cool Running! The weather has become much more cooperative. We may still get some hot days so remember your warm weather running techniques. We are through week 11 . Saturday is 12, 13 and 12.

Don't forget to fine tune your nutrition plans for race day, and load up on Vitamin C as your body is coping with increased mileage. Cut-back weeks are just as important as the higher mileage runs - your body needs the cut-back to recover and gear up for the next challenge.

The Fall Marathon Season celebration is usually held on a Friday, two weeks after Chicago. That would bring us to October 30. Final details will be coming later, but for now mark this date on your calendar as the tentative date, so that people with kids and other obligations can plan accordingly. We are planning a slideshow, and for a slideshow, you need lots of pictures. Please send me any pictures that you have from this season. It would be great if we had at LEAST one picture of every single runner. Why not take some group shots during the next few weeks?

Here are some other reminders:

Next Sunday, August 30: BIKE THE COURSE. Details are "pinned" to the top of our Facebook page. If you are viewing on a phone versus a computer, you may need to "view pinned posts". If you plan to join, please either vote, or email me so that we have a good headcount.

September 20: 20 MILER. We also need a headcount for this. We currently have approximately 25 people planning to attend. Check the website or Facebook for details.

September 27: LAST 6 MILES. If you're interested, talk to others in your group who have done this run and decide if it would be beneficial.

08/16/15

While Joe takes care of his family's needs, this week's update is provided by Jim Bruce.

Saturday was a great run! It may not have seemed that way around mile 14, but with weather threatening enough to frighten even the most seasoned runners, we took the proper precautions and got it done. Miles 15,17 or 19. Some people commented that it was really not as bad as predicted. That's the comment you always want to hear, versus the alternative: It was worse than we thought it would be. Common sense comes in handy when your goal is NOT to run a certain pace on August 15, but to run well on October 11. We also know of runners who showed up to run in spite of personal challenges. Each week there is probably at least one person who is in the middle of something heartbreaking to them. Maybe they share, maybe they just run. Either way, they know they are among people who care.

Some important reminders - check the website for updates.

Bike the course - August 30. If you haven't already, please "vote" on the Facebook link to indicate whether you plan to join. If you know of runners who don't use Facebook, please ask them to email me if they plan to join.

CARA 20 Miler - September 20. This is a CARA coordinated event, although we have our own spin on things. Please check the web page for more details and "vote" on Facebook if you plan to attend. We need to arrange a bus,so it's important to have a good headcount.

The last 6 miles - September 27. We run the last 6 miles, to give everyone a chance to become familiar with the end of the course while you have fresh legs (and a clear head!). We will arrange a bus for this event as well. Please vote if you plan to attend.

Next week is 16,18,and 20 miles. Who knows what the weather will be. As Joe might say, the enemy can be counted on to show up and try to throw us off course. The Yankee Runners can be counted on to show up and make the enemy shut up.

08/10/15

After a difficult day hiking up one side of the mountain and down the other in the rain we were left wet, cold and completely exhausted. With temperatures falling into the mid 20’s the fear of hypothermia was real. We finally got a fire started, began getting warm and dry. It was suggested the Mountain had won the day. The Mountain DID NOT win the day. We were where we were supposed to be, doing what needed to be done and at first light we would head out like we planned.

Each year as I look into your faces I see the same look. The look that without words tells me you THINK the Enemy won the day. The Enemy will never win the day. Not as long as we stay with the program, put in the mileage and support each other. Together no enemy can defeat us.

Don’t forget our ice cream social on Saturday Aug 8. We have added hay wagon rides for the kids and have moved the starting time to 7:00 to ensure a little more daylight. I hope to see you there.

We also do the last four or six miles of the course. The is a very beneficial event. Think if this is something you think is worthwhile.

08/02/15

I want to thank everybody who attended and helped make our first ice cream social, bonfire a success. My brother, Bruce and Beth his wife were wonderful hosts. The playground and trampoline were heavily used by the kids. The kids were joined by most adults on the hay wagon ride. None of that would have been possible without our sponsors. The treats we enjoy each week and the ice cream with all the toppings are provided by them.

The calendar may say we are half way done but the mileage has just begun. Staying with the program gives you the best chance of success.

Under normal circumstances I would be heading up a bike ride where we ride the course. This is not a training ride but a fun way to see the course. If there is interest in this event Jim Bruce will lead it.

One word of advice, look at a map in advance. I will have one on Saturday morning. For some reason GPS has trouble with this address.

Midsummer Yankee Runner Ice Cream Social and Bon Fire

Werner Family Farm 22460 South 88th Ave Frankfort, IL

Saturday August 8, 2015 7:00pm, Ice Cream will be served around 9:00

No Cost

07/26/15

Nearly a decade ago when I told my wife I was not doing marathon training because I was not sure I had the heart, her reply was “you’ll have the heart on marathon morning”. My friends all the heart in the world would not have helped on race day if I did not find the heart and the strength to do what I knew needed to be done during training.

You and I are very much alike in the regard. Unless you stay strong, follow the program, listen to your group leaders and draw strength from each other over the remaining months of this program all the heart in the world won’t help you on race day.

I never told you this would be easy. In fact many times I have told you the opposite, this will be hard. You never know where the Enemy will be lurking. Trust me he is out there and if given the chance he will pounce.

After Saturday’s run I saw in many runners eyes the thought that the Enemy won the day. It reminded me of the time during a 4 day backpacking trip when it was suggested to me that the mountain had won the day. The next time I join you on a Saturday morning I will share that story.

Remember to e-mail John at jjconley80@gmail.com if this is your first marathon. He will keep track of that for me.

So the rumors can be put to rest, yes Ray Piksrys did have a stroke. He was transported from his home to Palos then air lifted to Loyola. He is home and doing extremely well. The Dr’s credit his physical fitness that helped him bounce back so quickly. He hopes to be back with us sooner then later.

Stay strong my friends.

07/20/15

I hope you all enjoyed the cut back. I’m sure the weather put a damper on the fun. It could have and probably will get worse. I’m not sure it will ever be much warmer or more humid but at some point we will have those conditions on a long week. We get them every year and every year we run smart and get through them. We will slow down and keep drinking all week not just during the run. I don’t mean drinking beer either. Stay with the program and you will accomplish your goal. If this program can get me to the finish line it can get you there also.

Don’t forget for the next 6 weeks we will start at 6:30am.

Remember August 8 is our mid-season ice cream social and bon fire.

07/05/15

We are one month into our training. You will soon begin to feel what it is to be a distance runner. You are transforming into marathoners. Marathoning is tricky. Most people can run but few can marathon. Running is a hobby, racing is a sport, marathoning is a way of life. It is much more than a physical activity, it is a mental endeavor. Start preparing your mind along with your body. Start watching for the the Enemy. You may see him anywhere and anytime. He is tricky and has many disguises. I can't tell you for sure when or where he will find you, but he will find you.

Stay strong, be careful.

I apologize for canceling astronaut eggs but I look forward to the time it can be rescheduled.

I need to thank all of you for your support as my family continues on what will be a long and at times bumpy road to a full recovery for my wife.

06/28/15

I hope you all enjoyed the cut back miles Saturday. It will ramp up fast from here. Before the next cut back you will all be in double digits. I don’t care how many marathons you’ve ran double digit miles are serious. Cut back weeks are not designed to test your speed. They are designed to allow your body to recovery. You may not see the need for that yet but when you are cutting back to 10 or 12 miles you will.

Next Saturday is the 4th of July holiday and I am sure many of you have picnics to attend. Let me assure you the Enemy takes NO HOLIDAYS. What he does is smile when he sees you taking one. Remember what I said last week he is committed to stopping you short of the finish line.

I would never suggest you don’t attend your planned activities, just do them after you get your miles in.

06/21/15

If you were at Yankee Woods Saturday by 6:55am you would have heard me not once or twice but several times ask you to commit to this program. I promised you it will be hard, trust me it will be. I also promised you that your group leaders, the friends you will make and I will be with you week after week mile after mile, trust me we will. I mentioned I have been doing this since 1999. I know where the finish line is and what it will take to get there. I also have seen the Enemy in all his glory. We will fight him alone and we will fight him together. Each time he shows up we will fight him some more.

Two things you should know:
#1,The Enemy will never give up. He is committed to stopping you short of the finish line.
#2, If you commit to this program you CAN AND WILL defeat the Enemy. You will make it to the finish line.
Let me throw in a #3, In the end it will be worth it.

Don’t forget Astronaut eggs or our mid summer ice cream social. I will talk about these in the coming weeks.

We had a couple Yankee Runners racing this past week. Ricster won the Short run on a long Day in Frankfort last week and Stephanie Ebert earned an age award.
Remember if you want any race result posted let me know. I’ve been kind of busy and can’t keep up with all you guys.

Stay strong. See you Saturday.

06/14/15

Don’t you love first day of marathon training. I know I do, even if I’m still a couple weeks from running with you. I still got to see old friends and meet some new ones. I can’t say I am a fan of CARA’s new system for handing out packets. If I’m still involved, next year will be different, at least for the Oak Forest site. I won‘t let that little snag bring me down. I look forward to next week when we start to settle in. I will call the first timers to the front I will be looking to see the fire and to hear the voice. Of course the fire and voice are still present in all of us. If not we wouldn’t be out there. It won’t be easy, it never is. It will be worth it.

I was getting ready and ran across some old signs. They made me smile all over again. This week I liked the sign that said “months of training, hours of running, a life of pride.”

Come strong, be on time. See you next week.

Dates to remember:
July 11- Astronaut eggs. Bring $5.00 and at least an hour to spend with us after the run.
August 8- Midsummer Yankee Runner Ice Cream Social and bon fire.

At least one ticket was given for parallel parking. Remember there is always space available at the golf course.

If you do not have your packet be sure to get it. I will not carry the shirts for many more weeks.

06/07/15

A friend not in Mokena with us asked me how was the race. I replied, “Like I expected, biggest and fastest team.” Then I thought about it. How could I have expected over 70 Yankee Runners would show up. With Ricster and Rob Held not participating how could I have known we would have had the 1st, 3rd, 5th, 8th, and 10th place runners? And be the first team in the race’s history to win both biggest and fastest.

You would think by now I would never question determination of the Yankee Runners. When made aware that a couple of our faster runners would be absent nobody whined or felt sorry. What they did was dig down and run the best race they could. We never ask a runner to give more then they have. At times even I am surprised by how much you guys have. Your dedication and generosity to our club is what makes it special. Thank you.

I won’t even try to list the age award winners. There are too many. Instead check out the pictures.

On Saturday many of us will once again begin an incredible journey. It is a journey I would never consider making alone. It is a journey that will take us where only the brave dare to go. It is a journey that will make us better not for finishing but for having the courage to start. It is a journey I look forward with great anticipation to making with YOU.

Come ready and you will become strong.

See you next week.

05/31/15

When we picked Saturday June 6, 2015 as the coming out party for the Yankee Runners I never could have anticipated the support. I expect to line up in Mokena’s Summertime Stride 5k with over 60 Yankee Runners in the race. WOW is all I can say.

The race packets can be picked up at Running for Kicks from whatever time I get them there starting Monday June 1 until close of business Friday June 5. Whatever packets are not picked up I will have on Saturday morning at the race, starting at 7:30am. We will take a new picture for our web site at 8:15am, which is 15 minutes before the start of the race.

Race starts and ends Willowview Park located at 11420 W. 197th Street. Best way to get there is get to 195th and Wolf road go west to 115th ave, turn left and find a place to park in the park lot or at St Mary’s church.

If you ordered a Yankee Runner team shirt and had it shipped to Janis I hope to have it Saturday morning before the race. You should be able to pick it up in time to wear it in the picture and race. We will have a separate table for YR shirts and packet pick up.

I can’t think of a better way to spend the last Saturday before training starts then watching many Yankee Runners earn age awards.

05/29/15

More race more awards for the Yankee Runners.

Mark Fishbaugh earned an age award in the Michigan Shores ½ marathon.
Pat Sullivan earned an age award in the Mokena Muddy Monk 5 miler.

Below are age awards in the Ridge run. Some 5k some 10k.
Dan Barr 10k
Eric Hoffman 10k
Dace casillas 10k
Bill Faber 10k
Meg Sullivan 10k
Jake Christiansen 5k
Mike Phillips 5k.

I know we had some great performances turned in, in the Soldier Field 10 mile but I can’t find a way to get age group results. I do know that Ricster set a PR by 2 minutes running a 55:54 and Mike Yuhasz ran a 61-minute. What I don’t know is how these guys stay or even get faster as they get older.

Our team has shaped up very well for the Mokena Summertime Stride 5k on June 6. I will send in an update next Tuesday on how we will handle packet pick-up. I can’t wait to see all of you guys.

Speed work has started on Wednesday’s at Chicago Christian High School at 6:00pm. I hope to get by there soon even if I can’t take part.

Marathon training starts June 8 with the first long run on Saturday the 13th. If you are doing a marathon in the fall I urge you to sign up with CARA. If you just want to run 5 or 10k’s feel free to join us on part of our Saturday long runs.

I don’t want to bore anybody with my progress so I will keep it short. I believe I made great progress the first 5 days. Then things can to a standstill for the next week. The last couple days I seemed to have had a minor setback. That’s all for now. See you on June 6 in Mokena.

05/17/15

If anybody mailed his or her Yankee Runner registration to an address other then 10925 W. La Porte Rd. Mokena you need to contact me at once. You can e-mail me or call my cell 708-870-6350. Do it now, that is the only way I can be sure to get you on our team.

I’m not sure how I missed two age award winners at the Quarryman 10 mile last week but I did. Stephanie Ebert and Janis McGuffin also earned awards last week. Good job ladies.

I am currently working on getting group leaders for the coming marathon-training program in place. We have a need for a 9, 10, 11 minute leader to assist our other leaders. If you are interested PLEASE contact me.

The Yankee Runners are all off doing races and running different places before we settle in at Yankee for the summer. On May 23 some of us will meet at Lake Katherine at 7:00am and do 10 miles running west for 5 and back. I am interested in hearing how the new trail is. I’m not sure if the opportunity will present itself for me to run with or see you guys before June 6 or not. I will be in Mokena on June 6 no matter what and look forward to seeing all of you.

As many of you know I have been fighting a knee injury since early in March. Therapy was not having the desired effect. After a MRI showed a tear in both sides of my meniscus I decided to have surgery. I put my faith in the skilled and steady hands of Dr Michael Corcoran from Oak Orthopedics. Surgery was done on Friday May 15. My rehab started on Saturday May 16 under the careful eye of Jerry Davis from Nova Care. If hard work and commitment is what is required for a full recovery, I will be back with you sooner then later. I miss you guys and look forward to being back with you soon. Next week I will give more details of how things are going.

05/10/15

As I write this on Saturday night I want to wish my Mother along with all Mother’s a happy Mother’s day. A mother’s love is something that can’t be describe or understood it is just there and unwavering. Thanks Mom for everything you do.

As I was unable to run I know more about the tailgating from Mel’s ½ than I do about the run. I know the Yankee Runners know how to tailgate. It is getting easier for me each year. It is not that I am getting smarter it is because I get more help each year. As I was loading my car I noticed Mark and Jolene Miller along with Jim and Linda Bruce were loading as much as I was. Thanks to them and all runners who brought snacks to share. It was a good party.

I did not take part in the race but did monitor the pacers and I am happy to say our pacers did a very good job. Truth be told I would have not expected less. Once again they came through not only for themselves or me but also for hundreds of runners who they helped.

Our runners did their part also. Age awards were earned in the 10k by:
Jamie Parks
Christy Domalski
Ezio Tessari

Age awards in the ½ were earned by:
Karrie HamstraWright
Donna Kase
Maureen Mikulski
Andy Thomson
We had some PR’s set
Tom Callaghan
Ashley Esquivel
Lisa Petrelli, Lisa also got an age award in the Break through for brain tumors 5k earlier in the month.

I have another race to share results from.
In the Quarryman Challenge 5k:
Ricster won the race
Wendy Jay was second overall female
George Bugala age award
Lisa Petrelli age award
Maureen Yuhasz age award

In the 10 mile:
Mike Yuhazs age award
Bernard McGourty age award

Our team is shaping up very nice for the Mokena Summertime Stride 5k. Thereis still time to join our team. Download our custom registration; fill it out and mail it to the Mokena Park District, the address is on the form. The Yankee Runners will have their own packet pickup. In the coming weeks I will post that information.

05/3/15

For now I want to get the link to our uniforms out. The link will stay open until May 22 with projected delivery date of June 5. You will be able to pick up your shirts when you join us for the Mokena Summertime Stride 5k. Check back later in the week for a wrap up of Mel’s ½ marathon and Yankee Runner tailgating.


04/26/15

More great races by the Yankee Runners under less then perfect conditions. The weather at the Illinois Marathon in Champaign/Urbana was very similar to that in Boston several days earlier. The bad weather in Boston did not deter many of our friends from giving it there all and posting some impressive times. Qualifying for Boston is an incredible feat, doing it in Boston is even more so. That is what Peggy Marron, Rita Thiel, Christine Kickels, Bernie McGourty, Geoff Brown, and Mike Casey did. Christine ran a 3-minute negative split as conditions worsened. I guess she just wanted to get done. Good job everybody.


Our friends at Illinois were not to be outdone. Mark Miller, John Conley, Katherine Conley and Tony Montello all set PR’s in the Marathon. Katherine Callaghan, Leberta Gentile and Wendy Jay set Pr’s in the ½. Tom Callaghan, Joan Callaghan, set Pr’s in the 10k and Debra Werner finished her first 10k.

I am looking forward to hearing stories from both the Boston and Illinois events. The directors of the Illinois race have some explaining to do. How do you stop the race, withdraw traffic control and leave the water stops unmanned while there are runners out there. The runners needed to get to the finish line somehow and the fastest way would be to RUN. Unless they offered some other method of transportation that I have not been made aware of they messed up.

Next Sunday is Mel’s ½ marathon. Mel’s has always delivered good weather and I expect this year to be no exception. If as I expect it is dry the Yankee Runners will do some tailgating after the race. I will supply burgers, in the past runners have brought snacks to share. I look forward to seeing all of you. I will have Yankee Runner registration forms for the Mokena 5k on June 6. Bring $20.00 for this race. This is being billed as the coming out party for the new and more inclusive Yankee Runner, running club. Attendance is not required but expected.

I still need a few volunteers for packet pick up next Saturday. If you could help for 2 hours let me know.
 

04/19/15

Another week has come and gone. As this is written we have friends trying to get a good night sleep before running in Boston. The weather looks less than ideal; in fact since our friends won’t see this before the race I will tell you the forecast sounds about as bad as could be. Steady rain, temperature in the 40’s and a strong head wind. I’ve been there under those conditions so I speak from experience when I say the Yankee Runners will deal with it, they always have and always will.

It’s too early to talk about weather for next weekend’s events in Champaign Urbana. Once again I’m sure our runners will be ready.

We had runners ready on Saturday when they took part in the Palos Spring 5k.The only awards given out were for 1st in each age group. Still we took home some hardware.

Shannon Javaras was 1st overall female.


Age awards were earned by:


Mike Phillips

Wendy Jay (On Sunday Wendy also was 2nd overall female, 1st AG and a PR!!! at Lockport 5k!)

John Smith

John Conley


Our numbers continue to grow for our official coming out party in Mokena on June 6. Don’t miss out on our first official event. To run on our team you need to fill out a custom Yankee Runner registration and return it to me.

Those of you in Boston make sure you turn in any pictures so we can post them on our web site. This also goes for you going to Illinois.

We still need help with packet pickup for Mel’s ½. The events we take place in would be impossible to stage without volunteers. Contact me I will only ask for a couple hours.

 

04/12/15

Over the next few weeks the Yankee Runners will be all over the place in training and in racing. Next week is Boston, the following week is Illinois and the week after that is Mel’s ½ marathon. As is our custom we will tailgate after Mel’s ½ marathon.

Saturday April 18 Palos Park will put on a 5k on our winter training site. It was my hope to race in this event, but my knee is not close to being ready so I’ll just hang out and cheer for many Yankee Runners who will run in it. I look forward to seeing many of you I have not seen in several weeks. With the race-taking place I will not be dropping water.

The Palos Park Recreation department has been very supportive of our training. It is my hope we can support their race on Saturday.

I know we had a few runners who raced on Saturday and Sunday April 11-12. I have no results so I will try and post them next week.

 

04/05/15

While I was in Tennessee fishing in the rain, the Yankee Runners were taking another step toward achieving their goals for this spring. Many of them did their last long run before Illinois or the Gettysburg marathons. Others are in the taper and are allowing their bodies the recovery needed to run their best. Still others were racing in 5k’s, some local some not so local. Normally when Yankee Runners race, trophies are earned and this weekend was no exception. Lisa Gordon, Theresa Pratt and Maureen Mikulski earned age awards in the Chocolate Bunny 5k in Palos. Wendy Jay represented the Yankee Runners in Florida where she earned and age award in the Trever Miller 5k in Treasure Island. Good job ladies.

As is true with any organization the Yankee Runners cannot exist without volunteers. Having spoke with a few current group leaders for summer marathon training I realize we have need of group leaders at almost every pace. By group leading you will fill a need, making it possible for the Yankee Runners to continue providing the best and most successful program in the Chicagoland area. You will also get the training for FREE. You don’t have to have all the answers to group lead. Contact me and let me tell you how easy and rewarding it is. You can e-mail me at gokarts@juno.com or phone me at 708-870-6350.

 

3/29/15

Sunday was a windy chilly morning but that did not stop the Yankee Runners from taking part in the Shamrock Shuffle. We entered both male and female teams. All our runners ran very well. Our female team finished 5th and our male team finished 8th. Nadine and Ricster earned age awards. In applaud the effort put forth by all our runners. I hope to see many of you taking part in the Palos Park spring fling 5k on April 18.

Mary Pat Coughlin earned an age award in the March4Meg 5k in Evergreen Park. March4Meg raises money to fight melanoma on several fronts. Good job Mary on helping raise money for a good cause and bringing home some hardware.

I’m leaving Wednesday for my yearly fishing trip. I will return home late on Saturday. Thanks to Jim Bruce for taking over the water stops for me as those going to Illinois do their last 20 miler. Those going to Boston have already started the taper.

I have mentioned in the past that our web site is under construction. You should see changes coming soon.

In keeping with our motto, Yankee Runners we run the world, one of the many new features will be a map of the world. What we need from you is the name of any races you have done outside the Chicago area. Send your race info directly to John Conley at GOLFNUT98@mac.com (subject line Yankee Runner races).

We also want to put your pictures on the website. We need the pictures (including WHERE & WHEN they were taken so we know what to call them and where to put them). Send your pictures to John Conley at GOLFNUT98@mac.com (subject line Yankee Runner pictures).

John has been busy updating our website let’s keep him busy, send us the above stuff.

 

3/22/15

The Palos Park District basketball season has ended. This means we can once again park in the lot between the firehouse and the rec center.

Good luck to all runners taking part in the Shamrock Shuffle 8k. I’ll let you know how our teams do.

If you are training for Boston, Illinois or any other spring marathon you are in the meat of the program. The mileage is as high as it gets and the taper is just a week or two away. Remember you can’t make up for lost time. Stay focused on your training. Don’t let up but don’t push harder either, stay steady.

I am reaching out to all the group leaders from last year. In a couple weeks I will know who is coming back and where there may be a need for new leaders. Start thinking about volunteering to be a group leader.<<

I am still pushing for Yankee Runners to support the Palos park spring 5k, which takes place at our winter training site. Sign up through the Palos Park District. For the Mokena Summertime Stride go to the Yankee runners group facebook page and download the registration form that can be found on March 7. Return it to me with $20.00. We have time but keep your calendars open for that date. This will be the start of the official Yankee Runner circuit of events. The full circuit of events will be published in the coming weeks.

You can already see some changes to the web site. I hope to have information on uniforms also in the coming weeks.

I saved the most important announcement to last. Mike & Candace Kovac are expecting a baby. The newest Yankee Runner will arrive around August 23. They have experienced some as Candace calls it “morning day and night sickness” but are very excited and look forward to becoming parents. I know they will be great parent. I also know that Candace will become a great runner. I have seen it many times; giving birth makes women incredible strong. Maybe they just realize how strong they were all along. We’re excited with them.

It seems like yesterday when such an announcement was made about Kathy and Louie Ceja. Their daughters, Anna and Ava are 10 and 8 years old. Time sure flies.

 

3/15/15

This is normally the week I say what a great privilege it was to accompany many Yankee Runners to Cary to run in March Madness ½ marathon. Unfortunately I have a knee issue that may require some time off. It was bad enough to stop me 6 miles into what was planned for a 10 mile run. I have been resting and icing and will go see Becki on Wednesday. It is still my hope to do the Illinois Marathon in late April. We’ll see how things go. I haven’t heard any official times yet but am sure our friends did well on a very hilly course.

Our web site is under construction so we can expect to see changes in the coming weeks.

Don’t forget to support the Palos Park, Park District and take part in the Spring Run in the Park 5k. $20.00 with a shirt by March 30. It is run on our winter training course so you’ll have no excuses.

Remember our coming out party on June 6 at the Summertime Stride 5k in Mokena. Much more to come on this event.

 

3/08/15

The enthusiasm present at our meeting on Saturday is very encouraging. Progress continues to be made in all three areas we focused on. The uniform search goes on with the hope of giving our runners several choices with a common color and logo. The web site changes should start showing up soon. I would expect our events to be selected within a month. Remember April 18 in Palos Park a 5k will be a practice roll out with our first major event-taking place on June 6 in Mokena. I have Yankee Runner registration forms for the Mokena race and will try to have them with me at all our runs. To run for our team you need to fill out the form and return it to me with $20.00. The race gives out two team awards, one for the fastest team and one for the largest team. I plan on being competitive in both categories, with that I need your support. The price is a discounted assuming we hit a certain number of runners. I am collecting $20.00 in case we don’t. If we do hit their number I will put the extra $2.00 in our account.

I had the good fortune of being at Tinley Park’s Running O’ the Green 8k on Sunday. I enjoyed the race but mostly enjoyed watching several Yankee Runners collecting their awards. The runners below all earned age awards.
Warren Ehrlich
Ezio Tessari
Ray Piksays
Ricster
Patty Vail
Peg Marron
Maureen Mikulski
Jerry Rauman
Ethan Tuma

Next Sunday I will accompany several Yankee Runners to Cary IL and take part in March Madness ½ marathon. I will sleep in a bit on Saturday before going and catching up with a Hall of Fame Yankee Runner. See you on Mondays or Saturday March 28. Thanks to Jim Bruce and Maria for helping with the water in my absence.

 

3/01/15

I knew I would not be alone but was not sure how many runners would brave the cold for our long Saturday run.  As I dropped water on 119th street and drove to the start I only saw one early runner.  Normally I see many who can’t wait to get started.  I pulled into the parking lot and started to unload the supplies and seemingly out of nowhere runners showed up.  The question was how cold is it?  I heard everything from –2 to –11-air temperature.  I would not even guess how cold it was because it did not matter.  The Enemy was not resting and neither were the Yankee Runners.  There were miles to be run and nobody better to do them with than you guys.

I won’t say it was easy (20 miles in “The Hills” never is) but we made it.  Without the dedication and commitment I saw in you guys, I would never have made it.  Did I finish as fast as I had hoped?  No I didn’t.  After twenty miles in below zero air temperature in The Hills what time you finished in does not seem important.

The more training seasons I get through the more I look forward to cut back weeks.  The six-mile weekday runs followed with only twelve on Saturday look mighty nice from here.

I see that Wendy Jay continues to earn age awards in most events she takes part in. The indoor tri in Oak Brook was no exception.  Another first place age award for Wendy.  Good job.

Next week I hope to have something to report on the changes to our web site, uniforms and about Yankee Runner events committee.

I need somebody to pick up water next week, drop off the following week.  Then I need somebody to pick up that week and drop off the week after.  Let me know if you can help us out.  I will be running in March Madness.