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Athlete Stories

Kailee Remez Half Marathon Reunion

Running is always better with a buddy. Lake Zurich, IL native and former cross country/track runner Kailee Remez knows this best, having ran competitively from middle school through college. Now living in Michigan for grad school, she’s looking to come back to Chicago and compete in the Life Time Chicago Half Marathon this September. 

This race is extra special for Remez, as her old high school cross country team and coaches are planning to come in from all over the US to reunite and race together.

“The reason why I started to run was because of the people. When you’re running with others, everyone’s just so friendly and welcoming. It doesn’t matter what your skill set is, so that’s really fun,” she said. 

Remez said that her old teammates are all different ages and grades, and although they keep in contact digitally, some haven’t seen each other in many years. “It was such a goofy group of friends to all be together, going on runs and hanging out after practice and stuff. As we’ve gotten older and started moving away for work and grad school, it’s gotten a lot harder to see each other and get in touch,” she said

The team is planning to get together and enjoy each other’s company during the race. Remez said, “None of us are really thinking about the pace. We’re there to have a good time and be with each other, just doing it for the mems.”

Having not run competitively since she was in undergrad, Remez intends to restart her training by giving herself grace. “I’m restarting thinking this is going to be a blank canvas and be really hard for maybe a couple weeks. Then I’m planning to slowly build myself up because I can’t compare myself to what I was when I was in peak training season,” she said. She said that running with friends and playing music help her stay motivated during runs. 

Ahead of race day, she is most excited to bring back her team’s pre-race pasta party tradition. “It’s going to be super fun for us to all come back together and do the thing that we love. That’s why I fell in love with running in the first place. It was because of the community,” she said.

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