Half Marathon Training

Summer

2020

Experience the

Power of the Group!

Training Plan

A 14 week plan, expert-designed, with four levels to choose from: Novice, Novice-II, Advanced, and Run/Walk.

Pace Groups

Experienced and encouraging group leaders for paces 7:30 to 13:00 per/mile.

Locations

2 training site options in the city and the suburbs. Along with weekday track workouts and group runs at select locations.

Support

Education, resources, motivation, training tech-shirt, NovaCare Injury Hotline, and More!
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Experience CARA's "Power of the Group" on your half marathon journey!

CARA group training will provide you the support, community, and accountability you need to successfully reach the start line ready to race your fall half marathon. 

The CARA program has helped tens of thousands of runners. Our popular program has long been Chicago's premier group training program, serving newcomers and experienced runners alike.

CARA runners enjoy access to training sites across the city and suburbs. With CARA training you will never have to go it alone. Your pace group leaders and fellow participants will give you the Power of the Group that has gotten CARA runners to the finish line more than any other program in Chicagoland running. 

PROGRAM INFORMATION

Group Training Registration


Group Training: $160 [REGISTER]

  • Save $35 - 2020 CARA Supporter Level Members




Training Program Benefits


  • Training Plan: CARA Director of Training and Coach Tim Bradley provides an 14-week training plan with novice, novice-II, advanced, and run/walk options so you can train at the level right for your fitness and lifestyle. You will have confidence knowing your training program is led by CARA coaches who have national certifications and years of proven coaching success long before we bring them into CARA.
  • Group Training: Group long runs and speed training. Gain security and camaraderie with the support of your pace group and group leaders.
  • Pacer Led Runs: Weekend long runs will be led by friendly, knowledgeable, and experienced CARA Group Leaders, providing you pacing, and so much more! We offer groups at each 30-second pace interval, from 7:00 to 11:30 mins/mile, plus 12:00 Run/Walk, 12:30 Run/Walk and 13:00 Run/Walk.
  • Location: Train where you want and have the flexibility to train at different sites in the city and suburbs throughout the season. You are never locked into a single location.
  • NovaCare Hotline: Gain access to CARA's exclusive 24/7 Injury Hotline with Novacare Physical Therapist ready to support your injury questions.
  • Expertise: A weekly info-packed newsletter from CARA Director of Training Coach Bradley.
  • Training Guide: A training guide with your training schedule, and the information, education, and tips you need to successfully complete the program.
  • Hydration Support: Stations serving Gatorade Endurance and water during your group runs.
  • Gear: CARA runners receive a training tech shirt.




Locations


Group Long Runs:

  • Saturdays @ 6:00 a.m. at Downtown / Monroe & Lake Shore Dr. (Chicago)
  • Saturdays @ 6:30 a.m. at Christ Church Oakbrook / Bemis Woods (Darien*)
Speed Training (tentative):
  • Wednesdays @ 6:00 a.m. at Lake Shore Park Track (Chicago)
  • Wednesdays @ 6:30 p.m. at Downers Grove South High School (Downers Grove)
  • Wednesdays @ 6:30 p.m. at Montrose Beach Wilson Track (Chicago)
Weekday Group Runs:
  • Group Run Calendar HERE.
Note: Our plans are based on projections that all locations will be open for public use by Phase 4. *ANNOUNCEMENTS: CARA Darien - Due to group restrictions at Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, the CARA Darien group will be relocating this summer. CARA has secured access to the large parking lot at Christ Church Oakbrook. From there, groups can run east into Bemis Woods and the Salt Creek Trail from Canterberry Lane, as well as several other surrounding trails. CARA Downtown - In order to provide groups with enough space to meet within social distancing guidelines, the CARA Downtown group will relocate from Lake Shore East Park to the green space at the east corner of Monroe St and Lake Shore Dr. Discounted parking will be available through Millennium Park Garages, as well as at the Lake Shore East Mariano's.




Travel / Parking


Coming Soon




Weather Policy


We will run/wak rain or shine. However, if there is lightning or other hazardous weather we will cancel or postpone. Our full weather policy is HERE. Weather-related announcements will be made through the twitter feed www.twitter.com/cararuns and in the twitter box at www.cararuns.org.




General FAQ


Member discount is applicable to 2020 CARA Supporter Level memberships (Individual, Family or Student package). 2019 members must renew to receive the discount.

Registrations for group training without a member discount includes a 2020 CARA Supporter Level membership (individual). Learn more about CARA Supporter Level member benefits.

Credit Card Fees:

Online registrations paid with credit card are subject to a service fee by our registration provider. To avoid online credit card fees, send a check for the amount owed to CARA, 1100 W. Cermak Rd. #231, Chicago, IL 60608. Provide full name, e-mail, phone number and note that check is for summer marathon training program fees. CARA will then contact to complete registration.

Age Minimum: Runners must be 18 years or older to participate in group training.




Questions / Contact


General: info@cararuns.org Training Questions: training@cararuns.org Phone: 312-666-9836




COVID-19 Information


CARA is monitoring all guidance from local and state authorities, and the Center for Disease Control regarding COVID-19. The safety and well-being of our members, participants, volunteers, and staff is always our top priority. CARA looks forward to providing the summer half marathon training program, and has developed operational preparedness plans designed for current guidelines. Our plans require changes from our typical operations and amenities, in order to provide a meaningful experience that prioritizes safety guidelines focused on participants, volunteers, and staff. The State of Illinois’ reopening is currently guided by the Restore Illinois phased plan. At this time, CARA is proceeding with plans to begin the training program as scheduled. However, all group gatherings (long runs and track workouts) will not begun until Phase 4 of the state's plan. Phase 4 allows persons to gather in groups of up to 50 persons.

Through operational changes, by adjusting how we gather at training sites, to gathering only with our individual pace groups, we are able to provide a program within the guidelines considered safe and appropriate. With these changes, our gathering groups (pace groups) will be under 50, as the typical CARA pace group averages 10-35 runners under normal participation levels.

Our preparedness plan includes:
  • Cancellation Policy
  • Program Timeline / Schedule
  • Target Race Contingency Plans
  • Operational Preparedness for Group Long Runs
  • Participant Advisements / Expectations
  • Pre-Run Gathering
  • Group Running
  • Hydration Stations
  • Post-Run Gathering
CARA may modify these plans to comply with any future guidelines from local, state, or federal authorities. Complete details are available HERE.




Important Dates


Based on projections of when the Illinois Phase 4 will begin, CARA will proceed with the program on the following timeline:

  • July 6: Training plans begin
  • July 11: Group long runs begin
  • July 15: Group track workouts begin
Should the start of group runs be delayed past July 11, and CARA is not able to provide a confirmed approved start date before August 1, the program will be canceled. Please see FAQ for cancellation policy.




Volunteer / Group Leaders


Volunteer to be a group leader? You are encouraged to apply. Group leaders must be active CARA members to access the application. Learn more about group leading HERE. Volunteer to serve at a hydration station. Email jillian@cararuns.org. Volunteer to assist at track workouts. Email training@cararuns.org.




Target Race


The Chicago Half Marathon on 9/27 is the official target race of CARA's Summer Half Marathon Training Program. Should there be changes that do not provide an opportunity for mass participation, CARA has made contingency plans to provide training program runners an end of season 13.1 mile opportunity for completion of the training program goal. This opportunity will occur as follows:

  • At each training site, pace groups will complete a 13.1 mile run with appropriate support provided for medical, ambulance, hydration, and fuel.
  • CARA will facilitate or provide at minimum a finishers medal to commemorate the completion of training and accomplishment of running the half marathon distance.
  • All sites will complete their 13.1 mile run on October 10.




Packet Pick-Up


Packet pick-up start dates will be finalized as the state's reopening plan progresses. The expected start date for packet picked is July 1, with the expectation that pick-up will be available for multiple dates at each location.




Terms / Cancellation Policy


Should the start of group runs be delayed past July 11, and CARA is not able to provide a confirmed approved start date before August 1, the program will be canceled. If the program is canceled, CARA will provide the following options to paid registered participants to choose from:

  • Option 1: Full credit of fees paid towards choice of one CARA program or event of any kind of equal or lesser value. Must be used by the end of 2021. And extension of CARA Supporter Level membership to the end of 2021, or
  • Option 2: Refund 2020 training program registration fee, minus $50.
Participants may voluntarily exit the program prior to July 1 and receive a full credit of fees paid towards any one CARA program or event of any kind of equal or lesser value. Must be used by the end of 2021.

Other Terms / Details:

  • Program registration does not include entry or registration fees for half marathon race.

  • Fees are not prorated for late entry.

  • No refunds will be issued for any reason, except where described in the cancellation policy.




Virtual Program Option


CARA provides runners around the world the opportunity enjoy the CARA training program through its virtual program. Virtual Training Option: $80 ( REGISTER)

  • Save 15% - 2020 CARA Supporter Level Members
The program offers:
  • Training Plan: CARA Director of Training and Coach Tim Bradley provides an 14-week training plan with novice, novice-II, and advanced options so you can train at the level right for your fitness and lifestyle. You will have confidence knowing your training program is led by CARA coaches who have national certifications and years of proven coaching success long before we bring them into CARA.
  • Private STRAVA Club: Enjoy access to CARA's private club, just for the training program, on STRAVA. There you can receive daily training, and interact with fellow training program runners.
  • NovaCare Hotline: Gain access to CARA's exclusive 24/7 Injury Hotline with Novacare Physical Therapist ready to support your injury questions.
  • Expertise: A weekly info-packed newsletter from CARA Director of Training Coach Bradley.
  • Note: The virtual option does not include inclusion in our target race contigency plan if inacted. Should these plans be put in place, virtual runners may have access to register for this option.





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