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On National Running Day, I attended the re-launch of the Nike+ Run Club at Nike Chicago. The evening included a group fun run, snacks, Q&A with Dathan Ritzenhein and Nike+ Run Club coaches, the opportunity for a gait analysis, and tons of encouragement from coaches and pacers. So much encouragement that random people on the street would join in and cheer for us. It’s kind of cool when a big city like Chicago can have that friendly small-town feel, and someone yells at you on the street in a legitimately positive way.

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Run your first, funnest and fastest miles with Nike+ Run Club. Join a global community of runners and receive expert guidance from Nike+ Run Club (NRC) Coaches and Pacers at every session. NRC Sessions are designed for every runner, regardless of skill level. The training program was created to make you cross the finish line as your best you. NRC Coaches deliver expertise though one-on-one guidance and specifically training plans designed for all runners, motivating each runner to success in their goals. Encouraging runners before, during and after every run, NRC Pacers are there to support runners at each session. #NRC @NikeChicago

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After the general Q&A with the larger group, the Nike coaches sat down privately with some local bloggers to talk more about the program. They are gearing up for Chicago Marathon training (kicking off Monday, June 8th), however, anyone is welcome to sign up for the workouts, no matter your running goals. And like all Nike workouts, the program is completely complimentary!

Each workout in the program has a purpose, such a HIIT training to cross-train and build strength, speed workouts to help you get faster, long runs to build endurance, and recovery runs. The program is led by some pretty impressive coaches.

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If you haven’t joined a marathon training group yet, I highly recommend checking out the program with Nike! Even though I’m not planning to run a marathon this year, I definitely want to check out some of the workouts. The speed workouts are the same ones college athletes – like Pre – do (or did) on the track.

At the end of the evening, Dathan joined the bloggers and coaches to chat about training. So, we’re practically besties now.

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You can check out the new Nike+ Run Club at nike.com/chicago. Keep an eye on the site to save your spot for future group runs and workouts. Maybe I’ll see you there!

All pictures (except for the last one) are courtesy of Nike.