Member Speedwork

New CARA Member Speedwork for 2019! Presented by Spara & Hoka One One

Enjoy the support and camaraderie of the CARA community. As Chicagoland's largest running club, you will experience the benefits of group workouts designed to challenge you to become a better runner as you strive to improve your personal bests this racing season. 

These speedwork sessions are an included member benefit for CARA Supporter Level members (Individual, Family, and Student packages*). There is no cost for eligible members to participate, but members must sign-up prior to attending. 

CARA Member Speedwork is designed to bring together CARA runners of all abilities training for personal improvement. Speedwork has been proven to lower times for all distance races. This is a beneficial program for those racing in the CARA Runners’ Choice Circuit and other 5K to 10 Mile races. 

Looking for targeted Half-Marathon or Marathon programs? Check out CARA's popular training program options HERE.



Not a member? You can join through the sign-up button above.

Workout Schedule / Calendar

Workouts for each training date posted on our group run calendar.


Weekly from March 12 to October 22, 2019

Days / Times / Locations:

How it Works: 

  • Workouts will be led by experienced CARA coaches with national certifications and expertise.

    • Montrose Wilson Track: Coach Tim Bradley, CARA Director of Training

    • Lake Shore Park Track: Coach Ashley Lucas, Head Coach and Director of Track and Field / Cross Country at UIC

  • Workouts will begin promptly at 6:30 p.m. with CARA Coaches taking runners through running drills and dynamic exercises to prepare for the workout.

  • Runners are encouraged to complete 5-10 minutes of easy jogging prior to the 6:30 p.m. start to get warmed up.

  • Coaches will split runners into self-selected groups based on performance/fitness level. You will be running with runners of your own pace.

  • Workout groups are primarily based on each runner's 5K personal best or goal pace as follow:

    • Group 1: 19 minutes or under (6:06 pace per mile and under)

    • Group 2: 19-22 minutes (6:06-7:04 pace per mile)

    • Group 3: 23-25 minutes (7:24-8:02 pace per mile)

    • Group 4: 26-28 minutes (8:02-9:00 pace per mile)

    • Group 5: 29 minutes or above (9:20 pace per mile and above)

  • Workouts will last between 45 and 60 minutes.

  • Eligible members may attend any or all sessions and may begin coming at any point during the year.

What to Bring:

  • Personal hydration (water bottle, etc...).

  • CARA Membership Card (showing Individual, Family, or Student package type). You may be asked to check-in with your membership card.

  • GPS watch or timing device/watch.


  • Coaches will post workouts to the group run calendar HERE. Find each training date on the calendar to see the posted workout. Workouts are posted approximately four weeks in advance. Workouts are focused on 5K to 10 Mile racing goals and following the CARA Runners' Choice Circuit.

  • 1-Mile time trials will be held approximately every 8-12 weeks to test your fitness and measure progress (tentatively scheduled 4/30, 7/9, and 9/24)

  • Note, there will be no speedwork session held on July 2 due to the holiday and as many runners will be focusing on the July 4th Elmhurst 4 on the 4th 4 Mile (CARA Circuit Race).

Membership Requirement:

  • *Workouts are open to active CARA Supporter Level members (Individual, Family, or Student membership packages).

  • CARA Friend Level members are not able to participate.

  • There is no cost to participate in CARA Member Speedwork for eligible members packages. CARA Supporter Level membership dues are as follows (Individual - $35, Family- $70, Student - $15). Join or Renew HERE.

  • Eligible members must sign-up to participate HERE before attending, and should bring along their membership card to workouts.

  • Membership cards can be obtained online by clicking "Login" in the upper right corner of this page. Once in "My Account" click on the "View Membership Card" button. There you can save the card to your phone's photos, or print the card. Be sure the membership package shows Individual, Family, or Student. Those with Friend packages are not eligible for CARA Member Speedwork. Note, Lifetime members are eligible. 

  • Please note, training sessions for CARA Training Programs are only open to registered training program participants, and are not included with membership packages.

Weather Policy:

  • Please review CARA's weather policy HERE.


  • Volunteers are needed to help coaches at workouts, primarily with timing pace groups. If interested, please e-mail Tim at