‘Six Pack Mom Attack’ Set to Battle 198-Mile Run

By Jennifer Fisher, via Northbrook Patch,

Five of the six members of the team gather at Northbrook Court. From left: Stacy Abel, Whitney Martin, Jennifer Falk, Karen Redmond and Allison Harris. Credit Jennifer FisherLocal women with the right stuff take on challenging fundraiser run in hopes of motivating other mothers. They’re raising 19 kids between them, working full-time jobs and now planning to cover 198 miles by foot in roughly 24 hours.

That’s no problem for the “Six Pack Mom Attack,” a group of five women runners from Northbrook and one woman from Deerfield, who will tackle the Ragnar Relay in June.

The relay race from Madison, WI, to Montrose Beach on Chicago’s lakefront challenges teams of runners to cover nearly 200 miles as a group and raises money for Back on My Feet, a nonprofit that aids the homeless. The six women will trade off racing 36 legs among them over the course of the event, spending the rest of their time in two rented vans.

“We basically run, rest, eat, sleep in the vans,” said the team’s leader, Karen Redmond.

A corrective exercise specialist and running coach, Redmond said that she was inspired to put together a group of runners to compete as soon as she heard about the race.

“I wanted them to be people that I thought were great,” she explained. “But I also wanted them to be people that were pretty serious runners and well conditioned, not people who just start running in the spring when it gets nice out.”

Between her friends and their friends, Redmond had a talented pool to draw from. Her hand-picked team includes Stacy Abel, marathoner and mother of three; Whitney Martin, also a marathoner and mother of three; Kim Busch, Ironman competitor and mother of four; Jennifer Falk, marathoner and mother of two; and Allison Harris, who placed seventh in her age group during the 2009 Chicago Marathon and has three children.

“These women are winning races and placing in their age groups even in some of the races that have 10,000 runners in them,” said Redmond, who has two children.

The team leader adds that she also hopes they’re setting an example for other mothers who want to get into shape.

“Four of us are in our 40s,” she said. “I really wanted to try to empower and motivate women that have kids so they can be fit.”

Of course, the race is not so much about getting in shape for this group of women, who train year-round and have dozens of marathons under their collective belt. It’s really about the experience.

The runners will take turns running segments of the 198-mile race, ranging from 2.9 to 9.98 miles, as they follow the course south from Wisconsin. The race begins Friday morning and continues overnight into Saturday—meaning some people will be running during the middle of the night.

Read the rest of this article at Northbrook Patch.