Let us kid ourselves into categorizing pizza as nutritious running fuel. I’m partial to the following pizza joints, for great eats and fond memories…

Vote for Pizza printed on a t-shirt
Spotted at Target: Vote for Pizza t-shirt

#1 Pizzeria Lola – Forever my favorite pizza place, maybe because one of my favorite running buddies and close friend worked there, or possibly because Jen and I more often than not receive our dessert (the ONE place we splurge on dessert with the DIY chocolate chip cookie ice sandwich) comped (even after our friend quit working there). THE place for wood-fired pizza, always worth the 30+ minute wait.

#2 Black Sheep – Two weeks after hanging out, I asked Jen on a ‘proper’ first date to Black Sheep in the North Loop. A few years later and they now deliver. It’s our go-to dinner delivery, albeit indulgent, that you just can’t replicate coal-fired pizza in your electric oven.

#3 Burch Steakhouse and Pizza Bar – A shockingly good pizza find, located in Uptown. The atmosphere alone is lovely where the upstairs dining = $100 for a steak stuffiness vs. downstairs dining = cozy brick wall-lined get-away, where a seat at the bar provides a prime view of the intensely hot wood-fired pizza oven.

#4 Young Joni – The counterpart to Pizzeria Lola, housed in Northeast. Wood-fire oven? Check. Local, delicious, carefully curated toppings? Check. Plus, an awesomely cool aesthetic alone worth stopping in to see.

#5 Hello Pizza – Pizza by the slice, brought to you by the founder of Pizzeria Lola. An east-coast style pizzeria, this place complements their delicious slices with a photo booth, “HELLO my name is…” stickers, and salads good enough to call dinner. Low-key atmosphere that was perfect for a celebratory dinner  spot with friends and family post-ultra birthday 30-mile run.

#6 Parkway Pizza – The first on the list of what I’d refer to as ‘fast food pizza’ but it’s absolutely in a different class than Pizza Hut/Dominos/Papa Johns. Square pizza, generous toppings, good call for delivery.