This weekend we took a road trip to Nashville, TN for my brother in law's wedding. The only part of the trip that actually went as planned was my running in the Tom King 5k. There was actually a 5k and a half marathon that day, but obviously I could not run the half. Although, I may have tried if not for the flu the week before.
The race seems cool at first glance. You start at LP Field, where the Tennessee Titans play, and end the run in the stadium with a half lap around the field.
The race was Saturday morning with packet pick ups Friday night. Since I arrived in town Friday afternoon I decided to go over, get my stuff and check things out. There was nothing special. Tables to sign up, and tables to pick up your packet if you pre-registered.
I looked at the list for my bib number, and received an envelope with my bib and timing chip. The lady also handed me an empty bag, or so I thought it was empty. I looked inside and saw one postcard sized flyer advertising a running group for the Country Music Marathon. Big whoop, I put my envelope inside there and went over to get my t-shirt. It is pretty decent, short sleeved tee... the half marathon runners got a long sleeve tech tee. You think for a $30 5K we would have got a tech tee also.
So nothing to check out, I left and went back to my hotel. I was only staying about two miles from the stadium, so I was actually planning to walk to the race as warm up and then walk back for a cool down. The only problem... it was down pouring when I woke up to get going. I also had a wicked cough lingering from the flu last week. I almost talked myself out of going, but got moving and drove over to the stadium.
The 5k started at 7:30 and the half started at 8:30. There was a good crowd forming when I got there and everyone was kind of hiding in the stadium to get out of the rain. I did some stretching, and knew that I should run a bit to warm up, but actually skipped it.
This was the biggest start to a 5k I have ever seen... (although I have only seen three including this one.) It took me 40 seconds to get across the start line and I had to keep my pace slow as the crowd gently thinned out. The course took us around the stadium once and then an out and back to the stadium. You can see from the map that when we entered the stadium my Garmin lost reception and kind of skitzed out for a second. It got back on track once I entered the field.
The run was nice around the stadium and near the river, but the straight part of the out and back was mostly industrial lots and construction scenes. Not too attractive. There was a water stop right before the turn around point, and it was very well organized with lots of water ready. They did a good job there.
It was real cool running into the stadium and around the field. They had the jumbotrons going and you could watch yourself running across the finish line.
It rained the whole time, and I felt like crap. I was seriously thinking about walking a little near the end, but I fell in pace with this older gentleman who started talking to me. He was very nice and inspiring and we chatted while we ran toward the finish. He apologized for slowing me down and said that I was helping him finish his run. I assured him that he was not slowing me down, and in fact helped me get through the last mile without walking.
All in all it was a fun race. I coughed a lung up after crossing the finish line, and was soaking wet, but made it. My chip time was 34:06 which translates to an exactly 11:00 per mile pace. I finished 310 overall and there were about 500 finishers according to the website.
So not my best, but not my worst. As far as the race goes... I think it was a little expensive since you really got no extras besides the t-shirt and and empty bag. I did like running in Nashville... some of the route was very nice.
18 hours ago