The Nashville City Club Race Team, under the leadership of NCC Managing Director and 27 time marathon / too-many-to-count half marathon runner, Chris Weinberg, took off on their first team run. Chris has completed the Country Music Marathon 4 times, clocking both his fastest and slowest times on the course, recalling “It is, by far, the most challenging course I have run. The hills are constantly in play and the weather is usually not great.”
Before they could start, however, they needed to set their personal goals. From marathon and half marathoners, to walkers and runners, first timers and repeaters, our group of almost 50 participants was diverse, eager and excited. GC Maxwell recalls that he joined the race because Chris made him! “Oh and also because I ran the half two years ago, but took last year off and wanted to get back in the saddle and try it again.”
Based on each person’s individual goals, our team was divided into groups and given individual training programs based on Hal Higdon’s training program. Chris has followed this program for 17 years and Higdon is one of the world’s foremost authorities on marathon and half marathon training. The program was adjusted slightly based on an individual’s experience and training pace, and included days dedicated to strength and conditioning and flexibility, slowly increasing your mileage each week in anticipation of the big day.
Fast forward 7 months…
Thursday, April 25th, 2013
Just days before the race, the Race Team gathered for one last get together. Over lunch at the Club, Chris and fellow Race Team member, Jane Anne Miller, shared some helpful tips with the group! Knowing that we were heading into a cold, rainy Saturday, some advice included:
“Hydrate! Even though you’ll be cold, hydrate!”
“Wear a hat to keep the water out of your eyes.”
“Don’t start out too fast. It will be hard with all of the people and the rush of adrenaline, but try to run your race.. at your pace.”
Saturday, April 27th, 2013
We’ve finally made it! The Team gathered at the Club at 5am to head over to the finish line at Centennial Park. Junior, from Grand Avenue, was our bus driver and he was just thrilled to be with us! With all of the nerves, he was a great addition to our morning and managed to get us right up to the Parthenon, despite all of the road closures in Nashville.
At 6:30am, just 30 minutes from the start of the race, our Team members started making their way towards the start line.. double checking they had their race numbers, shoes tied and time chips. As the race began, NCC Team Members, Ashlee, Jaleesa & Anna-Vija, made the trek across town to LP Field to set up our tent & after party.
As our team members started coming in, it was amazing to be able to greet and congratulate them.
“There is no greater feeling than watching your teammates, who you have been training with for 7 months, cross the finish line and embrace the sense of accomplishment they have just achieved.”
-Ashlee Polk, NCC Member Relations Manager
“It was inspirational to see our staff and members stick to their commitment for over 7 months and finish the race. The team camaraderie and sense of accomplishment is a great value of the City Club and our awesome racers!”
-Anna-Vija McClain, NCC Assistant Club Manager
I think they were happy to see a refuge from the rain! With the rain, our party plans were changed and Team members and their friends and family made their way back to the City Club for champagne, sandwiches, cookies and a warm seat.
“Joining the Race Team for sure added to our [membership] experience because everything was taken care of and my wife and I didn’t have to worry about anything come race day. We were glad we did it!”
-GC & Kristen Maxwell, NCC Members
When this idea took root back in September, Chris’ goal was to gain a few running buddies. He had no idea there would be so much interest from the City Club members and staff!
“I am so proud of our group. We started training in October and met every Sunday for 7 months. On race day we had around 30 team members completed the half or full marathon in weather conditions that were very challenging. Most of our team members were either first time participants or had a few races under their belts. Not one person gave up on the day and everyone crossed the finish line. Our team consisted of people in their 20s, all the way up to the 60s. What a group of NCC Members. I am very proud!”
-Chris Weinberg, NCC Managing Director
Congratulations and great job to all of our Race Team members!