GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The 42nd River Bank Run will step off in just a few months, and runners are already taking to the streets.
Since December, hundreds of runners have been meeting on the first Saturday of every month at the YMCA in downtown Grand Rapids to prepare for the big race, set for May 11.
Runners set out into the city Saturday in preparation for the big day, despite the slick pavement and chilly temperatures.
24 Hour News 8’s Emily Linnert is participating in the Road Warriors 10k Run and joined in the runners’ training.
“I was thinking as I was walking up here, what have I gotten myself into,” Linnert said. “I am part of this kinda crazy community.”
The challenge of trying something new was part of the draw for Linnert.
“Something about challenging myself to try something new that I haven’t done before was exciting for me,” Linnert said. “I am excited to do the prep now so I’m in less pain on race day.”
Training Coordinator Greg Meyer was on hand to help runners prepare for the conditions Saturday and in May.
“We told the runners to enjoy themselves today,” Meyer said. “This is not a bad day to run in Michigan.”
The River Bank Run is in its first year with Amway as a title sponsor. Race Director David Madiol says runners can expect a few new additions.
“Runners will be excited to participate in the new virtual run this year,” Madiol said. “Runners can participate in the River Bank run wherever they are virtually.”
The virtual run allows runners the chance to virtually run in the race wherever they are, even earning a medal upon completion.
“All our virtual runners have to do to earn a medal and t-shirt is send in their official times after they run,” Madiol said.