The Salomon CITYTRAIL Chattanooga 10K & 30K race is coming up on Saturday, September 19th. With a course traversing historic Chattanooga landmarks across the city, off the beaten path urban locations, and amazing trails within the city limits this race offers a perspective like none other of The Best Town Ever–Chattanooga, TN. Registration is now open for the Salomon CITYTRAIL Chattanooga race and to give you a heads up on what to expect we\’ve interviewed 2014 CITYTRAIL Runner, Eunice Campbell. Many thanks to Eunice for taking the time to share her experience and perspective on this unique and exciting race!
Eunice, tell us a little about yourself–who you are and why you love running?
I am a crazy working mother with four children. Two girls and two boys. My girls are 15 and 13. My boys are 12 and 7. Yes, I have a caboose. I am an Occupational Therapist and I work full time at Soddy Daisy HealthCare Center. I love helping people and I love working with the elderly. Why do I run? I run because I am a crazy mom of four kids! I need me time! I think I find myself when I run and running brings me happiness. I find happiness in the woods and meeting new and amazing people. I want to show my kids that if you work really hard at something you can do anything. You can go the distance! I never really thought of myself as an athlete and now I think of myself as a runner. The people I have met along the way are the most amazing part of the journey.
How would you describe a CITYTRAIL race to someone who\’s never run one before?
The CITYTRAIL race is just fun! You have the opportunity to run through some really amazing places in Chattanooga. You are taken along the Walking Bridge, up the winding part of the Riverwalk just below the Hunter Museum, through cool back alleys in Fort Wood, the historic Engel Stadium, around the National Cemetery, more very interesting alleyways, wind through fun places along main street, run through the home of the Chattanooga Lookouts, along the waterfront and then through more crazy back alleys near Stringers Ridge. Then you get to hit the trails! Dash through Stringers Ridge and come to a finish back at Renaissance Park. You\’re greeted along the way by totally awesome volunteers at aid stations. CITYTRAIL gives you the opportunity to see the heart of Chattanooga with a group of super cool runners!
What made the CITYTRAIL race different from other races you have run?
CITYTRAIL is different from a traditional road race and different from a trail race. The course challenges you on a variety of surfaces ranging from asphalt, gravel, cobblestone, grass, turf, and dirt. Truly a super fun experience. I was perfect wearing road shoes for the race because the trails on Stringers Ridge are not too technical and just a wee bit hilly.
What was your favorite part of last year\’s race experience?
My favorite part of the race was running through Stringers Ridge. I love running in the woods and I love running at Stringers so I felt that was my place to just run the way I love to run. I also had the opportunity to meet some really nice people that remain friends today. Every time I run a Wild Trails race I make a new friend. That\’s the very best part. Yes, the competition is there, but these races are for both competitors and for people who just want to have a fun day running.
Do you plan on running the CITYTRAIL race again this year?
I have not yet decided if I\’m running CITYTRAIL Chattanooga this year. I fractured my knee cap last December and I\’m just getting my running game back. But through this injury I have developed a love for volunteering. My greatest love is encouraging another person to do something they never thought they could do. But, I will be a part of this event either as a racer or as a volunteer. The start time is a little later this year and I feel guilty not being home for my kids in the morning. I am hoping to maybe have the opportunity to pre-run this event.
What are you most looking forward to about this year\’s race?
I am looking forward to helping make this event amazing. To watching people achieve goals, to try a run on the trail for the first time, and to see people just have fun.
What are some things people should know about running the CITYTRAIL Chattanooga race?
- Wild Trails Races are the best!
- Road shoes are perfect to wear for this event!
- I would recommend a hand held water bottle or waist belt. You won\’t really need more water than that because aid stations are not too far apart and are always stocked with water and Heed.
- Don\’t wear that Garmin. Just have fun and enjoy having the opportunity to run through one of the best cities.
- Follow the flags!
- HAVE FUN!