A Running Glance:
Things I loved
- Fun Independence Day theme
- Custom finisher medal
- Earlier start time
- Live results
Things I less than loved
- Shirts were a no-show
- Course was short
Firecrackers in flight, this race was an early morning delight! From the fun Independence Day theme to the custom-designed hinged finisher medals, this event fully embodied (pun intended) the Bodies Race Company (BRC) slogan: Fun. Family. Fitness.
The registration price was a little higher than average for this 5k, but the cost was the same for the 10k, and both distances included the super unusual custom-designed hinged finisher medal AND *free* finisher pics like the ones seen below! This race started at $28 if you committed several months out and increased incrementally to $40 on race day. The charity of choice was Gateway Rescue Mission, which I didn’t even know until I checked the race website just now.
*Note to Race Director – I’d recommend promoting the cause you’re supporting prior to the event, which will benefit the race and the charity two-fold. 1) Supporters who may not normally participate in a 5k might come out just to support your cause, bolstering donations and money for your charity! And 2) Promoting the cause will raise awareness of the charity, which will also benefit the organization (and community) down the line!
There was actually a bit of a snafu with the t-shirts. (Oopsie!) I was distracted when I signed in, and honestly, I didn’t even realize I didn’t receive my shirt. A little while later it clicked that I wasn’t given a shirt when I checked in, so I asked a couple of the runners I knew if they had received their shirts at check-in. Someone said there was a problem and the shirts didn’t arrive on time. I never heard an official explanation but about two weeks later our shirts came in the mail! So, on the downside, the shirts weren’t given out on race day, but at least the director took the time (and expense) to mail them out to participants not long after the event.
The t-shirt was a Gildan brand, “Soft Style” ring-spun variety, and 100% cotton. This style is nice because it is thin and lightweight. Perfect for warm summer days! I liked the design despite the logo being large across the front of the shirt. It features the United States of America with the words “Running in the USA” above the “Firecracker Flight” race name in traditionally patriotic colors: red, white & blue.
Alright, BRC, the finish line “party” could use a little amping up! Water, oranges, and bananas were plentiful.
I’d love to see some additional food options on a separate table from race results. One really neat thing BRC offers at their events is real-time race results. When you cross the finish line, you’re directed to a table to pick up your medal and instantly told your age group (AG) placement. If you finished in the top three, you immediately receive your AG finishers medal, in this case, a cool “badge” you’ll see pictured in the next section below. No more waiting around for your AG medal!
This medal is pretty “EXPLOSIVE!!” It’s hinged and opens to reveal stars and simulate, well, firecrackers in flight! BRC is known for their custom medals, and the Firecracker Flight 2019 edition did not disappoint.
I snagged 1st place in my AG! Guess I was channeling my inner firecracker! 🙂
There were several volunteers at check-in and on-course helping participants get where they needed to be. SuperShakes was onsite passing out free sample shakes to finishers, and I love me some SuperShakes! One word: Butterfinger.
The start/finish line was set up in front of D1 Sports off Parkway East in Madison, MS. The route itself ran 1.5 miles in one direction down the Parkway, then back to D1 Sports. If you were participating in the 5k, you then took a left back into the driveway leading to D1, however, if you were a 10ker like me, you ran 1.5 miles in the opposite direction up the Parkway, and then back. The course did track a little short; I ended up with 5.88 miles according to my Garmin, over a quarter mile shy of the 6.2 miles that should have been the 10k course.
Course Difficulty: LEVEL 2
The route was incredibly flat! The course was mostly straight with only one real turn on the backside of the 10k route. There wasn’t much shade, but the weather was cool-ish for July, and definitely more bearable than it was just a few days before at the Watermelon Classic 5k! That 72 degrees felt pretty amazing, and it helped earned this route a LEVEL 2 on my RUNable difficulty scale.
I’d also like to note that my previous review suggested an earlier start time, and the race director again heard that request and changed the start time of this event! It’s really awesome to have an RD who listens to his runners!! Thank you; kicking this race off sooner really made a difference and helped us beat the heat!
In my last BRC #RUNableRaceReview for the Hero Hustle 5k/10k, I suggested they add an additional water stop or two along the course. I’m happy to report that the BRC race directors heard that suggestion and responded by moving the water stop from the start/finish line area to on-course as well as placing another water stop at the 10k turn-around point. Thanks, BRC! Well done.
*DID I MENTION THERE WERE SUPER SHAKES?
There was plenty of parking conveniently located at D1 Sports as well as access to the outdoor bathroom facilities behind the main building.
Bodies Race Company is actually a franchise operation currently making a positive impact on communities in Mississippi, Kentucky, Missouri, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska and soon to be – Florida! The market for fitness and weight loss businesses is only growing larger as it strives to help people get in shape. With over 70 percent of Americans considered overweight, providing an outlet for exercise with an emphasis on family and fun is a positive way to make a real difference while growing a healthy business. I’d love to see BRCs in every state!
Locally, there are two more BRC events on the books for 2019, both of which include discounted EARLY registration, t-shirts, and unique finisher medals! So, sign up now! Next up is the “Spooky Sprint Half Marathon/5k” scheduled for October 26. The medal for the Half Marathon is rumored to be 6-inches in diameter!! Bring on the BLING! Use code Runable_20 to save 20% off your registration today! Check the RUNable Race Calendar for a complete listing of local races. See you on the road, friends!