(Team Rio, Photo Courtesy of Pupak Photography)
Six-time Vocal Group of the Year, Diamond Rio’s Marty Roe and Jimmy Olander led 175 Sixth Annual Team Rio runners and walkers across the finish line at the Country Music Marathon and 1/2 Marathon this past Saturday in Nashville. This year the team raised over $135,500.00 for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee, surpassing the $500,00.00 fundraising mark in just six years. Olander crossed the finish line in 2:08:55 and Roe in 2:19:22 with both beating last year’s finish times.
“It was great to start the race with our Team Rio folks pumped and ready to run for Big Brothers Big Sisters,” shares Olander. “One of my favorite parts of the Country Music Marathon is the first right turn off Broadway going towards the Country Music Hall of Fame. As I looked over my right shoulder I could see 34,000 people in the race baring down on me from up the hill. It’ll make you get a move on that’s for sure. The 2:08 for my half marathon time is not what I was looking for this year. I screwed up my hydration and had calf and hamstring cramps from mile 6 on and ended up walking a lot. I thought as I was peeing during the middle of the night, ‘Hey stupid, I think this is your water reserve you are getting rid of.’ Sometimes less is more.”
In addition to the adult team, Team Rio Kids were out in full force competing in Friday’s Country Music Kids Marathon. Master Fitness Trainer and six-time Soldier of the Year Sgt Ken Weichert led 115 kids from numerous local programs in warm ups as they ran the last mile of the marathon and crossed the official Country Music Marathon finish line. Team Rio Kids partners with local schools to teach and encourage healthier lifestyles and to assist the kids with training for the Kids Marathon.
It’s not too late to make a donation. If you would like to support Jimmy, Marty or any Team Rio member a donation can be made HERE. For more information on Team Rio and to sign up for next year’s team, please visit www.teamrio.org.