What to Expect on Race Day

June 10, 2015

Running Expert Nate Vandervest helps get us pumped for race day!

Race day is right around the corner and here’s what you can expect.

The Bellin Run is the seventh largest 10K in the nation, and for a good majority of participants, the race is right in their backyard. Ninety percent of the event’s runners and walkers come from a 60-minute radius of Green Bay — so you can look forward to seeing numerous people you know as you make your way to your designated start corral. You’ll see numerous signs directing you where to go, and you’ll have plenty of volunteers to ask if you have questions.

Pre-race, you’ll hear music everywhere and the atmosphere will have a certain buzz to it. There will be a lot of nervous, pent-up energy as so many people have trained for weeks on end to take part in this one race. Some use this race to start their weight-loss program, others to compare themselves to years past, and others to be a part of the corporate challenge team. There are nearly as many reasons to run (or walk) as there are participants.

Soon, you’ll hear the national anthem, played live on a saxophone that has become somewhat iconic to the Bellin Run. Then you’ll hear the “crack” of the start gun.

Droves of people will flood out of the start corral and start making their way down Webster Avenue. There is music everywhere and people lining the streets cheering. Schroeder’s Flowers is on the right (and don’t forget to go back with your race bib for some great deals!) 

About two miles later, after a slight uphill the entire way, you will turn onto Greene Avenue. What a great road! You’ll have a little downhill followed by a little uphill and then a huge downhill that seems to give back some confidence that you can hit your goal. Sprinklers and the “Rocky” theme will greet you on this street. You’ll see still more cheering spectators, the Bellin’s famous banjo man — and even some rummage sales.

You will make the turn onto East River Drive and be immediately greeted by the 5K mark — yes, halfway! Now you get to enjoy the winding road all the way to the 4-mile mark. Just 2.2 miles to go — this is what you trained for!

A quick turn onto St. Joseph Street and then another onto Libal. This seems to be the fastest mile on the course. You will run past the Allouez Miracle League Field and then under the railroad track and up a small hill to the next turn at Garland. Another mile down — 1.2 to go! 

You will cut back a block to Hastings and then up to Clay Street. On sunny days, Clay Street is a blessing with its mature trees that offer plenty of shade. Now you can start to hear the music from Astor Park, along with cheers from the finish line. You can see the road up ahead opens up as you approach the 6-mile mark by Astor Park.

Now it is time to lay it all out! Just under a quarter-mile to go, there is a turn up Porlier with a slight uphill and then a nice flat stretch on Webster to the finish! You can see the race clock ticking away as you try to convince your body that it can move faster for just a little bit longer. 

Then you hear the beep of your chip as you cross the finish line. Congrats! You did it! Words of encouragement come from all around as our medical workers help keep you moving down the road. Make sure to say thank you to the volunteers! Without the thousand-plus race-day volunteers, this event would never happen — and they all do a phenomenal job. You’ll pick up your water around the corner, then head down Clay Street to pick up a goodie bag of snacks on your way to Astor Park. From there, you can watch and cheer on friends and family as you enjoy the music and atmosphere.

What a great way to start your Saturday morning. Now you start to see or meet up with friends and family members. The stories start flowing: “Did you see that guy?” and “Did you notice that?” Maybe even “I ran faster than last year!” This to me is the best part of the race, watching and enjoying how excited people are — this is what makes the Bellin Run so special. Talk to anyone in town and if they run they will ask “what was your time for the Bellin?” It is our own hometown benchmark in many regards. Best of Luck!

Always Running,

Nate Vandervest

Running Coach, CSCS, CES

Nate is a running coach and strength coach who specializes in running assessments, strength training and personalized running programs.  For more information contact Nathan.Vandervest@bellin.org.

Posted in: Bellin Health Fitness CenterEvent Info  |  2 Comments


  • This is my first Bellin Run ever. I’ve been training for 7 weeks for this race. It started as a goal to improve my general health. I was shooting for a finish time of under 1 hour. And I have surpassed that my almost 15 minutes in my last 3 10k’s I’ve ran over the last month.
    I can’t wait to see how I really do on Saturday!!

    Brian Brickham    June 10, 2015 at 10:16 am

  • Congratulations, Brian Brickham, on your journey to fitness and your first ever Bellin Run.

    Thiis is my 5th or 6th Bellin Run, having run several of them in the early ‘90s to early ‘00s.  Life then got in the way and my weight ballooned WAY up. 

    Then, in mid 2013, I had what I call my “come to Jesus” moment when I got back the results from blood tests done during my annual physical.  My blood cholesterol was over 250 and my doctor wanted to put me on a statin drug to lower my cholesterol.  With my previous background in the health care field I knew that statin drugs cause some very unpleasant side-effects.

    I knew that my truly awful diet and sedentary “couch potato” lifestyle was the main cause of the elevated cholesterol.  Shortly after receiving the aforementioned lab results, I drastically changed my diet and about a month later I started a fitness regimen.

    Three months after receiving the lab results I had a follow-up appointment with my doctor and my cholesterol level had fallen by over 100 points - all of this WITHOUT any drugs!!!!

    Because of my high weight I started my fitness regimen with intense walking workouts, to protect my hip, knee and ankle joints.  The plan was to take up running after I’d reached my target weight.  But, I’ve enjoyed the walking so much that I continue it to this day and compete in the walking division of races in which I used to run many years ago.

    Barbara Finger    June 10, 2015 at 2:11 pm

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