Have you heard of ZOOMA?
Formally the Women’s Half Marathon, it’s a women’s race series with two distances offered in Nashville – a 5k and a Half Marathon (13.1 miles). My mom and I ran it back when it was the Women’s Half Marathon. I’d just moved here, and it was a great way to see the city and spend time with my mom.
The kind people at Zooma have offered us a registration, friends! Normally the fee for this race is $60-110, but you can run it for FREE! Just answer the question at the bottom of this post in the comments below or on Facebook. I’ll announce the winner just one week from today so you can have plenty of time to train for the race on November 8!
Speaking of training, I’ve put together a far-from-comprehensive list of my favorite ways to sweat in Nashville. Here we go!
1.) Shelby Bottoms Greenway
If you love running, (or even just “like-like” it) this park will fan the flames. The paved, tree-lined trail is about five miles long, with five more miles of more rugged trails shooting off of it. For a long run, you really can’t do better in Nashville than running up and down the trail.Though it’s located in the city, running with only the sound of birds chirping and trees rustling gives the distinct impression of being “away from it all.”
2.) Metro Parks Recreation Centers
For anyone on a budget, the Metro Parks-affiliated gyms are the way to go. Even the Y doesn’t have rates this reasonable. Depending on which one is closest to you, equipment definitely varies though the Centennial Sportsplex, adjacent to Centennial Park, has a lot to write home about: two pools, tennis courts, a full gym, group classes, and an ice skating rink. The staff and clientele are friendly, and if you don’t feel like committing, you can go day-by-day at most locations for only $3 a pop ($7 at the Sportsplex)
3.) Hot Yoga Plus
Clean, consistent, and client-feedback-driven, there is a reason Hot Yoga Plus was voted Best Yoga Studio in the Nashville Scene’s Best of Nashville Poll for 12 years in a row. And there’s a reason I chose to get certified and to teach here, too – expectations for teachers are high, and it shows. There are a variety of classes available, including Hot 26, Power Flow, a fusion of both, restorative, and sculpt classes (yoga with weights!) but most of them have a distinctive high-energy, happy, and grateful vibe.
4.) Percy Warner State Park
At the entrance to this park, there is a set of stone steps that seem never to end. At the top, you’ll feel like a superhero – and you’ve just begun! There are some paved walkways, but most trails here are the rugged kind, perfect for a hike. For runners, these challenging hills are are made bearable, adorned with beautiful colors in any season.
5.) Hot Box
In truth, I’ve been here once. But it made such an impression on me that I’ve wanted to return ever since – the energy of this place is contagious! But the best part is how very personal the training seems. Instructors make classes personal by learning names and using a variety of motivational techniques, from screaming instructions to murmuring specific suggestions close to your individual bag.
6.) Shakti Power Yoga
Ok, so I had to put two yoga studios on this list. I couldn’t leave out Shakti! It’s a treasure in our city, and people know it – Shakti has developed a loyal fan following that allows it to offer fantastic development workshops, book clubs, and killer power yoga classes. The owners, Kelly and Lauren, are sisters with a genuine interest in their students’ lives. Equally interested in students are their two dogs, who roam the foyer and the studio after class, looking for a friendly face to lick.
What’s your favorite way to sweat in Nashville? (answer below or on Facebook for a chance to win the ZOOMA registration!)