LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Rainy weather didn't stop the thousands of people that are in town for the 15th annual Little Rock Marathon.

Participants arrived early Saturday morning ready for the exercise. Philip King, a member of Black Men Run, hits the streets again in this year’s Little Rock Marathon. He joins the thousands that have flocked to the natural state for the 26 mile run around the city.

“I have been running for a year now,” King said. “I travel from different states, so it’s always good to come home and run.”

Saturday, King took home the trophy for top male 10k finisher, and he’s hoping to bring home another win for the group.


“The run community here is really supportive and with this being our top BMR event I really want to take first place for everybody,” King said.

Along their journey, they'll need support, and for Robert Smith that task comes easy. Smith knows firsthand what it's like running long marathons.

“I’m a runner myself, but it’s always good to be out here to show support to others,” Smith said. “Yeah it’s raining, it’s a little cool, I could be in the hotel room chilling, but instead I decided to come out and just show some support.”

He said although it's raining he's glad to see so many people out and running. Smith said it's marathons like these that help educate and keep people active.

According to the CDC heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. And more than 600,000 Americans die every year from heart problems like diabetes, obesity, poor diet and physical inactivity, something Smith said is important to remember.

“Whether you run, jog, or ride a bike being more active and being considerate of your health overall, that’s the big message,” Smith said.