We Walk Half Marathon

This race was a long time coming.  A loooong time ago I was talking to a friend who improved her 5K walking time.  I told her she should come walk the Flying Pig Half Marathon.  We looked at the course time limits and it wound up not being the right fit.  I knew such thing as a walking half marathon and marathon did exist though.  After a little time on the google, I found the We Walk Half Marathon.  We started training sometime last fall.

Registration: Online registration was very easy.

Housing: This race is far enough away, with an early enough start time, that it seemed worth it to stay nearby.  College of St Ben's has dorm rooms available for one or two nights.  We opted for the one night stay.  Dorms were nice for a dorm.  The bed moved every time I moved, but I was almost expecting that.

Packet Pick Up: We did pick up the night before.  It was at the same place we had to sign in for housing.  There was some catastrophe with the shirt order, but the race organizers tried their best to make things right with what was delivered.

Pasta Dinner: This was my first time going to a pre-race pasta dinner.  I'd wanted to do it because I knew it would be simple and offer predictable pre-race food.  We also got to meet the race organizers and hear about the course for the next day.

Weather and Wardrobe:  Starting temps were in the 60s, finishing temps were around 80* and a slight breeze.  It was crazy sunny all day.
Top: Tank top (and a long sleeve shirt I dropped at the first water station)
Bottom: Running skirt (yes, seriously)
Shoes: Altra Intuition Running shoes.  I bought them specifically for this. 

Start Line: We parked at the finish line and took a school bus to the start line. There were 30-50 people at the start.  It was very friendly.  We got a bit of a pre-race speech and then "take your marks, go" and that was it.

Course: The Lake Wobegon Trail is a rail-trail.  Since trains can't climb big hills, this course didn't have any.  It was relatively flat and very scenic.  Lots of fields, some lakes, and some back yards.
The trail itself is marked every mile.  Our mile markers were counting us down.  We started at 13.1 and worked our way back to 0 which was the finish.  I was really confused.
There were water stops every couple of miles at trail access points.  Some water stops also had cut up fruit.  The watermelon was great.
The trail was obviously open to non-races.  I liked that the bikers actually called out "on your left" which is something they don't often do here in the cities.
The full marathon and 50K both start at 26.2 miles up the trail from the finish.  The 50K people get about 1.5 miles from the finish, and then have to turn and do a little out and back to get the rest of their distance.

Race: Walking a half marathon takes a long time.

Finish: The finish line was about as small as the start line.  My two racing companions both placed in their age groups so they got their age group medals and finisher medals right away.  I was told there were too many people my age in the race for me to have placed.  I was not surprised.

Race Recommended For: If it sounds good to you, definitely give it a try.  Everyone is welcoming and encouraging.  For such a tiny race it's very well organized and well supported with volunteers.
These races also had a "run/walk" category, particularly for the marathon and the 50K.  So if going the distance is a good thing but typical race time limits are a bad thing, this is a great race to look at.

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