Spring Half Marathons in Minnesota – 4 You Might Like
Running a half marathon is so hot right now! It’s a highly approachable race for someone who is just getting into running and wants to go a little further, and amazing for those of us wanting to push the limits of fitness, yet don’t want to dedicate 20 hours a week doing so.
I ran my first half marathon AFTER running my first full marathon. Not the ideal way to do it, but when 26.2 miles is all you know, 13.1 feel easy by comparison. I regularily run three or four (sometimes five or six) half marathons a year. It is a very sustainable goal for me.
As you sit around and fret about how you’re going to stay motivated this winter, follow my completely unoriginal advice and signup for a spring half marathon. If you’re reading this and it’s still winter, you have plenty of time to appropriately train for it, and hopefully, you haven’t missed the more expensive registration deadlines.
Spring, as you know, are the wonderful months between March 20 and June 19. When thigns begin to grow again, the air gets warmer, snow turns into rain, and people off all shapes and sizes get active outdoors in shorts and tank tops the day it hits 40 degrees.
Below are a couple interesting half marathons going on around the great state of Minnesota this spring.
If you’re looking to train for your next half marathon, we have a Free Half Marathon Training Plan that will help you get there.
Camp Wannarunamileormore – April 9th, 2016
I don’t know why the name of this race is all smashed together like that, but it certainly caught my eye when looking over our race calendar. Started in 2008, the Camp Wannarunamileormore half marathon, 11k, 5k and fun run this was originally intended to raise money to send underprivileged kids to camp. That turned out to be hard to do says Judi Fluger, co-owner of the event.
Surprisingly, we were unable to find a camp that was interested in partnering…there just aren’t a lot of camps left for kids. So we now raise money to support kids running locally – in the years past we have given money to the White Bear Lake boys and girls cross country running teams and track.
These very same young athletes can be seen along the race route, staffing the aid stations, and pumping up runners with their contagious energy.
This certified half marathon course can help you get into an early corral at the Twin Cities Marathon is that’s something you’d like to do. It’s also a great training run if you’re planning to run Grandma’s Marathon (early enough to test your fitness and fully recover).
The course offers a combination of gentle rolling hills on quiet streets in a combination of rural and urban settings. Runners will enjoy view of White Bear Lake and a shaded tree lined course. All this with just a short 20 minute drive from either metro area. Plenty of free parking within the park. Finishers receive a technical shirt and finisher medal. The course is open to all abilities (we get quite a few first timers at this race because we stay open until the last runner is in).
If this sounds like your thing, register now!
ZumBrota Half Marathon – June 18, 2016
Do you know where Zumbrota is? The next time you’re on HWY 52 towards Rochester, take the MN-58 exit toward County 10 and you’ll find this little town. The inaugural Zumbora Half Marathon is being held during the annual city festival, The Covered Bridge Arts Festival! You could make a whole weekend of this, as apparently there is a lot going on in this small south eastern Minnesota town.
Gary Schroeder, race coordinator, shared with me that this race will start and end at the Zumbrota covered bridge – a fleeting remnant of days gone by. He says that,
About 10 miles of the race is run on the Goodhue Pioneer Trail. The whole course is paved, but this 10 mile stretch is an out and back along this beautiful tree lined piece of Americana history. The remaining 5K of the race through some city street.
They hope to have the MN Pacers available as well, so if you’re looking to hit a certain time, this could be the race to do it.
Get in Gear Half Marathon – April 30, 2016
If you have been running in Minnesota any length of time at all, you are probably familiar with the Get in Gear race. It is Minnesota’s “Annual Rite of Spring”, at least for those in the running community. The first time I ran it was during one of those spring snow/slush “events” that could hardely be considered spring, but fun regardless because every single runner in the state shows up. Seriously, about a billion people show up.
Paulette Odenthal, the Executive Director of Get in Gear says that,
Minnesota’s “Annual Rite of Spring” Get in Gear events on the last Saturday of April is one not to miss! Join us for our 39th running at Minnehaha Park in Minneapolis for our Half Marathon, 10K or 5K event on Saturday, April 30th. 2K fun run held Friday, April 29th at 6:00p.m.
Read out Get in Gear preview post from 2014.
Sour Grapes Half Marathon – June 11, 2016
Let’s say there was a lottery for a race you really wanted to run, and you didn’t get in. What would you do? Wait until next year, find another race, or start your own? In 2002, the Sour Grapes Half Marathon was founded by a group of local runners who didn’t make the lottery for Grandma’s.
Lou Anderson, the Sour Grapes Coordinator sent me this,
Is it the lure of the beautiful Northwood’s setting or the “Minnesota Friendly” attitude that sets our race apart from others? Decide for yourself as you plan to attend our fifteenth annual race in the 540 acres of Green Space at the Brainerd Arboretum. The half marathon course and 10K run/walk course covers the beautiful, but challenging, terrain of wooded trails. The proceeds from the event will be donated to the Northland Arboretum, a non-profit organization.
Race includes a half marathon, 10K run or walk, Kids 1 M and Kids 1/2 M. The race will be chip timed and there will be race day registration.
Other Half Marathons
To see our complete collection of Spring Half Marathons in Minnesota (or other dates), checkout the calendar below, or head over to our race calendar page. There are so many to choose from (and we’ve written about many others in the past).