Yesterday was the “Get Ready to Rock 20 Mile” race in White Bear Lake.
(Is it really a “race” if it’s 20 miles long? I’ll call it a supported long run!)
The event also includes a 5k and 10k, and deems itself the “ideal training race for the Twin Cities Marathon or 10 mile.” The timing is quite perfect, as it’s 4 weeks out from most fall marathons.
In the past, the Calhoun Beach Running Club would run the “Bear Water 20 Mile“ as part of our training schedule. However, this year, our coach changed things up a bit, and put the “City of Lakes 25k“ on the schedule instead.
Unfortunately, the City of Lakes 25k was on Sunday morning. With Abby’s wedding last night, a lot of us did not want to have to get up early on Sunday for a race! So our thoughtful coach found another option for us, in the “Get Ready to Rock 20 Mile!”
It’s notable that there are two 20 mile races in the same small suburb of White Bear Lake, MN: the “Bear Water 20 Mile” and the “Get Ready to Rock”- I guess White Bear Lake loves a good long run!
This race started at 8 am. It was quite small, with just over 200 participants…(My fear was that I would get LAST place- it was a possibility!)
Cost: Cheap! The 20 Mile race is only $35. The 10k is $27, and the 5k is $25.
Course: One common complaint about the Bear Water 20 mile (the other White Bear 20 miler) was that it consists of two loops of the exact same course…. Yes, you run the same 10 mile loop twice. You actually cross the finish line, and have to go around again for another 10 miles. It’s mentally quite tough!
Luckily, the Get Ready to Rock 20 Mile followed a kinder course. The below map doesn’t accurately reflect it but there are still two loops of a lake but only a smaller 6 mile lake (Bald Eagle Lake), and you don’t have to actually pass over the finish line to start the second lap.
Rating: I give this race a 8/10. Overall, I enjoyed this race more than the Bear Water 20 mile, and I would do it again next year. It’s really great that we have so many options for “supported” long runs during marathon training, and even though I preferred this White Bear option, I would still recommend either race as a useful addition to your fall marathon program. A 20 mile “race” offers a great rehearsal for the actual marathon. You can test out your marathon gear, your pre-race fueling, and more, without the pressure of the additional 6.2 miles!