Should I enter a running race knowing I cant run and walk it instead? I missing running trail races and lately I've been considering the option of walking them. There are a few factors that have kept me from actually doing it. First, I don't get the same enjoyment from walking in the woods as I did from running through them. Second, I am a very slow walker. My friend Trail Pixie can walk around 12 minutes per mile but I'm lucky if I can maintain a 16-17 minute pace. Walking like a tortoise means I would be still on the trails long after all the runners have finished the race. Which leads me to the most pressing argument for not walking in a running race. The volunteers! These people donate their precious time, usually on a weekend, so we runners can play in the woods. I wouldn't expect them to stay out twice as long waiting for me to saunter across the finish line.
Despite what I just said, I'm considering entering the GAC Fat Ass 50K next month. Since this is a low key event I think I could get the blessing of the RD to start 60-90 minutes before the official start time to minimize any disruption I may cause by walking. And no, I wouldn't attempt to complete the entire 50K. That would be cruel and unusual punishment on me and the volunteers. My goal would be 30K which is the distance I covered in my three previous GAC FA50K finishes (all run on snow covered trails).
My friend KZ follows a train of runners across a snow-covered field during the 2009 GAC Fat Ass 50K.
I still have three weeks to think about it but you may just see me out there. Or not.