WCU race offers training program

Have the holidays added a few extra inches to your waistline and you’re determined to get fit in 2012?

Registering for Western Carolina University’s Valley of the Lilies Half Marathon & 5-K and taking advantage of the race organization’s free half-marathon training program and group runs on the WCU campus might be just what you need to get on the right track.

New and seasoned runners alike will gather for the second running of WCU’s half marathon on Sunday, March 25. The race will begin at 7:30 a.m. and take runners on a scenic 13.1-mile journey through the WCU campus and along the Tuckaseigee River. For runners looking for a shorter and faster option, race organizers have added a 5-K (3.1-mile) race and walk to this year’s activities. That event will begin at 7:45 a.m.

A free training program developed by WCU’s athletic training faculty will be emailed to all registered half-marathon runners, and group training runs for the half marathon will be held on the campus at 6 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and at 8 a.m. on Saturdays, beginning Monday, Jan. 9. There will be plans for both beginner and experienced runners, and experts in the fields of injury prevention, nutrition and health will provide information sessions and assistance to runners.

Online registration for the half marathon and 5-K is available at active.com. Registration fees are $40 for the half marathon and $20 for the 5-K through Wednesday, Feb. 29. Beginning Thursday, March 1, the fees increase to $60 for the half marathon and $25 for the 5-K. No registrations will be accepted after Wednesday, March 21, including on race day.

For more information about the Valley of the Lilies Half Marathon and 5-K, and the free training program, go to http://halfmarathon.wcu.edu.