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Inaugural marathon winner Jen Blue: Coaching this year

Duties take her to Moorhead Saturday

2010 Mankato Marathon winner Jen Blue: This year she's Coach Blue.

By Shane Frederick, Free Press Sports Writer [published in The Free Press, Mankato, MN, 10/21/2011]

Jen Blue running Mankato Marathon in 2010Jen Blue has run four marathons: One in Arizona, the Twin Cities Marathon, the Mankato Marathon and the world-famous Boston Marathon.

She has plans to run Boston again next April but won’t be running the Mankato race on Saturday because she’ll be coaching the Minnesota State Mankato women’s cross country team at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference championships in Moorhead.

While Boston is the oldest and arguably most-prestigious marathon, Blue said the 1-year- old Mankato race is nothing to sneeze at.

And why would she? Blue had a personal-record time of 3 hours, 3 minutes, 6 seconds, as well as the honor of being the race’s first women’s champion.

The biggest difference between run­ning 26.2 miles in Mankato, compared to other places? Geography.

“Boston has more hype, and the crowds are unreal. ... But I was happy overall with (Mankato). It was a good course.”

This year’s marathon and its companion races will have more than 1,200 run­ners than last year’s races, according to the event’s website.

“The fitness kick has been sweep­ing across the country. And it’s a great way to get whole families involved, whether it’s the marathon relay, the 5K, the 10K or the kids run.”

On Saturday, the 10K is scheduled to begin at 7:30 a.m. The marathon and half marathon both begin at 8 a.m. Those races all begin at Minnesota State Mankato.

For the complete Free Press story, see Friday's print edition, or go to the e-edition at

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