How to Prepare for the Grandad Half Marathon


To all the runners out there! If you want to challenge yourself and reach new goals while having a fun weekend, the Grandad Half Marathon is for you. This three-day fitness celebration includes several activities, like bike competitions and a 5K race, as well as a half marathon, one of the most highly anticipated events of the weekend. Run this 13.1-mile course past famous landmarks of Coulee, WI, and experience the beauty of the stunning Grandad Bluff area, the Mississippi River Valley, and nearby mountain ridges. The half marathon is an absolute must for any racer, professional or occasional, and is something you will want to add that to your bucket list!


If you are looking for more athletic activities like the Grandad Half Marathon in La Crosse, WI, we’ve got you covered! Download our free Vacation Guide and get our top recommendations for the best outdoor adventures, gourmet restaurants, fun events, secret hiking spots, and more! Don’t wait another second. Start planning your trip today and have a fantastic vacation at the Westby House Inn!


Run the Race of Your Life at the Grandad Half Marathon


Get to Know the Race

The Grandad Half Marathon is a scenic race that attracts hundreds of runners each May. Previously known as the La Crosse Fitness Festival Marathon, this race will leave you breathless, both literally and figuratively. The course takes you through scenic landscapes and famous locations of the La Crosse region and Driftless area. You can take a look at the course map in preparation for the big day.


Start at Grandad Bluff Park overlooking the city and run the first two miles in the park on a downhill stretch. Continue down Bliss Road in a U-shape, racing through the city and along the banks of the river. (Watch out for the sudden elevation change in the middle of the course!) End the marathon on the south side of Riverside Park, along the Mississippi shoreline. You will enjoy catching your breath with a picturesque view of the Blue Bridges. They even inspired the design of the medal you will receive!


Tip: The weather in La Crosse during the event usually varies between mild and cool, with lows around 45 degrees and highs of 68. A tank top and shorts is perfect!


Have Fun and Unwind

Setting new standards for yourself and achieving your goals is good, but the Grandad Half Marathon is also about having fun and sharing your passion with others! Once you have completed the race, celebrate with the other runners by enjoying delicious beer and bratwurst. This traditional La Crosse combo is the perfect comfort food after all that effort. You can even bring your family to the event; the post-race party is kid-friendly and features inflatables that the little ones will love.


Tip: The festival offers a shuttle service and free parking at the race, and it only takes 15 minutes! It’s something to keep in mind when you are planning out your day.


Treat Yourself

All that endurance comes at a price. Get ready for some burning quads the next day! Again, the Westby House Inn has you covered. We know some of the best spas in La Crosse! Book yourself a hot stone or leg massage and allow your muscles to rest and regenerate. Don’t forget to drink lots of water and get a good night’s sleep in one of our comfortable rooms.


Spend a Restful Weekend at Westby House Inn

Grandad Half MarathonAfter running all weekend at the Grandad Half Marathon, you will need a cozy place to relax in and unwind. Look no further than the Westby House Inn! Our authentic accommodations and warm, traditional atmosphere will make you feel right at home.

Book our Tower Room and enjoy a spacious suite with a stunning cherry wood queen bed and fluffy pillows for extra comfort. Take a hot shower and nestle up in your living room area with a glass of wine in hand. To make your stay even more special, add a trio appetizer plate with assorted cheeses, fresh fruit, and traditional-style cream chocolates. Then, wake up the next morning feeling as refreshed as ever and get ready for your next La Crosse adventure!

Book your stay today and have the time of your life at the Grandad Half Marathon!