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White breaks tape in Half female walk

Stay-at-home mom finishes course in 2 hours, 25 min.

August 17, 2019
By Ron Johnston - Sports Reporter , News and Sentinel Half Marathon

PARKERSBURG -Jennifer White has both a kick on the walk race course and in boxing.

But the 42-year-old Waverly, W.Va., resident didn't need the former Saturday morning as she was the first female walker to cross the 33rd running of the News and Sentinel Half Marathon finish line in 2 hours and 25 minutes.

"I'm a stay-at-home mom," said White, a Youngstown, Ohio, native. "But I do teach kick boxing. That's my cross training."

Article Photos

Stay-at-home mom Jennifer White breaks the tape during the News and Sentinel Half Marathon female walk. She bests runner-up Shannon Marks by almost four minutes.
Photo by Madeline Scarborough

Sharon Marks, the defending Half female walk champion, fought hard but was runner-up in 2:29.

"That girl was a beast," said the 61-year-old Marks, who teaches at PHS and coaches at Jackson Middle School.

"I was in another race with her...oh, my gosh, I am 20 years older than her. That's not an excuse but... I could see her, but she was strong.

"I give her everything she's got, because she's good."

The feelings were mutual.

"She (Marks) is amazing," White said. "I've got some extra years on her in terms of age, That's helpful. I hope to be like her when I'm 60."

White said she was competing in her third Half walk.

"I've gotten third overall, second overall, and I finally got it," she said.

"I don't think anyone was pushing me. I had some people out there spotting for me, so I didn't have to look behind, and that's helpful. Just moving your head back takes a second off your time."

White laughed.

"I really don't do a lot of walking, believe it or not," she said. "I do a lot of lifting and kick boxing.

"And then I just walk my drive-way with my German Shepherd. We've got a long drive-way."

White said she was looking forward to the challenge of the hills on the 13.1-mile course.

"That's all I walk are hills," she said. "That's where I excel. I like hills. It gives the body a break, because you have to change your gait. It gives the muscles a break."

Marks covered last year's Half walk in a winning time of 2:31 or two-or-so minutes slower than this year's race.

"I felt good," Marks said. "I'm finished. That's all I care about. I'm happy and it was a great race. I did it for the course, not the award."

Contact Ron Johnston at rjohnston@mariettatimes.com.

 
 

 

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