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Marathons

The marathon distance is 26.2 miles, or 42.2km. They are often seen as one of the main goals in a runner's lifetime. Completing one is a real feat of mental and physical resilience, and requires a serious amount of commitment and training if you are seeking a bragworthy time. Most marathons in the UK take part in the major cities, taking you through streets lined with cheering crowds and a vibrant atmosphere and passing historic landmarks. The London Marathon is the most famous of these, and is one of the six world marathon majors. Other marathons might take you out of the city and into the UK's stunning rural scenery. Some routes take in the national parks or the rugged coasts, so these races are a great way to see some incredible views while also achieving something incredible. Marathons are also amazing fundraising opportunities if you're feeling charitable. The London Marathon has raised over £1 billion since it started in 1981.

Nearby Marathons

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  • 28MAY

    Edinburgh Marathon Festival

    Running Edinburgh
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.2 mi • 0.9 mi • 0.6 mi
    £12 – £129.75C-19 Plan
    (13)
  • 2JUL

    The Festival of Endurance at Hever Castle

    Multi-Sport Hever Castle
    140.6 mi • 111.8 mi • 76.9 mi • 75.6 mi • 70.2 mi • 55.9 mi • 50.0 mi • 38.5 mi • 37.0 mi • 26.2 mi • 15.4 mi • 13.1 mi • 7.4 mi
    £30 – £338C-19 Plan
    (1)
  • 2OCT

    Virgin Money London Marathon

    Marathon London
    26.2 mi
    (48)
  • 9OCT

    Manchester Marathon

    Marathon Stretford
    26.2 mi
    Free
    (20)
  • 11SEP

    Brighton Marathon Weekend

    Multi-Sport Brighton
    31.1 mi • 26.2 mi • 6.2 mi
    £25 – £35
    (34)
  • 24APR

    ABP Southampton Marathon, Half, 10k & Mile

    Running Southampton
    26.2 mi • 13.0 mi • 6.2 mi • 1.0 mi
    £7 – £44.99
    (5)
  • 30APR

    Rightmove Milton Keynes Marathon Weekend

    Running Milton Keynes
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.5 mi
    £12 – £140
  • 2OCT

    Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running

    Running Inverness
    25.0 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 0.2 mi
    Free – £56
  • 24SEP

    Hever Castle Triathlon and Sport Festival

    Multi-Sport Hever
    70.2 mi • 35.0 mi • 32.0 mi • 30.3 mi • 26.2 mi • 25.8 mi • 18.6 mi • 16.0 mi • 15.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 12.9 mi • 10.7 mi • 7.1 mi • 7.0 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.9 mi • 3.6 mi • 3.5 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.6 mi • 1.0 mi
    £23 – £203C-19 Plan
    (4)
  • 28MAY

    Trail Pursuit Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k & 5k

    Running Clappersgate
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.0 mi
    £10 – £49C-19 Plan
  • 16OCT

    The Yorkshire Marathon & 10 Mile

    Running York
    26.2 mi • 10.0 mi
    £35 – £58C-19 Plan
    (33)
  • 10JUL

    Snowdonia Trail Marathon

    Running Caernarfon
    37.2 mi • 27.3 mi • 12.9 mi • 6.2 mi
    £28 – £81.95C-19 Plan
    (4)
  • 17SEP

    Beyond Badminton Trail

    Running South Gloucestershire
    31.1 mi • 26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi
    £15 – £40C-19 Plan
  • 10SEP

    Richmond Runfest

    Running London
    13.1 mi • 6.2 mi
    (4)
  • 10APR

    The PodPlus Kent Spring Marathon & Half Marathon

    Running Charing
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi
    £22 – £32C-19 Plan
    (45)
  • 17APR

    Boston Marathon UK

    Running Boston
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 3.0 mi
    £18 – £30
    (16)
  • 16OCT

    The Chelmsford Marathon & Half

    Running Chelmsford
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi
    £28 – £44C-19 Plan
  • 15MAY

    The Northants 'Shires and Spires Event' - Ultra 35, Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K

    Running Naseby
    35.0 mi • 26.6 mi • 13.4 mi • 6.2 mi
    £23 – £50C-19 Plan
  • 4JUN

    Rocket Race Orbiter

    Running Tollard Royal
    26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi
    £20 – £32C-19 Plan
  • 4JUN

    Race to the Tower

    Running Whiteshill
    52.4 mi • 26.2 mi
    £69 – £199C-19 Plan
    (6)
  • 23JUL

    Castle Howard Triathlon

    Multi-Sport Castle Howard
    70.2 mi • 38.5 mi • 35.1 mi • 34.1 mi • 26.2 mi • 17.9 mi • 17.1 mi • 17.0 mi • 13.1 mi • 12.9 mi • 9.4 mi • 6.8 mi • 6.2 mi • 5.5 mi • 4.2 mi • 3.7 mi • 3.6 mi • 3.4 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.6 mi • 1.0 mi
    £23 – £203C-19 Plan
  • 18JUN

    Cholmondeley Castle Triathlon

    Multi-Sport Malpas
    73.9 mi • 36.7 mi • 34.5 mi • 32.8 mi • 28.3 mi • 26.2 mi • 18.3 mi • 17.2 mi • 16.4 mi • 14.1 mi • 13.1 mi • 10.4 mi • 7.1 mi • 6.9 mi • 6.8 mi • 6.2 mi • 4.2 mi • 3.8 mi • 3.7 mi • 3.6 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.6 mi • 1.0 mi
    £23 – £203C-19 Plan
    (1)
  • 5DEC

    Running GP at Goodwood Motor Circuit – December

    Running Chichester
    26.2 mi • 20.0 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi
    £24 – £34
  • 25SEP

    Running GP at Goodwood Motor Circuit - September

    Running Chichester
    26.1 mi • 20.0 mi • 13.0 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi
    £24 – £34
    (2)
Showing 1 - 24 of 75 events

About Marathons in the UK

Marathons are 26.2 miles long (or 42.2k) and make up some of the most popular and spectacular races held in the UK. People run marathons for many different reasons, either for a loved one, a personal goal or for a great cause. In 2016, Shannon Foudy became the one millionth runner to complete the London Marathon.

What are the best marathons?

The most famous is the London Marathon, which last year produced a record 40,000+ finishers and over 800,000 spectators flooded the streets to cheer them on. If you're thinking of running a marathon, London is not only the most popular but also one of the flattest, so it's a great place to push for a PB. If you missed out on a ballot place, other super flat marathons include ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon, Brighton Marathon, and Edinburgh Marathon. These are held in the spring / early summer, around the same time as the London Marathon. If you're looking for something a little more off the beaten path, the New Forest Marathon, Baxters Loch Ness Marathon (watch out for Nessie) and Yorkshire Marathon all run from late summer into autumn.

How long will it take me to run a marathon?

The average time for London Marathon finishers in 2018 was 3h48m for males and 4h23m for females. This is significantly faster than the global average of around 4h13m and 4h42m for men and women respectively. Don't focus too much on what others are doing, keep your own pace and don't worry if you're overtaken by an inflatable T-Rex, they can be pretty speedy!

Keep in mind that your finishing time can be greatly affected by the course, some marathons are particularly fast (e.g. Berlin, London), and the average time for different marathons can vary - make sure you check out the course maps and elevation profiles to get a feel for the route.

For trivia fans, the world record for women was set in London by Paula Radcliffe in 2003 at 2h15m25s and is still proving tough to beat. The men's record was beaten in Berlin in 2018 by Eliud Kipchoge and at 2h01m39s is pushing close to breaking the elusive 2 hour barrier.

How do you train for a marathon?

To ensure you are ready come race day, check out our free marathon training plan, with nutrition and race tips included. Training for a marathon takes time and dedication. We recommend starting 16 weeks prior to race day, regardless of whether you are entering your first race or looking to hit a new PB.

Marathons by Location