Marathons in California
- The San Francisco Marathon25JUL
The San Francisco MarathonRunning ‧ San Francisco52.4 mi • 26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 3.1 mi$49 - $409
- Los Angeles Marathon8MAR
Los Angeles MarathonMarathon ‧ Los Angeles26.2 mi$175
- Surf City Marathon and Half Marathon1FEB
Surf City Marathon and Half MarathonRunning ‧ Huntington Beach26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.0 mi$21 - $119.95
- Oakland Running Festival22MAR
Oakland Running FestivalRunning ‧ Oakland26.2 mi • 16.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 3.1 mi$45 - $125
- The Santa Rosa Full/Half Marathon & 5K/10K29AUG
The Santa Rosa Full/Half Marathon & 5K/10KRunning ‧ Santa Rosa26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi$29 - $109
- Big Sur International Marathon26APR
Big Sur International MarathonMarathon ‧ Monterey County26.2 mi$399
- Shoreline Marathon19JUL
Shoreline MarathonRunning ‧ Ventura26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi$45 - $130
- Seaside Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k & 5k16FEB
Seaside Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k & 5kRunning ‧ Ventura26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi$40.50 - $117
- Catalina Island Marathon, 10K, 5K & Kids Run14MAR
Catalina Island Marathon, 10K, 5K & Kids RunRunning ‧ Los Angeles County26.2 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.0 mi$15 - $160
- Modesto Marathon29MAR
Modesto MarathonRunning ‧ Modesto26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi$35 - $105
- Look Good Feel Good Marathon10OCT
Look Good Feel Good MarathonRunning ‧ San Leandro26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 1.0 mi$25 - $60
- Western Pacific Marathon, 10K & 5K25APR
Western Pacific Marathon, 10K & 5KRunning ‧ Fremont26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi$40 - $98
- Lake Tahoe Marathon9OCT
Lake Tahoe MarathonRunning ‧ Tahoe City78.9 mi • 78.6 mi • 72.0 mi • 26.2 mi • 16.4 mi • 13.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi
- Devil After Dark Marathon, 1/2, 10K & 5K19SEP
Devil After Dark Marathon, 1/2, 10K & 5KRunning ‧ Las Vegas26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi
- Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon14NOV
Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas MarathonRunning ‧ Las Vegas26.2 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi$62
- Mendocino Coast PAL Big River Run22AUG
Mendocino Coast PAL Big River RunRunning ‧ Mendocino26.1 mi • 13.1 mi • 6.2 mi • 3.1 mi • 0.5 miFree - $65
- Sean O’Brian Trail Runs2FEB
Sean O’Brian Trail RunsRunning ‧ Agoura Hills62.1 mi • 50.0 mi • 31.1 mi • 26.2 mi
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About Marathons in California
Marathons definitely tend to draw the biggest crowds as competitors race through all sorts of surroundings from magnificent cityscapes to vast countryside. Marathons make up some of the most iconic races in the Golden State. Whether you're running for a personal challenge or a public cause, in Cali it helps that the weather is almost always near perfect and the scenery beautiful.
What are the best marathons?
There are so many high quality marathons to choose from in California. If you like fancy dress then the Walt Disney World Marathon might get you all Goofy. Get a boost from rock 'n' roll jams blasting behind you in the Rock 'n' Roll marathon series. Top tip, if you compete in 3 of 4 Rock 'n' Roll marathons in a year then you can collect a special medal. For spectacular scenery look no further than the highly rated Big Sur International Marathon.
How long will it take me to run a marathon?
The world record for women was set in London by Paula Radcliffe of Great Britain in 2003 at 2h15m25s minutes, and is still standing strong. 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.
The global average time to finish a marathon sits around 4h13m for men and 4h42m for women. Our best advice is that you keep your own pace and don't worry about others. If you're overtaken by a man dressed as the Mona Lisa, don't sweat it. It is worth pointing out that finishing times are greatly affected by the course - check our course descriptions for each race to get a better understanding of the route. Some marathons are particularly fast (e.g. A1A, Cali International), and some a bit more challenging (Avenue of the Giants).
How do you train for a marathon?
Training for a marathon takes a lot of motivation. Buddy up if you can, this will help you stick to your plan. You can download our free 16 week training plan, with nutrition and race tips included. 16 weeks should give you enough time to train up and set you in good stead for tackling 26.2 miles.