Have you recently conquered your first 10K or half marathon? If you’ve got a taste for longer distance running and you’re looking to try a new challenge, a beginner friendly marathon might be what you’re looking for. Even if you’ve never laced up a pair of running shoes in your life, chasing a marathon finish isn’t a bad way to find motivation. If chasing an audacious goal like a marathon finish isn’t enough, why not use it as an excuse to travel? Here are our favourite UK and European marathons for new runners and first timers.
Seville Marathon, Spain
A relatively new marathon, the Seville offers a smaller pool of runners which leaves the field less crowded. They are extremely well set-up with plenty of water and refuelling stations along the route, particularly toward the end of the course. It’s a flat course and the cooler weather provides a comfortable atmosphere.
Berlin Marathon, Germany
An exciting beginner friendly marathon the Berlin track offers over 40 000 runners the experience of running in a crowd. Once you pass the 25-kilometre mark, you can stop for a massage every 5 kilometres, if you’re looking for a little recovery mid-race.
Ikano Bank Robin Hood Marathon, Nottingham
A good beginner friendly marathon, Nottingham offers both half and full marathon distances. Both races begin at the same time, so while the first half will be a little busier, the crowd thins at the business end. It’s a flat road course with occasional rough patches. Look out for the bands and entertainment along the route.
SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon, Ireland
The Dublin marathon is highly recommended as a beginner friendly marathon. It has mild elevations, cool weather and is a once-around course, which avoids the mental exhaustion of a two-lap race. There is no lottery to get in (as there are for extremely popular races), rather, it’s first come, first served for the 20 000 competitors. There’s also no qualifying time required, so really there’s no excuse not to sign up and give it a go.
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