The Spring Marathons in Europe have been great training grounds for Boston hopefuls. Witness the five Kenyans in 2016 who broke 2:07, including Robert Cheruiyot who won the Boston Marathon in the same year. However, even leisurely runners can find great satisfaction in running these marathons.
They can take part in the sense of camaraderie that develops among participants from different countries, each speaking a different language, yet united by the flow of bodies in motion. Whether one is in Rome, Turin, Paris, Hamburg or Madrid, the language of runners is the same.
Spring Marathon in Rome: March 22 2017
Only in Rome would one do as the Romans did — take in a panoramic view of the city in one swooping run. The Rome Marathon begins at the Colosseum in the centre of the city, moves through historic sites like St. Peter’s Square, Vatican City, the Olympic Stadium, and the Trevi Fountain before rounding back towards the starting point. Not only is March easy on runners in terms of temperature (16 C), marathoners can also enjoy the hospitality of local residents and the cuisine of a city well-known for fine dining.
Spring Marathon in Turin, Italy: April 19 2017
Though participation in this marathon is smaller than in Rome’s, there is a decidedly rustic flavour to the Turin run. For one thing, most of the course is lined with trees, river banks and parks. For another, the course is relatively flat; aside from a short uphill section during the first half of the race, the rest veers downhill. A third benefit is the tendency of Turin residents to congregate in the streets to cheer on the marathoners and the fourth is the hearty pre-marathon pasta dinner that is out of this world.
Spring Marathon in Paris: April 5 2017
Touted as one of the most beautiful races in the world, the Paris Marathon has attracted elite runners from all over the globe because it delivers what it promises—sightseeing on the run. Marathoners will be treated to the most scenic sights in the city, including the Champs Élysées, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, the Seine—just about everything the city is famous for—in its 26 mile loop. April is also the month when the city bursts with colour—cherry and apple blossoms –in temperatures that average a breezy 15C.
Spring Marathon in Hamburg: April 26 2017
The Hamburg Marathon is the second biggest marathon in Germany. The course is known for its winding routes through the city, taking in several hot spots and ending at the Hamburg Messe Trade Fair Centre. First time marathoners love the Hamburg Marathon for two reasons: the course is flat and fast; the locals are friendly. They make it their point to turn out into the streets and cheer on the runners.
Spring Marathon in Madrid: April 26 2017
Who would not love to be in Madrid in the spring? Temperatures are moderate and the city overflows with festivals and celebrations. Madrid marathoners can definitely expect an eyeful of landmarks as they run past the city, the old town and Madrid’s residential areas, taking in famous spots like the Puerta del Sol, Plaza Mayor and Palacio Real before finishing the run at Madrid’s Retiro Park.
When Europe beckons, can spring be far behind? Spring Marathons in Europe are a great way to stay in shape and satisfy one’s wanderlust.