What’s the Most Popular Race Distance to Run?

NYCHALF16_COURSE_01Over the past decade, the half marathon has been growing in popularity as the most popular race to run. The number of runners who sign up and complete the half marathon has grown 10% each year since 2005. No other road race even comes close to the numbers put out by the popular 13.1 mile distance. This is true for both men and women although the women now outnumber the men. According to the Official Race Report, there were 1,543 US half marathons last year with over 2.1 million finishers.

You may look at the half marathon as being far outside your physical grasp, but don’t be easily discouraged. Most all of the half marathon finishers start their running journey with a training plan that usually lasts about 12 weeks. Hal Higdon has a tried and true training plan that can’t be beat. Also it is important to note that all of these finishers start off with a few 5k and 10k runs as part of the training plan.

Most of all half marathons have some sort of theme and are seasonal-based. The courses chosen are usually picturesque and exciting. Once you sign up, register and finish your first half marathon, you’ll get a commemorative t-shirt, swag bag and maybe even a medal. These will create memories that will last you a lifetime and fuel your desire for the next race.


3 thoughts on “What’s the Most Popular Race Distance to Run?

  1. From my perspective looking in I would not expect that many people to participate in marathons. As far as I knew America isn’t really known for athleticism. Though there are many athletes, I am glad to hear that there is a frequent increase in participants. An increase on 10 % each year for the past 10 years is a drastic change. A good change at that!


  2. I’ve always been interested in running a half marathon. I ran 2 5Ks last year, so hopefully I’m building up towards a half marathon. I never knew how popular they were. Running these events are so much fun.


  3. I do not know how people can do it, and want to do it. I think that running is boring and very hard on your knees. My mom has just signed up to do one and is starting the training for it with some of her friends.


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