Marine Corps Marathon

A race where you get a tour of downtown DC.
Marine Corps Marathon
Photograph courtesy of Marine Corps Marathon.

Why you might roll your eyes:

Every midsize city and minor cause now has a marathon. Can this particular 26.2 miles be any different?

Why you’ll love it:

If you’re going to run a marathon, the Marine Corps is one of the nation’s most memorable, winding past landmark vistas. With 30,000 runners, it can feel overcrowded at times; registration is by online lottery, which this year opens March 13.

Is it the country’s best marathon? Perhaps not, but spectators here may be unrivaled when it comes to creating geeky spur-you-on signs such as healthcare.gov didn’t work out but you did. And where else can you run a race where Marines proffer cups of water?

If you want a race that’s shorter but no less scenic, consider next year’s Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run (this year’s race, April 12, is closed), which also goes around Washington’s monumental landscape.

The 2015 Marine Corps Marathon is October 25. For the ten-miler, go to cherryblossom.org.

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