Lower Midwest Marathons

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Chicago Marathon
 
4.5 (14 reviews)
Chicago, IL
October 08, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 40,000
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 225 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. Runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream and participating in one of the nation's largest marathons. The marathon is known for its flat and fast course that starts and finishes in Grant Park and travels through one of the world’s most magnificent cities. The course has produced four world records, several national records, and countless personal bests. Participants enjoy the support of 1.7 million spectators as they run through 29 neighborhoods.

Indianapolis Monumental Marathon
 
4.6 (3 reviews)
Indianapolis, IN
November 04, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 4,200
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 275 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The Indianapolis Monumental Marathon is Indiana's largest and fastest marathon and among the 100 largest marathons in the world. The course tours many beautiful buildings and monuments in downtown Indianapolis and the surrounding communities. Highlights include the Indiana State Capitol, Arts Garden, Warehouse District, Monument Circle, Cultural Trail, Mass Ave District, Butler University, the State Fairgrounds, and Fall Creek Parkway.

Columbus Marathon
 
4.3 (5 reviews)
Columbus, OH
October 15, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 4,000
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 300 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon is a beautiful course that will run through Bexley, Olde Town East, German Village, downtown Columbus, Short North, The Ohio State University campus, Upper Arlington, Grandview, Victorian Village and will finish in the Arena District.

Flying Pig Marathon
 
4.8 (4 reviews)
Cincinnati, OH
May 07, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 3,800
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 550 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 2.00
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon promises to be a beautiful course which "flies" along the streets of Cincinnati, Covington, and Newport. This race presents a well-balanced, diverse tour of some the best neighborhoods in the area, and is also a Boston Qualifier.

Air Force Marathon
 
3.7 (3 reviews)
Dayton, OH
September 16, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 2,000
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 300 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The Air Force Marathon course is a 26.2-mile run that traverses historical places on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, including the National Museum of the United States Air Force, the Air Force Institute of Technology, Air Force Materiel Command, the Wright-Patterson AFB flight line, Huffman Prairie Flying Field, and the Wright Brothers Memorial Monument.

Cleveland Marathon
 
4.1 (3 reviews)
Cleveland, OH
May 21, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 1,500
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 400 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

Are you ready for The Cleveland Experience in the Rock & Roll capital of America? The Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon features one of the flattest and fastest courses in the country, offering full marathon, half marathon, 10K and 5K events. Whether you're looking to qualify for Boston, or walk a 10K with your friends - you'll enjoy a scenic "tour" of Cleveland and all the amenities of a world-class event.

Illinois Marathon
 
4.8 (2 reviews)
Champaign, IL
April 22, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 1,500
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 250 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 1.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

A beautiful, scenic tour of revitalized downtown streets, tree-lined residential neighborhoods, and awesome, paved park trails. The race starts near Assembly Hall, runs through campus, loops through Urbana, back through campus, out into Champaign, and finishes on the 50-yard line of Memorial Stadium. The course is mostly flat with a few small, rolling inclines.

Des Moines Marathon
 
4.7 (3 reviews)
Des Moines, IA
October 15, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 1,400
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 350 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 2.00
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

Runner’s World calls the IMT Des Moines Marathon a ‘must’ on the fall calendar. The course showcases the rejuvenated downtown, quaint neighborhoods, and lush city parks of the surrounding neighborhoods. It also loops around the historic Jim Duncan Track at Drake University and traverses paved park trails in Greenwood Park, Water Works Park, and Gray's Lake Park.

GO! St. Louis Marathon
 
0.0 (0 reviews)
St. Louis, MO
April 09, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 1,400
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 550 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 2.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes

The GO! St. Louis Marathon has been recognized as a great race for experienced or first-time competitors, who are looking for an event that provides an abundance of participant services and amenities. The course itself starts and finishes in the historic St. Louis downtown area and includes views of the impressive Gateway Arch, St. Louis Skyline, Anheuser-Busch Brewery, Edward Jones Dome, Soulard, and Forest Park.

Kansas City Marathon
 
0.0 (0 reviews)
Kansas City, MO
October 21, 2017

Race Vitals

Participants: 1,300
Course Layout: Loop
Elevation Gain: 850 ft.
Difficulty Rating: 2.50
Surface: Mostly Road/Paved
Certified: Yes
The Kansas City Marathon is one of the fastest growing marathons in the United States… and one of the few urban courses! The course tours through Kansas City with views of Downtown, Union Station, Liberty Memorial, The Plaza, Brush Creek, Loose Park, Ward Parkway, and Armour Hills.
Learn about Difficulty Rating

Difficulty Rating

Race Navigator created the Difficulty Rating scale to help runners quickly compare the difficulty between marathon courses. The scale is 0.0 to 5.0 with 0.0 being the easiest and 5.0 being the most difficult. A further explanation is below:

Rating Course Description
0 to 1 These courses are mostly downhill and very fast – excellent for PR/BQ’s.
1 to 2 A rating of “1” means the course is flat; closer to “2” you can expect small hills.
2 to 3 The course has moderate hills.
3 to 4 The course has substantial hills.
4 to 5 Very difficult course usually with technical terrain.

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