Marie McAden



Columbia Marathon offers hilly route through the capital city

Posted 1/21/2013 1:52:00 PM

If running 26.2 miles isn’t challenge enough for you, try the Columbia SC Marathon, a two-loop road race through the capital city with some hills thrown in to get your heart pumping just a little bit harder.

The running event, along with a half marathon, marathon relay and 5K, is set for March 9, promising runners cooler spring temps in the famously hot city.

The 13.1-mile course starts near the heart of the University of South Carolina campus, taking participants past the historic Horseshoe and buildings dating back to 1805. After traveling through scenic parts of the university, runners make their way to Five Points, an entertainment district popular with college students.

Then it’s a long stretch through some of Columbia’s most picturesque neighborhoods before heading back downtown and over two of the route’s biggest hills. The good news is that the final portion of the course is completely flat, ending at the South Carolina State House on Main and Gervais streets.

If you missed any of the sites along the way, not to fret. You get to do the 13.1-mile city tour all over again!

The marathon, half marathon and relay start at 7:30 a.m.; the 5K at 7:35 a.m. Cost to participate is $95 for the marathon, $70 for the half, $180 for the relay and $30 for the 5K. Last year’s race drew 550 runners in the main event and another 1,000 in the two shorter races.

In conjunction with the race, a Health & Fitness Expo is being held from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. March 8 at the Columbia Downtown Marriott. More than 50 exhibitors will be offering free samples and showcasing the latest in running gear, sports apparel and nutritional products. The Expo is free and open to the public.

For more information on the Columbia SC Marathon, click here.