There’s a ton of reasons why we runners love to lace up, embrace the start line nerves, pound the asphalt and cross the finish line. It gives us a goal, a sense of achievement, a medal and memory, an epic community, and usually a free beer. The hard part is deciding which races to sign up to and train for. Especially in America, where there are thousands of them. Literally. So to help you lace up those sneakers and get ready for an adrenaline-pumping race, we’ve rounded up the fifteen best running events the US has to offer.
From scenic marathons to electrifying 5Ks, we've scoured the land of the free to bring you the ultimate bucket list of running races that will leave you breathless yet craving for more. And to pop a cherry on top of it all: it doesn’t matter whether you're a seasoned marathoner or a beginner looking to dip your bruised toes into the racing world, these events offer an unbeatable combination of challenge, camaraderie, iconic views, and sheer excitement.
So, let's hit the sidewalk and uncover the races that will make your heart pound and feet dance:
Dubbed the holy grail of marathons, the Boston Marathon is a prestigious event that draws elite runners and passionate amateurs alike. With its iconic course and electric atmosphere, this race is an absolute must for any running enthusiast.
New York City, New York
Run through the bustling streets of the Big Apple in the New York City Marathon. This legendary race showcases the city's vibrant spirit and offers breathtaking views as you traverse all five boroughs, culminating in a triumphant finish in Central Park.
Los Angeles, California
With its vibrant atmosphere, scenic route, and unparalleled energy, pounding the iconic sidewalks through the heart of Los Angeles makes this an iconic race that embodies the true essence of the running spirit. Take in the sights, embrace the cheers and soak up LAs insane backdrop. And the best part: Runna are now the Official Virtual Training Providers.
Races don’t come much more epic than this one. Blending urban stretches and ocean views, this course takes you along the stunning Boston waterfront, you'll be treated to soul-shaking views of the city's iconic skyline, the shimmering waters of the harbor and a finish line that is famed for its unmatched enthusiasm and awesome energy.
Known for its fast and flat course, the Chicago Marathon is a runner's paradise. Experience the Windy City like never before as you race through its iconic neighborhoods and soak up the energetic crowds cheering you on.
Big Sur, California
Prepare to be awestruck by the breathtaking beauty of the California coastline in the Big Sur International Marathon. With its dramatic ocean views and rolling hills, this race offers a unique and unforgettable running experience.
Santa Monica, California
Being the Official Training Providers of this event is a dream come true for Runna. A spectacular point to point course along the Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica, the Santa Monica Classic is not just a race; it's an experience that combines the thrill of running with the laid-back California lifestyle. And with a 5K, 10K, and Kid Run, it's the perfect race for runners, joggers, and families of every ability.
Celebrate Independence Day with a bang at the Peachtree Road Race, one of the largest 10K races in the world. Join over 60,000 participants as you race through Atlanta's historic streets, fueled by patriotic fervor and the cheers of the crowd.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Take your running game to the next level with the Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas Marathon; a nighttime extravaganza that allows you to pound the pavement under the dazzling lights of the Las Vegas Strip, accompanied by live music and an electrifying party atmosphere.
Team up with friends or fellow running enthusiasts for the Hood to Coast Relay, a legendary race that spans 199 miles from the majestic Mount Hood to the picturesque coastal town of Seaside. This overnight relay adventure is as much about camaraderie and bonding as it is about the thrill of the run.
Possibly one of the most unforgettable race experiences in the whole of America thanks to its one of a kind finish line: on the field at the world-famous Rose Bowl, and Runna are the Official virtual training Provider. Now get ready to enjoy the picturesque route through beautiful Pasadena, passing iconic landmarks like the Colorado Street Bridge, Old Town Pasadena and Cal Tech University before you hit the memorable finish.
Channel your inner child and embark on a magical running adventure at the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. With races for all ages and skill levels, this event offers a unique blend of Disney enchantment and athletic achievement.
Immerse yourself in the vibrant running culture of Boulder, Colorado at the Bolder Boulder. This iconic 10K race combines a challenging course with a festive atmosphere, complete with live music, costumed runners, and a Memorial Day tribute that will touch your heart.
Arlington, Virginia, and Washington, D.C
Honor the brave men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces at the Marine Corps Marathon. Known as "The People's Marathon," this race takes you on a scenic tour of the nation's capital, showcasing iconic landmarks and inspiring you with a sense of patriotism and pride.
Downtown Missoula, Montana
This is a race for anyone looking to run through an area of mind-melting beauty and awe-inspiring landscapes because Missoula, Montana is blessed with beauty. Winding inclines, mountain views every way you look, the soothing sounds of the Clark Fork River, incredible camaraderie, and a deep connection to nature. There’s a reason why this one always finds its way on to any list about the Best Marathons In The U.S.
Thanks for reading our guide to the best running events in America. For more running insights, inspirations, stories and techniques, follow us on Instagram to take your runs to the next level.