Since 1981 the London Marathon has grown into one of the world's truly iconic races, offering runners of all levels an inspiring challenge. Here we explain why you should run the Virgin Money London Marathon and why it is such a special race.
An inclusive and friendly marathon
The Virgin Money London Marathon is more than a mere road race around a famous capital city. It's a race open to a wide range of ages and ability levels, with everyone from famous world and Olympic champions through to participants in 12ft high dinosaur costumes adding to the carnival atmosphere. The London Marathon's continued popularity is testament to its wide variety of participants which sees absolute marathon beginners sharing the same tarmac as their running heroes.
Fulfill a life-time ambition
For many people, running a marathon is a lifetime ambition with months of hard training going into an immense 26.2-mile (42.195km) race. Offering wonderful scenery, supportive crowds and even the possibility of appearing on national television, the Virgin Money London Marathon boasts the best possible backdrop to an inspiring and life-affirming event that will stay with runners forever. There are few things in life more satisfying than beating a personal goal. The Virgin Money London Marathon allows runners to do just that in unforgettable surroundings.
Do it for charity
Such is the London Marathon’s popularity that its entry places are now allocated through a ballot system. However, even if would-be marathon runners aren't lucky enough to get in through this ballot, they can still secure a place by running the London Marathon for charity. By teaming up with a charity, runners have the joint satisfaction of fulfilling their marathon dream whilst raising vital sponsorship money for a really worthy cause. Each year the London Marathon creates thousands of inspiring charity stories, as runners in fancy dress costumes fight against the odds to complete the epic race and meet their fundraising promises. With large crowds cheering them on to glory, it can be an emotional experience for all.
A great day out for the family
Though spectating as a loved one triumphs in the London Marathon can be a very happy experience in itself, the event also offers a great day out for families and runners alike. With plenty of entertainment alongside the main attraction, the Virgin Money London Marathon is a fun and celebratory day that won’t fail to sweep you up within its whirlwind of excitement. The race also offers the perfect excuse (if ever one were needed) for booking an extended stay in London, enjoying the sights and attractions of a world-class city.
You can make new friends
Whether joining in the fun of a 'pasta party' at the Expo with fellow charity runners or catching your breath amongst throngs of buoyant spectators, the Virgin Money London Marathon offers an ideal opportunity to meet new people and forge some lasting friendships. The marathon experience is all about bringing runners together and once you’ve shared an epic fitness battle with 40,000 other participants, you're sure to have plenty to chat about! This world-famous marathon has created some enduring friendships - and even marriages - over the years, so what better place to meet some like-minded people?
With its perfect combination of inspirational charity stories, inclusivity and ever-enthusiastic spectators, there has never been a better time to run the Virgin Money London Marathon. In offering a breathtaking experience for running beginners and professionals alike, the marathon certainly provides a day out that you won't want to forget in a hurry!