Frankfurt Marathon
Marathon, Race Review, Road Races

Frankfurt Marathon

Frankfurt Marathon is the oldest road Marathon in Germany and always takes place at the end of Oktober. (This is actually very nice as it is generally the Sunday when Germany changes from summer to winter time and you get one hour of extra sleep.)

Besides the Marathon the race also offers a relay marathon which is realy popular as well.

I ran the Frankfurt Marathon as my last and final Marathon of my 12 Marathon fundraising project. Luckily my friend Geo accompagnied me and filmed me the whole race. Here you can check out his awesome youtube video including the amazing finish line inside the old Frankfurt Fair hall.

Frankfurt Marathon
Frankfurt Marathon finish line

Travel and Accessibility

Frankfurt is probably Germany’s best connected city. It has Germany’s largest airport with direct flights to different places all over the world. It also is very well connected via train and bus. It as a good public transport system with trams, suburban trains and underground. The best part: it is not very big, so everything is really close.

The start, finish and expo are all located in the Frankfurt Fair area. It is just one stop from Frankfurt main station, or a quick 15 minutes walk. I literally walked back to the main station after the Marathon because I had to catch my train. But also if you need to catch a flight, it is super easy, as trains to the Airport from the main station only take 15 minutes.

I did not run the Frankfurt Marathon relay, but my friends told me that also the relay handover points were really easy to reach with public transport.

Expo and bib pick up

The expo and also the bib-pick up are located in one of the halls of the Frankfurt Fair. The bib pick up queues can be very long, especially Saturday around noon after the official shake out run, also called Pretzel Run. I went there right after I collected my Pretzel run medal and was fine. But my friends that went just 15 minutes later had to wait for ages.

The expo is really large and you can buy everything you need there. The main sponsor offers everyone free non-alocoholic beer, so make sure to not miss that. Also the goodie bags contained lots of (sometimes random) products from a consumer goods sponsor.

Pre-Race

The benefits of having the start line next to the Frankfurt Fair are obvious: The bag drop is inside, there are real toilets and you can stay inside the fair building until right before the start. This was basically what I did, as it was really cold the day of the Marathon. There are also some food stalls if you want to buy a last minute breakfast.

Frankfurt Marathon
At the start of Frankfurt Marathon

Frankfurt Marathon course

After the start of the Frankfurt Marathon at the Frankfurt Fair the course takes various loops around the city center. This can be quite confusing as everything looks the same because of the skyscrapers. I never really knew where I was right now. After around 10km you cross a bridge to the other side of the Main river, from where you have an awesome view of the Frankfurt skyline. The next 20km are unfortunately a bit boring. the course heads West on the south side of the river. It then crosses the river again on a motorway bridge and heads back East. These areas are sometimes quite rural and empty, as not a lot of spectators make their way there. But on the positive side: the course is really flat and fast, and you can really run fast on these stretches.

Frankfurt Marathon
Frankfurt Marathon course

At km 35 you are back in the city of Frankfurt and pass the old Fair Hall, where you can nearly smell the finish line already. But first you have to run a few confusing loops around the city center (again). The final 200 meters will take first across the original start line, before you turn left into the old Frankfurt Fair Hall. Inside you will run on the red carpet towards the finish line. The ambiance there is amazing. Spotlights everywhere, and spectators right and left. Even though the course is a bit boring, the finish line is absolutely worth it.

The course is well equiped with refreshment stations every 2.5km. Every 5km you will also find hot tea, bananas and porta potties.

Post-Race

After the finish line in the Fair Hall you are directed outside again where you will get your medal, food, drinks. You then have the chance to pick up your bags and take a shower. The showers are located in the basement of the fair and are just plain shower containers, but they are better than nothing. Make sure you bring a towel in your drop bag. Unfortunately there are no hair dryers, and it can be quite cold in there. So make sure you don’t catch a cold afterwards.

Once you are settles you can go back into the old Fair Hall and watch other runners cross the finish line. It is really worth checking it out.

Frankfurt Marathon
Finished my 12th Marathon!

Sightseeing

  • The Frankfurt Skyline: The skyscrapers might not be anything special if you live in New York City, Chigaco or Singapore. But it is the only one of it’s kind in Germany.
  • Frankfurt Old town: There you can find the Cathedral, the Römer Town hall and the “new” old town. The buildings there have recently been reconstructed based on old pictures of how Frankfurt looked before World War II. It looks a bit like Disney Land, but still interesting to see.
  • Museum shore: An area on the south side of the river where you can find 15 museums, with the famous moseum of applied arts and the Städel museum.
  • Fressgass: This is a small street in the center of Frankfurt with tons of restaurants. The people from Frankfurt literally gave it its nickname wich means “Grazing Street”. Make sure to check it out and enjoy local food like the “green sauce” which is typical for the area.
Frankfurt Marathon
The old Opera of Frankfurt during the Marathon
Half Marathon, Marathon, Race Review, Road Races

Munich Marathon

Munich Marathon will always be a special Marathon for me. I ran my first 10k race, my first Half Marathon and my first Marathon there. This year I spontaneously decided to run Marathon no 11 of my 12 Marathon fundraising project there, as a lot of my friends were running as well and the weather looked really nice. And I did not regret it at all.

Munich Marathon
Munich Marathon Medal

Travel and Accessibility

Munich is one of Germany’s largest cities and very well connected by plane, train and bus. The public transport system is also great. The start line of the Marathon and the 10k race as well as the finish line are located in the famous Olympia Park, wich has it’s own underground station. The start of the Half Marathon is located half way on the other side of the city, but also accessible via an underground station.

Munich Marathon Expo

The Munich Marathon Expo is located in the famous Olympia Hall, with lots of traders exhibiting. One big advantage of this Marathon is that you can register at the expo nearly up to the very last minute for all races, even in the morning of the race. Which is what my friend Susanne and I did, as we decided a few days before to run the Marathon. (without really training for it)

Munich Marathon

Pre-Race

The start line of the Munich Marathon is in between the Olypmia Stadium and the Olympia Hall. As this area is generally an area used for various events, you will find good infrastructure there. you can use the regular toilets of the stadium, and the bagdrop is located under the stadium stands. There are also a lot food stalls if you want to purchase food and drinks. And if your friends and family need a break from all that cheering action they can even go zip lining over the Olympia Stadium. Cool, right?

Munich Marathon Course

The Munich Marathon Course first heads East towards the famous Leopoldstraße. After that is takes a loop in the English Garden. This can be very nice if you like running in parks, but sometimes also a bit boring. After that the course heads further East where also the delayed start of the Half Marathon is located. The second half then first passes through the Eastern parts of Munich before heading right through the city center and the famous Marienplatz. It then takes a few loops around the Museums area and Königsplatz, before heading back to the Olympia Stadium. (Attention: the part around Königsplatz will be run in the beginning of the race starting in 2019) The final stretches of the Munich Marathon are the best: one final victory loop around the Olympia Stadium, with your friends and family watching you from the best seats!

Munich Marathon

Post-Race

The center area of the Olympia Stadium is also the finish line area. You will get your medal, a space blanket, water, sportsdrinks, food and of course some alcohol free wheat beer. You can can sit on the lawn or on some sunchairs and recover while enjoying the atmosphere.

Unfortunately you will have to leave the stadium in the end, which means you will have to walk up the stairs to the exit. Not fun at all. For some, this will be an even harder challenge than the Marathon.

After that you will then collect your drop-bag where you left it. Or in case you ran the Half Marathon your bag was transported to the stadium where you pick it up from the DHL vans.

A big bonus of the finish line location is also the Olympic Swimming pool. You can buy a normal ticket and use the showers there for just around 5€.

Munich Marathon

Munich Sightseeing

When you run the full Munich Marathon you will already see a lot of famous sights. But here are my top picks:

  • City center: visit the famous Frauenkirche, the City Hall at Marienplatz and the Residenz.
  • Beergardens: The most famous ones are the Chinese Tower Beergarden and Seehaus Beergarden in the English Garden Park.
  • Museums: Pinakothek der Moderne, Lenbachhaus and the Deutsches Museum are my favorites.
  • Something you don’t see during the Marathon: Castle Nymphenburg in the West
  • And if you want to travel a bit: Don’t miss out on Neuschwanstein Castle (but there is also a Marathon there in case you want to run one in July)Munich Marathon
Reykjavik Marathon
Half Marathon, Marathon, Race Review, Road Races, Running

Reykjavik Marathon

Iceland has always been on my travel bucket list. When I heard there was a Marathon in Reykjavik happening in August, I absolutely had to go for my 12 Marathons in 12 months charity project. And I have to say that Reykjavik Marathon did not disappoint. The people were incredibly friendly, the scenery was fantastic and it was organized perfectly. There is not only the Reykjavik Marathon, but also a Half Marathon, a 10km and several fun runs. So even if you are not into running the full 42.2 km distance, it is a good reason to travel to Iceland. And the best thing: later that day the famous Cultural Night is happening, with concerts and art installations taking place all over town, finishing with giant fireworks.

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Half Marathon, Marathon, Race Review, Road Races

Königsschlösser Romantik Marathon Füssen

You might have never heard of the German town Füssen. But you’ve probably heard of Neuschwanstein castle, the famous castle of King Ludwig of Bavaria, which is located nearby. The Königsschlösser Romantik Marathon is a small local race that covers exactly this area and runs past the pretty castles and lakes of the Füssen area. They offer a Half Marathon and 10km race on Saturday, as well as a Marathon on Sunday. I ran it as marathon no. 8 of my 12 Marathons in 12 months project, and really enjoyed the castle view (after Disney castle, Prague castle and Liechtenstein Vaduz castle).

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