How far is a marathon?

Estimated read time 2 min read

It’s a question that marathon runners get asked a lot. People who don’t run (we call them ‘normies’—just kidding!) don’t know what those goofy number stickers on our cars mean, so we frequently explain that a marathon is 26.2 miles. Everyone realizes that it’s a crazy-far distance. Still, it’s hard to really imagine how far twenty-six miles is, so I’ve made this handy comparison guide.

How far is a marathon?

how long is a marathon

A marathon is:

  • Almost as far as Grand Rapids to Spring Lake: 27.4 miles from my neighborhood.
  • Wider than the widest point of Long Island, NY which is 23 miles wide.
  • About as far as the average person could walk in 8.5 hours.
  • Longer than the circumference of asteroid 951 Gaspra which is about 23 miles.
  • Longer than the length of Rothschild Island in Antartica (24 miles).
  • About as long as 138,336 foot-long subs (you are allowed to eat as many subs as you can carry post-marathon, too, FYI).
  • Longer than 19,000 couches in a row (is this right? I did the math on this like 300 times. In any event, you will want to nap on 19,000 couches when you get done).
  • Like running the length of the tallest building in the United States (One World Trade Center) 77 times.

So yeah. A marathon is pretty far. 😉


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