If you’ve always wanted to travel to New York but have found it tough finding a proper excuse to spoil yourself, then for the dedicated holidaymaker something of a surprise awaits. The city that never sleeps actually offers up the perfect excuse to visit all by itself – but you’ve got to work for it. Why not combine taking part in one of the most famous sporting events in the world with your trip and sign up for the New York Marathon? This 26.2 mile race is one that brings thousands into the city each year and it certainly won’t make you feel like your holiday is in any way frivolous.

The New York Marathon is a major marathon that runs through all five boroughs of the city. This means that there are some excellent sightseeing opportunities for those moments you’re not completely out of breath, as well as the chance to familiarise yourself on foot with one of the most famous cities in the world. Run every year since 1970, the New York Marathon is one of the World Marathon Majors, making it a firm favourite with long distance runners.

Of course, it’s come a long way from its humble beginnings, where the race originally circled Central Park again and again until the 26 miles were up. Now, the race begins on Staten Island and traverses the entire city, taking in some of the Big Apple’s best sights and attractions while the roads close down to let runners rush past. The race begins by heading over the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, a sight that has become an iconic representation of the New York Marathon. From the bridge, the course explores the streets of Brooklyn, then heads over another bridge into Queens. After a couple of miles in this borough, runners cross another bridge into the famous borough Manhattan – which is widely recognised as one of the toughest parts in the race. The bridge is a steep one and should be prepared for during your training.

After Manhattan comes The Bronx for a brief stint before returning back to Manhattan and into Harlem. The last mile brings racers through Central Park and amongst thousands of cheering spectators to finish the run in one of New York’s prettiest areas.

Most people have a marathon in them, providing they train properly and correctly. After your race, you may never want to leave New York hotels but at least you’ll have had an excellent excuse for visiting the city!

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