Weekend Races 25th – 27th August 2017
August 23, 2017
Weekend Races 1st – 3rd September 2017
August 31, 2017

The Irish 3/4 Marathon

The Irish 3/4 Marathon – an essential step on the road to the Dublin City Marathon

If, like me, you are one of 20,000 people signed up for the Dublin Marathon (or the other marathons around the same time) then you are likely dreading the thoughts of your “Long Run”. Well, in this post I’ll cover ‘the answer to your prayers’……The Irish 3/4 Marathon.
This race was first run in 2010 as a way for runners to prepare for the Dublin City Marathon and it has grown in popularity since then. It is 19.6 miles and on 3 weeks before Dublin, so it corresponds with most training plans that recommend doing that distance 3 weeks before the marathon (and the last significant run before tapering). The race is on Sunday 8th October.

I’ve run this race twice, when preparing for Dublin and for New York (and I’ll be back again this year). The mantra of the organisers is not to treat it as a race, but rather as training. And thus, everything is set up in this way. For example the pacers will run 5% slower than your marathon race pace, as that is considered the ideal way to train at this time (you don’t want to burn out before the big event).


All of this creates a unique atmosphere of camaraderie. Nobody is really there under pressure to perform, so are in the mood to just have an enjoyable run and chat to new people along the way. I’ve spent both my runs there just talking to different groups about how their training has been going and what they expect in Dublin……the miles just fly by. And the alternative (which I’ve also done before) of doing the long run on your own pales in comparison.

The Course

This race is run on very quiet country roads, but is pretty scenic also. There is no major hills to worry about, just a couple of small climbs over river/canal bridges. It’s only an 88m gain spread out over the entire course. Actually the 88m gain is 3/4 of the gain in the Dublin Marathon, which has a gain of 119m (again ideal preparation). Here’s the course:

What you get

All finishers get a nice long sleeve tshirt, a medal and running gloves, all pictured below:


This race will Definitely Sell Out well in advance (it has the last couple of years), so if you can see the benefit the race to your training plans, don’t leave it to late, register now. Also, keep in mind the price increase on 1st September, so try register on or before Thursday 31st. See you there……here’s the link: