The Half-Marathon: America’s Favorite Race

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Apr. 2, 2013
A record number of runners finished U.S. half-marathons last year. Photo:

13.1-mile distance saw record growth in 2012.

Half-marathons are the most popular races in the United States, according to the RunningUSA Annual Half-Marathon report.

There were about 1.85 million finishers in half-marathons last year, a new record. The figure was a 14.9 percent increase from 2011, up from 1.61 million.

In 1,136 13.1-mile races, there was a 5.1 percent increase in finishers from 2011 to 2012. The number of finishers in U.S. half-marathons has risen by at least 10 percent every year since 2006.

Other factoids about the race distance: 60 percent of half-marathon finishers in 2012 were women; a record 36 half-marathons had 10,000 or more finishers; and there were more than 30 new half-marathons contested.

For more: RunningUSA


Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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