The Cologne Marathon, half marathon, skating event and hand cycling, attracts over 27,000 participants every year. The inaugural race took place in 1997 and it is now the third most popular marathon in Germany after the Berlin Marathon and Hamburg Marathon.

Known as the 'experience marathon', the Cologne Marathon is full of interesting sites.
Runners start in the Cologne Deutz area, crossing westward over the Rhine. They almost immediately then face the twin towers of the massive Cologne Cathedral before striding along side of the Rhine, past the many Romanesque churches, passing through some of the attractive parks that surround the city. They then return to the city centre, once again reaching the finish line at the impressive Cologne cathedral.

Almost 10,000 runners will toe the starting line today, but with a 6 hour time limit to complete the course, just half will finish...

Nice number

Myself and my partner Sunday are fortunate enough to stay with friends in Cologne just outside the city near Beethoven Park. Our friend Duc has been training for his first ever marathon, and at the age of 40 decided this is one thing on his 'to do' list to complete this year...

Fresh Green Tea for Duc

Avocado with olive oil and chia seeds, washed down with bulletproof coffee

See no, speak no, hear no evil...

Ready, set...


Let's run Koln

Cathedral Towers

Sunday on the last stretch 

Duc sprinting

Hungry finishers

Happy Luna feet

3:15:55 in 329th place

This was my slowest road marathon of the year, but then I have been nursing an on-going ankle injury and not trained for marathons since my London to Brighton Ultra event was my most recent off road. As much as I love the city marathon buzz, I cannot train fast for both, and find the balance difficult with my race schedule and shift work commitments already. 

I have a few key marathons for 2014 already, but I would recommend Cologne to anyone looking for a fast, flat and scenic city race among any of the other top European city marathons. The huge crowd support similar to London and the clear, precise organisation from the registration at the expo to the finish is 5 stars for excellence. 

Duc finishes his first marathon close behind me

Sunday finishes happy and pain free

Happy finishers



  1. Thanks for the post, may be one for the to-do list :)
    Which ones are you doing in 2014?

    1. Check out my race proposal for 2014 on the tab bar. So far I have Brighton and London planned...


Please add your comments here. I would like to encourage discussion on running, training and nutrition. Luke