March to Victory: In-Depth Guide to Marine Corps Marathon 2024

Feel the thrill and triumph of the 2024 Marine Corps Marathon. A salute to the heroic spirit of the Marines, this epic race is a breathtaking showcase of resolve, determination, and resilience!

An event with the power to inspire and stir feelings of honor, respect, and brotherhood, the 2024 Marine Corps Marathon is no ordinary race. This grueling affair highlights both the strength of the runners and the spirit of the Marines.

It’s undoubtedly awe-inspiring to take on the same road as those champions who’ve left their indelible marks on the course over the years. Each stretch filled with sweat and willpower, each corner echoing with past resonances of applause and mutual encouragement.

Runners also get the unique opportunity to learn about the rich history and prominent milestones of the Marine Corps, with commemorative sites and monuments along the way.

As you cross the finish line, you’ll receive more than just a medal. You will gain a testament to your courage, stamina, and determination. So, brace yourself, get those running shoes ready, ignite your spirit of competition, and prepare for an extraordinary path of accomplishment at the 2024 Marine Corps Marathon.

Follow along as we offer a detailed walk-through of the Marine Corps Marathon.

When is the Marine Corps Marathon?

The Marine Corps Marathon has specified different dates for its varying categories, taking place from October 25 to October 27, 2024.

How Can I Register for the Marine Corps Marathon?

Wondering how to get started and secure a spot in this thrilling event? The Marine Corps Marathon 2024 registration process is pretty straightforward. The mandatory requirement for participation is that you should be at least 14 years of age and maintain a pace of 14 minutes per mile throughout the marathon.

When it comes to registration, there are several entries to choose from:


Date: October 27, 2024 at 7:50 AM

The opportunity to secure your spot in this prestigious event is now open. To qualify, runners must be at least ten years old and able to maintain a pace of 20 minutes per mile.

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The Marine Corp Marathon, known for its 6.2-mile course, commences at the National Mall, then winds its way through the precincts of Crystal City, making a pass by the Pentagon, and finally concludes at the esteemed U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial.

To take part in the event, click here to register.


Date: October 27, 2027  at  7:15 AM

If you’re up for a challenge, the MCM50K is your perfect choice. It’s the biggest urban ultramarathon in the U.S.A. You’ll start your race right next to the Pentagon in Arlington, VA, alongside the participants of the Marine Corp Marathon 2024.

MCM50K registration is now open, and if you’re considering, remember participants are required to maintain a pace of 12.5 minutes per mile till mile 12.25 and then 14 minutes per mile for the rest of the track.

Plus, you need to be 18 years or older.

To ensure a steady pace whilst you savor the thrill and the challenge of running an ultramarathon, each time slot of 4:30, 5:00, 5:30, 6:00, and 6:30 will be accompanied by two pacers.

If you’re ready to dive into the challenge, you can register for the event here.

MCM Kids Run

Date: October 26, 2024, between 9:20 AM and 11:40 PM

The MCM Kids Run is a one-mile thrilling event exclusively designed for children aged between 5 to 12 years. This typically unforgettable family event is loaded with hospitable pre- and post-run activities.

Not to mention the engaging entertainment, exciting games, and lively mascots that add to the fun.

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Families have the flexibility to choose from eight different Marine Corps Marathon Start Times, beginning from 9:20 AM and extending up until 11:40 AM.

To access the Marine Corps Marathon course map for kiddos, simply click here.

If you are considering registering a group, please do not hesitate to contact

Active Duty and Reservist Military Registration

As a token of endless respect, 20% discounts are offered on entries for active duty personnel and reservists from the early bird registration phase, honoring the heroes who serve our country every day.

For additional information, feel free to click here.

Four Star Registration

Interested in a heightened level of sophistication? The Four Star Registration Package offers some extra perks.

Expect assured entries to the MCM 2024, accommodation at the MCM Health & Fitness Expo’s venue- the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, along with added services like transportation and dedicated hospitality.

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Click here to secure your participation.

Virtual Registration (for the MCM, MCM10K, or MCM50K)

Prefer to run locally? You can! With a virtual registration, you can participate from your neighborhood. All the excitement, without leaving the comfort of familiar streets.

Proceed to the registration by clicking on this link.

Deferment Registration

For those who deferred from the 2023 marathon, a special registration link will be sent directly.

Charity Registration

Going for a run while making a difference? That’s what this category is all about. Registration opens on February 1, 2024.

Ready to be part of the action? Check out their website for more information.

Marine Corps Marathon Route

If you’re considering running in the 49th Marine Corps Marathon, keep in mind that it’s not just any regular marathon; it’s an exhilarating journey through some of the United States’ iconic landmarks!

Imagine sweeping by the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, and even the Pentagon as you push your limits. Quite an experience, right?

The Marine Corps Marathon, which is located in Arlington, VA, promises a one-of-a-kind experience by traversing the most iconic sites in the United States.

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The race kicks off near Arlington National Cemetery and the Pentagon, then proceeds through Rosslyn, giving you a peek into Georgetown and the National Mall before you ‘beat the bridge.’

As you loop back towards Arlington, you’ll get another glimpse of the Pentagon, explore the sights of Crystal City, and finish your quest with an uphill run (yes, we did say uphill) to the Marine Corps War Memorial.

Check out the specific route for both MCM10K and MCM50K marathons.

Best Viewing Spots for Spectators

For the cheerleaders, supporters, and enthusiasts who wish to stay connected and updated, the Marine Corps Marathon Track a Runner feature has been designed just for you.

With this, you can virtually follow your favored athlete, note their milestones, and even share their achievements, all with the click of a button. You can download the Marine Corps Marathon app from Google Play or the Apple Store.

close up of people running

However, you can also embrace the thrill and excitement as you cheer your loved ones along the Marine Corps Marathon route.

Several viewpoints give you a fantastic vantage point to show your support while appreciating the energy and camaraderie of this coveted race. Take note of these prime locations:


Let’s get started with Arlington, where the marathon kicks off. Known for its proximity to Arlington National Cemetery and the Pentagon, it symbolizes an inspiring starting point for the participants.


Next, you may want to watch near Georgetown, a bustling district of D.C. Georgetown provides a lively atmosphere for spectators as the runners make their way through the district.

National Mall

Then, we have the incomparable National Mall. In addition to offering the opportunity to cheer the runners, you can soak up an array of historical monuments nearby. It can be an excellent waiting spot filled with so much to explore!

Marine Corps War Memorial

Lastly, consider the Marine Corps War Memorial, US Marine Memorial Cir, Arlington, VA 22209. It serves as the marathon’s spectacular finale, providing a dramatic uphill finish for the runners.

As a spectator, it’s the ideal backdrop to send off your final cheers and shows of support.

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A quick reminder: aim to get to these places early to grab the best viewing spots.

Parking and Transportation for the Marine Corps Marathon

During MCM Weekend, a host of transit options are available for participants and visitors to reach the event venues in Arlington, the MCM epicenter and the capital of the nation.


Moving across Arlington, VA, and the capital city is seamless, thanks to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, commonly known as the Metro.

Participants are urged to acquaint themselves with the Metro route map before the race day and identify the most suitable stations for reaching their desired destinations.

Before MCM Weekend, participants and their supporters are advised to procure a Metro SmarTrip card.

For the MCM10K: The most convenient station for the MCM10K start would be the Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter station (green or yellow line).

Other nearby alternatives are the L’Enfant Plaza (blue, green, yellow, or orange lines) or the Smithsonian (blue or orange line).

Event Parking

For the MCM10K: There is no specific parking area assigned for the MCM10K. Participants could consider parking options in downtown DC, but commuting to the start line via Metro is highly recommended.

Take a look at these parking options:

One Parking

2000 15th St N, Arlington, VA 22201, United States

The following are the parking rates and timings:

Monday to Friday: 6:30 AM – 7:00 PM

1 Hour: $7.00

2 Hours: $8.00

Early Bird: $8.00 (at 6:30 AM – 9:30 AM, Out by 7 PM)

Max: $10.00

Colonial Parking

1919 N Lynn St, Arlington, VA 22209, United States

3 hr: $12

Daily Max: $30

Make Your Way to the MCM50K Start. Runners Village can be accessed via the Pentagon station (on the yellow or blue line).

If you’re participating in the MCM50k, you have the convenience of complimentary parking. There’s an underground spot waiting for you at the junction of 23rd and Crystal Drive.

Eligibility for Marine Corps Challenges

The marathon is nicely divided into distinct categories, providing a chance for all qualified runners to partake in multiple challenges.

As a passionate racer, you have the opportunity to rise to the level of a recognized participant. All you need to do is ensure you sign up for the Marine Corps Marathon as well as other the following races:

Semper Fidelis Challenge

Eligibility doesn’t just stop at the main marathon event. Runners are welcome to join additional challenges. Get ready to participate in the distinguished Semper Fidelis Challenge set for the 2024 Marine Corps marathon – a long-standing tradition that runs deep in the veins of the headquarters of the US Marine Corps.

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Respondents should register for the Marine Corps 1775k marine corps historic half and the Marine Corps marathon weekend at the same time.

Do make sure that you are registering for both challenges, and once done, you will compete for a spot in the illustrious Distinguished Participants Circle.

It’s required to complete all five events, including the following:

  • Marine Corps 17.75K
  • Marine Corps Historic Half
  • Quantico 12K
  • One of the MCM Weekend events (MCM10K, MCM or MCM50K)
  • Turkey Trot

Marine Corps Historic Half

Get ready to participate in the 13.1-mile Marine Corps Half Marathon taking place in the beautiful city of Fredericksburg, VA.

This spectacular race is notable for its stunning finisher medal, top-quality technical participant shirt, and impressive commencement ceremony topped off with the resounding boom of a historic musket.

Date: May 19, 2024 at 6:00 AM

Location: Remarkably positioned midway between Richmond, the Commonwealth’s capital, and the capital of the nation, Washington D.C.

Registration is now live, so secure your spot today!

The Marine Corps 17.75K

The 17.75K distance of the Marine Corps Marathon is a tribute to the year of the Marine Corps’ establishment.

The captivating setting of Prince William Forest Park provides a course for the 11.03-mile run marked by a series of rolling hills, winding paths, and a lush, forested surrounding.

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By finishing the Marine Corps 17.75K, participants earn “Access Granted” passes that secure their spot in the prominent Marine Corps Marathon.

Date: March 23, 2024 at 7:00 AM

Location: Prince William Forest Park

Quantico 12K

Embrace the challenge and join the ranks of those participating in #RunWithTheMarines, providing you with an exclusive opportunity to traverse the premises of the Officer Candidates School (OCS).

The path is a robust 7.46 miles – a journey into the training environs of future leaders of the Marine Corps.

Date: April 24, 2024 at 6:30 AM

Location: Near the OCS Chow Hall and the Candidates’ parking area.

Turkey Trot

Embark on an exciting 10K run along the beautiful, tree-dotted trails of the Marine Corps Base in Quantico. This event is a fantastic way to get a head start on managing those incoming holiday indulgences.

Children playing in many fountains with green trees in the background
Photo Credit: Washington Park via Facebook

Date: November 23, 2024 at 10 AM.

Location: Trails of the Marine Corps Base in Quantico

Distinguished Participant

Registration for 2024’s Marine Corps Marathon and other events is now open, allowing runners to sign up for all five events in one go with the 2024 Distinguished Participant bundle, earning them a special medal upon participation. If a loved one is keen on participating, ensure that they are registering for this extraordinary event.

The bundle sale started on November 18, 2023, and will continue on a first-come-first-served basis until March 23, 2024.

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Those eager to undertake the Semper Fidelis Challenge along with the Distinguished Participant should register for the DP Bundle and ensure that they participate in the Marine Corps 1775K, Marine Corps Historic Half, and the Marine Corps Marathon to be eligible for both challenges.

The event lineup for the year includes the following:

  • Marine Corps 17.75K on March 23, 2024
  • Marine Corps Historic Half on May 19, 2024
  • Quantico 12K on August 24, 2024
  • One of the MCM Weekend events (MCM, MCM10K or MCM50K) on October 27, 2024
  • Turkey Trot 10K on November 23, 2024

Nearby Hotels and Lodging

Post-race, it’s essential to give your body some downtime. Consider reserving accommodation close to the marathon site for convenience and a swift return to relaxation.

Also, take this opportunity to extend your visit by a few days, where you can delight in the local city attractions at your leisure.

DoubleTree by Hilton Washington DC – Crystal City

300 Army Navy Dr Arlington, VA 22202

The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Washington DC – Crystal City will take your marathon experience to the next level.

First off, the Skydome Lounge offers some of the best panoramic views of Washington DC, providing a fantastic environment to relax and rewind. DoubleTree’s fitness center will catch your attention.

Equipped with all the latest equipment, it allows you to follow your regular fitness routine, helping you stay on top of the big event. You’ll also be spoilt for choice with an array of dining establishments within the hotel.

Whether it’s international cuisines at Café Go or classic American delicacies at Windows Over Washington, your culinary needs are well taken care of.

Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Washington, DC/Downtown

500 H Street NW Washington, DC 20001

Enjoy the sights and sounds of America’s capital right at your doorstep with Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Washington, DC/Downtown.

Strategically nestled in the heart of the city, this hotel is your perfect home base whether you’re lacing up for the Marine Corps Marathon 2024 or cheering on the runners from the sidelines.

You get to bask in their top-tier facilities, which include sleek rooms, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and more, all put together to craft a perfect hospitality experience.

Even better, the hotel’s closeness to various public transportation hubs makes going to and from the marathon site a breeze!

Hilton Garden Inn Washington DC/US Capitol

1225 First St NE Washington, DC 20002

At the Hilton Garden Inn Washington DC, you’ll find a bounty of amenities designed to enhance your stay. From the spacious guest rooms with comfortable beds to the on-site restaurant that offers a range of gastronomic delights, it’s a haven of comfort and leisure.

Further giving you reasons to book is the 24-hour fitness center and an indoor pool, allowing you to keep up with your fitness routine.

Achieve Greatness in the Marine Corps Marathon

The iconic Marine Corps Marathon, a race recognized for the Marine Corps Historic Half and the Marine Corps events, invites proud runners from around the world to register and take part in the heroic tradition.

Managed by the Marine Corps Marathon Organization, it is a race where soldiers and civilians come together, each pushing their own limits in a display of resilience and dedication.

Beyond the honor of participation and the exhilaration of the run, the Marine Corps Marathon doesn’t offer prize money, earning its nickname, The People’s Marathon.

Rather than focus on material rewards, the event stresses the significance of personal achievement and commemoration of the courage displayed by Marines. This contributed to the widespread interest in the Marine Corps Marathon results.

Joining the Marine Corps Marathon is a golden opportunity to push personal boundaries and celebrate fitness while commemorating the hard work, commitment, and bravery of our service members.

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While many marathons exist worldwide, registering for the Marine Corps marathon feels different. It puts you in a select group of individuals who have both the grit and the determination to conquer this physical and mental feat. It is, however, worth noting that only a limited number of runner slots are available each year.

This event urges individuals to be eligible willingly, heartily, and courageously. It encourages everyone, from pro runners to beginner trailblazers, to test their resilience and conquer something extraordinary.

So come and be a part of the Marine Corps Marathon – it’s not just a race but a remarkable experience that stays with you for a lifetime.


Start Date:

October 25, 2024 @ 7:00 am CDT

End Date:

October 27, 2024 @ 5:00 pm CDT





Washington Events

Washington, DC, WA United States


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Written by Anne Joyce Raymundo

Anne is a Filipino writer who formerly managed and created marketing strategies and materials for numerous websites and eCommerce platforms. Now, her voice...

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