Ready to Run

On your marks. Get set. And off we go running to Market Square during the City's biggest foot race of the year — the 2012 Dick's Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon. Scheduled to start at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, May 6, the Marathon will put as many as 50,000 feet on the streets as the 26.2-mile course winds its way through Downtown and other Pittsburgh neighborhoods. The new course for this year begins on Liberty Avenue between Sixth and  Seventh Streets and ends at Stanwix and Commonwealth Place before all finishers head to Point State Park for prizes, festivities, refreshments and a well-earned rest.

With so many top athletes and weekend warriors on the run, plenty of streets in just about every part of the City will be closed for parts or all of the race. Which means you better know your way around the roadblocks and detours. Normally, we encourage everyone to enjoy the low, all-day weekend parking rates at Downtown garages, but on race day, access will be limited. Fortunately, the good folks at Dick's put together a handy parking map and road closure schedule that will make it easier for you to navigate before, during and after the race. One way to beat the traffic snarls is to park at the West General Robinson Street garage on the North Shore, near PNC Park, and jump on the T to Downtown for a free ride. And if you're heading heading into town from the South Hills, the First Avenue garage also is a great place to leave your vehicle and ride the T for free.
Courtesy of Dick's Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon
Now, if you're in the running this year, we'll be cheering you on from the sidelines...and racing to the Square to wait for the leaders of the pack to return a couple hours later. Early birds will get the jump on the tasty pastries and a fresh brewed cup of joe at Dunkin' Donuts or Starbucks. Weather permitting, you might want to grab a table and sit down to mull over you favorite Sunday newspaper and just drink in the scenery of the City's ever-changing skyline.

Keep in mind that the first line of finishers will be going down the home stretch of the race just past 9:30 a.m., which means you better make tracks to see who takes home the top prize. Whether your favorite runner crosses the finish line first or further back in the pack, chances are he or she is going to need to refuel. Did you know that during a marathon a runner can burn anywhere from about 2,200 to almost 3,600 calories. So after a breather and re hydration, we suggest a victory lap around Market Square and a stop to replenish those depleted calories. Whether it's a monster sandwich from Primanti's, a bowl of carbohydrate-crammed pasta at Noodles & Company, a protein-packed gourmet burgher at the Diamond Market Bar & Grill, a healthy veggie burrito at Chipotle or a totally tasty taco at Moe's Southwest Grill, there's plenty to choose from in the Square.
Even if you weren't born to run, lace up those track shoes. We're going to give you a head start to the one place where everyone is a winner — Market Square!

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