Pittsburgh Half Marathon: A Guide to Running the City’s Best Race 2024

Looking for your next challenge as a running enthusiast? Join thousands of participants from near and far at the beloved Pittsburgh Half Marathon! With options for a half marathon, full marathon, and 5K, there’s something for every level of runner.

This annual event winds through the streets of Pittsburgh, showcasing some of the city’s most iconic landmarks and neighborhoods. But the Pittsburgh Half Marathon isn’t just about the race itself – it’s also about giving back to the community. The event supports a variety of local charities through its Run for a Reason program, allowing runners to make a difference while they run.

The next Pittsburgh Half Marathon will be on May 5, 2024 at 7 a.m.!

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🏃‍♂️ Overview of Pittsburgh Half Marathon

We are excited to share with you an overview of the Pittsburgh Half Marathon. The UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon is an annual road race held in Pittsburgh, PA. It is a popular event for runners who want to experience the vibrant culture and breathtaking views of the city.

🗺 Course13.1 miles through Pittsburgh’s iconic neighborhoods, streets, and landmarks.
⏰ TimingProfessional chip timing.
🧷 Race BibPersonalized race bib with your name.
📍 Tracking AppExclusive tracking app for real-time progress updates.
💪 Health and Fitness ExpoTwo-day pre-race expo with fitness gear, nutrition, and expert advice.
🚑  Medical SupportMedical assistance stationed at strategic points.
🍌 Hydration and NutritionOn-course hydration and nutrition stations.
🏃‍♂️ Race ShirtCutting-edge tech race shirt for performance and comfort.
🎖️ AwardsPossibility to compete for awards honoring dedication and achievement.
🏅 Finisher’s MedalWell-earned medal at the finish line.
🎉 Post-Race ActivitiesEngage in post-race activities and celebrate with fellow participants.
🛍️ Partner GiveawaysExclusive access to partner giveaways.

The course is USATF certified, and runners can expect to encounter some hills as they make their way through the city.

The Pittsburgh Half Marathon is usually held on the first Sunday in May, but the exact date may vary depending on the year. In 2023, the race was held on May 7th. The event attracts runners from all over the country, and even internationally, who come to experience the excitement and camaraderie of the race.

The race starts and finishes in downtown Pittsburgh, and runners will encounter some of the city’s most iconic landmarks along the way, including PNC Park, Heinz Field, and the Cathedral of Learning. The course is also lined with enthusiastic spectators who come out to cheer on the runners and create a festive atmosphere.

“I always loved running…it was something you could do by yourself, and under your own power. You could go in any direction, fast or slow as you wanted, fighting the wind if you felt like it, seeking out new sights just on the strength of your feet and the courage of your lungs.”
– Jesse Owens

📜 History of the Race

pittsburgh half marathon Race start
by Pinterest

We are excited to share with you the rich history of the Pittsburgh Half Marathon. The event was first announced on October 3, 1984, with U.S. Steel and PNC Bank as sponsors. The inaugural marathon was held on May 5, 1985, and it was a huge success. Since then, the Pittsburgh Half Marathon has become one of the most popular races in the country.

Over the years, the race has undergone several changes and improvements. In 2009, the event was renamed the UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon, and it has grown to include a full marathon, a relay race, and a 5K. The course has also evolved, taking runners through some of the city’s most iconic neighborhoods, including Oakland, Shadyside, and the North Shore.

One of the most significant moments in the history of the Pittsburgh Half Marathon was when it hosted the United States Olympic Marathon Trials for women in 1988 and for men in 2000. This was a huge honor for the city, and it helped to establish the race as a major event on the national running calendar.

Another highlight of the Pittsburgh Half Marathon is the community involvement. The race has always been a celebration of the city’s spirit and vitality, and it brings together people from all walks of life. From the volunteers who help to organize the event to the spectators who cheer on the runners, everyone plays a part in making the Pittsburgh Half Marathon a success.

In recent years, the Pittsburgh Half Marathon has continued to grow and evolve. The success of the event has even earned it the opportunity to host the 2018 and 2019 USA Track & Field Half Marathon Championships.

🏁 Pittsburgh Half Marathon – Race Details

pittsburgh half marathon Crowd is running over bridge
by Pinterest

We are excited to share the details of the upcoming Pittsburgh Half Marathon! The event will take place on Sunday, May 5, 2024, in Pittsburgh, PA. The course map will take runners through some of the city’s most iconic neighborhoods, including Allegheny, Lawrence, Liberty Avenue, Garrison Place, South Side, and Downtown.

Course Map

The course map is designed to challenge and inspire participants. The half marathon will start at 7:00 am and will follow a scenic route through the heart of Pittsburgh. The course will be well-marked, and runners will be able to enjoy the city’s stunning views as they make their way to the finish line.


The Pittsburgh Half Marathon offers several distance options for participants, including a half marathon, 5K, 10K, and relay.


The Pittsburgh Half Marathon is part of a weekend-long event that includes several other races and activities.

The weekend will kick off on Friday, May 3, 2024, with packet pickup and an expo.
On Saturday, May 4, participants can choose to run the 5K, 10K, or relay race.
The half marathon will take place on Sunday, May 5, 2024, starting at 7:00 am.

🌦️ Race Conditions

pittsburgh half marathon Group is running
by Pinterest

As we prepare for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon, it’s important to take into account the race conditions that we’ll be facing on race day. The weather conditions and course features will play a crucial role in determining our strategy and performance.

Weather Conditions

The weather conditions in Pittsburgh can be unpredictable, but we can expect mild temperatures in May. The average temperature on race day is around 60°F, which is ideal for running. However, it’s important to keep an eye on the weather forecast leading up to the race and adjust our clothing and hydration accordingly.

Course Features

The Pittsburgh Half Marathon is a flat and fast course that runs along the river. The course is known for its downhill start, which can be both a blessing and a curse. While the downhill start can give us an initial boost of speed, it’s important not to go out too fast and burn out before the finish line.

The course also features several notable landmarks, including the Andy Warhol Museum, PNC Park, and Heinz Field. These landmarks can provide a mental boost and help us stay motivated throughout the race.

🏃‍♀️ Participation and Registration

pittsburgh half marathon Logo
by Pinterest

If you’re interested in participating in the UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon, you’re in luck! Registration for the 2024 DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon Weekend of Events will open on August 16, 2024 at 10 a.m. EST.

This is your chance to secure your spot at the lowest price on opening day, so make sure to mark your calendar and set your alarm!

The Half Marathon Walking Division has also seen a surge in popularity, with participation doubling from 2022 to 2023. In 2024, we aim to double participation again and create a community of over 2,000 enthusiastic walkers.

When you register for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon, you’ll receive a full spectrum of perks, including breathtaking views and a vibrant culture that defines the city. You’ll also receive a special medal and more benefits if you’re one of the 500 runners who get to experience a second half-marathon course.

We encourage all runners and participants to take advantage of our expert resources on half marathon training to prepare for race day. We offer tips and advice on everything from nutrition to pacing, so you can feel confident and ready to tackle the course.

👀 Top 5 Spectator Locations

Top 5 Spectator Locations at Pittsburgh Half Marathon

🎉 Our Top 5 Post-Race Activities

  1. 🍽️ Enjoying a meal or drinks with family and friends at a local restaurant or bar.
  2. 🖼️ Exploring Pittsburgh’s cultural attractions, such as the Andy Warhol Museum or the Carnegie Museum of Art and Natural History.
  3. 💆 Relaxing and recovering with a massage or spa treatment.
  4. 🛍️ Visiting local shops and boutiques for souvenirs or gifts.
  5. 🌳 Taking a scenic walk or hike in one of Pittsburgh’s many parks or nature reserves.

🏃‍♂️ Other Pittsburgh Marathons

If you’re looking for other marathon options in Pittsburgh, you’re in luck! The city offers a variety of races to choose from, including 5Ks, 10Ks, and relays. Here are a few other marathons to consider:

  • Erie Marathon at Presque Isle: If you’re looking for a scenic route, the Erie Marathon at Presque Isle might be the race for you. The course takes runners along the shores of Lake Erie and through the Presque Isle State Park. The race includes a full marathon, half marathon, and relay options.
  • Great Race: The Great Race is a popular event in Pittsburgh, attracting runners of all skill levels. The race includes a 10K, 5K, and a family fun run. The course takes runners through the city’s beautiful parks and neighborhoods.

Our 4 Top Tips on the Pittsburg Half Marathon

Dennis Heinrich after Mallorca Marathon 10.2023 Bild1

Stretch and warm up: Before the race, take some time to stretch and warm up your muscles to prevent injury and ensure a smooth start.”

Stay positive: Stay positive and focused on your goals throughout the race. Celebrate each milestone and push yourself to keep going!”

Sebastian Gradl after Running a Charity Run 09.2023
Dennis Heinrich Mallorca Marathon Bild 6 10.2023

Use a tracking app: Use a tracking app to stay connected and track your progress throughout the race.” 

Enjoy Pittsburgh: Take advantage of your time in Pittsburgh and explore the city’s many cultural attractions, parks, and restaurants.”

Sebastian Gradl after Running Wertach X-Run


When is the Pittsburgh Half Marathon?

The Pittsburgh Half Marathon is usually held in May. 

What is the course like?

The course is relatively flat and takes runners through various neighborhoods in Pittsburgh, including the Strip District and Oakland. 

Is there a time limit for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon?

Yes, participants must maintain a pace of 15 minutes per mile or faster to complete the race within the allotted time limit of 4 hours.

Have you ever run the Pittsburgh Half Marathon? I would love to hear your experience in the comments. I’m sure you also like reading about the Cambridge Half Marathon or about the Charleston Half Marathon.

Sebastian Gradl 26.09.2023
Sebastian Gradl

Nice to meet you, I´m Sebastian Gradl!

I write the articles on runfitjourney.com.

I hope I can awaken your passion for running too and would be happy to take you on the runfitjourney!

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