Conquer marathon day with these ten tips from our experts.

Whether you’re an experienced runner of steel or looking to cross the finish line for the first time, follow these tips from UPMC Sports Medicine on the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon Course.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 1-855-93-SPORT (77678) or visit

Tips for Conquering the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon

Research the course prior to race day

Communicate with friends and family members where you would like for them to cheer for you along the race course. Besides using mile markers to indicate distance, create your own points of reference to help you while running.

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Eat breakfast!

Allow yourself time to get up in the morning and eat breakfast two to three hours before race time. Fueling on energy gels or protein bars alone is not enough.

Know where first-aid stations will be available on the course

There are 11 first aid stations along the marathon course. Certified medical staff and volunteers will be able to assist runners.

Give yourself time to find your start corral

There are four start corrals (A, B, C, D) each with their own entrances located on Liberty Avenue. When approaching the entrance for your corral, make sure your race bib is visible to the race official to verify you are in the right corral.

Bundle up while you warm-up

The race takes place during the first weekend of May, which in Pittsburgh can have unpredictable weather. Whether warm or cold, wear old sweatshirts or trash bags can be worn as insulation and allow yourself time to do a dynamic warm-up while waiting in the start corral. Discard your clothes to the fences that line the start. Don’t worry: They’ll be donated after the event.


Runners have access to 20 fluid stations along the marathon course, with the option for either sports drink or water. While there will be opportunities to hydrate during the race, it’s important to stay hydrated before, during, and after to help prevent injury.

Be prepared for hills

The DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon Course provides a variety of hills in the form of bridges, Forbes Avenue, or the gradual downhill slope near the finish line.

Enjoy the race-day atmosphere

While your focus may be on getting to the finish line, take the time to enjoy the sights and sounds of the Pittsburgh neighborhoods along the course. You’ll spot bands, cheer stations, spectators, and hilarious signs along the way.

Have a post-race reunion plan

For friends and family who watched you from start to finish, designate a location after the race to be used as a reunion spot.

Recover and celebrate!

Before indulging in a celebratory meal or drink, take the time to properly cool down your body. We recommend you keep your body moving for about 20 minutes after the race and incorporate static stretching to cool down tired muscles.

UPMC Sports Medicine is the official medical provider of the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon.

Running Assessments Before Race Day

Running assessments are great for runners of all speeds and distances who would like to better their overall performance and form and prevent injury. Our experts provide one-on-one assessments that include:

  • Learning the personal running and injury histories of an athlete
  • Performing a lower extremity evaluation that involves testing core strength, flexibility, and single-leg strength exercises
  • Performing a treadmill evaluation at a self-selected pace

Running assessments are available at both the UPMC Lemieux and UPMC Rooney Sports Complexes. For more information or to make an appointment, call 1-855-93-SPORT (77678) or visit

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on , and was last reviewed on .

About Sports Medicine

An athletic lifestyle carries the potential for injury. Whether you’re an elite athlete or a weekend warrior, UPMC Sports Medicine can help. If you are looking to prevent, treat, or rehabilitate a sports injury, our multidisciplinary team of experts can help you get back into the game. If you are seeking to improve your athletic performance, we can work with you to meet your goals. We serve athletes and active people of all ages and experience levels. Our goal is to help you keep doing what you love. Visit our website to find a specialist near you.