Bank of America Chicago Marathon: Tips for Training & Race Day

Bank of America Chicago Marathon: Tips for Training & Race Day 

Marathon runners

Known for its fast pace and magnificent views downtown and adventurous route through 29 neighborhoods, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is among North America’s most competitive courses.

So, when is the Chicago Marathon slated to start in 2023? The 45th running of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon kicks off on Sunday, October 8, 2023, in Grant Park. As for the exact starting time, the Chicago Marathon has a variety of start times. Runners start in the following groups (or waves):

  • Marathon Wheelchair Start (men): 7:20 a.m.
  • Marathon Wheelchair Start (women): 7:21 a.m.
  • Marathon Handcycle Start: 7:23 a.m.
  • Wave 1 Start (red): 7:30 a.m.
  • Wave 2 Start (blue): 8 a.m.
  • Wave 3 Start (orange): 8:35 a.m.

Looking to support a friend or family member? You can’t be present when the Chicago marathon is starting, but spectator access to Grant Park opens at 9:30 a.m. Spectators and runners can celebrate at the 27th Mile Post Race Party anytime between 9:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. in Grant Park’s Butler Field.

Training for the Chicago Marathon

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon offers a training plan built around an 18-week schedule. Developed by Nike Coaches, it is adaptable to all runners and customizable to fit alongside a busy schedule.

  • Vary your training. To maximize your training, you’ll need to include speed runs as well as distance runs.
  • Don’t skip rest and recovery days. Taking time to rest and recover is an essential part of training. In fact, your body needs this time in order to rebuild and benefit properly from harder runs. That’s especially important as you log longer runs in the weeks leading up to the Chicago Marathon date.

Planning to Run a Marathon? Here’s How to Do Your Best On Race Day

Concerned about nerves when the Chicago Marathon date finally arrives? Knowing how to train for a marathon is one thing—but knowing what to expect on the big day can help you reduce anxiety and better manage fatigue. Keep these tips for running a marathon in mind:

  • Listen to your body. Remember that many factors can impact your pace—including weather, elevation, lack of sleep, and stress. Pay attention to how your body feels and adjust your workout to fit.
  • Be flexible with your expectations. Good days and bad days are part of being an athlete, and you can’t control every variable. Don’t let the numbers on your stopwatch rule over your experience on the course.
  • Trust your training! Race day can bring on the butterflies, but you’ve put in the time and the effort—so trust it! Clear your mind and focus on your paces. 
  • Help your body recover!  Crossing the finish line is an exciting accomplishment, but helping your body recover after such a big undertaking can be extremely important in decreasing possible injury. Utilizing Normatec compression boots, jumping in a cold water immersion tub, or scheduling a tune up or stretch session following your big day can make a huge difference in how your body recovers!

Train Smarter for the 2023 Chicago Marathon with Physical Therapy

Whether you’re an older runner, dealing with knee pain after running, or searching for expert tips for running a marathon safely, a licensed physical therapist can help! A customized exercise plan combined with manual therapy can help you get the most out of your training time—and perform your best on race day. You’ll find IMPACT Physical Therapy and Sports Recovery facilities in Chicagoland and the southwest suburbs, so request an appointment to learn more!