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Paris Marathon: Mile 12

March 24, 2010
Mile 12 of the Paris Marathon

Back in the city, the route starts to cut a parallel course to that run in the opening miles of the race

Back in the suburbs of Paris, the scenery changes and the roads narrow. This is a populous area, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for anyone trying to cross the road – while the road will have been shut to traffic, expect Paris’s residents to be continuing with their daily lives.

Mile 12 of the Paris Marathon

A road lined with cafes, apartments and trees greets runners as they return to the city centre

Cafes line this road, so you might expect to receive some passing encouragement from anyone sitting outside. In which case, best hope for good weather, as the tables are likely to be deserted in the rain.

You’ll also notice that the street is lined with hire bicycles. These can be picked up from more or less anywhere within Paris for a fee, and returned to more or less anywhere in Paris. A good way to see the city – if you don’t mind braving Paris’s notoriously exhilarating traffic – but perhaps not as good as running. (Which is very easy to say now, but having run 12 miles…)

2 Comments leave one →
  1. CAROLINE LEEMING permalink
    April 4, 2010 3:41 pm

    Dear Lewis,
    Have just come across your website, and would like to thank you very much for the excellent information, advice and photos.
    Briefly, my sister and I are jointly raising funds for Walkthe Walk – a breast cancer charity. She is running both Paris and London marathons and we are both power-walking the 26 mile Moonwalk in London in May. As you can imagine, she will have her work cut out to accomplish all that in the space of 5 weeks, and I am travelling to Paris next weekend to support her. I have sent her the link to your site as I know she will find it really encouraging – she has run London and NY before but not Paris. We are neither of us spring chickens, although at 47 she has 10 years advantage on me! I am no runner, having broken my ankle the one time I attempted a half-marathon…
    Anyway, if you have not yet fallen asleep with boredom at this tale, would it be very cheeky of me to ask you some advice re Paris? Just to make life interesting, while Sam (my sister) is slogging around Paris hoping to achieve a PB of 4h 30 or better, I have to fit in a 14 mile training power-walk, whilst not neglecting to pop up if possible to offer her some moral support. I was planning to sort of mirror the route of the race by starting at the 12m marker and walking to the finish, but using the opposite bank of the river to avoid crowds if possible. However having read your info I was wondering whether you think I can actually sneak on to the course – this would make it a bit easier for me to keep track of Sam and to actually be sure of covering my own distance. There is a team of two ladies representing Walkthe Walk who are power-walking as proper entrants, so maybe the officials might think I was one of those?
    If you have time to advise me I would be v grateful, but don’t worry if you are too busy with your own training.
    Good luck with your run in any case, hope you raise loads.
    Kind regards.
    Caroline Leeming

    • April 4, 2010 10:08 pm

      Dear Caroline,

      Wow, that sounds like quite a hectic five weeks! I wish you and your sister good luck – Paris and London in two weeks should be fantastic (if somewhat tiring)!

      I’d have to advise against joining the Paris Marathon course, though… I’m sure it’s possible to sneak on without the marshalls noticing, but it could cause some problems for the organisers. For insurance and legal purposes, all competitive sporting events in France require participants to submit an approved doctor’s note to say they’re fit to take part in the competition. That said, there’s probably nothing against keeping to the sides of the course – a lot of it has good footpaths – so that would give you a chance to offer moral support in the final miles.

      If you’re looking to measure your distance, you might want to have a look at a site like – it’ll help you to plan a measured route through the city. Of course, if you’re able to take in the south bank of the river, you’ll get a better view of Notre Dame and take in the gardens around the Eiffel Tower.

      I hope this is of some use to you, and I hope you have a great time in Paris. Fingers crossed for the weather!

      Best wishes,


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