Via Francigena

Francigena Marathons, advice and information to begin with your best foot forward

Picture of Redazione AEVF
Redazione AEVF

The marathon season has begun along the Italian Via Francigena. The mother of non-competitive walks, the European Francigena Marathon, will take place on 27th May, 42km from Acquapendente to Montefiascone in the province of Viterbo.

Around 1500 participants are expected from all over Italy and abroad, young people and adults ready to compete with steps and chats.

What are the secrets when facing a marathon? Some advice from Sergio Pieri, organisational manager of the European Francigena Marathon, an institution of the Francigena, a true sportsman, who has worked for the town of Acquapendente for years.

The key is not to exaggerate if there is you are not adequately prepared – Pieri confirms – you must be able to choose the right path. We, for example, offer the opportunity to choose your distance, otherwise there is a risk people may withdraw due to leg pain.”

What kind of training is necessary?: “You have to start walking at least three times a week, increasing to five times, for at least a couple of months. As well as training, it is important to follow a sports diet, made up of carbohydrates, vegetables, some sugar, drink a lot but no alcohol; eat fruit, avoid eating first and second courses together. Supplements? They leave the time they find. In my running group they always made water, lemon and honey, a real natural power “.

In addition to the classic 42,195 km marathon, the European Francigena Marathon offers the option to choose alternative routes to ensure everyone can participate. It ranges from 11km for the Acquapendente – San Lorenzo Nuovo stretch, to the 18,700km of the Bolsena – Montefiascone, to the 23km from Acquapendente to Bolsena to name a few. Different distances because the important thing is not to win but to participate (for further details visit the official website:

These events were born to promote the Francigena in our territory and therefore also the south of Tuscany and northern Lazio, which have enviable panoramas – confirms Pieri – and I must say that in the past six years it has worked. It is an opportunity to socialise, to meet up with friends on the road “.

Pending the registration deadline, open until 8th May (click here), the type of participants is curious. Women beat men in terms of participation and it is not the first time. The highest number of participants are aged between 50 and 60 years old (provisional data for this edition), followed by 41-50 year olds and 11-20 year olds.

And there are those who participate with a spirit to be admired: there are 22 participants over 70! As for the provenance, the top ten inscriptions include: Rome, Viterbo, Florence, Siena, Terni, Lucca, Pisa, Milan, Perugia and Turin. Among the most popular routes is, in first place, the 42km marathon (over 1000 members), followed by the 23km (Acquapendente – Bolsena) and 18km (Bolsena – Montefiascone) marathon.

You just have to warm up your muscles … happy marathon!

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