NMDC Hyderabad Marathon 2022 Route Preview

NMDC Hyderabad Marathon 2022 Route Preview

The NMDC Hyderabad Marathon goes by the moniker “The Flyover Marathon”. This is a point-to-point course, that passes through some of the iconic landmarks of Hyderabad/Cyberabad. In the process you get to run on flyovers, undulating terrain, over a cable bridge, through the IT district and inside one of India’s best universities before the race culminates in the GMC Balayogi stadium aka Gachibowli stadium.

They had an abridged edition of this race back in December 2021 where some changes were effected to the erstwhile route. However, after two years of COVID-19 created disruptions, this race is finally back where it belongs in the Calendar, i.e., the last weekend of August.

Let us start with the weather, generally around this time of the year, the weather in Hyderabad is un-predictable. All race categories start relatively late – Marathon(5:00AM), Half Marathon(6:00AM), 10km(7:00AM) – and tree cover is sparse on this route (virtually non-existent for the HM and 10km runners). So, expect the sun god to show up in the later stages of the race and anticipate a certain amount of humidity right from the start of the race.

No rain is expected during the race hour. However, the humidity is expected to be very high touching 100%. Temperature during the race is expected to be between 23-28 degrees. Wind direction is from North & North West, with an average speed of 15 km/h, so expect head-winds in some sections.

The NMDC Hyderabad marathon expo is an experience, you can find more details on the expo here. Here is some information about the expo, & bib-pick up logistics

The Marathon and the Half Marathon start from the People’s Plaza on Necklace road in the heart of Hyderabad. Traffic diversions will be in place so expect a short walk from wherever your ride drops you to the holding area. PLEASE LEAVE EARLY FOR THE RACE.

Being a point-to-point race, any baggage you drop at the start point will be transported to the finish point by the organizers. Once you finish the race go to the designated area in the Gachibowli stadium complex to collect your bags.

With the weather, expo and start line logistics out of the way, here is a bird’s eye view of the course. At the risk of sounding trite, Hyderabad offers a point-to-point course. Meaning you start the race at one place and end the race at another place. This holds good for all 3 categories viz. Marathon, Half Marathon and 10KM. The course by and large is undulating. There are a few flat stretches at the beginning of the race and at the fag end of the race – where you finish on the track inside the iconic Gachibowli stadium – respectively.

The Half and Full marathon routes overlap except for the first 9 odd kms and the last 12kms in the context of the Marathon. We have organized this route description accordingly.

Let us now do a deep dive into the course.

Note

This section is only for the marathoners

Necklace Road Loop:

Marathon: Start line to 9.5km

This section of about 9.5kms is flat. Hold your horses! Fresh legs, adrenaline rush and a pleasant breeze across Hussain Sagar can tempt the most seasoned of runners to push a pace that they haven’t really trained for. Remember, the hills and flyovers come late in the race. Use this section to find your rhythm and then maintain a steady pace. Add some time to the bank but don’t overdo it.

Landmarks in this section:

  • The Buddha in all his sereneness in the middle of Hussain Sagar
Marathon Route

Info

For an interactive marathon & half-marathon route with detailed elevation profile, click the button below.
Please note that these maps are optimized for desktop. To use them on mobile please rotate phone to landscape mode.

Note

The next few sections are common for the Marathon and the Half-Marathon

Peoples Plaza to the start of Punjagutta Flyover:

Half marathon: Start line to 3.5kms

Marathon: 9.5kms to 13kms

You will encounter the first flyover i.e., the Khairatabad flyover in this section. It is a short flyover with a sharp turn to the right on descent which will lead you onto the Raj Bhavan road. The half-marathoners should be watchful as you will have to navigate your way around runners in this initial stretch. The crowd disperses as you come closer to the Somajiguda circle. This is a relatively flat winding section with one U-turn towards the end, so again, try and get some extra minutes in the bank. But exercise caution as the real challenge lies ahead.

Landmarks in this section:

  • The Raj-Bhavan on your left and there will be some crowd support in this section to cheer the runners up.
Half-Marathon Route

Punjagutta Flyover to KBR park:

Half marathon: 3.5kms to 9kms

Marathon: 13kms to 18kms

This is where the fun begins😊, up and undulating! You encounter the second flyover on this route i.e., the Punjagutta flyover and after that there is a steep and steady climb all the way through Banjara hills road number 2 and right up-to KBR national park. Once you cross the signal in front of the main gate of KBR national park, the next two kms are undulating in nature.

Interesting trivia: The area around the traffic signal in front of the KBR park main gate is the highest point in terms of elevation on this course. So, when you cross that point, pat yourself on the back. The battle of Banjara hills has been won!

Landmarks in this section:

  • Upmarket Hyderabad aka Banjara Hills with all its Tony label showrooms
  • The prestigious LV Prasad eye institute and
  • KBR national park on your left

KBR park to Road# 45:

Half marathon: 9kms to 12kms

Marathon: 18kms to 21kms

This section is a downhill section where you can make up for the time lost in the previous section. Just be careful not to overdo it as only half the battle would have been won by the end of this section. Open your strides and go with the flow. Let the downhill terrain do the rest.

Road# 45 to Biodiversity Park:

Half marathon: 12kms to 17kms

Marathon: 21kms to 26kms

This is one of the most scenic and eventful sections on this course. You also tackle some serious elevation gain and loss in this section. First up you take the third flyover on this course that leads you onto the Durgam Cheruvu cable bridge with its breathtaking view and then you run through the IT district of Cyberabad all the way unto the Mumbai highway.

The first km of this section will offer a steep rise in elevation. Photographers and the scenery around the Durgam Cheruvu will ensure that your suffering is mitigated. The next 4 kms are net downhill. In fact, this is the fastest stretch you will encounter on this course. This is the section to push, particularly for the half marathoners, but do that responsibly. We repeat – In Hyderabad, it is NOT over until the final FLYOVER!

Landmarks in this section:

  • Durgam Cheruvu Cable bridge
  • ITC Kohenur +Inorbit Mall +IKEA store and
  • bio-diversity park

There will be entertainment stations enroute. One specifically just after the Durgam Cheruvu cable bridge, soak in the festive mood!

Interesting trivia: The 17th km (HM)/ 26th km (FM) in this section is the lowest point on this course in terms of elevation. Try and capitalize on this km to build/ regain momentum on what is otherwise a challenging course.

Biodiversity park to IIIT junction:

Half marathon: 17kms to 19.5kms

Marathon: 26kms to 29kms

For the half marathoners, this is the (anti) climax of the magnum opus called NMDC Hyderabad marathon! For those running the full distance, the suffer fest has just begun 😉. This section has the fourth (and final) flyover on this route. Now you understand why we say – in Hyderabad, it is NOT over until the final FLYOVER! – What makes the suffer fest bearable is the school children who line up on this flyover to cheer the runners. Give them a high five and smile at them that will lift your spirits like few other things ever will.

The section after the flyover is undulating, for the half marathoners this is the time to dig deep as the end of the race is near.

Note

This section is only for the half-marathoners

IIIT junction to Gachibowli Stadium:

Half marathon: 19.5kms to 21.1kms

The final frontier! Remember you run a good 1km within the stadium complex before finishing on the track. Though this section is relatively flat it is mentally testing. The stadium on your right beckons but the route into the stadium is a circuitous one that involves running two stretches with a U turn before getting on to the track.

Interesting Trivia: Some of the most candid photos are the ones taken at the finish line of the NMDC Hyderabad marathon so remember to express yourself as you cross that finish line 😊

Note

This section is only for the marathoners

IIIT junction to HCU back gate aka Gopanapalli

Marathon: 29kms to 36kms

This is a section that will test you to the core. Again, you run through the technology hub of Cyberabad with premier organizations/institutions on either side of the course. The first couple of KMs are a steady uphill and then there is a sharp drop in elevation as you approach the Wipro circle thereafter you gain in elevation as you near the HCU campus back gate. A couple of things to note in this section – runners would have spread out by now and there is virtually no tree cover in this section, this is also the time when the body starts asking questions of you owing to fatigue – long story short, you are running alone and the sun is beating down on you. Take in every KM as it comes while maneuvering this difficult section. Welcome to the NMDC Hyderabad “Marathon” folks 😉 this is the battle of Cyberabad!

Note: All aid stations after the IIIT junction on the marathon course will be well stocked with sponges, fruits, electrolytes etc. for the benefit of the marathoners. Physio support will be available every 2kms hereafter.

Landmarks in this section:

  • ISB campus
  • Campuses of Microsoft, Infosys, & Wipro
  • Gopichand badminton academy

Interesting trivia: From the 30th to the 31st km you will encounter the sharpest elevation drop on this course. Capitalize on that but be mindful of not adding further fatigue on those quads as there is a steady elevation that follows all the way up to the HCU back gate.

HCU Campus and Gachibowli stadium:

Marathon: 36kms to 42.195kms

Running into the HCU campus should fill you with a proud sense of accomplishment for a job well done! Only you as a runner know what you had to endure to get this far! You won the battle of Banjara and now you have won the battle of Cyberabad! The victory march begins 😊 Now it’s all about counting the kms down and getting the job done. The HCU campus offers a good dose of tree cover and HCU Students will be cheering to keep your spirits high. This should rejuvenate you to redouble your efforts for this final section of the marathon. In terms of elevation, you will encounter a steady uphill before you exit the HCU Campus and hit the Old Mumbai highway. Thereafter the finish line beckons and unlike your HM compatriots you are not subject to a circuitous loop inside the stadium complex.

Landmarks in this section:

  • The beautiful and sprawling HCU campus.

Interesting Trivia: Repeat. Some of the most candid photos are the ones taken at the finish line of the NMDC Hyderabad marathon so remember to express yourself as you cross that finish line 😊

Happy Racing to all the participants!!!


Kartik

Kartik Iyer is a conversationalist, running geek, techie, marathoner, miles to go CrossFit junkie and bathroom Carnatic vocalist. He loves striking random conversations with people just about anywhere, music and anyting to do with tech and fitness, in no particular order. He can be reached at @kartikiyer2007 on Insta and on Strava

With inputs from Prashant Morparia, and Avik Pal from Hyderabad Runners, and Aravind Yarra


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