Alaska’s Mariah Burroughs pulls away from the pack to win 2023 Anchorage Mayor’s Marathon

The first women’s marathon runner to cross the finish line at the 2023 Anchorage Mayor’s Marathon was Alaska’s own Mariah Burroughs, who ran away from the pack for a decisive win.

Her mark of 3 hours, 14 minutes, 28 seconds was nearly four minutes faster than runner-up April Nelson of Anchorage.

“I started off knowing that the first couple miles were downhill so I was OK running a little bit under seven-minute pace,” Burroughs said. “Once it flattened out, I tried to run around 7:15 pace and hold that through 11 miles.”

She tried to be conservative from miles 11 to 18 when there was “a little bit more elevation gain and terrain on the trails,” but once she turned left onto Tudor Road, she started picking up her pace.

At the beginning, she was running alongside her sister Riley Burroughs and two other women at the front, but as the race went on, she began to separate herself.

“I think I pulled away from the other top female at mile 13 and I didn’t see her after that,” Burroughs said.

[Friends and former college teammates win half and full marathons at Anchorage Mayor’s Marathon plus full marathon results]


While this is her first time participating in the Mayor’s Marathon, it was her fourth time running a marathon since she started competing in the races in 2020. Her most notable finish was in the Boston Marathon two months ago. She and her sister both ran, with Mariah finishing the race in 3:15:52.

“It was amazing and one of the most incredible experiences I’ve ever had,” Burroughs said. “There were so many spectators and kind people cheering you on, and it was just such a positive environment for runners.”

The 27-year-old grew up in the Valley, graduated from Wasilla High School, and both competed for and graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage.

She was an avid endurance runner growing up and competed in cross country and track and field since she was in the fourth grade. That helped earn her a scholarship to attend UAA, and she joined the Seawolves.

“I was more of a 5K and steeplechase runner in track, 6Ks in cross country, and decided to get into marathons after college,” Burroughs said. “I had to learn how to love running again after college and I think that’s what got me into marathons.”

The possibility of something new was enough to prompt her to start running marathons with some of her friends, and after she ran one, she wondered if she could complete another even faster.

“It made me want to be competitive again,” Burroughs said. “It gives me a really good outlook and is a great coping skill. I work in mental health, so I like to work out a lot and be outside.”

She graduated from UAA with a bachelor’s degree and currently lives in Anchorage, where she works as a social worker with the Anchorage Police Department’s new mobile intervention team.

“We do crisis work in the community, taking a little bit of the pressure off of patrol, and really dealing with more of the mental health calls and diverting from the jails and hospitals,” Burroughs said.

Find full marathon results here.

Women’s full marathon overall - top 10

1. Mariah Burroughs 3:14:27, Anchorage; 2. April Nelson 3:17:59, Anchorage; Madison Labosky 3:18:37, Anchorage; 4. Krista Inscho 3:19:17, Anchorage; 5. Rosie Whittington-Evans 3:21:18, Palmer; 6.Gwen Jacobson 3:22:26, Rochester MN; 7. Colleen Bolling 3:24:24, Anchorage; 8. Kelsey Ripp 3:25:43, Anchorage; 9. Gabrielle Panzo 3:26:09, Washington DC; 10. Riley Burroughs 3:30:56, Anchorage.

Women’s half marathon overall - top 10

1. Autumn Ray 1:22:48, Tucson AZ; 2. Ashlee Weller 1:30:31, Anchorage; 3. Megan Kahn 1:33:06, Loveland OH; 4. Sarah Cosgrave 1:32:49 Anchorage; 5. Amanda Cherok 1:39:45, Homer; 6. Emma Sweeney 1:40:29, Rockford MI; 7. Lucy Swygman 1:40:47, Girdwood; 8. Heather Hassett 1:40:54, Anchorage; 9. Regina Fiacco 1:41:03, Anchorage; 10. Delaney Preston 1:41:12, Anchorage.

Josh Reed

Josh Reed is a sports reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. He's a graduate of West High School and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.