How to change from an average into a Boston qualified runner

03 May, 2019 • by Admin

Your development really depends on numerous factors, such as your level of experience, age, and gender.

More than 487,000 runners finished a U.S. marathon a year, according to Running USA's annual marathon report. Some runners completed the 26.2-mile race in a little over two hours. Others took more than seven hours. Marathon courses differ significantly in terrain, elevation and weather conditions, and the time required to complete each course varies. The average marathoner, however, will take almost twice as long as an elite runner to finish a race.

Current qualifying standards

  • 18-34 (Men 3:00, Women 3:30)
  • 35-39 (3:05, 3:35)
  • 40-44 (3:10, 3:40)
  • 45-49 (3:20, 3:50)
  • 50-54 (3:25, 3:55)
  • 55-59 (3:35, 4:05)
  • 60-64 (3:50, 4:20)
  • 65-69 (4:05, 4:35)
  • 70-74 (4:20, 4:50)
  • 75-79 (4:35, 5:05)
  • 80 and over (4:50, 5:20)

Average Marathon Runner

In terms of average marathon times, the median marathon finishing time in 2016 for men in U.S. marathons was 4:22:07 (9:59 minutes per mile pace), according to Running USA. The median finishing time for women was 4:47:40 (10:58 minutes per mile pace).

For most first-time marathoners, the goal is usually to finish, rather than worrying about their finishing time. Runners who run multiple marathons usually find their results improve as they gain more experience and confidence.

You can use your finishing time for shorter distances to estimate your marathon race time. By knowing your time for other distances such as the mile, 5K, 10K, and half marathon, you can determine if you are on track for your best marathon time.

Gender and Age

Marathoning attracts more men than women. 58% of marathon finishers were men. The median finish time for a man was 4:17:43. Among women runners, the median finishing time was 4:42:53. Not surprisingly, the average time it takes to run a marathon increases as you get older. For example, the average for males between 30 and 34 years of age is 4:00:11, while the average for those 50 to 54 years old is 4:23:0.

Marathon Training Is Different

Unlike other events like the 10K, or even the half marathon, training for the marathon necessitates a specific focus on physiological adaptations that aren’t of great importance to shorter races.

In the marathon, the primary focus of training is developing your aerobic threshold (the fastest pace you can run while staying aerobic), increasing muscular endurance (how long you can run without your legs falling apart), and fuel efficiency (how efficient you can be at burning fat instead of carbohydrates while running at goal marathon pace). At no other race distance are these three training adaptations so important.

Therefore, to train for the marathon correctly, you need to temporarily neglect the specific training demands of shorter events. Furthermore, to accomplish many of the aforementioned training adaptations, you need to practice running on tired legs or with low energy levels.

Long-Term Development

Training correctly for the marathon requires an intense focus on the on the specific demands of the marathon race. There are training adaptations that are important for success at shorter distances, but don’t translate well to good marathon racing.

If you neglect certain energy systems or physiological elements for a long period of time, you start to lose overall fitness. To continually improve, the body needs a change of stimulus — a new type of demand for the muscles and body.

If you’ve done more than three marathons in a row without dedicating a specific training block to 5K or 10K training, running another marathon might not be the best choice if you want to record a new PR.

With the extreme popularity and accessibility of marathons these days, it can be hard to forgo the temptation to race one every season. However, if you’re a new runner or a veteran looking to break through to the next level, perhaps you should look closely at your training and goals to determine if running another marathon is the right choice for you.

Follow Boston Recommended Traning Plan

Visit Boston Marathon Training Plan. Developed by B.A.A., these plans will help guide you to success. These training plans are specifically geared towards preparing for the Boston Marathon, and are not necessarily intended for other events. The 20-week plans begin late November, and culminates at the Boston Marathon in April.

There are four levels of training plans designed to help you whether you are running over five hours or going for a sub-three hour marathon. The step by step increase in daily and weekly mileage is designed to challenge you while also minimizing the risk of training too hard. All four plans build a solid base of running fitness, and will help try to maximize your race potential. As with any training plan, what is outlined is merely a guide on how to build and structure your weekly running routine.

Estimate, Track and Analize Your Finish Time

Before running your marathon, it's definitely helpful to have an estimate of your marathon finishing time, so you know how to pace yourself properly. A quick formula that a lot of runners like to use is to take a recent half marathon time, double it, and then add 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the difficulty of the course.

A smartphone's built-in sensors make it a great platform for a variety of running apps that can track your speed, distance traveled and calories burned while even mapping your route.

If you're curious about where you might end up finishing (top 25 percent, age group winner, etc.) in a particular marathon, look at the online results from last year's race. Analize your finish time history and find a way to improve it

Finally! There is No Secret!

The truth is there is no secret. There is no one formula that you should follow that will lead to the result you’re looking for. Everyone is different. Our body types, genetics, past medical history, current life situations

What works for me, might not work for you. This post is about what I did and hopefully you will benefit from something I say. My advice: just keep going. Don’t give up. It may take months or years. But keep going. That's my most important piece of advice.


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