Marathon Under Two Hours?

Sounds incredible?  So was the 4 minute mile back in 1954 before Roger Bannister broke it.  Not to mention, runners have been progressively getting faster due to advancements in technology and training.

Current world record for marathon is 2.02:57 (2 hours 2 minutes and 57 seconds) set by Kenya’s Dennis Kimetto at Berlin in 2014.  To shave 2 minute and 58 seconds off, Mr. Kimetto would have to run 6.8 seconds faster each mile. That may not sound a lot, but it means 4 minutes 35 seconds per mile for 26.2 miles.

That is what the folks at Nike is trying to achieve according to Dr. Sanjay Gupta of the Cable Network News. While not trying to run a sub 2 marathon, I find Dr. Gupta’s article offers an interesting look at how the professionals try to squeeze more efficiency from running.

The article includes the latest design approaches on shoes & apparels, the key pillars of running: oxygen & hydration, and running environment.  In a nutshell: to increase efficiency, it takes a mid-foot strike running form, refined VO2 max which apparently is like our brain that never get fully utilized, and a good weather on a flat course.

Whether you think you can, or you think you think you can’t — you’re right.  ~ Henry Ford

Do you think a sub 2 hours marathon is near?

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2 Responses to Marathon Under Two Hours?

  1. 50in50marathonquest says:

    I’ve been following the Nike sub-2 hour moonshot via Runners World and specifically the Runners World podcast…you should check it out for more information. They are going into all kinds of crazy details. Keep in mind this is a marathon in a controlled environment on a specific course – a motor race track in Italy, with a pace car as well as human pacers. Additonally, each runner is being monitored by all kinds of sensors. It is very interesting. I think they will break it one day…personally I’d love to see them do it at an actual race but it will be interesting nonetheless. What is also of interest is the editor in chief of RW is included as part of the team with his moonshot being to try to BQ.


    • terryshen says:

      Yes James,

      I think Nike is investing in this for both science and business. That’s why they picked the runners and Monza race track to ensure maximum favorable conditions to break this record as early as next month.


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