Marathon PB

Just over a year until I hit 40 and I am begining to wonder if I can PB again in the marathon. (I am pretty sure I can!)

So I thought I would conduct a staw poll on how old marathon runners were when they got their current PB and after how many marathons did this take.

So for me it was at age 31, 2nd marathon out of 4 completed in total. PB 3:13.

To save typing, could shorten response to:

Tick Tock 31/2/4/3:13



  • 46yrs on my 3rd mara at Nottn in 3h53m7s.

    I did 4h0m57s last year at 52, in between there have been a few slower ones, but I know a faster one is still there to be had.
  • TickTockTickTock ✭✭✭
    Big Dave - PB at 46 is enough to inspire me. Good luck with the next one.
  • 46, 8th marathon, 2.53
  • 3-36age54 started running at 40.go for it!
  • Cheers T T, but some of these peep put me to shame eh?
  • In 2006 age 50 I did 3:50:56 (3rd Mara), 27 minutes faster that 2005.

    Guess what? I will go faster next year!
  • First and so far only one aged 24 - 11 years ago. I ran 2.50 and didn't see myself ever doing much better again.
  • GobiGobi ✭✭✭
    Age 34 3:07:29 Abingdon 2005 but I have been faster in an Ultra this year
  • drewdrew ✭✭✭
    Age 46, 2:54 (5th marathon) Started running at 40. Not finished yet! Sub 2:45 still very achievable.
  • TickTockTickTock ✭✭✭
    Too right Big Dave! I feel like a spring chicken. Some really impressive PBs by some of the 'old folk'. Well impressed.

    Maybe I still have years of getting better (even though after 15 years of running parts of my body do seem to be groaning)
  • I just hope to outlive enough folk, so I can be good for my age.
    I reckon about another 35years should do it.
  • For my money, people are capable of achieving a hell of a lot more than they think they are. But too many runners -- on this board especially -- have no interest in ever leaving their comfort zones; they think finishing a marathon is an achievment in itself (tip: it's not -- absolutely anyone can do it); and they waste time asking dumb questions like "can I run a marathon on three training sessions a week?" which only tell you these people have no chance of ever fulfilling their potential. None of the PBs here from the old folk (myself included) surprise me. We're not talented...we're just committed and dedicated. Or as Lance Armstrong put it, go hard or go home.
  • OSD

    It is down to why do you r*n.
    I have a long term goal, which is to be fit enough when I am 90 to do long walks if I care to. If I can still r*n and want to then so much the better.

    This lark is a means to an end, and just one of the things that I do.
    It is not an end in itself.
  • paskha 56 (next week) / 29 / 31 / 4:28

    I've still got several PBs to do, as my PB for a Half is 1:55, I need to do enough training to run well all the way in a marathon!!! and I prefer hilly scenic marathons ....
  • Oh by the way ....

    started running at 46yrs 9mths (when my youngest child was 5yrs and in school!!)

    one of my long-term aims (partly cos of the cost, but I can say I'm on my way) is an IRONMAN ....
  • Have only done 1 mara, which was Paris in April 3.21.52 age 41 (then) 42 now
  • TickTockTickTock ✭✭✭
    I agree with Big Dave that we all run for different reasons....though I never met a runner that either can not recount PBs (sometimes in incrediably boring detail)for all distances or secretly wants to better on past performances.

    The sound of being fit enough to do long walks in my 90s in appealing though.
  • Cheers TT

    So what are your reasons?
  • TickTockTickTock ✭✭✭
    My main reasons were initally just to get fit, 15 years later though my near obsessiveness with running is about pushing myself to see how well I can do. I guess as I get older I feel the patience required to train for a marathon suits me better than beasting myself on the track trying to improve 10k timesby 2 seconds. Hence the initial question about age related PBs.

    I am not worried about where I finish in the field but am concered if I have done myself justice (based on myself defined expecations). At the end of the day, we all run for our own reasons and we run for ourselves. As long as we happy, then all is good I guess?
  • This forum is full of obsessive people.

    BTW I can't afford to worry about where I finish in the field, I regularly enter some races, where being last is most definately an option. (They usually have the word championship in the title)
  • Tom.Tom. ✭✭✭
    Tick Tock, I'm not sure your really asking the right question.

    In simple terms, a marathon runner, who starts in his early twenties and trains consistantly and progressively, is likely to reach his/her peak in their early thirties.

    A runner who starts in later life, and again trains consistantly and progressively is likely to hit their peak in about 7-8 years from start, although the vast majority of their improvement will occure within the first three years.

    So for example a 57-58 year old who first starts running at that age is well capable of running PBs (not necessarily just at marathon) at age 65. Likewise a runner who starts in his late teen/early twenties should be capable of running PBs at age 30 odd. The performance isn't strictly age related, it depends how long you've been running, how hard you're prepared to train and how resiliant and adaptive your body is to the training load.

    JJ says he ran PBs at 65. Don't think that because he did that, you starting at age 40 will also be Pbing at aged 65!!. JJ's a pretty talented runner, but had he come into the sport 10 years earler, he would have run times at age 55, that he wouldn't get near, now he's 65.

    Just do your best, and take pleasure in your performances as and when they come along.
  • Evidence that you get faster with age:

    24yrs - 3:13
    25yrs - 2:58
    25.5yrs - 2:44

    Taking time off from marathons, but reckon if I keep running, as Tom says, I'll peak in my early 30's. I started running aged 24 after a 7 year layoff from sport.
  • TickTockTickTock ✭✭✭
    Superb times and few more years to improve as well!

    I am sure lots of elite runners ahave run PBs in their late 30s. Didn't Ingrid Christiansson (sp!) run a pb when she was 40?
  • Tick Tock - I think it is as others have said - that if you've only started this lark in your late 30s - sure you can get PBs in your 40s.

    Ingrid Kristiansen was a wonderful runner and showed us all that motherhood and running can go hand-in-hand.

    I think a good example of running well at an older age was Pricilla Welsh.

    My PB - 2.47.25 came on my 6th marathon in 1981 when I was 30 years old. My last marathon - my 31st was 3.42.50 at 55 years old.

    I've lost almost an hour over 25 years but I was still pleased to finish.

    I think motivation is one of the limiting factors to performance. I think if you feel you have no chance of doing a PB the best way to get your head around it and still get out there and take part is by just telling yourself - this will be a season's best.
  • Pricilla Welch.
  • NZC - you're probably good for better than 3:42 though :) as you say, you were pleased to finish that day.

    My marathon pb was set 4 years ago when I was 48 (3:53). My fourth or fifth marathon. I should have done better (as I should have done at other marathons around the same time) but did silly things in training as race day approached.
    If all goes well I should get within striking distance of that PB on September 17th. I suspect it will depend on the weather. I feel I am running better now than at any time since 2002/3.
  • Tick Tock

    1st 3.29 age 28, after 2 months training for a bet.

    was hooked.

    have done about 10 marathons since then.

    last pb was 2004 FLM 2.47.14

    this year ran 2.49.34

    think I can get close to 2.45.....just like Drew.
  • 2000 (age 43) First marathon (FLM), 3:58:??
    2001 (age 44) FLM 3:09:??
    2002 (age 45) FLM 2:58:46
    2003 (age 46) Leeds Marathon 2:58:28
    2003 (age 46) Loch Ness Marathon 2:58:22

    Age 49 now, still running marathons but the time, dedication and effort to push for PBs was taking its toll with depletion, depression and injury. Shall be age 50 next year and shall be pleased just to be able to carry on running reasonable times and to stay injury free.

    No limit to what can be achieved with the right attitude.
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