On the 6th May 2017, a Kenyan distance runner ran the marathon in 2:00:25 at the Monza racetrack, Italy. Although Eliud Kipchoge's time marks the fastest marathon ever run, his performance cannot be considered an official world record (currently at 2:02:57) because he benefited from unusual advantages (eg, car drafting and rotating pacemakers, controversial running shoes). Yet, this astonishing performance suggests that a sub 2-hour marathon under official conditions might not be so far away and demonstrates the remarkable capacity of the human body, as exemplified by Kipchoge's ability to endure a gruelling training regime (>120 miles/week at ~2400 m) in typically warm climes, helping him achieve a performance previously considered impossible. Even more important are the lessons we can learn from a global health perspective.
Bibliographical note© 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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- School of Sport and Health Sciences - Professor of Sport and Exercise Science
- Centre for Stress and Age-Related Disease
- Sport and Exercise Science and Sports Medicine Research and Enterprise Group