Road Race Stats - Marathons & Other Running Races

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Half Marathons Taking Over?

Runner's World Daily News mentioned this cool website It's a site that helps members run half marathons in 25 states. It's interesting to read their reasoning behind this goal. It mentions a quote from Roy Benson of Running Times "Committed recreational runners can finish it without killing themselves in training. Serious competitors can do it well, avoiding the risks taken and the recoveries demanded by the marathon." And they're reason for only 25 states: "By committing to only half the states, you can find 25 pretty nice places you want to visit."

Perhaps these half marathon attitudes are gaining ground. From the race stats that I've collected, one thing I've noticed is that half marathons seem to be growing in popularity. For example, in Nashville's Country Music Marathon, the number of 2005 marathon finishers were down by about 10% from 2004. However, the number of half marathon runners were up by 23%. And there were a lot more runners in the half marathon (11392 vs 3743).

So in future posts I'll have to look at the stats for the half marathons for these recent races and see how they compare to the full marathons.

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  • That is an interesting site. I will have to look at it closer. As a marathoner, I commonly use halfs are organized training runs... so they almost go hand in hand.

    By Anonymous Terry from Knoxville, at 7:09 PM  

  • Ken,

    I am interested in numbers and running, so I very much enjoy your site.

    I wonder if there are any statistics on how many half marathons were completed last year. says that over 361,000 completed marathons in 2004.

    I would believe that the interest in the half marathon over the marathon is similar to that of the 5K over the 10K.

    Don from California

    By Blogger Don, at 5:51 AM  

  • Don, thanks for the feedback.

    I'll keep a lookout for total half marathon finishers for 2004. It would be interesting to see how this compares to 361K.

    Do marathons really require significantly more training and recovery time than halves?

    I was thinking that these issues may influence more runners toward halves especially repeat runners. I don't know if the same thing can be said about 10Ks vs 5Ks. Seems like the training and recovery time for both are not too different.

    By Blogger Ken, at 10:06 AM  

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