Before reading this article about how you can prepare yourself for completing a sub three hours marathon, you may ask “why three hours and where does that point come from?”. Well, there are a couple of critical point for marathoners that they are trying to reach those points and they are 4:30,4:00,3:30 and 3:00 hours. Among those times, completing a sub three hours Marathon is specially important for marathoners because it would qualify them for Boston marathon which is dream of every marathoner. Actually to be very exact at this point, being qualified for Boston marathon depend on your age and gender, and for young men runners (under age 30) qualifying time for Boston marathon is 3:05 hours.
There are different training schedules for marathon, but most of them consist of about 18 weeks of training and in this period you would run over 1100km. After completing each marathon, you need at least two weeks of rest before start training for your next marathon in order to improve your previous record. In case you want to start training for your next marathon immediately after your previous training, you may neglect the first five weeks of your schedule which doesn’t include SOS workouts and jump into the sixth week, but in any case in order to complete the rest of your schedule, you again need to train at least 13 weeks/+1000km in order to get your goal.
Now back to our initial question “how long would it take to complete a sub three hours marathon and be qualified for Boston marathon”, the math is very simple now. Usually to have a sub 3:30 marathon, you need at least two training sets while any attempt to complete your first marathon before 3:30 hours is pretty aggressive and chances of getting injured is so high, where in that case you would not even able to complete the marathon.
After completing a sub 3:30 marathon, by each set of training, you would able to improve your previous record by usually 3% ,let’s say 7 minutes (theoretically you can improve up to 5%, but again it’s not recommended and continuing that way you would high likely get injured in a close future) Therefore in order to improve your record from 3:30 hours to 3:00 hours you need 4 sets of marathon training and therefore you need at least six sets of training in order to be able to complete a sub three hours marathon from the point that you started. As we discussed in past each training set requires at least 1000 km of running so you need to run at least for 6000 km in order to complete a sub three hours marathon and being qualified for Boston marathon which is dream of every marathoners.