How Many Marathons Can You Run In A Year?

Natalie Cecconi
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General Rules

There’s no good answer to this question. It really depends on many factors, including your level of physical fitness, your age, your body type and your training background.

Below, I’ve compiled a number of factors that will help you determine your answer.

Be realistic. If you don’t have the background to run a marathon or if you’re physically unfit, you may want to reconsider your race goals.

You probably didn’t decide you want to run a marathon in a week. You probably ran 5K races, 10K races, and marathons slowly over the course of a few years. Dedicate yourself to your running goal and you can run marathons faster and maybe even more than one this year.

Positive goal setting and focused training will take you where you want to go.

You may find that you are not very good at running long distances. This can apply to both the duration and distance of your runs.

To improve your endurance and stamina, you can run at an easier pace, faster paces, or you can increase the weight of your running shoes.

Warm up and cool down every time you run. This will help prevent injury and provides a time for your body to acclimate to the running environment.

Rules for 3+ Marathons Per Year

If the rigors of marathons have already taken a toll on you, then you may want to take a break for a while.

But if you are someone with a marathon running bug, then it’s best to heed to all of the rules of running a marathon. And then some!

There are plenty of marathon rules that you have to follow to get the most out of it. And let’s face it, it’s really tough to avoid the runners’ high (endorphins, anyone?). In fact, if you’re a runner, you’re pretty much addicted to it anyway. So, my advice would be to make all the rules your own and bend them as much as possible.

With that said, here are a few marathon rules that should be followed even by the most ardent of runners.

Weather

Running a marathon in different temperatures across Antarctica, the Marshall Islands, and the North Pole can be tough on the body. Running in the polar region is grueling enough, but you must remember that they run in half of the year when it’s dark most of the day, plus the fact that it’s freezing cold. This is a true testament to the distance runner.

But let’s give the runners some time to warm up and acclimate to the climate before we give much notice.

The average temperatures are:

Antarctica – -1.8°C (29.8°F)

Marshalls – 27.8°C (82.0°F)

North Pole – -38.0°C (-36.4°F)

The World Ice Marathon has nine races in extreme weather habitats of the world. Most of the races are at higher altitudes. In each race, it is always 25-35 km (15.5-19.5 mi), plus you must always carry heavy equipment.

The average winners’ times are:

Antarctica – 7:40:27

Weekly Mileage

The mileage you can get away with depends completely upon your current running ability. As you become more advanced, you’ll be able to handle more mileage.

The most important thing to look at is not how many miles you run in a week but rather how you accumulate those weekly miles.

The majority of runners in the advanced and elite groups don’t run more than 75 miles per week.

You can get away with more mileage if you can manage run slower than seven minutes per mile.

For faster runners, the sweet spot for weekly mileage is between 50 and 60 miles per week.

Recovery

The recovery and rejuvenation period between marathons depends largely on the fitness level of the runner. The more fit the runner, the smaller the time span of the recovery period.

While recovery is not necessary between marathons if a runner is extremely fit, for the rest of the runners, recovery is a biological requirement to nurse the body back to full health.

If you are training for a marathon, recovery and rejuvenation period are critical for any marathon runner.

The most important factor for a quick recovery after a race is to listen to your body. Depending on your body’s needs, you can decide how long the process should take.

You should start with a walk after the race and then move on to jogging. You can then slowly increase your running speed, as you respond to your body’s needs.

As you start to run again, you should gradually reduce your mileage, as the body takes time to recover and heal from the conditions it was subjected to during the race.

Take one or two rest days after every week of running. As your body responds better, you can increase your mileage every week. Try to increase your training gradually and avoid big leaps.

Rules for Back-to-Back Marathons

If you’re a marathon enthusiast, you might want to break the marathon barriers. And with years of planning, training, focus, and determination, you might even be able to train yourself up to run 2 marathons back to back.

But before you jump into your next ironman marathon ordeal, there are a few things you should know about this physically and mentally challenging (in a good way) event and how your body is going to respond to it.

In this article, I’ll share some of the things I learned when I completed 3 consecutive marathons during my training process. Hopefully you’ll find some useful advice in the tips provided below that will help you fully enjoy the challenge and experience while staying healthy and injury free.