Kilometraje mínimo para correr un maratón


Towards Entel Maratón de Santiago 2017: Knowing how many kilometers running each week during training for a marathon is one of the aspects that more doubt and controversy produce among runners.


One of the critical components of a training plan to participate in a marathon is endurance training, the ability to maintain an effective effort for as long as possible.

Basically, it is to prepare your body and mind to be able to complete the distance, do it in less time and suffer less (or not suffer), a race that, if not well prepared (in training), can be a real torture.

The number of kilometers you should run is one of the key factors of your training plan to run a marathon; if your mileage is low, you will be hardly able to finish the race and if it is excessive, you run the risk of getting injured and/or overtrain.

You need enough mileage to achieve realistic career goals, but you must also pay attention to your limitations and not make yourself forced to exceed these realistic limits.



The definition of the maximum mileage to run per week depends on the runner. There are elite runners, who exceed 200 kilometers per week during the training plan for a marathon. Of course, these distances are possible due to their genetics and experience (years running), and because they spend much of their time in rest and recovery. However, for amateur runners who have less time for training and recovery, this volume of training is difficult to achieve and it is even dangerous. A questionnaire applied to nearly 700 marathoners analyzed their training habits, with particular attention to the weekly volume and effects on the appearance of injuries. In the questionnaire, the runners were asked about various demographic characteristics, injuries sustained in the 12 months preceding the marathon, pre-marathon volume of training, experience in running and in the distance. They also had to report about the apparition of injuries after running the marathon. Based on the responses to the questionnaires, the researchers grouped the participants in one of the following groups:

– mileage inferior to 30 weekly kilometers.

– mileage between 30 and 60 weekly kilometers.

– mileage superior to 60 weekly kilometers.

From the 662 participants, 68 suffered some injury (which made them stop for at least two weeks) during the training plan for the marathon.


Based on the analysis of results, researchers reached the following conclusions:

– The risk of injury increased significantly for those runners with a weekly mileage inferior to 30 kilometers.

– The risk of injury is affected by age and previous injuries: runners younger than 35 years old and those who have suffered injuries have a higher risk of injury.

– Those runners with experience in the distance (those who had already run a marathon) had a lower injury risk than those without experience.

As a consequence of this result, the researchers found out that the minimum weekly mileage fot a marathon is 30 kilometers.

Trying to run 42 kilometers in a day, when the runner’s body is “used” to run less than 30 weekly kilometers, is not only harmful for performance but also for health.

Previous research shows that the runners are in higher risk of needing medical attention of face problems during and after the week if they have had less than two months of training, run less than 60 weekly kilometers and have not run more than 24 kilometers in a single run.


From our view, we believe an insanity to participate in a marathon (42 kilometers) if during the training for the distance you do not run more than 30 weekly kilometers.

To get good results, minimize the possibility of injury and not suffer the distance, we recommend a minimum of 80/100 weekly kilometers, in no less than five days of training each week..

However, trainers with more experience and higher expectations may reap benefits from a superior volume of training, training seven days a week (and even in double shifts).

Quality must always prevail over quantity, and you must avoid counting “trash” kilometers.

In order to increase the number of kilometers you run, we recommend you as follows:

Finally, we know that many runners participate in marathons with a lower volume of  training to that we recommend and finish the race. That does not mean, however, that this is recommended from a health and performance point of view.


Quoted studies:


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