The Ultimate Running FAQ: The 50 Most Common Questions About Running Answered

Whether you’re a beginner runner or have been running for decades, you most likely still have questions about running. 

Because there is so much running lingo and terminology, questions about distance and training, and doubts about nutrition and injuries, we have compiled what we believe to be the top 50 questions about running, with short and sweet answers to get you started and continuing links for in-depth information on each topic to follow up. 

Ready to get all of your burning questions answered about all things running? Let’s go!

A runner smiling while running on the coast.

Jump to:

#1: Is running good for you?

#2: How can I start running?

#3: What gear do I need to start running?

#4: How often should I run?

#5: What should my weekly mileage be?

#6: Should I run every day? 

#7: Is running hard?

#8: Does running ever get easier?

#9: Do I need to warm up before running?

#10: Do I need to stretch after running?

#11: Do runners need to strength train?

#12: What is speedwork? 

#13: What is crosstraining?

#14: How can I avoid getting injured?

#15: How can I run faster?

#16: What is interval training?

#17: What are hill sprints?

#18: What are tempo runs?

#19: What are Fartlek runs?

#20: What are strides?

#21: What are plyometrics?

#22: What is the rate of perceived exertion?

#23: What is Vo2 Max?

#24: Does running build muscle? 

#25: How many calories do I burn running?

#26: Does running burn fat?

#27: Is running bad for your knees? 

#28: What is the correct running form?

#29:What is the ideal running cadence?

#30: What should I eat before I run? 

#31: What should I eat after I run? 

#32: How should I fuel during a run?

#33: Should I hydrate on my runs? 

#34: What is the best diet for runners?

#35: What do I do if I get cramps when I run?

#36: What do I do if I get a side stitch?

#37: What do I do if I get blisters?

#38: How can I avoid chafing?

#39: Should I run if I’m sore? 

#40: How can I fix sore muscles?

#41: Should I run with a cold?

#42: What are the best ways to stay motivated while running?

#43: How long does it take to train for a 5k?

#44: How long does it take to train for a 10k?

#45: How long does it take to train for a half-marathon?

#46: How long does it take to train for a marathon?

#47: What’s a good 5k time? 

#48: What’s a good 10k time?

#49: What’s a good half-marathon time? 

#50: What’s a good marathon time? 

A group of runners in a park.

#1: Is running good for you?

One of the most common questions about running has to be, is running good for you.

And to answer concisely, yes, running is good for you! 

Running has many health benefits that will improve your physical fitness and your quality of life. Not only does running have physical benefits, but plenty of mental benefits as well. 

Take a look at a few of running’s top benefits and why if you aren’t currently running, you should start today. 

Running:

  • Strengthens your heart and lungs improving aerobic capacity 
  • Strengthens your muscles and joints 
  • Improves your immune system and lowers your risk for certain diseases
  • Helps you attain and maintain a healthy weight
  • Reduces stress and boosts your mood
  • Improves sleep
  • Boosts confidence 
  • Connects you to nature 
  • Gives you well-deserved “me time”

This is just scratching the surface of all the fantastic things running can do for you and your body. For more detail, check out The 26 Awesome Benefits of Running.

Two runners with their cellphones on their arms, listening to music.

#2: How can I start running?

Now that you know running is incredible for your body and mind, we’re sure you want to get cracking. But how do you begin? 

This is one of our most important questions about running because if you are starting out, the last thing you want to do is jump into too much too quickly, as it can lead to injuries from your body not being accustomed to the high impact of running. 

Begin with a walk/run training plan of three days a week at walk/run intervals, two days of strength training, and an optional cross-training day or two. Ensure you always have at least one full day of rest per week to give your body the time to recuperate adequately. 

For a complete beginner training plan, we have our very own Couch to 5k training plans using the walk/run method and some beginner guides for strength training for runners

#3: What gear do I need to start running?

To get started, your most important piece of equipment is going to be your running shoes

It is imperative to choose the correct running shoes for you and your running gait. Therefore, head to your local specialty running store to get help from an expert so you start off on the right foot, so to speak. 

We have excellent guides with extensive information on choosing your running shoes here.

Next, you will want comfortable running clothes appropriate for the weather you will be running in, shorts, tights, tanks, long-sleeved, short-sleeved, sports bras, etc., made from fabrics that dry quickly and won’t leave you drenched in sweat. 

After you have your running outfit picked out, a GPS running watch is also an excellent addition to your equipment list. Here you can see your distance, pace, laps, heart rate, and an endless amount of other data to track and celebrate your progress. It also makes it much easier to follow workouts and train efficiently. 

A runner tying their trail shoe.

#4: How often should I run?

The ideal running frequency will vary significantly from runner to runner depending on several factors such as fitness level, running goals, experience level, overall health, and age.

If you are running for overall health, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommendations for adults are to be active on most days of the week and to accrue a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week.

You can split this into as many workouts as you see fit as long as your reach the total minutes. Remember to leave at least one day of rest for your body to recuperate. 

Beginner runners who are more focused on running goals, such as running their first 5k, may start out with 2-3 days of walk/run intervals, while more experienced runners can run between 5-6 days per week, again respecting at least one rest day to allow for the body to recuperate adequately. 

#5: What should my weekly mileage be? 

This is a follow-up question to the previous one, and the answer is similar. It depends. Your mileage will hinge on your current running goal and fitness level. 

Weekly mileage varies significantly if you are running your first 5k or if you are a seasoned marathoner trying to hit a new PR. 

You also must consider the type of workouts you are doing when planning weekly mileage. If you are running all of your miles at an easy, conversation pace, your body will be able to take on more than if you are including hill sprints and other types of speedwork a couple of times per week. 

A great rule is the 10% rule. Increase your mileage by at most 10% from one week to the next. For example, if you run 10 miles your first week, your second week should only be 11 miles, your third week 12 miles, etc. 

Also, take into consideration you will need recovery weeks every 3-4 weeks, where your mileage needs to dip a bit for recovery purposes. 

Check out our mileage guide if you want more specific guidance regarding weekly mileage estimates for a 5k, 10k, half marathon, and marathon training.

A person running on a path along a lake.

#6: Should I run every day? 

Everyone’s body needs time to recuperate to improve overall performance and reduce the risk of overuse injuries. 

Although some elite athletes do run every day, it is strongly suggested to take one full day of rest per week.

You want to be able to run long into your golden years, don’t you? So take good care of your body and allow it to rest and recuperate for your next big workout.

#7: Is running hard?

This question can be relative, but most people feel that running is hard.

Whether it’s when you are just starting out, and every step feels like a big feat, or if you are more advanced and taking on difficult speedwork such as running sprints and hills at your maximum effort. 

Whether or not running feels hard will depend significantly on the intensity and length of your workouts. The easier you run, the less difficult running will feel. 

This leads us to our next question.

A person running on a track.

#8: Does running ever get easier?

As a beginner runner, running will feel like it will never get any easier. Still, it just takes some patience and consistency to see improvements. 

Stick to a beginner training plan completing all your sessions and gradually increasing your distance and intensity without making any big jumps. 

As you improve, you will be able to run at an easy effort more comfortably without needing to walk. Then your jog will feel easier and easier as you advance.

Of course, when you begin to increase the difficulty of your workouts again, running will feel hard because of the effort level you are training at. Hard workouts like intervals and tempo runs will always feel hard because you will work out in harder training zones, reaching 80-95% of your maximum heart rate.

To make running feel easier, consider running with a friend to chat with along the way, strength train consistently in addition to your running, follow a well-thought-out training plan, and stay consistent.

#9: Do I need to warm up before running?

Yes!

A warm-up routine should be a staple before every one of your runs, especially tough workouts. Warm-ups often get overlooked because of a lack of time or desire. 

Your warm-up routine should consist of light jogging, anywhere between 5-20 minutes, depending on your fitness level and goals, followed by dynamic stretching such as heel-and-toe walks, Frankensteins, butt kicks, and high knees. 

Take a look at our guide to dynamic stretches for more warm-up ideas.

Two people warming up with windmills.

#10: Do I need to stretch after running?

Another often overlooked piece of the running puzzle is stretching.

Stretching for at least 5 minutes after your run will help decrease the risk of injuries and should be a fixed part of your routine. 

Be sure to stretch your quads, glutes, hamstrings, calves, hip flexors, and any other muscles you use during your workout. 

Check out our post-run stretches for runners for a complete guide on static stretching after your runs.

#11: Do runners need to strength train?

This is an absolute yes. Who wouldn’t want to be stronger and improve their athletic performance? 

Runners should strength train by performing total-body workouts twice per week.

Strength training has endless benefits for runners, such as preventing overuse injuries and improving running economy, efficiency, form, and overall performance. 

Include compound exercises such as squats, lunges, deadlifts, glute bridges, planks, step up, rows, and push-ups in your training sessions.

For our complete guide to strength training for runners, click here.

#12: What is speedwork? 

Speedwork is a running workout involving running faster than your standard, easy training pace. 

Types of speed workouts include track intervals, hill repeats, fartlek runs, and tempo runs. We’ll get into more details about each of these workouts later on.

A person cycling.

#13: What is crosstraining?

Crosstraining in any low-impact activity that will assist in your running performance, but that is not running. These activities improve your aerobic fitness without the impact of running and are very useful for those coming off of an injury, trying to reduce the risk of injuries, or spicing up their training and making it more interesting and well-rounded. 

Crosstraining includes cycling, rowing, swimming, aqua jogging, elliptical, yoga, pilates, ski erg, and hiking, among many others.

For more information on crosstraining for runners, check out our guide here.

#14: How can I avoid getting injured?

Sometimes injuries are just inevitable or plain old bad luck. Still, there are precautions you can take to lower your risk of injury by quite a bit. 

Here are some of my best tips to reduce the risk of injury: 

  • Strength train twice a week
  • Warm up before your runs
  • Stretch after your runs
  • Add mobility to your weekly routine 
  • Increase mileage gradually 
  • Follow a well-assembled training plan written by a knowledgeable running coach 
  • If possible, get a sports massage every month or even two weeks, depending on your training load
  • See a physical therapist immediately if you feel any discomfort or pain

For a complete mobility guide for runners, click here.

Now, once we really get into running, a common one of our questions about running tends to be our next one: 

A person doing a banded squat.

#15: How can I run faster?

More intense running workouts should be added to your training plan, such as track intervals, hill repeats, tempo runs, and fartleks to run faster.

But don’t overdo it. Starting out with only one speed workout per week is plenty. Once you have adapted to these types of workouts, you can bump it up to twice a week, always leaving at least one day between tough sessions to recover appropriately. 

In addition, working on perfecting your running form and technique will allow you to run more efficiently and, in turn, faster.

Adding strength training and plyometrics can also boost your power and speed, making you a stronger, faster runner.

Now that we know the type of training sessions that can help with speed, I bet the following questions about running are popping up for some of you:

#16: What is interval training?

Interval training is speedwork where intense efforts are mixed with recovery.

An example of an interval session, often done on a 400-meter track, is:

10 × 400 meters hard with 200 meters recovery 

Runners running up a hill.

#17: What are hill sprints?

Hill sprints are a type of speedwork that boosts your power. They consist of sprinting hard on an uphill with a steep incline and recovering by slowly jogging back downhill.

The sprints should be at max effort, followed by an easy recovery.

An example of a hill sprint workout is: 

 Warm up with 15-20 minutes of easy running. 

10 x 10 sec uphill at max effort, jog back down easily and fully recover until you are ready to go again.

#18: What are tempo runs?

Tempo runs are moderate to hard-effort training runs that makes you a faster and stronger runner. They also help build your lactate threshold, making you a more efficient runner.

With a tempo run, you are running at about a 6 out of 10 effort level or the pace you could hold running all out for an hour.

An example of a tempo run is:

5 × 1 km at tempo pace with 3 min of recovery 

Or, for more experienced runners:

10, 15, or 20 min at a tempo pace, depending on your experience and fitness level

A person sprinting on a track.

#19: What are Fartlek runs?

Fartlek is the Swedish word for “speed play” and is a type of interval session that will help develop speed and endurance.

Fartleks are less structured than other interval workouts. They involve picking and choosing when to run faster bursts throughout your run.

You may be running a 10k Fartlek and randomly choose moments or landmarks you would like to reach a faster pace, such as from lamppost to lamppost.

You make the rules with a Fartlek!

#20: What are strides?

Strides are short accelerations where you reach a fast pace (around 7-8 out of 10 effort level) before gradually slowing back down to your original pace.

Including them at the end of your easy runs is a great way to improve your form, mechanics, and cadence. 

#21: What are plyometrics? 

Plyometrics are functional exercises that involve fast, explosive movements such as skipping and jumping that maximize muscle contractions and boost your power output. There is minimal contact with the ground, as the goal is to bounce back off the surface as quickly as possible.

By training your muscles to contract quickly, you will produce greater power, resulting in improved running. 

For a complete guide and examples of plyometric exercises, check out our 15 Best Plyometric Exercises For Runners.

A person bounding.

#22: What is the rate of perceived exertion?

Your rate of perceived exertion, or RPE, is a tool you can use while training to measure your effort level. You measure your intensity on a scale from 1 – 10, 1 being very easy such as a slow walk, and 10 being an all-out sprint, an effort you can only hold for a few seconds.

For the complete chart and in-depth explanation of RPE, check out our guide here.

#23: What is Vo2 Max?

Another one of those tricky running terms that we think we know what it means but is often misunderstood is Vo2 Max. 

Your Vo2 Max is defined as the maximal oxygen consumption of your body during a specified time, usually when performing intense exercise. 

It is the maximum amount of oxygen your body can take in and use during your max fitness efforts. 

Vo2 Max is a great way to measure our fitness level and track our progress. By improving your Vo2 Max, which includes enhancing your stroke volume (strengthening your heart) and oxygen uptake in your muscles, you will be able to improve your speed, endurance, and potential at high intensities. 

To improve your Vo2 Max, check out our article on strategies to do so.

A muscular runner stretching.

#24: Does running build muscle? 

You can potentially build muscle while running, mainly in your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves. Still, it depends on a couple more factors besides just putting your shoes on every day and running out the door.

These factors include your diet and the types of running workouts you are doing. Here are some tips to help you build and not lose muscle while running: 

  • Fuel after your runs with a post-run snack within 30 minutes of finishing

#25: How many calories do I burn running?

Running does burn calories, but how many, exactly? Well, that depends on several individual factors, such as your body weight, age, and sex, and workout factors, such as the intensity, length, terrain, and incline of your run.

The more intense your workout, the more calories you will burn. 

There are several different ways to measure your calorie burn during a workout. 

  • Use a heart rate activity monitor set up with your personal data.
  • Use the MET formula for running: Calories burned = MET * weight (kg) * time (hrs) 

For a very broad generalization, you can expect to burn 80 – 140 calories per mile. 

A variety of healthy food with a whiteboard in the middle.

#26: Does running burn fat?

Running, as with any other type of exercise, along with eating a nutritious, healthy calorie-controlled diet, will help you lose weight and burn fat. 

When you run, your body burns stored fat for fuel to supply energy to your muscles to contract. Therefore, you can lose fat if you have a caloric deficit and follow a consistent running routine. 

Of course, the longer and/or more intense your workouts are, the more calories you will burn, ultimately helping you burn more fat.

#27: Is running bad for your knees? 

Even though running is a high-impact sport, the short answer is no; for most of us, running is not bad for our knees. 

The origin of knee pain is often a result of a different factor, such as weakness in the muscles surrounding the knee joint, poor running form, carrying extra weight, ramping up mileage too quickly, and using old, worn-out running shoes, among others. 

If you are experiencing knee pain, check out our complete article on what to do.

#28: What is the correct running form?

This question is for beginners and experienced runners alike, as some who have run for decades may have never worked on their running form or even given it a second thought.

Having proper running form can help decrease your risk of injury and make you a more efficient runner. Here are some quick tips for proper running form:

  • Keep your body aligned, legs, pelvis, torso, neck, and head in a straight line.
  • Keep your arms at 90 degrees and swing them from front to back without crossing them in front of your body.
  • Keep your hands relaxed, holding them in loose fists. 
  • Take short, quick steps, and always keep your legs underneath you to avoid overstriding.

Check out our guide for a complete breakdown of the correct running form. Going a step further and looking at technique leads us to our next question: 

A person running.

#29: What is the ideal running cadence?

This is highly debatable, as cadence range varies from runner to runner. 

A short, quick stride is optimal, and a cadence of 180 steps per minute has consistently been named the “ideal” cadence. 

Although this may vary, trying to work up to a quick cadence is the best way to improve your running economy and avoid injuries.

For tips on improving your cadence, check out our How To Increase Cadence While Running guide.

Now on to some common nutrition questions: 

#30: What should I eat before I run? 

Running on an empty stomach isn’t ideal and can affect how you feel and perform during your training. 

Eat a small, carbohydrate-rich snack at least one hour before each training run to give you the boost you need to perform at your best and not fatigue.

Some examples include a slice of toast with jam, a banana, oatmeal, or a glass of juice. 

Three pieces of toast with different jellies on each.

#31: What should I eat after I run? 

This is where we shift from a carbohydrate-dense snack to a protein-dense snack. Now, instead of trying to fuel up with energy to perform, we want to fuel our bodies to recover. 

Ideally, within the first 30 minutes after your run, have a protein-dense snack such as a protein shake, scrambled eggs, or greek yogurt. 

For some great protein shake recipes, click here. 

#32: How should I fuel during a run?

Now, on to fueling during a run. If your run is an hour or shorter, it isn’t necessary to fuel during the workout. 

When we are talking about long runs, fueling becomes very important. For long runs, it is recommended to consume your body weight in kilograms, in grams of carbohydrates per hour, for maximum results.

Therefore, if you weigh 65 kilograms, you must consume 65 grams of your preferred carbohydrate. This can be energy gels, solid foods, or carbohydrate-rich sports drinks.

This leads us straight to hydration… 

#33: Should I hydrate on my runs? 

As with eating, if your run is over an hour, it’s a good idea to hydrate during your workout to perform at your best and avoid dehydration, especially if you run in the heat and humidity.

Each of us sweats at a different rate, so the ideal way to figure out how much you sweat each hour is by taking a sweat test. With this result, you can gauge how much you should drink during your runs.

For instructions on how to perform a sweat test, click here.

To kill two birds with one stone, you can hydrate with a carbo-dense sports drink to fuel and hydrate simultaneously.

A person hydrating with a sports drink.

#34: What is the best diet for runners?

Nutrition plays a big part in running and for any athlete. Runners need to ensure they are consuming a sufficient amount of calories and nutrients to maintain their training.

As everyone has different likes and some may have dietary restrictions, the most important things to focus on are sticking to whole, unprocessed foods and consuming a sufficient amount of the macronutrients you need (mainly carbohydrates, protein, and good fats) for performance and recovery.

To calculate your specific needs, check out our article outlining nutrition for runners.

#35: What do I do if I get cramps when I run? 

Cramps are often caused by one of two things, dehydration because of a deficiency in electrolytes, or overexertion. 

The best remedy would be to avoid cramps in the first place by warming up before your workout, running at an appropriate pace and effort for your fitness level, and ensuring your hydration is on point. 

If you already have cramps and want to try and get rid of them, here are a few steps you can take: 

  • Slow your pace to a light jog or even a walk, and focus on controlling your breathing.
  • Hydrate with electrolytes.
  • Lightly stretch or massage the cramping muscles. 
  • If cramping continues, stop walking altogether and allow your muscles to recover. 
A person holding their side stitch while running.

#36: What do I do if I get a side stitch?

The all-famous side stitch is a cramp in your abs, often at the bottom of your rib cage. Some possible causes are running too soon after eating, shallow breathing, running too hard or with poor posture, core weakness, or dehydration. 

As mentioned above, the same steps should be taken as with any cramp. 

#37: What do I do if I get blisters? 

Blisters can be caused by several variables that can often be avoided if you take suitable precautions.

The number one rule is to buy running sneakers that fit you and are comfortable. If your running shoes are too tight or loose, they can cause blisters. 

Also, applying diaper cream to your feet and in-between your toes before your longer runs can help reduce friction.

While running, if anything, such as a pebble or grain of sand, gets into your running shoe (which more often occurs when trail running), take the time to stop, take off your shoe, and shake it out. If you leave it, you will surely end up with blisters or hot spots.

Now, if it’s too late and the blister has already formed, the recommendation from most medical professionals is to let it be.

If you pop it, you risk infection. If you absolutely need to pop it because it is just too painful to put weight on, do so with a sterilized needle, and then put antibacterial gel on it and cover it.

An alternate solution to popping it is to place moleskin or a blister-specific bandage on it, so it takes the pressure off.

For more information on how to take care of your feet, click here.

A person holding their pinky toe which has a blister on it.

#38: How can I avoid chafing?

This is another common ailment that most runners will face at one time or another. Chafing can occur in many different places, such as between your thighs, under your armpits, or against any part of your skin where your wet, sweaty clothing rubs.

To avoid chafing, apply either diaper cream or an exercise-specific product such as Body Glide to the areas where you usually chafe.

#39: Should I run if I’m sore? 

With this one, our best advice is to listen to your body to decide whether or not you should run on sore legs.

Beginners will experience soreness as they are just starting out and the body is adapting to running. Therefore, giving the body time to recuperate is suggested. Running every other day should help with this recovery.

If you are an experienced runner and have done a hard workout, your soreness is probably a case of DOMS, delayed onset muscle soreness. With this type of soreness, a light jog may actually help ease your soreness.

Instances, where you should not run are if you have any pain or localized soreness. 

Also, if your body feels fatigued and overly tired, you’re better off taking a rest day than pushing through. Best to err on the side of caution. 

A person holding their calf.

#40: How can I fix sore muscles?

If you are sore from running, there are a few things you can do to help relieve these uncomfortable muscle aches, such as performing active recovery activities such as swimming, rowing, yoga, or walking, foam rolling, icing, or massaging the affected muscles.

#41: Should I run with a cold?

The type of cold you have will determine if it’s a good idea for you to get in your workout or stay in and rest.

The standard rule is that if your cold is a head cold and your symptoms are above the neck, such as congestion in your nose, you should be able to run if you feel up to it. You may even release some of the pressure of congestion by going for a run.

However, if your symptoms are in your chest, such as a cough or fever, it’s better to take the day off.

#42: What are the best ways to stay motivated while running?

If you haven’t become a running addict quite yet, you may lack motivation from time to time. 

Here are some quick tips to encourage you to keep on running:

  • Choose a goal race
  • Run with a friend or family member
  • Join a running club
  • Find a trainer and follow a plan
  • Keep your training interesting by switching it up with different types of workouts
  • Track your progress with a running app
  • Make training “me” time
  • Listen to podcasts or pump up playlists

These are just a few quick ways to keep your motivation up! 

People are racing, one holding up their arms in triumph.

#43: How long does it take to train for a 5k?

For a complete beginner, a Couch to 5k program can take anywhere from 8-12 weeks, depending on your current fitness level.

If you can run straight for 60 seconds without stopping, the 8-week plan is right for you.

For our 5k training plans, click here.

#44: How long does it take to train for a 10k?

For a complete beginner, a Couch to 10k program can take anywhere from 12-16 weeks, depending on your current fitness level.

If you can already run straight for 60 seconds without stopping, the 12-week plan should be right for you.

If you have more experience and have been running 5ks, 8 weeks should be sufficient.

For our 10k training plans, click here.

#45: How long does it take to train for a half marathon?

If you are a beginner, it should take about 15 weeks to run your first half marathon, gradually increasing the distance as you advance. 

Someone who is a seasoned half-marathoner trying to hit a PR could do a 12-week cycle. 

For our half-marathon training plans, click here.

People smiling in a road race.

#46: How long does it take to train for a marathon?

If you have a decent running base, you should be able to train for a marathon anywhere between 12-20 weeks.

For our marathon training plans, click here.

Of course, the longer you give yourself to train for any distance, the better prepared and faster you will run.

For our last batch of common questions about running, we have chosen something we get asked all the time, what are “good times” for the different distances? 

Let’s take a look:

#47: What’s a good 5k time? 

According to Running Level, which calculates running times based on age and ability, says that good 5k time for a man is 22:31, and a good 5k time for a woman is 26:07. 

For a complete look at average and good 5k times calculated by different age groups and sex, check out our full article here.

#48: What’s a good 10k time? 

According to Running Level, a generally good 10k time is 49:43. This is based on the average of 10k times across all ages and genders worldwide. 

More advanced runners will find that a time of under 43 minutes is more attainable. 

For a complete look at the average and good 10k times calculated by different age groups and sex, check out our entire article, click here.

A person running on pavement.

#49: What’s a good half-marathon time? 

According to Running Levelthe average time for the half marathon across all ages and sexes is 1:50:15. 

The site classifies a good half marathon time for men to be 1:43:33 and a good half marathon time for women as 2:00:12. Again, this is the average half marathon finish time for women across all ages and levels.

For a complete look at average and good half-marathon times calculated by different age groups and sex, check out our full article, click here.

#50: What’s a good marathon time? 

According to Run Repeat, the overall average marathon time is 4:29:53.

If we break down the data by sex, the average time to run a marathon for men is 4:21:03, and the average time to run a marathon for women is 4:48:45. 

They also state that a “good” marathon time across all sexes and ages is 3:48:20. Breaking it down by sex, 3:34:56 is a good marathon time for men, and 4:08:09 is a good marathon time for women.

For a complete look at average and good marathon times calculated by different age groups and sex, check out our entire article; click here.

There you have it!

Our top 50 common questions about running. Is there one we still need to answer for you? Let us know, and we’ll get right to it!

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Katelyn is an experienced ultra-marathoner and outdoor enthusiast with a passion for the trails. In the running community she is known for her ear to ear smile even under the toughest race conditions. She loves sharing her knowledge and experience with everyone and has a great desire to motivate others to hit the trails alongside her. Run for fun!

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