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D-15 Thematic Poster - Elite and Masters Athletes Thursday, May 28, 2015, 1: 00 PM - 3: 00 PM Room: 28D

Fastest Age-adjusted Marathon World Records Of All Time

1583 Board #4 May 28, 1

00 PM - 3

00 PM

Vanderburgh, Paul M. FACSM

Author Information
Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2015 - Volume 47 - Issue 5S - p 420
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000477575.32852.9b
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PURPOSE: Identify the fastest age-adjusted marathon world records for men and women.

METHODS: Best-fit polynomial curves of age vs. men’s and women’s marathon world records (WR) were developed for the 18–80 yr age range. Percent deviation of actual vs. predicted race times were used to determine the fastest age-adjusted scores. To reduce the age bias effect against younger runners due to the data scatter among older runners, an iterative process of curve-fitting was employed twice. Specifically, those above the age vs. WR best-fit curve were deleted, a new best-fit curve of the remaining data points was fitted and the process was repeated. The resulting best-fit curve was then used to evaluate the adjusted WR of all runners by sex.

RESULTS: The iterative best-fit method was successful in reducing scatter with each successive plot for both women (R2 = 0.957, 0.994, 0.998) and men (R2 = 0.966, 0.995, 0.998). The best overall age-adjusted times were Australia’s Barbara Dalgleisch for women: 77 yr, WR = 3:52:49, age-adjusted WR = 2:12:50; and Canada’s Ed Whitlock for men: 73 yr, WR = 2:54:48, age-adjusted WR = 2:02:42. The top five of each sex showed a wide age range (women: 18–77 yr; men: 18–73 yr).

CONCLUSIONS: The current analysis suggests that the fastest age-adjusted marathon WR of all time are held by Barbara Dalgleisch (77 yr) and Ed Whitlock (73 yr). In substantially reducing data scatter and the resulting age bias, the iterative best-fit technique may be an optimal way to determine age-adjusted world records.

© 2015 American College of Sports Medicine