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The impact of age on parkrun running times

Updated: May 8

There are some amazing performances throughout all age grades but unfortunately on average age is not on our side when it comes to running times.

Impact of age on parkrun times

I'm not saying you can't get faster as you get older but if you've has run for many years the chances of getting faster does reduce, but lets have a look by how much:

From my analysis there are two factors that impact how much age impacts parkrun times:

1) Gender, and

2) Age

Bare with me with the latter as its a bit circular!! But basically there is a trend that we see up to age 65 years old and then it changes after this, this could be due to less volume of runners causing volatility in the data but also maybe due to the fact that age catches up with us all by then.

Therefore we need to split this into

  • Male Under 65

  • Female Under 65

  • Male Over 65

  • Female Over 65

...So what is the impact of age on running times?

Male Aged 18 - 65

On average for every year you get older you'll get 5.9 seconds slower

Female Aged 18 - 65

On average for every year you get older you'll get 5.2 seconds slower

Male Aged Over 65

On average for every year you get older you'll get 13.3 seconds slower

Female Aged Over 65

On average for every year you get older you'll get 14.1 seconds slower

So interestingly, age doesn't have as big an impact on running times for women as men under 65 but this trend reverses after 65.

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How I came to this conclusion?

I analysed a years worth of parkrun data across some of the biggest parkruns and grouped the average time by age to work out the impact of age on running times.

Therefore this is done on the data alone and no other adjustments. A larger data set may show different results but they do look like common sense, however I've intentionally not hypothesised on what the reasons are that we are seeing such trends.

What you can do about it?

Unless you can reverse aging then there isn't much you can do but you can look after yourself properly. Also although age isn't our friend when it comes to running faster, you can 100% get faster that you are today, how?

The first thing you should do is download my FREE How to PB parkrun guide, it tells you everything a good training programme should include. You should also follow me on social media (links below) for more tips and advice.


How to pb parkrun guide


Want to improve your running times? Grab a copy of our free e-book that includes exactly what every training programme with the goal of getting faster should include. >>> DOWNLOAD HERE <<<


Summary of this blog:

See the running times by age with our comprehensive blog post! Discover the average times for parkrun and 5km runs across different age groups, and learn how age influences your running performance. Dive into the data on age-related running times, including insights on good running times by age. Whether you're a seasoned runner or just starting out, this post sheds light on the impact of ageing on your running journey. Find out how to optimise your performance at any age!


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