How Long To Walk A Marathon

More and more people are looking for an activity to get them into shape. Instead of the traditional gym, many have turned their attention towards endurance sports or walking a marathon time.

Surprisingly, today’s growing pastime is a brand-new type of marathon that includes walking. Its popularity has increased to the point that the race’s organizers have made significant adjustments to make it more accessible.

Certainly, marathon walking became the new fitness trend. But the question is, how long does a walking marathon time take?

Is It Allowed To Walk In a Marathon?

Yes, walking a marathon is generally allowed. Many marathon organizers provide generous cutoff periods and guarantee that individuals who prefer to walk are accommodated.

Although, it would be best if you double-checked the specifics with the organizers beforehand. It is necessary to confirm the cutoff times to ensure that you are physically capable of participating in the marathon.

How Long Does a Marathon Walk Will Take?

Depending on your pace, a marathon might take anywhere from 6 to 9 hours to walk. An average walking distance of 3.1 miles per hour would result in a marathon walking time of approximately 8 hours and 23 minutes.

What is the average marathon time for a beginner runner?

Just a reminder that beginners should focus on reaching the finish line rather than finishing time. For a marathon, you should follow a training plan that focuses on improving your general fitness level and not be pressured to keep up with the runners.

An average beginner’s marathon time is approximately 4:30 for men and 4:45 for women.

Average marathon time for walkers depending on miles

Distance (miles) Average Walking Marathon time
5K (3.1 miles) 40 minutes 18 seconds
10K (6.2 miles) 1 hour 20 minutes 36 seconds
15K (9.3 miles) 2 hours 0 minutes 54 seconds
21.1K (13.1 miles – Half Marathon) 2 hours 50 minutes 18 seconds
42.2K (26.2 miles – Marathon) 5 hours 40 minutes 36 seconds
50K (30.1 miles – Ultra Marathon) 6 hours 43 minutes 53 seconds

Can You Walk a Marathon Without Training?

It is possible to walk a marathon without training, but it’s not the best way. Exercise will help your body prepare better to avoid injury or chronic pain due to the overuse of muscles that aren’t used much during regular activities.

Now, if you’re healthy with experience being physically active, then walking a marathon should be safe enough without any additional training.

Still, taking the time to increase your weekly walking mileage in training will help prepare you for success with a walking marathon.

7 Tips For Walking a Marathon

Here are the things you can do as a preparation for walking a marathon:

1. Gradually increase your weekly walking miles (mileage)

Plan out your workouts while keeping track of how much time you have till race day. If you have a long way to go, you’ll be able to steadily increase your miles over time.

2. Other types of exercise should be included

Include some cross-training or strength training in your workout routine. Walking a marathon will be easier if you have good cardiovascular fitness and muscular strength.

3. It’s a good idea to practice fueling and hydrating

During longer training walks, try out different fuels and drinks. You’ll be able to see how your body reacts to various sources of energy and devise an effective eating and drinking strategy while walking.

4. Make a test walk

Setting up a trial for a mini walking marathon for your training will allow you to test your clothing, equipment, fueling plan, and other factors. It will help you so that you may make adjustments before the big day.

5. Prepare your walking gear ahead of time

If you’re going to run a marathon with new clothes or gear, make sure you test wear them ahead of time.

Test all your equipment to check how it works, and make sure all your clothing fits you. When you prepare everything ahead of time, you’ll feel more confident and equipped to join the marathon.

6. Pay attention to any injuries or pain

If you get aches and pains during exercising, make sure you treat them appropriately, so you don’t get hurt.

Take some time to rest, stretch, and ice any sore spots. Taking a few days off throughout training will have no impact on your main goal.

7. Review your marathon etiquette

If you plan on walking a marathon, you should be respectful to those running alongside you.

While marathon walking is entirely allowed, you can easily get in the runners’ path on the track if you’re not careful. Always stick to the right direction and avoid walking in huge groups.

Walking a Marathon Training Plan

For a successful walking marathon, it is advised to prepare and follow a training plan:

One month before

Your longest walk occurs in the final month of training. During a long walk, you’ll make any necessary modifications to your clothing and fine-tune your eating and drinking habits.

By then, you will be able to figure out what works best for you when it comes to long-distance walking.

Two weeks before

After your longest training walk, start reducing your mileage on your walks. Lowering the walking miles will allow your body to recover and be ready for race day.

A week before

You’ll need to eat well, remain hydrated, get enough rest, and make sure you have all of your race kit ready on race day.

If you’re going to a foreign city for a marathon, you’ll want to ensure you have everything you need to prepare for the race and any weather.

A day before

Most runners advised that you should eat a lot of carbs just before the marathon. But the leading hypothesis reveals that you shouldn’t eat too many carbs, or it will be difficult to move while in the race.

Race day

Make sure you get up a few hours before the race to give yourself plenty of time to prepare. Drink 16 ounces of water two hours before the marathon to keep your body hydrated.

Worst Marathon Walking Mistakes you should avoid

Starting a race, you’re too slow to finish

Many walkers have no idea how to estimate their marathon time. Switch to a shorter distance event if you can’t reach the cutoff.

If you already know you’ll be late by the start of the race, make sure to inform the organizer. Not telling them your ability to finish it on time will put yourself, others, and the race itself in trouble.


If the temperature rises over 60 degrees Fahrenheit, your marathon walking attire should consist of shorts and a short-sleeved shirt.

Nevertheless, you’ll need a light jacket, capris, breathable long trousers, and maybe light running gloves if the temperature drops below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Eating or drinking mistakes

On long-distance walks, it’s best to stick to full-strength sports drinks. It ensures consistency and allows you to get the appropriate balance of your body.

More so, try to eat something bland that won’t irritate your gut or stomach for your pre-marathon meal and breakfast. Don’t worry about eating food with sugars because you’ll need the energy calories for the race.

If the marathon provides a low-sugar sports drink, you should be eating already before reaching 10 miles. If you haven’t eaten any of the snacks served by the race organizers, don’t eat them.

Not preparing for blisters and chafing

Almost everyone gets blisters on their feet during a marathon. Preparing your feet with lubricants, cornstarch, and sweat-wicking socks can help you avoid them for as long as possible.

Forgetting essential gear

If you forget your race number or timing chip, you will not complete the marathon. The night before, lay out your whole attire and supplies. Make a checklist the night before and check everything off.

Getting lost

If you’re driving, know where the start and finish are, as well as where you’ll be able to park. Prepare ahead of time by studying the course map.

If you’re feeling good but running behind schedule and organizers, tell you to get in the sag wagon, do so without hesitation. It is part of the basic etiquette to follow in a marathon.

When to Quit walking a marathon?

Do not end your marathon with an ambulance trip to the hospital. Immediately stop walking if you have heart illness, dehydration, hyponatremia with nausea, vomiting, blacking out, or other symptoms.

Before you need hospitalization, ask race volunteers to fetch the sag wagon to transport you to the medical tent.


Who should NOT be a marathoner?

Children are discouraged from participating in marathon events. The training and the distance are too much for them, especially their growing body.

Severely calorie-restricted diets are also a contraindication against marathoning. It can affect participants’ energy and physical condition to walk for a long time.

On the other hand, Pregnant women are often advised to stay away from vigorous exercise. But still, as long as they consult with their doctor first, there is no reason why pregnant mothers can’t train for the marathon.

Is Walking a Marathon Harder Than Running One?

Completing 26.2 miles, regardless of how you do it, is a difficult task. Even yet, walking a marathon is typically more comfortable than running one.

You are walking at a slower speed than you would if you were jogging; your heart rate is never as high as it would be if you were running.

While running a marathon is more difficult than walking one, marathon walking is not that easy. A 26-mile trek necessitates physical fitness, endurance, and determination.

What are the basic marathon walking etiquettes one should know?

  • If you’re walking a marathon, don’t start at the front of the line. Always remember to position yourself at the back of the runners.
  • For the first two to three miles, stay on the right side of the racecourse. In America, the right side of the racecourse is the slow lane.
  • After the third mile, most runners will have passed you by, so do what you want to after mile 3.
  • Walk no more than two persons abreast for the first two to three miles (side by side),.and before you start forming walking barriers, distance yourself from group participants.
  • Even beyond the third-mile sign, no more than 3 or 4 individuals should be stacked side by side. Please be polite to walkers who may need to pass you.

How can I shorten my average marathon time?

While completing a marathon is an accomplishment in itself, once you’ve done one or two events, you may want to focus on improving your time and setting a new record.

Here are some suggestions for reducing your average marathon time:


Rest days are just as important as marathon training schedules. Resting days give your joints and muscles a chance to recuperate from the kilometers of effort you execute in the race.

A week of recovery will also strengthen your body as a whole.

Train at your goal speed

It is particularly true for your shorter training runs since you should be pacing yourself a little slower for your long training runs. You should integrate some goal-paced tempo if your sessions can help you become used to the pace of your walking marathon minutes.

Start by trying to run approximately 5 miles at this speed, then work your way up to 10 miles as your training progresses, or try including a few miles at this pace into your long run.

Remember, it will take you a lot of walking marathon a time to effectively shorten your record. So it is important to train at your own pace and have rest days.

Coach Brian
My name’s Brian and I created to help people run far. After conquering marathons and ultramarathons, I became a running coach to help others achieve their running goals! We help people run far. By using this website, you can spend less time searching the Internet and being overwhelmed with information and more time doing the one thing you want to do: become a better runner.

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