Chances are people running this year’s (or any other year’s) Boston Marathon know that the course is quite challenging relative to other big-city marathons.
The point-to-point race finishing in downtown Boston on Boylston Street begins in Hopkinton, Mass. The net downhill course notably drops approximately 450 feet (137m) over the course of 42.2K. The undulating route, featuring the Newton Hills including the infamous Heartbreak Hill, requires strategic pacing in an effort to prevent a late-race bonk.
Enter The Pacing Project, “an advanced running pace calculator based on course specific terrain that can be used to create an optimal pacing strategy.” The Training Peaks-powered program allows one to select either goal time, recent race time or average pace on a similar course and adjusts your pacing chart for various races depending on the course’s elevation profile. Fortunately, the Boston Marathon is among the races included in the calculator.
Below, for example, is a calculation of a goal 3:00 marathon at Boston. Note the significant pace changes during notable climbs and drops on the course. Try the Pacing Project calculator for yourself here.
Useful Canadian Running content for running the 2017 Boston Marathon
– Complete 2017 Boston Marathon coverage
– Course preview, race-specific tips and suggestions
– Boston Marathon jackets through the years
– A beginner’s guide to America’s greatest race
– Pre-race workout with Rejean Chiasson