World Records that Fell During IMPACT’s Rise

Tracking the evolution of major running records over 30 years of Canada's best fitness magazine

Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt, is the world record holder in the men's 100 and 200 metres. Photo: Christel Saneh for World Athletics

A lot has changed in the health and fitness world over the 30 years since IMPACT was born. Better training, nutrition, equipment, coaching and therapies are taking athletes, both elite and weekend warriors, to new heights.

In 30 years, the women’s marathon world record has dropped more than seven minutes. The men’s marathon record is five minutes faster.

Here is a look at how world records have changed — or not — in key running disciplines over the past three decades.

Event19912021Current Record Holder (Year of Record)
Marathon Women2:21:062:14:04Brigid Kosgei, Kenya (2019)
Marathon Men2:06:502:01:39Eliud Kipchoge, Kenya (2018)
10,000 m Women30:13.7429:01.03Letesenbet Gidey, Ethiopia (2021)
10,000 m Men27:08.2326:11.00Joshua Cheptegai, Uganda (2020)
5,000 m Women14:37.3314:06.62Letesenbet Gidey, Ethiopia (2020)
5,000 m Men12:58.3912:35.36Joshua Cheptegai, Uganda (2020)
1,500 m Women3:52.473:50.07Genzebe Dibaba, Ethiopia (2015)
1,500 m Men3:29.463:26.00Hicham El Guerrouj, Morocco (1998)
800 m Women1:53.281:53.28Jarmila Kratochvilova, Czech Rep. (1983)
800 m Men1:41.731:40.91David Rudisha, Kenya (2012)
400 m Women47.6047.60Marita Koch, East Germany (1985)
400 m Men43.2943.03Wayde van Niekerk, South Africa (2016)
200 m Women21.3421.34Florence Griffith-Joyner, U.S. (1988)
200 m Men19.7219.19Usain Bolt, Jamaica (2009)
100 m Women10.4910.49Florence Griffith-Joyner, U.S. (1988)
100 m Men9.869.58Usain Bolt, Jamaica (2009)
Letesenbet Gide
Letesenbet Gidey holds the record for the women’s 10,000 and 5,000 metres. Photo: Christel Saneh for World Athletics

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