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Lancaster University Public Lecture Series / Breaking 2: physiological insights into the attempt to run a sub-2-hour marathon


Breaking 2: physiological insights into the attempt to run a sub-2 hour marathon
Breaking 2: physiological insights into the attempt to run a sub-2 hour marathon
The Storey, Music Room, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster LA1 1TH
Professor Andrew Jones
Lancaster University Public Events

Event Details

On 6th May, 2017, exactly 63 years after Sir Roger Bannister ran the first sub-4-minute mile, three elite distance runners attempted the (almost) unthinkable: to run a 26.2-mile marathon in less than 2 hours. This event, performed at the Formula 1 racetrack in Monza, Italy, was the culmination of more than 2 years of scientific development work by Nike and its associates (including the presenter, Professor Andrew Jones).

There has been much speculation amongst sports scientists and the athletic community over whether a sub-2-hour marathon may be humanly possible (and, if so, when and how it might occur). In his presentation, Professor Jones will describe the physiological limitations to human endurance exercise performance and outline the strategy employed by the Nike team with regard to athlete selection and creation of the optimal conditions to make the sub-2 attempt viable.

This will include information on the battery of laboratory and field-based physiological tests used to identify the athletes most likely to achieve the feat and insight into the consideration given to the environmental, training, course, pacing, drafting, biomechanical and nutritional factors that can impact marathon performance. 

Date: Thursday 4th April 2019
Time: 6.30pm to 8.00pm, doors open at 6pm
Venue: The Storey, Music Room, Lancaster

This lecture is free to attend but registration is required, to register for your free tickets, please go to Eventbrite or contact the public events team at  or 01524 592 994.


About Professor Andrew Jones‌

Andrew Jones is Professor of Applied Physiology at the University of Exeter, UK, and is internationally recognized for his expertise in the following areas:

  • control of, and limitations to, skeletal muscle oxidative metabolism;
  • causes of exercise intolerance in health and disease;
  • respiratory physiology, particularly the kinetics of pulmonary gas exchange and ventilation during and following exercise; and
  • sports performance physiology, particularly in relation to endurance athletics.

Professor Jones has authored more than 250 original articles and is co-editor of three books; he is Editor-in-Chief of the European Journal of Sport Science, Associate Editor for Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise and serves on the Editorial Board of five other international journals in sports medicine and exercise science. He serves or has served as consultant physiologist to UK Athletics, the English Institute of Sport, the Gatorade Sports Science Institute, and Nike Inc.