Big Data Benefits Marathon Runners With Ambition

Big data can help marathon runners thrive at their skills, along with benefiting many other athletes. Here's how.

big data benefits marathon runners
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We have previously talked about some of the ways that big data is influencing sports. The NBA is using big data in a variety of ways to improve performance and streamline their business models.

Athletes in other sports are using big data as well. But what are the benefits of it in these capacities?

In recent years, the term “Big Data” has been thrown around in a lot of different capacities. However, you might not have heard what big data can do in the field of marathon running. The two concepts do not seem to make sense together: how can big data do anything at all to help marathon runners?

Whether you know it or not, big data can help marathon runners become more efficient in their sport. Here’s how.

What is Big Data?

It is first important to explain what big data is before we can successfully link it to marathon running. To put it simply, big data is the term used to describe a large amount of data sets that have collected information from a variety of sources. Once collected, big data can then be analyzed to be put to use. Businesses often use it for customer tracking to help them improve their marketing capabilities, but it is not the only way that it is used.

Health and Fitness

The market for big data in the sports industry is expected to reach $4.6 billion by 2025. Some sports are using it more than others. Marathon running may not use data analytics to the same extent as the NBA or NHL, but will still rely on it to a point.

Before we discuss the wearable technology that is on trend right now, let’s look at the idea of health and fitness. The trends of what foods we should eat and exercises that we should try has been going on for decades. That’s why, when given an opportunity to try something new, we will take it.

So, when there is new information and technology out about how to be healthier, it only makes since that more people will be taking advantage of the big data that is collected.

Wearable Technology

The biggest area where big data comes in with running is with wearable technology. Wearable technology can collect data about you and then put it into an algorithm for analysis. Wearable devices can process a large amount of big data in order to leave you with an analysis of your run.  The market for wearable devices will exceed $100 billion within the next three years.

These devices record speed, time, steps, distance, elevation, heart rate, and so much more. When you wear a fitness device while you run outside, most devices use GPS technology, which is supplied through the use of big data.

Additionally, wearable technology can alert you to unseen health conditions by comparing your information to information collected through big data.


In addition to wearable technology, mobile apps also can tap into big data to help you with your runs. Apps can provide you with set workouts, making workouts to fit your individual running needs. They usually require information directly inputted into them, but they can then use the information and get feedback from big data to help you have a better idea of the types of workouts that you need.

The kind of information that you supply can be anything from your stats, like height and weight, to whether you wear any of these recommended running shoes for wide feet. That information can help to decide what you need to do in order to become a better runner.


Because of the increase in popularity of wearable fitness devices as well as the accompanying apps that allow you to document your workouts and the food you eat, the amount of people trying to run a marathon has gone up substantially. With more people understanding what it takes to get fit enough to run a marathon, more people will be competing in these events in the future. There are bound to be a lot of marathon runners who have just discovered their passion by using information compiled from big data.

Marathon running is not even the only sport that has been affected by the growth of big data. As long as there are stats to be collected and analyzed for a sporting event, then the use of big data will continue to increase.

Health and fitness are always in fashion and with the continual influx of new healthy tips to try, it only makes sense that we will see more and more marathon runners come out to give it a try.

What is the Ultimate Prognosis for Big Data in Marathon Running?

There is always the concern about big data, but let us reassure you. Big data is not a sentient program or anything. It is more like an endless filing cabinet where you can pull out the information that you want. For marathon running, this information is only going to help you out.

Sean Parker is an entrepreneur and content marketer with over 5 years of experience in SEO, Creative Writing and Digital Marketing with Rank Media. He has worked with several clients from all over the globe to offer his services in various domains with a proven track record of success.