October 14, 2010

Women and Boston. Unfair Advantage?

What do you girls and boys think?  Today's Wall Street Journal ran a story you should be interested in.   The question is should women get a 30 minute advantage to qualify for the Boston Marathon?  That has been the handicap to date, but is it unfair?  Now that Boston is filling up so quickly, some are saying this is unfair!  What do you think?

Click here for the link.  Please come back to this blog to leave your comments!

   

8 comments:

dogvera said...

surely men have the unfair advantage as women have only been able to officially run in marathons for the past 30-odd years. We've still got a lot of catching up to do but I believe that we'll see a closing of the gap between the women's world record and the men's over the next couple of decade.

Laura
lazygirlrunning.com

Jess said...

It's hard not to be biased here. I ran as fast as I could and qualified with a 3:32. If I needed to knock 12 minutes more off that time to BQ, I think I could, but only if I trained more. This article discusses the gap between elite male and female runners. Consider that those women do not have full-time jobs but get to train all day. I do not have that luxury. Nor do most women these days. Raising the bar would definitely eliminate a big percentage of the female qualifiers. Additionally, it would put a big shadow over my shining moment when I BQ'd. People would say, "Oh, you BQ'd back when it was easy."

Anonymous said...

Some of us guys have full time jobs too and do not have to train all day. I'm a 48 year old guy, but have to have a faster qualifying time than a 20 year old girl. Sure, raising the bar would eliminate some women from qualifying. But that's the same bar that's currently eliminating men who don't have the luxury of an extra 30 minutes.

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Runners World had an interesting look at just this a while back (find at http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-239-506--13111-1-1X2X3-3,00.html). Here's their solution: "But there's a simple way to level the BQ playing field: Use the age-graded tables created by the World Masters Association (WMA), which use world-record times and "age factors" to calculate "equivalent" times for all race distances for every age between 8 and 100 (the tool is at runnersworld.com/agegraded).The current Boston standards for men in their mid-30s and mid- 40s produce a WMA age-graded performance of about 65 percent (i.e., 3:20 is roughly 65 percent as fast as the world record marathon time for 44-year-old men). These are the oldest Boston standards and have changed little in recent years, so they seem a good benchmark. If you create new BQs by applying this same 65 percent equalizer to all runners, the Boston standards become a little easier for all men, quite a bit tougher for women under 45, and considerably easier for women over 49."

Emz said...

I read this article.

I say YES!! YES!! YES!! I think it's a joke that a man, my age must run 30 minutes faster than me.

I mean for me to "qualify" for a spot in NYC I would have to run a 3:23 hence my crazy training back in June. And I got my 3:20. Why should I not have to do this for Boston if it really is the marathon of all marathons?! I don't get it.

Asha said...

I'm going to be selfish here and say I hope the women's standard stays the same-- I'm trying to BQ in the next year and its already really hard for me. But, I've always thought that the standard for men seemed unfairly more difficult...but then again lowering the men's standard only makes the issue of too many runners even worse. Either way, women do have an unfair advantage I think.

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pheromones attract women said...

Well, I think and I also agree that "lowering the men's standard only makes the issue of too many runners even worse. Either way, women do have an unfair advantage I think."


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