Kelvin Kiptum: Inside Look at Intense Training Routine of Kenyan Legend Kipchoge’s 'Successor'

Kelvin Kiptum: Inside Look at Intense Training Routine of Kenyan Legend Kipchoge’s 'Successor'

Martin Moses
updated at October 13, 2023 at 7:10 AM
  • Kelvin Kiptum put the world on notice when he set a new marathon world record on October 8
  • Of the six fastest times in marathon history, the new champion of Chicago owns half of these
  • His training schedule is brutal compared to his compatriot and 'predecessor' Eliud Kipchoge

On September 25, 2022, Eliud Kipchoge elevated the levels of road running when he set a new marathon world record of 2:01:09 in Berlin.

The Kenyan, the greatest we have ever seen in the history of marathons, broke his own record from four years earlier on the same course in the German capital.

Eliud Kipchoge, Berlin Marathon, Kelvin Kiptum, Chicago Marathon, marathon's world record
Eliud Kipchoge celebrates after winning the Berlin Marathon on September 25, 2022. Photo by Marvin Ibo Guengoer - GES Sportfoto.
Source: Getty Images

The irony in all this is as Kipchoge was setting the fastest time ever, Kelvin Kiptum - a man who would achieve so much in the next 12 months - was yet to run a senior official marathon race.

Kelvin Kiptum's records in marathon

Kiptum made his debut at the Valencia Marathon, clocking the fastest time ever for a debutant to win the race with 2:01:53 on the clock.

He then went to the London Marathon in April and not only broke Kipchoge's course record but came agonisingly close to breaking the world record. He missed the 2:01:09 by just 16 seconds.

Not to be denied in Chicago, Kiptum upped the pace after the 30-kilometre mark to shatter Kipchoge's world record, shaving off a clean 34 seconds. He also became the first human being to run a marathon race under legal conditions under the 2-hour one-minute mark.

2:00:35, for a 23-year-old who has only run three marathons in his life. Are you kidding me?

His coach, Gervis Hakizimana shed more details on Kiptum's training schedule, which when compared to Kipchoge's, is insane - to say the least.

Comparing Kipchoge's and Kiptum's training sessions

Kipchoge, in all his years of dominating the marathon, runs between 180 and 220 kilometres weekly in training. Kiptum, meanwhile, as reports, averages between 250 and 280 kilometres every week and, at times, gets up to 300 kilometres.

So intense is his schedule that his coach fears that he will burn out in the next five years if he doesn't slow down.

"He has a very large volume. He works a lot on endurance. When he trains, he is strong. He’s in his best years, but at one point, I’m afraid he’ll get injured. At this rate, he risks breaking. I suggested he lower the pace, but he doesn’t want to."

His training goes from hard to easy as they approach race month. Kiptum, who jetted back into the country to dance and jubilation on October 10, has indicated that his next target will be the Olympics next year in Paris.

Kiptum vs Kipchoge or the clock?

It will potentially be the first time he faces off with the man he seeks to replace in the long term. Kipchoge will be going for a third Olympics title in what many think will be his final bow in road running.

But for Kiptum, it is only the beginning. Running a race in under 2 hours will be next on his agenda. From his wicked pace and crazy training sessions, one gets the feeling that it won't be too long before he does it.

What Kiptum earned for his world record

Kiptum not only went home with a world record but also earned a handsome paycheque, Sports Brief also reported.

$560,000 in total prize money was on offer ($280,000 for men and women) plus $50,000 extra for any new records.

Therefore, Kiptum earned a total of $150,000 for his marathon success which is over 22 million in Kenyan shillings.

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Martin Moses
Martin Moses is a sports journalist with over five years of experience in media. He graduated from Multimedia University of Kenya (Bachelor of Journalism, 2017-2021)
Eliud Kipchoge