Female Marathon Runners

Vote for Your Favourite Female Marathon Runners

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 1 
Paula Radcliffe
(British Former Long-Distance Runner)
Paula Radcliffe
6
Birthdate: December 17, 1973
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Davenham, Cheshire, England

Paula Radcliffe is a retired distance runner, credited with winning the London Marathon and the New York Marathon three times each. Born into an athletic family, she emerged as a running talent by the time she was in her teens, winning the world junior cross-country title at the age of nineteen, eventually. She held the Women's World Marathon Record from 2003 to 2019.

 2 
Brigid Kosgei
(Kenyan Long-Distance Runner)
Brigid Kosgei
6
Birthdate: February 20, 1994
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sinon, Kapsowar, Kenya
 3 
Bobbi Gibb
(American Marathon Runner)
Bobbi Gibb
4
Birthdate: November 2, 1942
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
 4 
Grete Waitz
(Norwegian Marathon Runner and Former World Record Holder)
Grete Waitz
3
Birthdate: October 1, 1953
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: April 19, 2011

Grete Waitz was a Norwegian marathon runner who became the first female runner to complete a marathon in less than two and a half hours in 1979. A former world record holder, Waitz won a record nine New York City Marathons between 1978 and 1988. Grete Waitz is also remembered for winning the silver medal at the 1984 Olympic Games.  

 5 
Mary Jepkosgei Keitany
(Kenyan Former Professional Long Distance Runner)
Mary Jepkosgei Keitany
5
Birthdate: January 18, 1982
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kabarnet, Baringo County, Kenya
Height: 5'2" (157 cm)
 6 
Kara Goucher
(American Long-Distance Runner)
Kara Goucher
4
Birthdate: July 9, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Queens, New York, United States
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 7 
Tirunesh Dibaba
(The Youngest Female World Champion in Long-Distance Track Event)
Tirunesh Dibaba
12
Birthdate: June 1, 1985
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bekoji, Ethiopia

Ethiopian distance runner Tirunesh Dibaba scripted history by becoming the youngest female World Champion, in 2003, when she was a little over 18 years. She is also the first female to win the Olympic 5,000m/10,000m double. The 5-time World Champion is also a 3-time Olympic gold medalist.

 8 
Joan Benoit
(American Marathon Runner Who Was the First Women’s Olympic Games Marathon Champion)
Joan Benoit
1
Birthdate: May 16, 1957
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Cape Elizabeth, Maine, United States
Height: 5'2" (157 cm)
 9 
Deena Kastor
(American Long-Distance Runner)
Deena Kastor
4
Birthdate: February 14, 1973
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Waltham, Massachusetts, United States
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 10 
Zola Budd
(Former South African Middle-Distance and Long-Distance Runner)
Zola Budd
2
Birthdate: May 26, 1966
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bloemfontein, South Africa

Zola Budd is a South African former athlete who used to compete in long-distance and middle-distance running. Budd represented Great Britain at the 1984 Olympic Games before representing South Africa at the 1992 Olympic Games. Zola Budd also took part in the 1985 and 1986 World Cross Country Championships, winning gold medals on both occasions.

 11 
Rosa Mota
(Marathon Runner)
Rosa Mota
1
Birthdate: June 29, 1958
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Porto, Portugal
Height: 5'2" (157 cm)
 12 
Catherine Ndereba
(Kenyan Long-Distance Runner)
Catherine Ndereba
3
Birthdate: July 21, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nyeri County, Kenya
 13 
Catherina McKiernan
(Former Irish Marathon Runner)
Catherina McKiernan
3
Birthdate: November 30, 1969
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cavan, Ireland
 14 
Ingrid Kristiansen
(Former World Record Holder in the 5000 Metres, 10,000 Metres and the Marathon)
Ingrid Kristiansen
1
Birthdate: March 21, 1956
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Trondheim, Norway

One of the most successful female long-distance runners of her time, Norwegian athlete Ingrid Kristiansen was a World Champion and a European Champion. However, she missed out on an Olympic medal, as she finished 4th in the women’s marathon. She was also a talented cross-country skier in her teens.

 15 
Liliya Shobukhova
(Russian Long-Distance Runner)
Liliya Shobukhova
3
Birthdate: November 13, 1977
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Beloretsk, Bashkortostan, Russia
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 16 
Uta Pippig
(German Long-Distance Runner and the First Woman to Officially Win the Boston Marathon Three Consecutive Times)
Uta Pippig
0
Birthdate: September 7, 1965
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Leipzig, Germany
 17 
Edna Kiplagat
(Kenyan Professional Long-Distance Runner)
Edna Kiplagat
0
Birthdate: November 15, 1979
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Uasin Gishu County, Kenya
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 18 
Kathrine Switzer
(American Marathon Runner and Author)
Kathrine Switzer
4
Birthdate: January 5, 1947
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Amberg, Germany

Kathrine Switzer was a 20-year-old Syracuse University student when she registered for the Boston Marathon in 1967. Though women were practically barred from competing, she competed as KV Switzer, avoiding mentioning her gender. Attacked at the event, she made history and became a champion for women’s rights.

 19 
Tegla Loroupe
(First African Woman to Hold the Marathon World Record)
Tegla Loroupe
3
Birthdate: December 9, 1979
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kenya
Height: 5'1" (155 cm)
 20 
Genzebe Dibaba
(Ethiopian Middle-and-Long-Distance Runner)
Genzebe Dibaba
8
Birthdate: February 8, 1991
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Bekoji, Ethiopia

Genzebe Dibaba is an Ethiopian athlete who specializes in middle and long-distance running. She is best known for winning a silver medal at the 2016 Olympic Games. Prior to 2016, she had success at the 2015 World Championships where she won gold and a bronze medal. Genzebe Dibaba has also won five gold medals at the World Indoor Championships.

 21 
Jacqueline Gareau
(Canadian Marathon Runner)
Jacqueline Gareau
3
Birthdate: March 10, 1953
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: L'Annonciation, Quebec, Canada
 22 
Mizuki Noguchi
(Japanese Professional Long-Distance Runner)
Mizuki Noguchi
1
Birthdate: July 3, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Ise, Mie, Japan
Height: 4'11" (150 cm)
 23 
Lornah Kiplagat
(Dutch Marathon Runner)
Lornah Kiplagat
3
Birthdate: May 1, 1974
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kabiemit, Kenya
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 24 
Irina Mikitenko
(German Retired Long-Distance Runner)
Irina Mikitenko
2
Birthdate: August 23, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bakanas, Kazakhstan
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 25 
Lorraine Moller
(New Zealand’s Former Athlete)
Lorraine Moller
2
Birthdate: June 1, 1955
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Putāruru, New Zealand
 26 
Lisa Martin
(Athlete)
Lisa Martin
1
Birthdate: May 12, 1960
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Gawler, South Australia, Australia
 27 
Olivera Jevtić
(Serbian Long-Distance Runner)
Olivera Jevtić
2
Birthdate: July 24, 1977
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Užice, Serbia
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 28 
Naoko Takahashi
(Retired Japanese Long-Distance Runner and Olympic Gold Medal-Winning Marathoner)
Naoko Takahashi
1
Birthdate: May 6, 1972
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Gifu, Gifu, Japan
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 29 
Tomoe Abe
(Japanese Ultramarathon and Marathon Runner)
Tomoe Abe
2
Birthdate: August 13, 1971
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kitsuki, Oita, Japan
Height: 4'11" (150 cm)
 30 
Gete Wami
(Ethiopian Former Long-Distance Runner and Olympic Medalist)
Gete Wami
0
Birthdate: January 28, 1974
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Debre Berhan, Ethiopia
 31 
Priscah Jeptoo
(Kenyan Professional Long-Distance Runner)
Priscah Jeptoo
2
Birthdate: June 24, 1984
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nandi, Kenya
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 32 
Wang Junxia
(Chinese Former Long-Distance Runner)
Wang Junxia
3
Birthdate: January 19, 1973
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Jiaohe, Jilin City, China

Wang Junxia is a Chinese retired long-distance runner who currently holds the world record for 3000-metre run. From 1993 to 2016, she was the world record holder for the 10,000-metre run. After winning the 1993 World Championships, Wang went on to win the gold medal at the 1994 Asian Games for 10,000 meters. She won an Olympic gold in 1996.

 33 
Fatuma Roba
(The First African Female Long-Distance Runner to Win an Olympic Marathon Gold)
Fatuma Roba
1
Birthdate: December 18, 1973
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Bekoji, Ethiopia

Ethiopian long-distance runner Fatuma Roba won her very first marathon in 1993. She then won the Olympic gold at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, scripting history as the first African female runner to win an Olympic marathon gold. She also won 3 consecutive Boston Marathons, from 1997 to 1999.

 34 
Ejegayehu Dibaba
(Ethiopian Long Distance Runner and Olympic Silver Medalist)
Ejegayehu Dibaba
5
Birthdate: March 21, 1982
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Ethiopia

Ethiopian long-distance runner Ejegayehu Dibaba beat her cousin and two-time Olympic gold medallist Derartu Tulu to clinch the silver medal in the 10,000 m event at 2004 Summer Olympics. Her personal bests also include winning two bronze medals at 2005 World Championships in Athletics over 5000 m and 10000 m respectively, and winning her marathon debut at 2011 Chicago Marathon.

 35 
Constantina Diță
(Romanian Long-Distance Runner and Olympic Gold Medalist)
Constantina Diță
1
Birthdate: January 23, 1970
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Turburea, Romania

Romanian long-distance runner, Constantina Diță became women’s marathon gold-medallist at the 2008 Beijing Olympics at age 38 and with this became the oldest marathon champion in the history of Olympics. Specializing mainly in marathon and half-marathon Diță has a marathon best of 2:21:30 hours. She also became the first Romanian to win gold at the World Half Marathon Championships (2005).

 36 
Yuko Arimori
(Japanese Professional Marathon Runner)
Yuko Arimori
1
Birthdate: December 17, 1966
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Okayama, Japan
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 37 
Aliphine Tuliamuk
(American Long-Distance Runner)
Aliphine Tuliamuk
3
Birthdate: April 5, 1989
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Posoy, Pokot County, Kenya
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 38 
Kayoko Fukushi
(Japanese Long-Distance Runner)
Kayoko Fukushi
2
Birthdate: March 25, 1982
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Itayanagi, Aomori, Japan
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 39 
Tatyana Petrova Arkhipova
(Russian Long-Distance Runner and Olympic Medalist)
Tatyana Petrova Arkhipova
0
Birthdate: April 8, 1983
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Urmarsky District, Russia
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 40 
Lidia Șimon
(Romanian Long-Distance Runner)
Lidia Șimon
2
Birthdate: September 4, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Târgu Cărbunești, Romania
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 41 
Allison Roe
(New Zealand Politician and Former Long-Distance Runner)
Allison Roe
0
Birthdate: May 30, 1956
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Auckland, New Zealand
 42 
Rosie Swale-Pope
(Author, adventurer and marathon runner)
Rosie Swale-Pope
0
Birthdate: October 2, 1946
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Davos, Switzerland
 43 
Jeļena Prokopčuka
(Latvian Long-Distance Runner)
Jeļena Prokopčuka
0
Birthdate: September 21, 1976
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Riga, Latvia
 44 
Valentina Yegorova
(Russian Marathon Runner)
Valentina Yegorova
1
Birthdate: February 16, 1964
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Izederkino, Russia
 45 
Joyciline Jepkosgei
(Kenyan Long-Distance Runner)
Joyciline Jepkosgei
3
Birthdate: December 8, 1993
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rift Valley Province, Kenya
 46 
Jane Tomlinson
(British Marathon Runner)
Jane Tomlinson
3
Birthdate: February 21, 1964
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Wakefield, West Riding of Yorkshire, England
Died: September 3, 2007

It was after her breast cancer diagnosis that Jane Tomlinson became a radiographer. Given 6 months to live after her cancer relapsed, she later lived for 7 more years, until her death. A fearless woman, she raised funds through charity sports events such as marathons, while battling the disease.

 47 
Joyce Chepchumba
(Kenyan Marathon runner)
Joyce Chepchumba
1
Birthdate: November 6, 1970
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kericho, Kenya
 48 
Lidiya Grigoryeva
(Russian Long-Distance Runner)
Lidiya Grigoryeva
1
Birthdate: January 25, 1974
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Ibresinsky District, Russia
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 49 
Véronique Marot
(British Marathon runner)
Véronique Marot
4
Birthdate: September 16, 1955
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Compiègne, France
 50 
Zhou Chunxiu
(Chinese Long-Distance Runner)
Zhou Chunxiu
0
Birthdate: November 15, 1978
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sheqi County, Nanyang, China