Yuki Kawauchi

BROWSE ALL +65 ATHLETES / Yuki Kawauchi

yuki kawauchi

Personal bests:
1500m – 3:50.51 (2012)
5000m – 13:58.62 (2012)
10,000m – 29:02.33 (2010)
10km road – 29:54 (2013)
10miles road – 47:28 (2014)
Half Marathon – 1:02:18 (2012)
Marathon – 2:08:14 (2013)
50km Ultramarathon – 2:44:07 (2016)
Yuki is arguably the most interesting and unconvention elite marathoner around, here’s why:
  • Yuki’s a full-time employee of the Japanese government, working 40 hour weeks as a clerk in a 12:45-9:15pm shift. For this reason, he has been given the nickname the “Citizen Runner”.
  • He’s 30 years old and has run 76 marathons under 2:20 (and still counting). In his first marathon of 2018 he  ran 2:18:59 in 1-degree F (-17C) snowy conditions in Massachusetts. Take a look at finish in the video below!



    • Is not sponsored. Yuki refuses sponsorship & appearance fees as cannot receive outside employment as a state employee, this excludes race winnings.
    • Trains 130-140km (80-87 miles) per week in what is a very different program to that of most elite’s. All his miles come from single daily runs, also something less common among elites. Significantly different stress between 50min AM + 40min PM vs. single 90min run.
    • Races most weekends, however, mostly for training. His weekdays are particular full, so he does more low intensity work during the week, and more harder sessions on weekends. He mentions that the lower intensity weeks allow him to put more emphasis on weekend runs.
    • In 2013 he raced 11 marathon, 4 of which were sub 2:10 which included his 2:08:14 PB. A virtually unheard of feat by any standard. He wants to have run 100 marathon before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
    • Has a home-made gym consisting of equipment he’s made himself from things he’s bought out of the local supply store. Does basic exercises like bench press, lat pull-downs, abductor/adductor exercises ect. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
    • After racing he listens to body and takes necessary recovery he needs. He uses acupuncture and massage therapy a few times a month, as well as visiting hot springs.
    •  Naturally he is self coached

His general week goes as follows:
Monday
– 70 to 100 minutes jogging or routine runs, usually 20km covered and often around 5min/km. 
Tuesday
– 70 to 100 minutes jogging or routine runs, usually 20km covered and often around 5min/km. 
Wednesday
– Speed work: intervals (10 x 1,000m in about three minutes or just less or 20x400m at faster pace) or a tempo run
Thursday
– 70 to 100 minutes jogging or routine runs, usually 20km covered and often around 5min/km. 
Friday
– 70 to 100 minutes jogging or routine runs, usually 20km covered and often around 5min/km. 
Saturday
– Trail run in mountains, or race. (depends on Sunday)
Sunday
– Race or serious long tempo (depends on Saturday)

Source: Runners World Interview & Deadspin Article