Welcome to Marathon Shoe History. The idea for this website first came to me back in 2017 when like many, I watched Eliud Kipchoge come within 25 seconds of breaking the two-hour marathon barrier. Another fact that crossed my mind was that back in 1960, Abebe Bikila set the marathon world record at the Olympics barefoot.

Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

Since then most major shoe companies have released models featuring carbon-fibre plates like the Nike Zoom VaporFly Elite model that Kipchoge wore. The question remains, how did we get here? I found out by scouring through archival images, contacting key people who were close to the events, as well as reading countless websites, blogs and newspaper articles.

As far as I’m aware, there has been no attempt to create a list like this before, so I hope you find reading this website as enjoyable as I did researching it.


If you want to get in touch, I’m on Twitter at @MarathonShoeNrd and on Instagram at @marathonshoenrd so please reach out with any questions or comments you might have.

You can also reach me by email on marathonshoenerd (as one word) at Gmail.