From people's stories I've read, at least 2 or 3 years if you train wisely and you probably still won't be near your peak. I'd imagine while you are still losing weight some of your PB's are coming from that, once you hit your plateau weight then you'll be improving your real fitness which can go on and on for years, different distances (the longer the distance I imagine the longer the time it takes to optimise yourself - I've heard a good couple of years+ mentioned to improve your marathon times for example). As you get faster/fitter though your PB attempts need to be picked more carefully and will get less frequent. A colleague of mine told me he won the Nottingham marathon when he was 47 (after I said to him I'd taken up serious running too late at 37 last year) - so it's not necessarily a young mans game.
It all depends how intelligently you train I suppose.
depends on how seriously you go at it
I started running when I was 37, I'm 49 now and I'm still improving
but I've built up VERY steadily
Have a read of PRF's blog ... http://runningonaraisin.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/background.html
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