Running quickly, driving slowly

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Here’s something I think about when I’m driving, particularly when I’m in a slow 30 miles/hr speed zone: how fast in miles/hr does the fastest sprinter run?

Usain Bolt of Jamaica currently holds the world record for running 100m in 9.58 seconds. In rounded numbers, we have the following calculation

  • 100m in 9.58 seconds means
  • 1000m = 1km in 95.8 seconds, but
  • there are 60*60 = 3600 seconds in an hour, so we have
  • (3600/95.8) * 1km in (3600/95.8) * 95.8 seconds = 1 hour, so we have
  • 37.6 km in 1 hour, but
  • 1 km = .62 miles, so 37.6 km/hr = 23.3 miles/hr

That is, at my 30 miles/hr, I’m still going faster than the fastest human can run, by a non-trivial amount. It still feels slow to me.


One Comment

  1. I hope you don’t do all those calculations while driving – it seems more dangerous than texting & driving!

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