4 september 2008

A coin has two sides, or is it three?

Some interesting reflections related to the Olympics. Who won the medal count?


Was it China winning the most golds (51), or was it USA bringing home most medals (110). Guess it depends on who you are asking. Seems like the Americans think that they won the medal league, while the Chinese people claim to be the winners. Given that both USA and China are huge countries, maybe a more fair comparison would be this, http://www.medaltracker.eu/ . Or what do you think? To give you another alternative, if you compare the number of gold medals with the number of inhabitants in the country, Jamaica is the winner with 2.2 gold medals per million inhabitants. China is only in 47th place in this list…


Another interesting question is who the fastest man on earth is at the moment. Probably 90% of us would answer Usain Bolt. And yes, Usain Bolt is the fastest man over 100m or 200m (the average speed during his 200m race was actually HIGHER than during his 100m race, 19.30 / 2 = 9.65). But it all comes down to the length of the race. Usain Bolt is definitely not the fastest man on earth over the marathon distance. And who said it was only in the 100m and 200m events that speed mattered?


Another way to measure who the fastest man on earth is, would be to measure top speed at any given moment during a run (that’s the way you measure which car is the fastest, isn’t it?). Might be that Usain Bolt is still the winner, but it’s not a given. If another runner has the speed peak later in the race, and is not good at sustaining that speed to the finish line, he can still have the fastest top speed.


Is Michael Phelps really the best Olympian through all times just because he took 8 gold medals in Beijing? Not necessarily. 3 of his races were relays, and in one race he won with just a few millimeters, so is he really that much better than everyone else? Or is it just that there are many more swimming races (17) compared to the number of pole vault events (1) just to take one example of a unique and quite extreme sport which is totally dominated by Jelena Isinbajeva?


BTW, saw somewhere that Michael Phelps has to eat around 12000 calories every day with the training he does. That’s 4 times more than what a normal non-active person would burn in one day. And it’s around 4 times what I would burn during a marathon. 

2 kommentarer:

Your oldest bro´ sa...

Coll & Interesting facts man, Keep it up, BTW The Asics news:Fun 2 know, cu

F sa...

Hej Chrille, har du sett mitt mail? Har du några tankar? Jag vet ju inte så mycket egentligen men i mina oslipade öron lät det ju bra. Hör av dig! /F