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Can Women Ever Out run Men ?

Updated on March 21, 2013

Introduction


I remember hearing somewhere that as distance increases , the differences between men and women decreases, I did some research to see more information about this but could not find a simple comparison, so I decided to compare world records between men and womens for running events and see the differences, I am not very good and maths and have very little understanding of statistics so this could be completely wrong, but I just calculated the percentage difference between the numbers to work out the difference between men and women below are the results:

Results

Event
Men’s World Record
Women’s World Record
Percentage Difference
100m
9.58
10.49
9.06%
200m
19.19
21.34
10.61%
400m
43.18
47.6
9.74%
800m
1.4
1.53
11.5%
5000m
12.37
14.11
13.14%
10km
26.44
30.21
13.31%
half marathon
58.23
1.05.40
11.6%
marathon
2.03.38
2.15.25
5.74%
100km
6.13.33
6.33.11
3.21%

Discussion

The table above seems to show, that yes men are genrally about 10% better in running events and this is fairly consistant from 100m to half marathon. But as the distance increases the percentage difference decreases to 5.74% for marathon distance and to 3.21% for 100km. One interesting study(http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9044230) of this issue was done in 1997 by Bam, Noakes, Juritz and Dennis, it compared 28 female ultra marathoners to me and show that races 90km plus there was little or no difference between men and women. So girls if you finally want to beat men in something, its going to be a long run.

Do you think women can be as good as men in long distance running events?

See results

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