# What animals can a human outrun

When we introduced Run the Numbers as a column, we promised that topics would range from the obvious—the size of marathons over the past decades—to the not-so-obvious—how fast can a pig run a mile? Well, we covered the size of marathons months ago in our first post. But we haven't delivered on how fast a pig can run a mile. That is, until now.

In the course of my thorough research into how fast a pig can run a mile, I discovered some alarming points.

First, pigs are fast. Imagine how fast a pig can run. Seriously.

Next, many other animals are also fast. And they would love to catch you; you are made out of tasty meat, after all.

So, in the interest of keeping our readers alive, I compiled 16 of the most dangerous animals you would want to run away from—and calculated the head start you would need to escape—into a handy list. My math is based on you being able to run six minutes per mile for several miles. That may sound like quite a workout, but keep in mind that you would have an extreme motivation nipping at your heels.

**16. Rattlesnake**

Top Speed: 3 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 400 meters

Head Start Needed: *None*

Assuming you are not stepping directly on a rattlesnake, you can always outrun it, as it will quickly fall behind.

**15. Alligator**

Top Speed: 11 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 16 meters

Head Start Needed: 1 meter

Don't run zigzags. That's a myth. Just run. And don't worry about jumping the gun—you're going to want a little bit of a head start.

**14. Tiger**

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 32 meters

Head Start Needed: 23 meters

Tigers, while our first "very fast" animal on this list, are ambush hunters and will quickly stop chasing you. Just stay out of their red zone.

**13. Lion**

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 48 meters

Head Start Needed: 32 meters

Lions will chase you a bit further than a tiger. And be careful—they hunt as a group—so that minimum safe distance is from the lead lion.

**12. Elephant**

Top Speed: 20 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 100 meters

Head Start Needed: 50 meters

There is some debate over whether elephants actually "run," as there is no aerial phase where all of their feet leave the ground at once. Nevertheless, you don't want to be within 50 meters of a bull elephant if it decides to take the world's largest, fastest jog at you.

**11. Chimpanzee**

Top Speed: 25 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 100 meters

Head Start Needed: 60 meters

Who knew chimpanzees were so fast? Even Usain Bolt wouldn't be safe.

**10. Killer Bees**

Top Speed: 12 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 400 meters

Head Start Needed: 67 meters

"Killer" bees will chase you about three times as far as regular honeybees.

**9. Rhinoceros**

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 100 meters

Head Start Needed: 71 meters

If it's a choice between a rhino and killer bees, you want to be closer to the killer bees. Slightly.

**8. Komodo Dragon**

Top Speed: 12.4 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 400 meters

Head Start Needed: 77 meters

Komodo dragons are not poisonous as they were long thought to be. That's good news if one managed to outsprint you through the jungle.

**7. Hippopotamus**

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 200 meters

Head Start Needed: 133 meters

Hippopotami are really quite fast. They're also quite mean. Though vegetarians, they kill more than 2000 people a year. You're going to want to stay more than a football field (plus endzones) away from them.

**6. Moose**

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 400 meters

Head Start Needed: 286 meters

If you're in sight of a moose, you are potential moose tracks.

**5. Cheetah**

Top Speed: 70 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 400 meters

Head Start Needed: 343 meters

In the time it takes a cheetah to run 400 meters, you can run 57. They are the fastest animal on the list—but they aren't the most dangerous.

**4. Polar Bear**

Top Speed: 20 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 1 mile

Head Start Needed: 805 meters

The nice thing about running from polar bears is that you can probably see them from the half mile head start you would need to escape. Unless they're covering their noses with their paws.

**3. Wild Boar**

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 1 mile

Head Start Needed: 1,073 meters

Finally, we get to how fast a pig can run a mile! Very fast. And you want to stay away from these pigs, as they can weigh over 600 pounds, grow a skin "shield," and have sharp tusks.

**2. Black Bear**

Top Speed: 25 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 2 miles

Head Start Needed: 1,931 meters

You probably shouldn't try to outrun black bears.

**1. Brown Bear**

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Maintainable Distance: 2 miles

Head Start Needed: 2,146 meters

And you definitely shouldn't try to outrun brown bears.

*Note: The math here is overly simplistic in that it assumes the animal would slow to a speed slower than your 10 m.p.h. as soon as they've exhausted their maximum speed distance, but this isn't necessarily true. (A cheetah can still outrun you even when she's just jogging.) This is more for fun than an actual scientific guide, so don't take this advice too seriously.*

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