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Who has the fastest runners? US state comparison with 6 million results

I think us Oregonians think of ourselves as lovers of all things outdoors – especially running. We have so many trails, routes, and a committment to the sport, that it’s hard to imagine there being faster runners out there. Jens Jakob Andersen, founder of, together with Ivanka Nikolova, Ph.D. in Math, have analyzed 6 million marathon results from 1996 to 2016 and come up with a full US state comparison. So how does Oregon stack up?

Read the original study here


  • Overall ranking – 9th place (4:29:01)
  • Women ranking – 13th place (4:45)
  • Men ranking – 4th place (4:12)


By average age group, Oregon ranks:

  • <20 years – 15th place (average finish time – 4:23:32)
  • 20-29 years – 6th place (average finish time – 4:17:39)
  • 30-39 years – 3rd place (average finish time – 4:15:37)
  • 40-49 years – 7th place (average finish time – 4:25:14)
  • 50-59 years – 15th place (average finish time – 4:40:36)
  • >60 years – 17th place (average finish time – 5:10:14
  • The average age of Oregon participants is 41.2
  • Oregon over 50-year olds (4:50:55) are faster than the under 30-year olds from Alaska (4:51:36) and Mississippi (4:58:11)
  • Oregon age distribution – <30 (20%), 30-49 (60%), >50% (20%)
  • Young to Elderly participants – rank 33, coefficient 1.05. This means that Oregon has almost equally many young as elderly participants


  • By number of participants Oregon ranks 33rd
  • Oregon has 44.8% women participants and 55.2% men
  • By number of participants as % of states population – ranks 42nd with 0.04% participation. That is 0.42% of the population participated in a race past year. Or 1 in 238
  • Oregon female participants numbers have declined by 7.87% in the last 17 years


  • By change in speed Oregon ranks 2nd and they have speeded up by 1.29% in the last 17 years. That is, Oregon has improved a lot!
  • By change in women time Oregon ranks 2nd and women have speeded up by 2.66%
  • By change in finish time for men Oregon ranks 2nd with 0.46% increase in speed
  • Oregon women (4:45:36) are faster than the men from Hawaii (4:55:03) and Mississippi (4:57:10)
  • Oregon women are 12.99% slower than Oregon men
  • By age group the ranking of the slowdown is as follows:
    • <30 – rank 2, speed up 1.17%
    • 30-49 – rank 1, speed up 0.63%
    • >50 – rank 2, speed up 2.57%.
Oregon is among the only 4 states that have actually improved the past 17 years.
About Matt Rasmussen (1282 Articles)
Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching the Olympics, sampling craft beers, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010. Matt joined the Run Oregon team in October 2011, and since then he has spearheaded the blog’s efforts to cover product reviews, news about businesses related to running, and running events in the Willamette Valley.

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