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Earlier this month, news came that Roger Bannister had died.
I turned 18 the year Roger Bannister became the first human to run a mile in less than four minutes. A mile – you may remember those things, a quaint anachronism consisting of 5280 feet, each containing 12 inches. Only the U.S. still uses those funny dimensions, although it has long given up other measures of the mile – eight furlongs, 80 chains, 320 rods…
Back in 1954, though, the mile was still a standard measure. We measured fuel efficiency in miles per gallon, speeds in miles per hour.
And the four-minute mile was still considered impossible for mere humans.
It turned out to be a psychological barrier, not a physical one.
Categories: Soft Edges
Tags: Roger Bannister, mile, Miracle Mile, 1954