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15 Facts About Usain Bolt That Will Make You Say "Holy Shit"

Spoiler: He's really, really, fast.

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1. Usain Bolt is fast, but he is actually slower than most other sprinters at the start.

Michael Kappeler / AFP / Getty Images

In the 2016 Olympic 100-meter final on Sunday, his reaction time was 0.155, making it the second slowest in a field of eight.

2. However, as the race goes on, Bolt really shines. He is fastest between the 60- and 80-meter mark.

Matthias Hangst / Getty Images

At his world-record-setting race in Berlin in 2009, Bolt covered the 60- to 80- meter distance in 1.61 seconds and reached a speed of 27.79 mph.

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3. At 6'5", Bolt is taller than most sprinters, and is able to cover 100 meters in fewer strides. It takes Bolt 41 strides on average, whereas other elite sprinters take around 45.

4. As good as he is in the 100, the 200 is actually his favorite and stronger distance.

Fabrice Coffrini / AFP / Getty Images

The 200 has always been Bolt's go-to race — which he also holds the world record in, with a time of 19.19 seconds. In fact, when he won the 100 in Beijing, he had been training for the event for less than a year.

5. He actually took up the 100-meter because he didn't like running the longer sprint races.

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He was initially a 200-meter runner, and his coach wanted to have him run the 400. They made a bet that if Bolt broke the Jamaican 200-meter record at the national meet in 2007, he could run the 100 instead, and never have to do the 400. Bolt smashed the record of 19.86 with a 19.75 time. He never had to run the 400, and he added the 100 to his arsenal. He's gotten pretty damn good at it since.

7. As good as he is at sprinting, cricket is actually his first love.

Manjunath Kiran / AFP / Getty Images

He chose track and field because his father figured there would be less competition at a national level.

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8. His main rival is American sprinter Justin Gatlin, and much has been made of their rivalry. However, they are actually friends off the track.

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They have nicknames for each other, and have even partied together, according to Gatlin.

9. While he is no doubt the fastest man alive, he's also fittingly adopted a cheetah, the world's fastest land animal.

Roberto Schmidt / AFP / Getty Images

Back in 2009 Bolt paid $13,700 to adopt a baby cheetah from an animal orphanage in Kenya. He named him Lightning Bolt, and pays $3,000 a year for his care.

10. It's not all training and traveling for Bolt. He's a fan of video games, particularly Call of Duty.

11. He currently adheres to a strict diet, but that wasn't always the case. While at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, he ate 1,000 Chicken McNuggets.

Ian Walton / Getty Images

In his autobiography Faster Than Lighting, Bolt says he started out eating 20 at a time, but as the games progressed, he increased his McNugget intake to 100 a day.

13. Bolt's 100-meter world record time of 9.58 is so fast it's close to the fastest speed a normal human can possibly achieve.

Mark Dadswell / Getty Images

Stanford biologist Mark Denny published a 2008 study in Journal of Experimental Biology that claims the absolute limit of human speed in the100-meter distance is 9.48 seconds — only ten-hundredths of a second faster than Bolt's record.

14. Bolt has done all this while dealing with scoliosis. He was born with the condition and works hard to make sure it doesn't affect his performance.

Michael Steele / Getty Images

He told ESPN the condition made him injury-prone early in his career. He has since strengthened his core and back through training to keep it under control.

15. To this day Bolt still lives and trains in his home country of Jamaica.

Michael Steele / Getty Images

Part of the reason is that he wants to be close to family, friends, and coaches. Another reason is that Jamaica has little to no celebrity culture, so he doesn't have to worry too much about paparazzi.

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