Idioms for Speed: Zooming Through Expressions


They make our speech lively, and when it comes to speed, idioms truly rev up the excitement. In this article, we’re going to explore some idioms that convey the essence of rapidity.

So, fasten your seatbelts, and let’s dive into the world of idioms for speed!

idioms for speed

What is an idiom for speed?

An idiom is a group of words that, when put together, has a meaning that’s different from the individual words. Idioms are used to express ideas or concepts in a way that’s unique and often figurative.

When it comes to speed, English has an array of idioms that paint vivid pictures of swiftness.


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Created by Dr. Julia Rossi

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What is a simile?

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Identify the simile in the following sentence: “She swims like a fish.”

3 / 20

What is a metaphor?

4 / 20

Which of the following is a metaphor?

5 / 20

What is an idiom?

6 / 20

What does the idiom “break the ice” mean?

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What is an adjective?

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Choose the adjective in the following sentence: “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”

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What is an abbreviation?

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What does the abbreviation “e.g.” stand for?

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What is a verb?

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Identify the verb in the following sentence: “The cat sleeps on the sofa.”

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“Out of the frying pan into the fire” is an example of:

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Which of the following is an adjective?

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The abbreviation “NASA” stands for:

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Choose the metaphor in the following sentence: “Time is a thief.”

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What does the idiom “hit the books” mean?

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Which of the following sentences contains a simile?

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“LOL” is an abbreviation for:

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Let’s break down the meaning of each idiom and use them in sentences to see how they work.

IdiomMeaningExample Sentence
Fast as lightningExtremely quick or rapidHe finished the race as fast as lightning, leaving his competitors far behind.
Quick as a winkVery fast, almost instantaneouslyShe responded to the question quick as a wink, showing her deep knowledge.
Speed of lightAs fast as possible; at the maximum speedThe delivery service promised to get the package to its destination at the speed of light.
Like a bat out of hellTo move extremely fast, often with a sense of urgencyWhen the fire alarm went off, people evacuated the building like a bat out of hell.
In the fast laneLiving or working in a high-paced, energetic mannerShe’s always in the fast lane, juggling multiple projects at once.
Burn rubberTo accelerate quickly, often with squealing tiresThe sports car burned rubber as it sped away from the traffic light.
Zooming alongMoving swiftly and smoothlyThe skateboarder was zooming along the sidewalk, showing off impressive tricks.
Racing against timeTrying to accomplish something quickly before a deadline or time constraintWe were racing against time to finish the project before the client’s meeting.
Running like the windRunning at an incredibly fast paceThe track star was running like the wind, breaking records left and right.
Greased lightningExceptionally fast and smoothHis fingers on the piano keys were like greased lightning, creating beautiful music effortlessly.
Swift as a deerMoving with grace and incredible speedThe gazelle darted through the savannah, swift as a deer, escaping from a predator.
Pedal to the metalAccelerating a vehicle to its maximum speedHe pushed the pedal to the metal and raced down the highway.
Warp speedMoving at an extremely high velocity, often used in a sci-fi contextThe spaceship traveled at warp speed, exploring distant galaxies.
A whirlwind paceA hectic and fast-paced way of doing thingsOur vacation was a whirlwind pace, visiting multiple cities in just a week.
At breakneck speedDangerously fast; so fast it feels recklessThe roller coaster descended at breakneck speed, thrilling the riders.
Like a bullet trainMoving as quickly as a high-speed trainThe project progressed like a bullet train, reaching milestones ahead of schedule.
Flying like a rocketMoving rapidly and with great force, like a rocket taking offThe car sped down the straightaway, flying like a rocket.
Running a mile a minuteRunning or moving very fastShe was running a mile a minute to catch up with her friends.
Like a streak of lightningExtremely fast, with a sudden and swift movementThe cat darted across the room like a streak of lightning, chasing a toy.
Rushing headlongMoving forward quickly and recklessly, often without thinkingHe was rushing headlong into the project without a clear plan.
Hitting the gasAccelerating a vehicle by pressing the gas pedalHe hit the gas and sped away from the traffic jam.
Full throttleMoving or operating at maximum speed or intensityThe band played their music at full throttle, energizing the crowd.
Time is of the essenceIt’s crucial to act quickly because there’s limited timeWe need to finish the repairs now; time is of the essence before the storm hits.
Like a tornadoMoving swiftly and destructively, like a tornadoThe kids cleaned their room like a tornado, leaving everything in disarray.
Speed demonSomeone who loves to drive fast or is exceptionally skilled at itHe’s a speed demon on the racetrack, winning championship after championship.
Faster than a cheetahIncredibly swift, like the fastest land animalShe finished the race faster than a cheetah, setting a new world record.
Racing the clockTrying to complete a task or reach a destination before a specified timeWe were racing the clock to make it to the airport before our flight departed.

Speed is like an arrow released from a bow, hurtling through the air with unstoppable force and velocity. For more comparisons to describe speed, you can check this link: Similes for speed. And for a variety of metaphors related to speed, you can explore this link: Metaphors for speed.

Idioms for Speed

1. Fast as lightning

Meaning: Extremely quick or rapid.

In a Sentence: He finished the race as fast as lightning, leaving his competitors far behind.

2. Quick as a wink

Meaning: Very fast, almost instantaneously.

In a Sentence: She responded to the question quick as a wink, showing her deep knowledge.

3. Speed of light

Meaning: As fast as possible; at the maximum speed.

In a Sentence: The delivery service promised to get the package to its destination at the speed of light.

4. Like a bat out of hell

Meaning: To move extremely fast, often with a sense of urgency.

In a Sentence: When the fire alarm went off, people evacuated the building like a bat out of hell.

5. In the fast lane

Meaning: Living or working in a high-paced, energetic manner.

In a Sentence: She’s always in the fast lane, juggling multiple projects at once.

6. Burn rubber

Meaning: To accelerate quickly, often with squealing tires.

In a Sentence: The sports car burned rubber as it sped away from the traffic light.

7. Zooming along

Meaning: Moving swiftly and smoothly.

In a Sentence: The skateboarder was zooming along the sidewalk, showing off impressive tricks.

8. Racing against time

Meaning: Trying to accomplish something quickly before a deadline or time constraint.

In a Sentence: We were racing against time to finish the project before the client’s meeting.

9. Running like the wind

Meaning: Running at an incredibly fast pace.

In a Sentence: The track star was running like the wind, breaking records left and right.

10. Greased lightning

Meaning: Exceptionally fast and smooth.

In a Sentence: His fingers on the piano keys were like greased lightning, creating beautiful music effortlessly.

11. Swift as a deer

Meaning: Moving with grace and incredible speed.

In a Sentence: The gazelle darted through the savannah, swift as a deer, escaping from a predator.

12. Pedal to the metal

Meaning: Accelerating a vehicle to its maximum speed.

In a Sentence: He pushed the pedal to the metal and raced down the highway.

13. Warp speed

Meaning: Moving at an extremely high velocity, often used in a sci-fi context.

In a Sentence: The spaceship traveled at warp speed, exploring distant galaxies.

14. A whirlwind pace

Meaning: A hectic and fast-paced way of doing things.

In a Sentence: Our vacation was a whirlwind pace, visiting multiple cities in just a week.

15. At breakneck speed

Meaning: Dangerously fast; so fast it feels reckless.

In a Sentence: The roller coaster descended at breakneck speed, thrilling the riders.

16. Like a bullet train

Meaning: Moving as quickly as a high-speed train.

In a Sentence: The project progressed like a bullet train, reaching milestones ahead of schedule.

17. Flying like a rocket

Meaning: Moving rapidly and with great force, like a rocket taking off.

In a Sentence: The car sped down the straightaway, flying like a rocket.

18. Running a mile a minute

Meaning: Running or moving very fast.

In a Sentence: She was running a mile a minute to catch up with her friends.

19. Like a streak of lightning

Meaning: Extremely fast, with a sudden and swift movement.

In a Sentence: The cat darted across the room like a streak of lightning, chasing a toy.

20. Rushing headlong

Meaning: Moving forward quickly and recklessly, often without thinking.

In a Sentence: He was rushing headlong into the project without a clear plan.

21. Hitting the gas

Meaning: Accelerating a vehicle by pressing the gas pedal.

In a Sentence: He hit the gas and sped away from the traffic jam.

22. Full throttle

Meaning: Moving or operating at maximum speed or intensity.

In a Sentence: The band played their music at full throttle, energizing the crowd.

23. Time is of the essence

Meaning: It’s crucial to act quickly because there’s limited time.

In a Sentence: We need to finish the repairs now; time is of the essence before the storm hits.

24. Like a tornado

Meaning: Moving swiftly and destructively, like a tornado.

In a Sentence: The kids cleaned their room like a tornado, leaving everything in disarray.

25. Speed demon

Meaning: Someone who loves to drive fast or is exceptionally skilled at it.

In a Sentence: He’s a speed demon on the racetrack, winning championship after championship.

26. Faster than a cheetah

Meaning: Incredibly swift, like the fastest land animal.

In a Sentence: She finished the race faster than a cheetah, setting a new world record.

27. Racing the clock

Meaning: Trying to complete a task or reach a destination before a specified time.

In a Sentence: We were racing the clock to make it to the airport before our flight departed.

Quizzes About The Idioms in The Article

  1. What does the idiom “Quick as a wink” mean?
    a) Extremely slow
    b) Very fast, almost instantaneously
    c) Slow and steady
  2. Which idiom means “Moving swiftly and destructively, like a tornado”?
    a) Racing against time
    b) Like a tornado
    c) Hitting the gas
  3. What is the meaning of “In the fast lane”?
    a) Taking your time
    b) Living or working in a high-paced, energetic manner
    c) Being cautious
  4. Which idiom describes someone who loves to drive fast or is exceptionally skilled at it?
    a) Full throttle
    b) Speed demon
    c) Greased lightning
  5. What does “Pedal to the metal” mean?
    a) Driving slowly
    b) Accelerating a vehicle to its maximum speed
    c) Applying the brakes
  6. What does the idiom “Running like the wind” convey?
    a) Running slowly
    b) Running at an incredibly fast pace
    c) Running in circles
  7. Which idiom means “Dangerously fast; so fast it feels reckless”?
    a) Like a bullet train
    b) At breakneck speed
    c) Racing the clock
  8. What does the expression “A whirlwind pace” signify?
    a) A leisurely pace
    b) A hectic and fast-paced way of doing things
    c) A slow and steady progress
  9. Which idiom means “Moving with grace and incredible speed”?
    a) Swift as a deer
    b) Time is of the essence
    c) Warp speed
  10. What is the meaning of “Like a streak of lightning”?
    a) Extremely slow
    b) Extremely fast, with a sudden and swift movement
    c) Moving at a moderate pace

Answers:

  1. b) Very fast, almost instantaneously
  2. b) Like a tornado
  3. b) Living or working in a high-paced, energetic manner
  4. b) Speed demon
  5. b) Accelerating a vehicle to its maximum speed
  6. b) Running at an incredibly fast pace
  7. b) At breakneck speed
  8. b) A hectic and fast-paced way of doing things
  9. a) Swift as a deer
  10. b) Extremely fast, with a sudden and swift movement

Conclusion

English is full of colorful expressions that vividly convey the concept of speed. These idioms bring life to our conversations, allowing us to describe swiftness in imaginative ways.

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