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Thread: cycling speeds

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Mesa, AZ

    cycling speeds

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    Hi everyone, Just got back from 3rd ride out. I went 6.75 miles at an average speed of 10 mph. I realize I have alot of progress to make before I will even consider riding in a local group but can anywone give me any indication as to how I'm doing so far (being a newbie and all) and what are the average speeds for local city events that usually ride on 10, 25 and 50 mile rides? Considering I've doubled my distance and mph's from my 1st ride already, I'm feeling good about my initial progress. Any input is appreciated. THANKS


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    San Francisco Bay Area
    The next organized ride we're doing gives you enough time to do the hundred miles at a ten mile/hour pace. But the organizers expect the Double Century riders to average 12. That's total time on course, including any stops you may make for food or repairs.

    Our club offers a couple rides a week that are no drop rides to help newcomers develop strength and skills. You might see if any of your local clubs do the same. Ours are about twenty miles or less in length with few hills.

    As far as your progress, I would advise comparing yourself to you. Every rider has their own individual stengths and weaknesses. Personally, I'd love to be able to climb faster and have more sprint power. But I've got tons of endurance. I can maintain a set speed for a wicked long time and I can climb for forever just not as fast as some of the folks I ride with.

    Just keep riding lots and you'll get better.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Brighton, England
    Well done Mtnsnowsnake - sounds like you're doing fine.

    Depending on how often you ride it may take a little time to build up your strength and speed but just take it gradually and you'll do great.

    When I started out I was kind of obsessed with how fast I should be going and how I compared to others. Like Veronica said, when you're starting out the best person to compare yourself to is you.

    To help build your stamina why not try looking at the distance you ride to begin with. Maybe add 2 or 3 miles each trip and gradually work up till you can do say, 15 miles, without thinking about it. Then you can start to look at how fast you're going. Just add on a little distance each time.

    You'll probably find as you get stronger your speed will start sneaking up anyway.

    For me it was the distances that were the main hurdle. The thought of riding a bike for 25 miles seemed totally crazy and impossible , but gradually I got there. Now I can do it with my eyes closed, I'm starting to see just how fast I can do it in.... I'll let you know how I get on.!

    Last edited by MightyMitre; 10-13-2003 at 05:01 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    On my bike
    As you ride more, you'll find that you are best with (1) sprints or (2) endurance depending on the type of muscles you have (fast twitch vs slow twitch). My experience is that women generally have more endurance than men, but men sprint uphill faster. That's a big, sweeping generalization.

    Right now, don't worry about either. Practice spinning in circles, rather than mashing down heavy gears so that your muscles are trained properly. Muscle memory is important. Make sure that your bike fits you properly so that you can more comfortably ride longer distances that will increase your aerobic endurance.

    If you're in AZ, you're finally getting into some nice, cool cycling weather while our sisters in the northeast are eyeballing their trainers. Enjoy it. Before you know it, it will be 110 in the shade & you'll have to get all of your cycling in by 8AM.
    To train a dog, you must be more interesting than dirt.

    Trek Project One
    Trek FX 7.4 Hybrid

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada, eh?
    one of the best things about excercise is that it forces you to pay attention to your body. if you're sleep-deprived, eating crappy food or somehow being bad to your body, you'll find out when you're excercising. how does this relate? well, in my admittedly limited experience, youy body will tell you when you're biking too hard. train as hard as you're comfortable with. as the others said, don't compare to other people, just yourself. other people may have done spin classes, or excercised hard in other areas, or be generally fit without excercise (although i do kinda hate those people ). if you realize you pushed it one day, ease off a little bit. conversely, if you go for a decent ride and your legs are still twitchy, take another 10 minutes!!

    also keep in mind that just beginning to bike involves a HUGE learning curve. you're challenging yourself in so many areas all at once (muscular endurance, cardiovascular endurance, road skills/mtb skills, mebtal endurance, and figuring out this new @$% piece of equipment) that every ride is a challenge. so go easy on yourself!! if you beat yourself up about not biking hard enough/fast enough/long enough it becomes just another chore, which sucks all the fun out of it....
    I used to dream about ice cream, Antonio Banderas, and daquiris on the beach. Now, i dream about fresh pavement...



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