# General Cycling Discussion - So what counts as a (metric) century?

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JugglerDave
08-08-05, 07:19 AM
If I do a 25-mile (or km) loop from home, 4 times in one day, rest an hour between each one, does that count? Or does it have to be a single "route" away from the start point with brief stops and maybe a lunch break? Is it 100 km/miles in one "calendar day", regardless of the intervals or breaks?

Or, as I suspect, I can just tell myself what *I* want to count as a century, and just head to that goal and feel good about it.

Juha
08-08-05, 07:24 AM
Or, as I suspect, I can just tell myself what *I* want to count as a century, and just head to that goal and feel good about it.

You beat me to it. :)

--J

jabike
08-08-05, 07:28 AM
Of course it counts. A century is just based upon total mileage. How long of a break you take doesn't matter as long as you can get it all in in one day. There are some audax rides, etc. that have more stringent rules, but for a recreational ride just the total mileage is what counts.

Robert Gardner
08-08-05, 07:34 AM
Years ago when I was riding with a bicycle racing club they had some rule that the 100 miles had to be done in under ten hours to count as a century. That seems extremely easy today since it is an average speed of little more than ten miles per hour.

InfamousG
08-08-05, 09:03 AM
...the 100 miles had to be done in under ten hours to count as a century. That seems extremely easy today since it is an average speed of little more than ten miles per hour.

That's with no break stops though. For JugglerDave doing 4 sets of 25 miles with 3, 1-hour rests, that actual on the bike time moves to 100 miles in 7 hours, pushing him up to an average of 14-15mph (which is still certainly doable).

I did my first century last weekend, on a mountain bike no less. Took about 9 hours including breaks through some pretty massive hills. Certainly fun because for every painstaking uphill, there is going to be a fast and fun downhill. My top speed was near 50mph.

Zee
08-08-05, 03:09 PM
Downhill at 50 mph on a bicycle?? I'd be crapping all over the bike and screaming in terror the whole time! :eek:

TheCahill
08-08-05, 03:49 PM
Technicaly you would be crapping in your cycling shorts and then leaking onto the bike. but the effect is much the same.

The abillity to get to the point of defication whilst on the bike would be amazing feat in and of its self, mayhap more rare than a century.

InfamousG
08-09-05, 09:04 AM
Downhill at 50 mph on a bicycle?? I'd be crapping all over the bike and screaming in terror the whole time! :eek:

Very little traffic, the downhill grade was quite possibly 25-30% for about a quarter mile. I was just grinning ear to ear as I flew past people whilst hollering "ON YOUR LEFT" in the middle of the lane. I was in the middle of the driving lane since the speed limit down the road was 35mph.

Luckily there were no cops to give me a speeding ticket ;)

Juha
08-09-05, 10:27 AM
InfamousG, no luck there. Imagine what that ticket would have looked like, framed and hanging on your wall... :)

--J

operator
08-09-05, 10:43 AM
Years ago when I was riding with a bicycle racing club they had some rule that the 100 miles had to be done in under ten hours to count as a century. That seems extremely easy today since it is an average speed of little more than ten miles per hour.

That's to prevent people like me from saying I did 23 complete centuries back to back (spread out over two months).

cydewaze
08-09-05, 11:38 AM
Dave, you could just do this 150 times:

http://www.descenders-on-dirt.com/fargo.jpg

:D

Zee
08-09-05, 12:51 PM
Uphill, or down? Downhill, you better have really, REALLY good brakes - looks like there are treetops between those cross roads! :eek:

cydewaze
08-09-05, 01:00 PM
Uphill, or down? Downhill, you better have really, REALLY good brakes - looks like there are treetops between those cross roads! :eek:
I was thinking uphill, although I guess to do repetitions you'd have to do both, unless you found an alternate way down.

CdCf
08-09-05, 01:07 PM
although I guess to do repetitions you'd have to do both, unless you found an alternate way down.

Unless you live in an Escher drawing, any alternate route will be downhill too... :D :p

cydewaze
08-09-05, 01:42 PM
Unless you live in an Escher drawing, any alternate route will be downhill too... :D :p
LOL!! Well yeah, but I meant not that exact route (and possibly into the treetops).

Sometimes I think I live in an Escher drawing where everything's uphill, and has a headwind.

Bontrager
08-10-05, 08:36 PM
Unless you live in an Escher drawing, any alternate route will be downhill too... :D :p

Hahahahaha!

Machka
08-10-05, 11:42 PM
Downhill at 50 mph on a bicycle?? I'd be crapping all over the bike and screaming in terror the whole time! :eek:

Try it on the back of a tandem where you've got no control over the situation at all. There's one of those "never again" experiences!

Machka
08-10-05, 11:57 PM

A century (100 miles) counts as a century when it is completed within a 24 hour period of time, as "all-at-once" as possible. In other words, reasonable breaks are fine, but overly extended breaks call the integrity of the century into question.

Let me elaborate ...

The century is allowed 24 hours because there are conditions where 24 hours may be required. Take the Susitna 100 in Alaska for example. That's 100 miles over snowmobile packed trails in all sorts of winter conditions ... and it often takes the participants all day (as in 24 hours) to complete it. In fact, I think they've actually got something like 40 hours to do the ride. The site is down right now, or I'd post the link. I've done a very cold winter century (see the Winter forum here where I talk about Winter Centuries) which took me 15 hours.

But century riders are encouraged to do the ride as "all-at-once" as possible to protect the integrity of the ride. With that 24 hour allowance, a rider could conceivably do 50 miles one evening, starting at 5 pm and ending at 9 pm ... then could get a good night's sleep, eat breakfast, lounge around the house for a while, and then at 1 pm could hop back on the bicycle again and ride the remaining 50 miles, finishing up at 5 pm, 24 hours later. That would be 100 miles in 24 hours, but I don't think anyone would consider two 50 mile rides on two separate days like that to be a century.

However, if a rider starts out at 8 am, rides, stops for a snack for 15 minutes, rides, stops to take a look at a local tourist attraction for 30 minutes, rides, stops for lunch for an hour at the local Subway, rides, stops for ice cream for 20 minutes, and then finally wraps up the ride ... something like that would still be considered a century because the breaks were of a reasonable length.

Cyclaholic
08-11-05, 02:18 AM
Personally I count a ride distance as not having stops, except for flats , red lights etc. I prefer to eat on the bike because a lunch stop to me feels like the end of a ride, then after lunch it's the start of a new ride...... but thta's just me, if not competing under a set of rules then we're all free to choose our own way. :)