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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 04-06-07, 09:09 AM   #1
rykoala
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Highest Speed, Fastest Commute time

This morning I was running LATE for work. I *hate* that. I left my house at 6:38am to be at work at 7:00am. Normally I leave at 6:25 or 6:30. I usually take 26-28 minutes for my 5.5 mile commute. I'm that that fast.

This morning was a different story. I noticed my speed pick up after a few minutes on the road. Soon I was doing 17-18mph instead of my usual half asleep 13-14mph. I was less than half way through my commute and I had 12 minutes to be to work. I stepped it up a notch and on the long and relatively flat part of my commute, I found myself doing 22mph. That was a short burst however but I kept 20mph for about 1.5 miles and then down to 17-18mph for the rest of my commute.

I made it to work in 22 minutes which is on par with my fastest time back when my bike was geared (it is fixed now).

I also hit my highest fixed gear speed ever while going down the underpass by the freeway. I managed to get to 30mph, which at my gearing is 130rpm cadence.

So, what personal records have you set lately?
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Old 04-06-07, 09:41 AM   #2
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Two weeks ago, I swapped out the 35c knobbies on my Kona Jake to 32c pavement tires, and switched from platform to clipless. My 6.5mile (each way) commute has gotten noticeably quicker, maybe by 2-3 minutes, and much smoother/quieter.
Used to be about 28-30 minutes on the way in and a few minutes quicker going home, and now it's more like 25-28 going in, and 22-25 home.

I don't stopwatch it, but generally look at my watch as I clip and and as I coast to a stop, and I've been surprised at the times lately, even on days when I felt tired and/or had a lot of lights.

Last night, I was just beat- all I wanted to do was lie down on the grass and sleep, but my legs kept churning and I didn't feel the need to shift into an easier gear or anything- probably partly attributable to the advantages of cliplss and partly due to the fact that I'm getting stronger lately as I'm riding much more than in March when we had a fair amt of snow/ice. But I still got home in my normal time range.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:07 AM   #3
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If I work in the Platte Valley which is steeply downhill from my house, it takes me 20 minutes down (5 miles and I try not to push when I get to the river so that I'm not quite so soggy when I get there) and it takes me 23 minutes back (up a monster 35 mph downhill).

For my other commute to Golden it takes me around 50 minutes by road bike (11 miles) or about an hour by mountain bike (I play around in the dirt on the way in ). Home is about 10 minutes less.

With a great tailwind, I was able to take a shorter route (9.5 miles) last week that took me 23 minutes to get home. I think I heard a sonic boom on that one
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Old 04-06-07, 10:12 AM   #4
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When I lived and commuted near Canadaigua, NY I was able on occasion to make my 18 mile commute in just under an hour. I had a long descent to start, but the balance was rolling (sometimes steep) hills along the lake.

Going home always took about 10 mintues longer - from the climb back to the house and from being stressed and tired from work.

Now I commute from the bedroom to the office in the room next door.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:14 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knucklesandwich
Two weeks ago, I swapped out the 35c knobbies on my Kona Jake to 32c pavement tires...

Looking forward to doing this on my Surly FG... as soon as the snow stops!
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Old 04-06-07, 10:18 AM   #6
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I hit 31.5mph yesterday on the way in, which was fun. Until I had to go home, and that hurt. This is no fun going up with no warmup:

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Old 04-06-07, 10:20 AM   #7
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There's a section of road that I HAVE to keep my speed down due to a near crash into the back of a garbage truck that runs in the mornings. Its not even that steep, but nice and long with lots of twisties. Well I commuted to my local YMCA on Sunday (no garbage trucks) was feeling a little frisky and hit and held 39.5mph. .

My fastest on the section is over 40mph from last year, but I will never do it again in the mornings.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:25 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rykoala
So, what personal records have you set lately?
Clocked 38mph on the fixed the other day. I think that's about 170 rpm (48x17).

Not trying to set any records, I'm just glad I don't have to ride the brake anymore. I loved the bike since I got it, but used to really dread the downhills.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:32 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by JeffS
Clocked 38mph on the fixed the other day. I think that's about 170 rpm (48x17).

Not trying to set any records, I'm just glad I don't have to ride the brake anymore. I loved the bike since I got it, but used to really dread the downhills.
I bet you looked absolutely rediculous... I wonder what people in cars were thinking?
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Old 04-06-07, 10:38 AM   #10
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My highest speed is 34.5 mph. I was coming down L Street which was the finishing straight of Stage 2 of the TOC this year. So of course I had to ramp it up and throw my hands in the air.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:44 AM   #11
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Yesterday was a hammerfest for me, too. I usually average 11.5-12.5 MPH. There are two life-sucking climbs on my commute that usually bring me down to 38t-20t or even 38t-23t spinning at about 7-8 MPH. There are a few downhills on my commute as well, but the destination is higher than home.

I hammered it up the hills up until I felt my old nemesis, Bonk, sneaking up on me. Then I backed off a bit. This resulted in an average speed of about 10 MPH up the slopes. Seeing my average speed at 14.8 for the trip, I went ahead and hammered it some more on the slightly uphill last leg of my journey, seeing if I could budge it up to 15 MPH before the bus stop. I quickly got it to 14.9, but I failed to break past that despite pushing 18 MPH uphill (but not a climb)

14.9 MPH is my fastest average speed on my commute, ever.

Coming down off of the viaduct (the second big climb in my morning commute) right after climbing up it, I once hit 36 MPH. That's the fastest I've gotten on my way TO work.

On the return trip, I hit 38.2 a few days ago, but coming down the first big climb.

My lard speed record is 42.6 MPH but that was on a recreational ride and was assisted by a 15 MPH tailwind.
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Old 04-06-07, 11:21 AM   #12
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12 mile commute. 3 stop lights, 5 stop signs.
Overall average speed, 14.2
Best ever, 16.3
Highest top speed, 35.something

This is on a Bianchi hybrid.
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Old 04-06-07, 11:58 AM   #13
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Old 04-06-07, 01:05 PM   #14
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I had a lot of energy yesterday morning for some reason. Did the 13 mile commute in 40 minutes. Normally it takes around 50 minutes. There is a nice but brief hill just coming down to my office building and I maxed out at just over 42MPH going down it.
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Old 04-07-07, 12:36 PM   #15
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Nearly 15mph average for my total commute (which includes a 3/4 mile long, varying 7-10% grade just before I get to work.) The nice thing is that I can really get cookin' coming down it on the way home.

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Old 04-07-07, 12:42 PM   #16
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My personal record: 18 mph average on an urban commute with lots of lights, traffic etc. (and no breaking the law... except for occasional speeding ).
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Old 04-07-07, 01:34 PM   #17
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Well, not to be too bragging, but when I lived in Hawaii, my daily commute over the Pali Mountains was 'exciting'.

Max speed ever on the Kailu bound sid ewas 46 MPH on my Leader mountain bike. Bit of a tailwind there and lots of gravity.

Most days it was around 40 -> 42 MPH. Pedaling like a cartoon character.

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Old 04-08-07, 11:27 PM   #18
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This thread reminds me of that thread where the guy couldn't break--what was it--something like 30mph on his downhill and everyone was posting their speeds.

Anyway, my current max speed record:



The first day I got the computer I made 40 mph. I ride a hybrid, flatbar, top gear 48x13. There's a good downhill on the way home, which I immediately have to climb out of. For what it's worth my average is about 14ish.
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Old 04-08-07, 11:35 PM   #19
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I just did my best average speed on my 11 mile commute last friday. 16.9mph! I've consistently averaged 13.5-14.5 before. I guess there is no better motivation than money. My kids had to be picked up from a class program and every minute over the limit, 6pm, is a $2 charge. Made it with 6 minutes to spare. My fastest speed on my commuter is not that fast though. Only 29mph .

On the other hand I once clocked 38mph on my mountain bike going downhill a firetrail at Black Diamond mines. Dirt, rocks, bumps, and ruts. I thought I was gonna die.
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Old 04-09-07, 06:50 AM   #20
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My Average speed is around 20 mph. I make it to work in 10 mins or less. IF I go the short way of 3.5 miles. I take the lone way most mornings, that gives me a 20 mile ride. Now it takes me 58 mins to cover the 20 miles.
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Old 04-09-07, 07:19 AM   #21
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When I started doing my commute, the first time I averaged 13.5 MPH over 22 miles. RT average was slightly faster, since (for some reason) faster going home. It went up over time, and I even broke 17 MPH once on the trip home. Just last week, though, I felt great both ways, and averaged 17.1 going in, and 17.7 going home - total was a 17.5 average. Wonder if I can break 18?
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Old 04-09-07, 07:55 AM   #22
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I don't rush my 5 mile commute in the morning since I'm overweight and easily sweat, and I can usually avoid needing to shower if I'm careful. In fact, in summer, I deliberately slow it down. Still it only takes 20-25 minutes, because it's downhill. My best time is 17 minutes (17.6 mph). Of course this is an inner urban route with lots of stop signs and lights.
I work harder on the ride home, which includes 60 m of elevation. My best time is 23.5 min (12.8 mph). So not very fast by some of your standards.

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Old 04-09-07, 08:54 AM   #23
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16:55 / 5.5 miles through the city. (Tailwinds help)

Highest speed: Probably low 30s.
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Old 04-09-07, 08:58 AM   #24
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Wow, we are a varied bunch! I keep lusting after a faster bike but I realize that the speed is all about the engine. My bike fits quite well and while I keep fiddling with the configuration (such as building a 3 speed wheel soon) it will never change significantly. The change has to be in *me*. That is a humbling thought. I just have to keep working at maintaining those high rpm's for more than just a couple of minutes if I want to maintain my speed around 20-22mph. That's a tough thing to do for me for some reason. Lance I am not. That guy can do 120rpm all day!
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Old 04-09-07, 09:36 AM   #25
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Highest speed on my commute has been around 30/31mph on a brief downhill on Spadina towards Queens Quay. Usually don't hit over 25mph though. Current commute means no more than 21/22mph unless I really really gun it (which I haven't yet).

Fastest average I think has me at about 16mph, but right now even with my short commute I don't get much more than 13, usually around 12 - pretty badly out of shape/out of conditioning particularly my cardio - the wind going across the lake sucks the breath right out of me most times.

Fastest recorded speed I had until my battery dislodged was 36.6mph, wasn't part of a commute and was down a fairly steep incline which I hammered it down - I'm convinced I can hit 40mph given the chance, even on my el cheapo bike
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