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Old 07-27-14, 07:24 AM   #26
rydabent
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Or you can do what I do. I say to the hell with someone else telling me what cadence I should be riding at. I ride with a cadence that feels right at the the time. On some up hills I might go as high as 90 or more, and down hill with the wind I often shift into my highest gear and cruise along at 50 or so rpm just to relax. Who really cares what some "expert" says?
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Old 07-27-14, 07:47 AM   #27
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I've concluded that I'll just ride the way I want. My whole life, (and I've been riding my whole life), I've always ridden with lower cadences. I'm quite comfortable riding at a cadence of 65, and can do it all day long. I've tried spinning faster. Just doesn't work for me. Just yesterday, (Strava link), I rode a pretty flat metric century. My cadence average for the ride was only 70, and I thought I was pushing it a lot on that ride.

When I get to 85 or so, I start looking for a higher gear. On some of the steeper grades around my area, I've noticed that I'm only "spinning" at 45 or 50. I won't get to the top first, but I'll get there eventually. Until I figured out how to turn it off, my old Garmin would often complain while climbing that my cadence was too low.

p.s. Knees are fine. Has never been an issue.
Back in the day 70-75 was considered a touring range.
85 would be considered rather high for that purpose. Nothing wrong with holding that all day.

There's features on my garmin I should adopt but just haven't yet.
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Old 07-27-14, 08:32 AM   #28
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One of these days I should buy a computer to see what my cadence is. When I jump on the Life Fitness exercise bike at the gym, I usually run around 85.
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Old 07-27-14, 08:38 AM   #29
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No, it doesn't, really. Conditions and terrain vary.

In general, fitter and more experienced cyclists will employ a higher cadence (and therefore a lower gear) for a given speed. That is not, however, as many will tell you, because it is "more efficient".

Actually, the most efficient cadence in terms of power generated for oxygen burned is around 60. That is why most beginners default to something close to that - it's similar to a typical walking rhythm of about two paces per second. Higher cadences burn more fuel, because irrespective of the force applied there is an energy cost to simply moving one's legs faster. So the faster you pedal, the higher the stress on the cardiovascular system. That, simply in terms of energy consumed, is "inefficient".

However, it does have one very considerable benefit, in that pedalling faster in a lower gear means one is applying less force through each pedal stroke, and therefore stressing the muscles less. And that means one can cruise for longer without one's legs getting tired.

So, the more aerobically fit (that is, those whose systems can deliver more oxygen to their muscles) can afford to be "inefficient" - they have oxygen to burn, and they can be profligate with it in order to spare their legs and go further, faster, at higher cadences.

Which is a long-winded way of saying that higher cadences transfer stress from the joints and muscles to the CV system. If you're in good shape, that's a pretty good idea a lot of the time. And if your cadence is in the 90s, I'd say that it would be reasonable to conclude that you're fairly fit and riding in a way that exploits that.
I'd agree with all that and add: Higher cadence with smooth pedaling is also more healthy for ones knees.

And: I'm not sure that higher is better beyond a certain point. And for me, an average of 93 would be great. If your body wants to go higher, do it, but I would think there isn't much more benefit.
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Old 07-27-14, 08:39 AM   #30
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No, a Vespa
Had one - I'd rather get a Ducati.
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Old 07-27-14, 11:35 AM   #31
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At one time this forum had about 65 fictitious characters all writing to each other and others (all written by maybe 2-3 anonymous folks, as I recall), each with his/her own character. Mods finally stopped some of the best fictional writing around, and not a word was true.

Just sayin . . . .
Glad someone pointed out the obvious (that's a compliment, btw); I couldn't be a_rsed ... whenever I do, I seem to get in trouble!!
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Old 07-27-14, 04:37 PM   #32
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I maintain a cadence of 90 RPMs. Trying to get my wife to spin has always been a challenge and, now, she has been having some knee problems when she tries muscling the bike. If you can maintain your spinning rate, it means that you are letting the gears do the work for you. That's how races are won.
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Old 07-27-14, 09:59 PM   #33
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Back in the day 70-75 was considered a touring range.
85 would be considered rather high for that purpose. Nothing wrong with holding that all day...
Yeah, I think I'm a tourist. Just got back from a short ride. Wanted to get in a few miles. Strava says I did the 15.5 miles in just under an hour for a 16.0 mph average. The average cadence for the ride was 75, and I felt that I was really pushing it the whole time. That might have been because of the wind and the gradients. To me anyway, pedaling fast isn't very much fun. I think I'm most comfortable in the 65-70 range on the flats. Less on hills, and usually freewheel on the downhills. I'm old enough that I'm not much into seeing how fast I can go bombing down a steep mountain anymore.
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Old 07-28-14, 04:11 AM   #34
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Yeah, I think I'm a tourist. Just got back from a short ride. Wanted to get in a few miles. Strava says I did the 15.5 miles in just under an hour for a 16.0 mph average. The average cadence for the ride was 75, and I felt that I was really pushing it the whole time. That might have been because of the wind and the gradients. To me anyway, pedaling fast isn't very much fun. I think I'm most comfortable in the 65-70 range on the flats. Less on hills, and usually freewheel on the downhills. I'm old enough that I'm not much into seeing how fast I can go bombing down a steep mountain anymore.
Some years ago I met a man on the highway pedaling slowly and moving "slowly". I clocked him at 14mph and had a cadence noticeably below 60rpm. Doing the Fredly thing of the moment I pulled up and asked him why. He says it is his 200+ mile ride pace. Pfffft. Ok, sorry I asked.
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Old 07-28-14, 06:47 AM   #35
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Some years ago I met a man on the highway pedaling slowly and moving "slowly". I clocked him at 14mph and had a cadence noticeably below 60rpm. Doing the Fredly thing of the moment I pulled up and asked him why. He says it is his 200+ mile ride pace. Pfffft. Ok, sorry I asked.
Not my friend Freddie...The Man Who Rode to the Moon (and back) (twice) | Miles 4 Melanoma you met since his cadence was so low and speed too slow, but truth be told, cadence is a personal thing and everyone has to figure out what's best for their type of riding. There are very few people in the world who can match Freddie's accomplishments with his 80rpm that has worked very nicely for him.
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Old 07-28-14, 09:39 AM   #36
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All this stuff about speed, heart rate and cadence was never on my radar for the last 4 years and 10 months, I just knew that when i came home i was tired and my legs were exausted. This all cahnged about a month ago when i purchased my 1st Bike Computer (Garmin Edge 1000). I always thought that i was doing ok however the garmin sure showed me alot i had no idea about. I like to ride by myself as most guys are still not up and moving at 430am every day..
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Old 07-28-14, 05:47 PM   #37
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Some years ago I met a man on the highway pedaling slowly and moving "slowly". I clocked him at 14mph and had a cadence noticeably below 60rpm. Doing the Fredly thing of the moment I pulled up and asked him why. He says it is his 200+ mile ride pace. Pfffft. Ok, sorry I asked.
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Old 07-29-14, 03:06 AM   #38
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All this stuff about speed, heart rate and cadence was never on my radar for the last 4 years and 10 months, I just knew that when i came home i was tired and my legs were exausted. This all cahnged about a month ago when i purchased my 1st Bike Computer (Garmin Edge 1000). I always thought that i was doing ok however the garmin sure showed me alot i had no idea about. I like to ride by myself as most guys are still not up and moving at 430am every day..
Sounds like my kind of riding. Nice and quiet.

A 0430 start, just a little late for me. 0205 last Saturday was start time for my 133 miles. Thinking about 150 this Saturday so a 0100 start would be in order.
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Old 07-29-14, 05:17 AM   #39
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Sounds like my kind of riding. Nice and quiet.

A 0430 start, just a little late for me. 0205 last Saturday was start time for my 133 miles. Thinking about 150 this Saturday so a 0100 start would be in order.
Is that your normal start time 7 days a week 365 days a year or just for those long rides? Thats my start time 7 days a week..
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Old 07-29-14, 05:29 AM   #40
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Is that your normal start time 7 days a week 365 days a year or just for those long rides? Thats my start time 7 days a week..
Not every day like you, so more power to you for sure.
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Old 07-29-14, 07:47 AM   #41
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Not every day like you, so more power to you for sure.
I DO NOT like you ride 150 and 100 mile rides ever. I am only good for about 35 to 50 miles a day and actually i am starting to get burned out like this.. I have not missed a days since back in may and i need to give my weary legs a rest i suppose..
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Old 07-29-14, 08:27 AM   #42
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Went for a fairly flat 8 mile ride this morning. I haven't gotten a cadence meter yet, but I focused on riding a gear or two lower than normal and keeping the cadence up. Found if anything I was a MPH faster than usual and got a bit more of a cardio workout. Interesting.
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