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Old 07-26-14, 06:49 AM   #1
trekmogul
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What about CADENCE..?

Is there anything to gauge or understand from your average cadence..? If you have a average cadence of 93 RPM for a hour does that tell you anything..?
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Old 07-26-14, 07:14 AM   #2
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Is there anything to gauge or understand from your average cadence..? If you have a average cadence of 93 RPM for a hour does that tell you anything..?
Yes - you did 5580 revolutions

Besides that, you have a pretty good average cadence, but, each person finds the cadence that best suits him/her. However, higher cadences are a goal for most folks, and 93RPM on the average is pretty good, IMHO. Higher cadences are supposed to equal less stress on the body (i.e., knees) - at least that is what some folks say.
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Old 07-26-14, 07:22 AM   #3
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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.
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Old 07-26-14, 07:40 AM   #4
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When my cadence hits 90 I'm already reaching for the next highest gear. It's how I roll. Spinning along at 110rpm's may be chic but it's a waste of time and energy to me.
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Old 07-26-14, 08:08 AM   #5
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Is there anything to gauge or understand from your average cadence..? If you have a average cadence of 93 RPM for a hour does that tell you anything..?
Not much. Most riders, including pros, have an average cadence somewhere around 90. Average power for 1 hour, on the other hand, can vary from 2 to 6W/kg and tells you much more.

While cadences vary depending on rider type and leg strength, for an individual rider their cadence normally increases with power. In other words if you're just cruising around your cadence will likely be lower than if you were doing a one hour, or shorter, time trial.
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Old 07-26-14, 09:23 AM   #6
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I have always thought that cadence on it's own doesn't tell you much other than how fast your legs are turning. Shouldn't the discussion also include the gear you are in. You could be pedalling like the clappers in lowest gear but only doing say 15 mph or pedalling half that rate in a high gear and doing 25 mph. I think I must be cycling inefficiently as I am almost always looking to ride in a higher gear at a slightly lower cadence for any given speed - probably putting unnecessary strain on my knees.

I just did some searching on the net and found this interesting (to me anyway) calculator for gears/cadence/speed. I might do some more research on my riding methods using this tool: Bicycle Bike Gear Ratio Speed and Cadence Calculator
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Old 07-26-14, 09:40 AM   #7
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It indicates that you have a lower chance for knee problems than you would if you had a cadence of say 60 with equal distance and speed IMO
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Old 07-26-14, 10:20 AM   #8
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When my cadence hits 90 I'm already reaching for the next highest gear. It's how I roll. Spinning along at 110rpm's may be chic but it's a waste of time and energy to me.
I'm with you. Keep gearing up and accelerating. You don't know how fast you can go until you try. Just holding a high cadence is limiting unless you're riding in a group, in which case it's fine. I do long solo intervals during which I hold a high cadence up hill and down. I think that's good training, but that's not how I roll when I want to go.
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Old 07-26-14, 11:26 AM   #9
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I just 'stay on top of my Gear' (ratio) not too fast, not pushing hard ,
and not so proud as to stay on the bike, up a steep hill when my heart-rate will drop
to a comfortable elevel , if I get off and Push it up that Hill.
the 2 foot gear.
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Old 07-26-14, 12:08 PM   #10
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I'm with you. Keep gearing up and accelerating. You don't know how fast you can go until you try. Just holding a high cadence is limiting unless you're riding in a group, in which case it's fine. I do long solo intervals during which I hold a high cadence up hill and down. I think that's good training, but that's not how I roll when I want to go.
I have a 13.4mi course with one big hill and plenty of false flats. Every gear one my 2x14 is used at some point. Cadence is approx 65-85 in this course.

Then there is the flat 4mi that is hammer-til-you-cant. That's a fun one where I will use that upper end cadence of 85 and keep stretching for the next gear.
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Old 07-26-14, 12:12 PM   #11
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Mainly flat land and a tad over 19 mile coarse with a average speed of 19mph with a cadence of 93 and this would include EIGHT SLOW DOWNS for road crossings and at least one complete dead stop out of cleats..I ride a single speed belt drive trek District and a former heavy slob..
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Old 07-26-14, 12:26 PM   #12
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Mainly flat land and a tad over 19 mile coarse with a average speed of 19mph with a cadence of 93 and this would include EIGHT SLOW DOWNS for road crossings and at least one complete dead stop out of cleats..I ride a single speed belt drive trek District and a former heavy slob..
What is the weight of the bike?
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Old 07-26-14, 12:27 PM   #13
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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.
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Old 07-26-14, 02:58 PM   #14
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I have a 13.4mi course with one big hill and plenty of false flats. Every gear one my 2x14 is used at some point. Cadence is approx 65-85 in this course.

Then there is the flat 4mi that is hammer-til-you-cant. That's a fun one where I will use that upper end cadence of 85 and keep stretching for the next gear.
OTOH, I TT best at 94-96 cadence. I obviously can put out the most power at those cadences. Higher cadences put a greater load on my CV system, but all the same I can hold the watts longer up there than at a lower cadence. You might practice that and see if it's true for you too. 4 miles is pretty short. When it gets up to 10 miles it really makes a difference. When I'm just riding, I don't pedal that fast, though.
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Old 07-26-14, 03:00 PM   #15
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Mainly flat land and a tad over 19 mile coarse with a average speed of 19mph with a cadence of 93 and this would include EIGHT SLOW DOWNS for road crossings and at least one complete dead stop out of cleats..I ride a single speed belt drive trek District and a former heavy slob..
Ah, it tells you that you're riding a SS bike! SS can be fun.
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Old 07-26-14, 03:37 PM   #16
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If you have a average cadence of 93 RPM for a hour does that tell you anything..?
Yes, that I'm on flat road w/o a head or quartering wind in a fixed gear, and I'm getting bored.

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Old 07-26-14, 03:42 PM   #17
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When my knee is acting up, it definitely prefers higher cadence. But it is more aerobic, which is perhaps my weakest point.
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Old 07-26-14, 04:12 PM   #18
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I've always been a relatively fast cadence rider although I've never had a cadence meter on any of my bikes. I just pretty much adapted to that as the best way for me to last long at fast paces with riding partners when I was young and I still ride that way.

Yeah I've been dropped plenty by mashers alright, even at my younger-best. But spinning 'em is the way I still roll.
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Old 07-26-14, 04:13 PM   #19
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Yes, that I'm on flat road w/o a head or quartering wind in a fixed gear, and I'm getting bored.

-Bandera
Actually i never said anything about a head or cross wind and i can assure you i am not bored. After being 265lbs and now 148 there is no boredom in anything i do. The winds on my afternoon ride are usually quite stiff and brutal. My 430am rides are quite calm and pitch dark on the bike trail. I am not trying to compare to the seasoned 20 thousand mile a year rider, i am looking for input from you casual rider whom dont ride more then a 1000 miles a month .. I do understand the cadence and load on gearing add in to the factor, but riding a single speed bike, i have what i GOTS and thats IT..!
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Old 07-26-14, 04:43 PM   #20
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Casual riders doing nearly 12,000 miles a year? That's professional level compared to me.

It's lucky I don't do Strava to compare with others, the results could be embarrassing - for me

If I really wanted to find how I compare to others I would join a club or do group rides, everything else is just gossip.

Be happy with your fitness and performance and stop searching for affirmation.
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Old 07-26-14, 06:26 PM   #21
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Casual riders doing nearly 12,000 miles a year? That's professional level compared to me.

It's lucky I don't do Strava to compare with others, the results could be embarrassing - for me

If I really wanted to find how I compare to others I would join a club or do group rides, everything else is just gossip.

Be happy with your fitness and performance and stop searching for affirmation.
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 . . . .

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Old 07-26-14, 06:39 PM   #22
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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 . . . .
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Old 07-26-14, 08:36 PM   #23
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OTOH, I TT best at 94-96 cadence. I obviously can put out the most power at those cadences. Higher cadences put a greater load on my CV system, but all the same I can hold the watts longer up there than at a lower cadence. You might practice that and see if it's true for you too. 4 miles is pretty short. When it gets up to 10 miles it really makes a difference. When I'm just riding, I don't pedal that fast, though.
Since I dont have a cadence function on my GPS I very well could be in that range already. I do know there is a sweet spot I have and when on the speed courses it's cranked up near that 95rpm range but will quickly upshift if it's too easy or too fast of a spin to apply pedal pressure.

That 4mi is a "candy" course. Lot's of heavy breathing and in the drops working on form. Speeds run 23-26mph.
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Old 07-27-14, 06:47 AM   #24
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So if you have bad knees or joints, then go high cadence. If you have a bad ticker (atrial fib), then go low cadence. If you have both, get a bent?
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Old 07-27-14, 07:19 AM   #25
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So if you have bad knees or joints, then go high cadence. If you have a bad ticker (atrial fib), then go low cadence. If you have both, get a bent?
No, a Vespa
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