I've been riding a road bike for a little over three months, before that I was rideing a Trek comfort bike. I ride to stay in shape, and get in better shape, and to lose weight. I've lost 103 lbs, and am now at 215lbs, but I want to go down to 190lbs, but then closer I get to my weight goal the slower the weight is coming off. I ride 16 miles a day five days a week Mon through Friday, my problem is that every day that I ride I end up raceing myself, trying to beat my time, and average speed from the day before, but Im not sure thats the right thing to do. I just turned 59 yrs old a few days ago, and Im not experianceing any knee, back or muscle pain yet. Last week every ride averaged between 18.11, and 18.97 mph, today my average was only 17.97 mph with only a 3 mph wind, I know thats not very fast for some of you guys but for me it's 100% effort. My question is should I be riding at 100% effort everyday, or should I do more miles say about 20 miles at a slower pace say around 15-16 mph, also I find it hard to ride at less that 100% effort, many years ago while in airborne training they pounded it in my head that any effort less than 100% is a wasted effort, and even though it's been 40 yrs since airborne school I still find myself thinking that every training session must be an all out effort, any help with this from some of you more experianced riders will be greatly appriciated.