Thread: Average MPH
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Old 03-28-17, 10:52 PM
  #6  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
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Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

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I'm never going to be as fast as I was in my 20s but when I resumed cycling in 2015 after 30 years away I was surprised by how difficult it was just to ride three miles at all, let alone at anything resembling "speed". A couple of times I was passed by people walking uphill.

After a year I could manage an average of 12 mph over 10-30 mile rides on a heavy comfort hybrid. Beyond that my average dropped to around 10 mph.

Now, with a somewhat lighter (but still heavyish) 27-30 lb rigid frame bike, depending on what I'm carrying, I can average 14 mph over 10-20 mile rides, closer to 13 mph up to 60 miles. Over less hilly routes the main challenge I'm hitting is wind resistance with a somewhat upright riding position. I've set the riser handlebar to saddle height for comfort over distance. I can feel the wind catching my torso and dragging me down a bit.

With an upright riding position it takes an effort disproportionate to any increase in speed over distance to break a 15 mph average. I finally did break that 15 mph barrier on a recent 15 mile ride, despite the hills and some crosswinds. But it demanded a huge effort over my usual comfort zone for a 1 mph increase.

So far I've gone a year between each bike upgrade. So by this summer I might be ready to consider a lighter bike. Flexibility will be the main challenge in getting a more aerodynamic bike. Working on it, though.

But a realistic goal would be something closer to 16 mph average over distance. I see local men and women close to my age averaging 20 mph over distance on the same routes I ride. I don't see that happening with me. But if I can ride a bit faster and still enjoy the ride without feeling like I'm "working out", I'll be satisfied.
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