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60 Miles roundtrip 5 days a week: Sane?

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60 Miles roundtrip 5 days a week: Sane?

Old 05-12-13, 07:21 PM
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tariqa
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60 Miles roundtrip 5 days a week: Sane?

Hi members.

Question.
I am questioning commuting to work 60 miles round trip, busy busy city streets, 5 days a week, and possibly 20 more on the weekends.

I have read and heard stories of some folks riding 100 miles in one trip or commuting 50 miles some days, maybe 2-3 times a week, many were retired, ample amounts of time (or some just crazy) but I am talking 5 days a week, possibly even everyday along with a countless list of duties, responsibilities, other goals (other than maximum fitness level..I have a life you see) and ambitions.

This is something I rarely hear about. 5-7 days a week possibly?
I am not questioning whether it can be done, but should it be done?


What are the risks of taking such an exhausting task?

The way I figure, eventually you will get used to it.
I have rode everyday for months, without a single rest day, and have never tired of the task once.
Yet I was not riding at distances such as these.....ever.

I'm attempting to do so but just wanted to know from others if this is a good idea, or more importantly, something a sane man would undertake?

Not to mention 8 hours of work, plus going to school full time?
This is something I do not see as a possibility as there are only really 2-3hours of free time after 8 hours sleep, 8 hours of work, 5 hours commuting, 1 hour prep, and of course probably 1.5 hours for eating...(gotta eat right?).

That leaves possibly 30 minutes of free time a day.. That is really no time to get any schoolwork done or any other type of extra circular activates or duties done.
And a family to attend to.



If it was just me, no school, and no family, I would possibly (emphasis on possibly) consider this undertaking.

But it is not...And right now my bravery is telling me I'm a wimp and just go for it.
But my sane side is questioning what I really am thinking.

I'm split between these two so folks any recommendations, considerations, or logic that can be imputed in this dilemma?




I mean cycling is cool, but there is more to life than just being fit and more prosperous right? I do have needs like any other normal human being, why limit them because of the few gains cycling brings?

Just confused right now....I don't know.

Thanks.

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Old 05-12-13, 07:27 PM
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That's a big time commitment. Balance your priorities. Is cycling worth losing your job or flunking out of school? Maybe you should dial it back and try 2-3 times a week at first and see how much time you have left for other things.
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Old 05-12-13, 07:37 PM
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Listen to your sane side... Just because it can be done mathematically doesn't mean it would/would work out in "real life"...
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Old 05-12-13, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kenji666 View Post
That's a big time commitment. Balance your priorities. Is cycling worth losing your job or flunking out of school? Maybe you should dial it back and try 2-3 times a week at first and see how much time you have left for other things.
Hah...I was being very generous with my calculations.
I doubt I would have more than 1.5 hours a day to do anything.
Yes risk losing everything because.

I dont think losing freedom is worth the minimal gain in cycling this way.

Yes it is good for the environment, our health, and good for our economy, but at what cost?
It sounds like I would literally be sacrificing everything for it.

I have heard of some folks doing distances like this everyday, but I havent heard of anyone factoring all of the other aspects I have to deal with.

It may be possible if you are retired, not working, not going to school, no family, no other aspirations or goals, but unfortunately (or fortunately) I do.
I think when you factor everything else in, we are looking at two different pictures here.


You are right. Maybe 2-3 times a week and see how it goes.

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Old 05-12-13, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Listen to your sane side... Just because it can be done mathematically doesn't mean it would/would work out in "real life"...
Hah...Right. Not to factor in all of the added time I would have to put in to maintain a lifestyle such as this.
Increased meal times, increased prep + commute times. The only way it could possibly be managed is by decreasing sleep, eat, and prep time. But then I don't know how it would affect commute time. Riding, working, schooling, on 5 hours of sleep....Just doesn't sound reasonable.

Maybe it has been done by someone. Somewhere...If so I would love to know how....on Earth.
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Old 05-12-13, 07:57 PM
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All that riding requires recovery time for your body as well. That includes sleep and proper nutrition.
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Old 05-12-13, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by kenji666 View Post
All that riding requires recovery time for your body as well. That includes sleep and proper nutrition.
Which means, probably not a good idea everyday? Every weekday? At least if sleep and eating is covered why not?

I think it is possible if I dont go to school. Im still contemplating if I want to go back.

30 mins at worst for free time though still sounds bad.
If going to school, that 30 mins goes straight to school.

Still have to account for cleaning, chores, duties, at least 1 hour extra.


***@#*#*.....My mind is boiling just doing all of this calculating.
Doesnt seem like living to me...Seems like dying...
Done for the night...Im done thinking..Need relaxation...
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Old 05-12-13, 08:13 PM
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I have just started commuting regularly 18.5mi each way to work, 4 days a week, on Monday OR any day I absolutely need to drive in to work I will bring some clothes into work and swap out my smelly stuff. I've also done 21-22mi each way here and there as needed due to traffic or bad weather, depending on the elevation you're facing it may not be a good idea to do quite that much. I have about 1200ft of elevation going and 800 or so coming back, after a few days it does start to hurt with the extra weight I'm carrying. So I'd say just do it a few times a week, and do a recovery ride the other days from home in the morning or evening.
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Old 05-12-13, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by thecyclingadmin View Post
I have just started commuting regularly 18.5mi each way to work, 4 days a week, on Monday OR any day I absolutely need to drive in to work I will bring some clothes into work and swap out my smelly stuff. I've also done 21-22mi each way here and there as needed due to traffic or bad weather, depending on the elevation you're facing it may not be a good idea to do quite that much. I have about 1200ft of elevation going and 800 or so coming back, after a few days it does start to hurt with the extra weight I'm carrying. So I'd say just do it a few times a week, and do a recovery ride the other days from home in the morning or evening.
Sounds reasonable.

I have pushed myself to excruciating limits before for a minimal gain that wasnt worth the price in the end.
I am trying to learn a lesson from my past and know when enough is simply too much.

2-3 times a week sounds fine.
Maybe pushing 4 for 60 a day...Possibly...I dont know..That may be a stretch.

All I can do is at least try to get 2 in and see how I fare.
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Old 05-12-13, 09:06 PM
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Sane? Nope. I find 5 days of 20 miles per day is tiring enough. Tripling that would be completely impossible for me.
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Old 05-12-13, 09:26 PM
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I vote insane. But heck, if you have the stamina, don't let opinions here stop you. Just don't kill yourself and end up quitting altogether. I don't do 30 mi RT a full 5 days myself.
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Old 05-12-13, 09:43 PM
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While it may be physically possible, it doesn't make much sense for your situation. I'd consider doing the commute every Friday or something like that.
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Old 05-12-13, 09:58 PM
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There were many years when my commute was fifty miles round trip. For most of those years, I rode to work five to seven days per week. For a couple of those years, my wife and I were both also in grad. school; she was also working full time. Fortunately, shortly after our son was born I was able to transfer locations and have a much shorter commute. We would have needed to use some sort of day-care or hire someone to do the house remodel we were doing in our spare time if I had continued with the prior commute.

So, I guess I can say that a slightly less than sixty mile r/t commute leaves plenty of time for other interests. I think the reason your time analysis indicates otherwise is two-fold:
1. It won't take you five hours to ride sixty miles if you put some effort into getting faster.
2. Assuming you desire to live a full and healthy life, you are going to need at least an hour per day of exercise anyway. Now you can get something else done while getting that daily maintenance done. For me, time in a car is time lost. Time on a bike is time enjoyed.

If you are committed to riding slowly and you don't feel any need to stay healthy, then commuting 300 miles per week will feel like drudgery. If you enjoy the ride and can get your speed up, it will leave you feeling energized and leave you plenty of time for other pursuits. However, we all get 168 hours per week and no one can really assess how best to allocate those hours other than the person who is living with the decisions.
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Old 05-12-13, 11:47 PM
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Physically it can be done, but it can become a lonely existence. Others that rely on you, if only for interaction, very well may come to resent the time you spend on the bike.
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Old 05-13-13, 12:10 AM
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Originally Posted by GeneO View Post
I vote insane. But heck, if you have the stamina, don't let opinions here stop you. Just don't kill yourself and end up quitting altogether. I don't do 30 mi RT a full 5 days myself.
Probably do have the stamina...Just dont know if I should have the stamina..
Thinking other options perhaps...But then again I have told myself before I coudlnt or shouldnt do something, ended up doing it and succeeded.

Like I said it wouldnt hurt to at least try....What's the worst that can happen besides losing?
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Old 05-13-13, 12:11 AM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
While it may be physically possible, it doesn't make much sense for your situation. I'd consider doing the commute every Friday or something like that.
And if my situation were ideal? Sensible or still no?
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Old 05-13-13, 12:17 AM
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I say, combine your bicycle commute with other forms of transportation. Like bike-car, or bike-bus, or perhaps even bike-train. Your family and education should always come far before anything else. If you must sacrifice cycling altogether, then so be it! Just pick it up some other time...

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Old 05-13-13, 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
There were many years when my commute was fifty miles round trip. For most of those years, I rode to work five to seven days per week. For a couple of those years, my wife and I were both also in grad. school; she was also working full time. Fortunately, shortly after our son was born I was able to transfer locations and have a much shorter commute. We would have needed to use some sort of day-care or hire someone to do the house remodel we were doing in our spare time if I had continued with the prior commute.

So, I guess I can say that a slightly less than sixty mile r/t commute leaves plenty of time for other interests. I think the reason your time analysis indicates otherwise is two-fold:
1. It won't take you five hours to ride sixty miles if you put some effort into getting faster.
2. Assuming you desire to live a full and healthy life, you are going to need at least an hour per day of exercise anyway. Now you can get something else done while getting that daily maintenance done. For me, time in a car is time lost. Time on a bike is time enjoyed.

If you are committed to riding slowly and you don't feel any need to stay healthy, then commuting 300 miles per week will feel like drudgery. If you enjoy the ride and can get your speed up, it will leave you feeling energized and leave you plenty of time for other pursuits. However, we all get 168 hours per week and no one can really assess how best to allocate those hours other than the person who is living with the decisions.
I am calculating 5 hours a ride because 20 miles takes around 2 hours for me...30 minutes added on for traffic lights, hills, slow easy pace.

Then again I usually ride at a slow/moderate pace.
But the slow/moderate pace is what allows me to ride so consistently. I practically never tire...

Beefing my pace up to a moderate/heavy pace I beleive would quickly tire me doing such insane distances.

Yes I can go faster...Maybe I should try to curb it under 4 hours, 2 each way... Possibly even 3 and a half.
I have cut 20 minutes off of an hour stretch before..so i'm looking at possibly 90 minutes off this commute.
Roughly 3-3.5 hours. Thats not bad but still will only give me 2-3.5 hours free time.
3.5 hours is not bad at all. If I can find sleep time to cut, maybe 8 to 7, that would make a total 4.5 hours a day.

Other cuts here and there and sure maybe I can achieve even 5 hours a day.

I'm sure it's possible. The only thing holding me back is fear of the risk. Taking a risk changing my so successful yearly routine and transforming into a more intense rider.

I fear that this destroys my love for the sport..That would be possibly the most devastating loss I can account for.

But either way, if I never risk, I will never know possible failure or gain.
Couldnt hurt to try the way I see it.

If you never go, how will you really ever know?
Someone surely knows better than we do.
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Old 05-13-13, 12:35 AM
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I would not want to discourage you from giving it a try. If it was me I would want clip on aero bars to make the distance a little bit more comfortable. I say give it a try. If it doesn't work out, you can always switch to something less intense.
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Old 05-13-13, 12:38 AM
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You can get in shape to do it and learn to ride faster. No problem. But if you want a life, that much time riding is going to be a problem. I used to ride 17 miles each way. I got bored and wished I had more time for other activities. I eventually stopped the commute.

I'd say if you are really convinced, try one day a week and work up. The time is the inflexible part. Living life means balancing your activities. Unless you are a professional rider, that much time is unbalanced.
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Old 05-13-13, 12:53 AM
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Haha....Right...There is so much more to being fit than just exercising...
Like relaxing, reading a book, playing with your family, taking up a new hobby, learning a new language, raising a family....

There's just so much to do....Only cycling, exercise, saving money, and being strong exists**********?
Important aspects in life, but not the only nor the only way...

I guess my mind, body, and soul will guide me to let me know what is the best for me. They couldnt lie to me could they?
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Old 05-13-13, 04:30 AM
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Originally Posted by tariqa View Post
Haha....Right...There is so much more to being fit than just exercising...
Like relaxing, reading a book, playing with your family, taking up a new hobby, learning a new language, raising a family....

There's just so much to do....Only cycling, exercise, saving money, and being strong exists**********?
Important aspects in life, but not the only nor the only way...

I guess my mind, body, and soul will guide me to let me know what is the best for me. They couldnt lie to me could they?
I think that you should consult with a family life counselor and ask a professional advisor for their official opinion.
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Old 05-13-13, 05:18 AM
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My trip to the office is 50-60 miles one way depending on the route, but i do it only once a week. After 8 months I am still not tired of it, actually every week I am looking forward to that ride. I wouldn't wish to do it more often than that, it would become a chore pretty quickly.

But like OP says cycling is cool, so couple of times per week I would just go for a ride in the evening, some 50km, and once a week we do it together with my wife. That is just the right amount of cycling for me, and leaves plenty of time for being with my family etc. It also allows me to pick more interesting routes rather than riding always same paths.

Riding to work once a week brings a lot of Ahs and Ohs from my coworkers, so I have no problems with the sense of accomplishment. Actually in my case it's far easier than they imagine it, but I keep quiet.

Like many have suggested already in the OP's situation I would ride once or twice a week for few weeks in a row and see if that's enough. Another option is to move closer to your office or change the office. Option 3 is to go to the office less frequently and work from home few days a week (that's my approach). Of course a lot depends on what sort of job you have, etc. You have a better idea what fits and what doesn't.

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Old 05-13-13, 05:25 AM
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If you want to save on gas, but not kill yourself from over-exertion, you might try finding a parking solution halfway or 2/3 of the way along the commute route, and drive that part of your commute, then bicycle the final part.

If nothing else, you'll get to try bicycling back the full 60 miles when your car gets stolen. (I'm suddenly thinking this might not be such a great idea.)

Alternative solution: Find local bus and/or light-rail routes that cover much of that 60 miles, and bicycle the rest. I think most local bus services include the bicycle rack in front, and there are usually bicycle commuter accommodations on light-rail systems. I know they have it on the Metrolink in St. Louis, and on Madison County Transit buses here in Illinois. If that works for you, you can usually buy passes to make things cheaper over the long term. To milk every last cent out of those passes, you may end up bus/biking to just about everywhere!
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Old 05-13-13, 05:50 AM
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I did something similar to this for a year. The round trip was 58 miles, not 60, but it had some decent hills so it involved close to four hours per day on the bike. I did it five days a week to start with, but backed off to four and, sometimes, three days.

Whether or not I would recommend it depends on your lifestyle and what you want to accomplish. From the sound of things you have plenty going on, and I strongly suspect that you would find this investment of time every day detracted from either school or family life. Plus, twenty hours per week is actually more than you need to train in order to get super-fit, and going hard on five successive days, week after week, probably isn't even the best training strategy.

I'd suggest doing it on alternate days, so maybe three times per week. Assuming that you want to ride at least once on the weekend, that's probably closer to optimum training-wise, as well as slightly less onerous time-wise.

FWIW, the commute I did for longest was a 32-mile round trip. That seemed to me to be pretty much ideal, took only about two hours out of my day (less when you net off the time I would have been driving), gave me enough training volume to stay in good shape, kept me pretty cheerful.
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