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Average speed

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Mark Randlesome 28 Aug 15:45  

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Hi all, I've just got back into cycling and posted a few routes on this site that I find really enjoyable.

I live in hilly Dorset and the routes i've posted get me 12.5 average mph, i'm doing 25-30mph downhill and 4-6mph uphill. I'm wondering if this is a 'normal' average speed for cyclists or if i'm not pushing myself enough??

Thoughts would be appreciated!!



My Latest Route: Aug 2010 Corfe Mullen to Verwood Loop
happy 28 Aug 15:53  

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Hi Mark,

Yeah I would say that could be considered average. It also depends on what type of cyclist you are. Pure roadies will probably average a bit higher but then they are always on a good rolling surface with low rolling resistance tyres. If you are a mountain biker on the other hand, your average would be much lower.

Sometimes I feel like I can spend most of the cycle doing above 20mph, but my average is much much lower.

You also need to make sure that you reset your speedo every cycle so it isn't taking the all time average.


My Latest Route: Oct 2010 Livingston to Ayr Avoiding A71

Russ Boy 29 Aug 20:42  

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Hi Mark,

I don't always look at the computer that much (other than for the clock),but when i do look ,my speed,mostly seems to be around 14-15 Mph.
On my most frequent journeys (12 mile commute),my journey average when i have checked is around 12 mph,what with stopping at lights (most of the time! ).
This is on a Road bike,entirely on ok'ish roads.I have been told that for the purposes of improving fitness,losing weight etc,that on a road bike,you should try and maintain a speed of 18 mph for 30 mins or so,although i don't know how accurate this info is,as i would think different people have different aerobic threshold levels.
Your average seems, well.... average to me,and what with all the hills etc,you're probably underestimating yourself,as a lot of people are averse to hills.
Someone once said 'Cycling,it never gets easier,you just get Faster!".

Regards,
Russ.


Russ Boy 29 Aug 20:45  

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Hi Mark,

I should have qualified my last post by stating that my average is mostly on flat'ish London roads (no real challenging hills),so you're working harder than me anyway.

Russ.


jp 30 Aug 21:40  

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Mark,

i average around 15mph, but im not sure there is an average, is there? i look at my speeds and try to judge if the conditions are similar and see if i can raise the bar.

There will always days where you are faster, slower and there are a spectrum of variables.

try riding with a club and this may help with any suggestions

All the best, Jason

My Latest Route: Jul 2009 Eggleston Circular via West Auckland and Frosterley Loop

dudley 31 Aug 07:41  

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traffic and junctions will play havoc with any average speeds


My Latest Route: Nov 2009 Forth Estuary Circular

Mark Randlesome 04 Sep 13:47  

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Thanks everybody for your input......really helps.

I think I'm happy with my 12.5mph average now and will look to joining a club to get that higher!!!!!

Thanks again

Mark

My Latest Route: Aug 2010 Corfe Mullen to Verwood Loop

epa611 07 Sep 08:14  

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Why care about speed unless you want to race.

Just get out and enoy yourself.


simonannitsford 09 Sep 12:05  

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I've just got back from a 250 miles tour with a group starting and finishing in Edinburgh, doing about 50 miles a day. The average overall was a smidge over 10 mph, but never more than 11 mph on any individual day.

However, when I'm doing shorter rides from home of a couple of hours or so, my average is usually around 13-15 mph depending on hills.

Simon

My Latest Route: Jun 2008 Mitford To Bolam Lake

Mark Randlesome 14 Sep 02:13  

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Cheers all,
Today I did the 23mile Meningitis charity bike ride in Dorset with a few mates and we averaged 13.5mph....lot's of hills!!!!

Really does make a difference riding in a team, get's the competitive juices flowing and is more of a laugh.

Looking forward to the BHF bike ride in dorset next year!!!

Thanks

Mark

My Latest Route: Aug 2010 Corfe Mullen to Verwood Loop

Stargazer 15 Sep 12:03  

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I average about 13 -14 mph, but that's with just me. It is a measure to see how You improve, or more generally don't!

As You mentioned above riding in a group You will go quicker, just look at the peloton in the TdF when they catch the breakaways!

My Latest Route: Aug 2011 Chester Circular Via Kelsal Hill

pdrep 19 Sep 23:23  

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I am just pleased that I can ride at all. I figure if my heart rate is where it needs to be , that is the most important thing of all. I love cycling! I fight depression and cycling helps alot! I love cyclists too. We're a fun bunch, huh?


pdrep 19 Sep 23:25  

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I just graduated(?) to a road bike from a hybrid and LOVE it. I am averaging 15MPH. Once I lose 20-25 lbs. I expect that speed will increase.
25 miler in the AM!


dudley 21 Sep 12:49  

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it will increase!

i have lost 7 of the 25lbs i'm trying to lose, and the speed is increasing.

average around 14 / 15 on the 13 mile commute to work, but shocked myself with a 20mph average over 14 miles in a Sprint triathlon a few weeks ago. Nothing like a few hundred other bikes to get the blood up!

i found the biggest speed increase was when i was less knackered / out of breath getting up the hills, i pedalled more on the downhills rather than cruised along, and the average jumped up a fair bit for not a massive effort.

My Latest Route: Nov 2009 Forth Estuary Circular

mlh 22 Sep 23:20  

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There are many of us that do average under this famous 12 mph or so. I've seen it described as a comfortable rate .... I think I'm doing well if I manage 10 mph over not particularly hilly terrain.


robbie 24 Sep 00:15  

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I wondered this myself, just started riding and on the road get overtaken by hardened riders so i was wondering if I was really THAT slow. I do a 10 mile up hill ride to work and average 13mph but coming home (the fun part) it reaches 19mph so about 15mph average. so maybe im doing ok???


dudley 24 Sep 08:57  

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i'd say you're doing ok!

average 13 over a 10 mile uphill is pretty good. I'm sure it saps the strength after that haul!

My Latest Route: Nov 2009 Forth Estuary Circular

Demon 25 Sep 16:07  

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On my 10 mile ride into work this morning, I averaged 13mph on my Scott hybrid, I live and work in Sheffield and I have one climb on my route followed by a downhill and then a long 3 mile flat road along the Don vally with the wind in my face. I'm pleased with that, but it should be even quicker going home with the wind on my back. I'll let you know.

At the end of August me and my mate did a ride all the way round the Isle of Anglesey 62 miles and an average of 14mph.

My Latest Route: May 2010 Circular round Isle Of Anglesey

Demon 25 Sep 17:05  

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Just done the ride home, average speed 14.5.

My Latest Route: May 2010 Circular round Isle Of Anglesey

Shortbusdriver1969 27 Sep 17:37  

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I guess a average speed would be dependent on what type of bike you have, and type of tyres you have on, I have a mountain bike but with
road tyers on. and my average was around 10Mph.
but with these road tyers its getting up to 15Mph. ( though I am getting better at riding I supose that helps ).
and at the end of the day ( It's midnight). it all depends with you have your computer set up right and its dependable :-)
10.10


Demon 27 Sep 18:05  

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Really, I do believe that, unless you are in a race, the average speed doesn't really matter. What is important is that you are out in the fresh air enjoying riding your bike. The added benifit is that you will be fitter for it and the increase in your average speed as a result of this increased fiteness is a secondary benifit meaning that you fit even more miles into your ride.

My Latest Route: May 2010 Circular round Isle Of Anglesey

stephen george 01 Oct 21:54  

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Hello mate, hope you're good and don't mind me calling you mate.
My name's Steve and my e-mail address is stephenmlv@googlemail.com.
How old are you? Hilly areas are always challenging and good to build
stamina and fitness. I live in Hampshire, close to Rowlands Castle. The areas really good for keen cyclists and I love climbing the hills around the
Mardens and Harting, Portsdown hill is not so difficult in comparison to the former, I'm 48years old and get out on my bike at least 3times a week. Similar mileage to you, struggle up the hills but the downhills really make
up your time, I've been averaging about 16-17mph but I always eat well
before I go. I regulary eat a high carbohydrate and protein diet but there
are still a lot of fitter blokes and women out there than me. I'm probably
fitter now than I was in my 20's. My bike's a 7005, ali framed, 700 by 23wheel racing cycle.
It doesn't matter at what level you cycle, whether you're keen or just
to keep your fitness level up, the more you cycle the fitter you'll get.

Hope to hear back from you.
Best wishes.

Steve


psycherbiker 24 Oct 13:09  

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Hi All,
I was reassured by Mark's number re average speed. I also live in Dorset, though on Wiltshire/Dorset border, and the it is alos hilly. My average speeds on Garmin GPs are very similar- 12 MPH average with 30-40 MPH downhill and 6 going up (Thought often difficutl to see the screen as I gasp for breath!).

Conversely, people who have been cycling for longer and are, I suspect, younger! talk about averaging 20MPH.

Great forum. Very helpful.



My Latest Route: Oct 2009 Three Counties Circular Ride

Iainturnbull 27 Oct 00:57  

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Hi everyone,

This is my first post.I did 32 miles today and averaged 16.8mph on GPS. I do on average 120 miles per week and fancy joining a cycling club. Just been looking at the Thirsk sportive for next year. Anyone got any experience of it?
I think your 12.5 is average depending on difficulty route.


globalfish 28 Nov 01:46  

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I can do a local 21.5 mile off road loop at 12.9mph average on a 32.5lb full susser - not tried it on my new lighter bike yet. 12mph is a good off-road speed. 30mph isn't too fast downhill though - I assume that's off-road and not perfect conditions.

I'm not fit - 45 yers old, 13 stone, no excercise and i train on X large pizza + Ben & Jerry's :-)


bloomp 01 Jun 13:39  

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Hi Guys,
More stats / experience for the pot . . .
My last run was a 73 mile round trip over undulating terrain to the coast, almost all road, some decent hills and I averaged 12.69 mph - 2 months ago that pace would have probably killed me - cycling does work - last 1/2 stone but exchanged flab for muscle as well !!
I'm still on off road tires "Kenda Koyote" - anyone changed over to road tires on a trail / mtb bike ? Sure it would all be a lot quicker with road tires . . . I do a bit of canal and dirt trail riding as well so need something with puncture resistance - any tried and tested suggestions ??

My Latest Route: Sep 2010 Middlesborough to Thorpe Thewles Circuit

dan_b23 01 Jun 18:01  

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Hi Guys,
More stats / experience for the pot . . .
My last run was a 73 mile round trip over undulating terrain to the coast, almost all road, some decent hills and I averaged 12.69 mph - 2 months ago that pace would have probably killed me - cycling does work - last 1/2 stone but exchanged flab for muscle as well !!
I'm still on off road tires "Kenda Koyote" - anyone changed over to road tires on a trail / mtb bike ? Sure it would all be a lot quicker with road tires . . . I do a bit of canal and dirt trail riding as well so need something with puncture resistance - any tried and tested suggestions ??

Hi everyone

Bloomp I use slick tyres on a Carrera hardtail MTB. They were £15 off ebay :) and they have been perfect. Much less rolling resistance and can handle rough bridleways that I cycle on as well. Also never had a puncture with them! The exact item is no longer on ebay so I can't show you the exact ones. There are some which are similar but I suppose it is luck whether they are any good.

My last ride was 22.5 miles and I averaged 15.5 mph which I was quite pleased with. 73 miles is a long way though and I wouldn't be able to keep it up for that length :P

My Latest Route: Apr 2010 Ponteland to Matfen and Kirkheaton Loop

dan_b23 01 Jun 18:01  

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Sorry accidently copied Bloomp's post in as well :S

My Latest Route: Apr 2010 Ponteland to Matfen and Kirkheaton Loop

bloomp 02 Jun 08:26  

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Thanks for that Dan - i'll check them out - sound good. I'm conscious of the constant drumming of the tread on the road as i ride - must be slowing me down / taking more effort to spin the wheels.
My ride to the coast was on Bank Holiday Sunday:-

http://www.cycle-route.com/routes/Bolton_to_Southport_Beach_Circular-Cycle-Route-4754.html

It actually took 2.75hr to the coast & 3.30hr back i.e. 6.25hr for 11.68mph not 12.69 as i incorrectly posted earlier sorry my maths is a bit rusty :-(

Still a pb for me though :D

My Latest Route: Sep 2010 Middlesborough to Thorpe Thewles Circuit

dudley 03 Jun 12:24  

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knobbly tyres slow you on the road for three reasons

road friction
wind resistance
weight

the worst weight is rotating weight.
two wheels of equal weight, and the light tyre/heavy hub will beat the light hub/heavy tyre hands down.



My Latest Route: Nov 2009 Forth Estuary Circular

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