Bike speed

I would like to find out the average speed some of you achieve when training as a barometer to judge myself against and see what I should be aiming for.

Over a 2 hour training ride, assuming its over an average course i.e. not mega hilly or flat, on a clear day and average traffic (taking into account short stops for junctions) what would your average speed be over those two hours?

Id say at the moment my average speed would be about 16-17mph.


  • I dont normaly train at a "Speed" i normaly aim to train at a set cadance and within a target heart rate zone
  • Will - but it works out at the equivalent of about 3 miles an hour, doesn't it?
  • that's on your race bike obviously... a bit slower on your training bike
  • Cruel boy candy.

    Carl - this is a bit like asking how far you run in an hour. It all depends on the effort.

    Generally, a steady Sunday bike ride would end up being about 17. summat mph for me.

    Maybe a bit faster if I ride with the club.

  • Don't know if this is of any use, but when I was racing in the 80's, training was a little less scientific than it is now, such as WW describes. Similarly, we didn't aim to keep an "average" speed over a partcular time, the emphasis was more on the time on the bike, a "get out and ride the bloody thing" attitude.

    In a group, this might have been a one-hour fartlek session, sprinting for hill crests, half-wheeling each other, an extended ride (7 hours, probably covering 130+ miles) or simply winding up 53*12 and seeing who was left hanging on after 10 miles. On my own I would have gone for an easy run anything from 1 to 3 hours sometimes with some climbs thrown in, pace wasn't the main aim of these rides.

    I will say I spent my first 2 years getting dropped every club ride, then one day I was dishing out the pain. We trained as we felt but from end March to mid-October most miles were covered in races or mid-week time trials.

  • but how far do you run in an hour cougie?
  • Usually a little less than I wanted to.
  • tee hee - but how far do you run if somebody asks you if you've signed up for Austria yet?????
  • VERY far !!!!
  • lol
  • Usuaslly about 6 mph average, but thats off-road.
  • Thanks I can see its not all about speed, and will certainly concentrate on the stamina and hill climbing and all sorts. Just trying to get time in the saddle at the moment.
  • I've just done my first long ride (for me)25 miles:o)

    Just went out with a friend to enjoy the day really as it's so fine compared to recent weeks! We chose a lovely scenic circular route, but with a few mountainous hills (1:3) that certainly worked the legs. Was out for over 2 hours, but we stopped several times to admire the view of course!

    AND it was the first time of wearing my cleats outside and I only fell off twice!

    Why is it so hard to get your feet back in the cleats going uphill?
  • Lol Hilly, only fell off twice I like that (not that you fell off I mean, just the way you said only twice).

    Yes ive got used to getting my feet out of the cleets. Getting them back in is where I struggle, I push off at traffic islands or junctions and wobble for about 20 yrds trying to get my darn foot in. Very diconcerting when your teetering across an island with traffic whizzing all around you (well we do have over 1000 islands here in Milton Keynes so its hard to avoid them).

    I to did a long one today (for me anyway), 1hr 40 mins (26 miles) fairly flat but was it windy or what, oh not to mention the driving in your face rain – it was sunny when I left lol - ave speed 14.9mph.

    Oh this bring me on to another question, how to clean my bike? Got back and it was soaked, I dried it off and completely wiped it down with paper towels, guess I should oil it a little to so must get some next week. What should I be doing in the way of cleaning / oiling?
  • Well Carl i did expect to fall off at traffic lights or junctions, but luckily it was on quiet roads and not too bad!:o) A couple of kids and a women saw the first one, but they didn't laugh, I did though!

    When I got back with from my ride I just hosed it down and let it dry in the sunshine. Not sure what the proper way to clean bike is though.

    Really enjoyed being out on bike, must try and fit in more rides.
  • popsiderpopsider ✭✭✭
    Carl - best way to clean it is as soon as possible and lubricate the chain if it's been wet.

    On speed I reckon if you can maintain a computer average of 17mph over 20 miles you could think about going out with a club ride - their steady ride would probably be challenging for you and you might not last the full distance but riding in a group is the best motivator. If you/they are worried you will hold them back just tell them to ride at their normal pace and if you'll keep with them as far as you can. You'll also improve your bike handling skills because following good riders downhill you can go a lot faster. OUr club rides average 17-18mph and are normally about 70-90 miles - then they wonder why there aren't many people doing the club rides.
  • Great to see your getting out on the bike Carl. Gotta agree with Suffolk here. Time in the saddle is probably the best thing here. Averages are all very well and good, but weather, road surfaces and terrain all play a major role.
  • Thanks Alan & Popsider, im certtainly going to get in with a club, just getting a bit more practice and confidence on my own first, also want to get a 40 mile ride under my belt though I think I could ave 17mph over 20miles at the moment, ill have a test one night this week.

    I know what you mean about road surfaces Alan, round here most of the roads are quite rough ashfelt and it’s a pleasure to get on some of the smooth stuff, on smooth ashfelf my bike just seems to zip along with little effort even uphill.
  • Just noticed some info on another thread re gearing and re the discussions of downhill speed and I have another questions.

    My bike set-up is thus:

    Cannondale R800, Mavic Elite wheels.

    Crank TruVatiV Elita SL , 39/53
    Rear Cogs SRAM PG-970, 12-26

    Pretty standard I guess – but on a ride at the weekend going downhill (not super steep but steep enough) – I maxed out at about 34mph, that was with light wind behind, pushing my biggest gear with a cadence of 90-100 and I was down on my tri bars with elbows, knees etc tucked in.

    So how do I get more speed? Ive read some get 50mph plus or is that only down very steep hills or do I need to change my crank and cog set-up? Would full racing tryres make much difference?
  • popsiderpopsider ✭✭✭
    53/12 is a pretty high gear, I'm a bit surprised you spun out at 34mph with that, it looks like a good spread for training I'd keep it, maybe get a closer ratio cassette for flat time trials though I wouldn't bother.

    If you work out what inch gear 53/12 is you can work out your speed at various cadences.

    Realistically though yes 50mph is a very steep downhill.

  • Thanks Popsider, I wasnt actually pushing at full power and guess I could have squeezed out another 3-5 mph.

    Oh the hill was only about a 20ft drop over say 1000yards to not really steep at all.

    So with what you say about 50mph down steep hills I guess im on about a par.

  • I got my 56mph on a 53-12 on a steepish hill. You've really gotta work at it though !

    Should be able to work out how fast I was spinning out at, but too tired.

  • im considering duathlon as i run and cycle in and out of work on my hybrid bike.does anyone have advice on a decent entry level racing bike which wont break the bank but will give me a chance to be competitive??is it worth considering buying second hand from cycling specialists or are these likely to have had a hammering?????any advice welcome......
  • I'd just play on my hybrid bike for the first few. You see every kind of bike imaginable at these things. Get slick tyres and maybe some tribars or spinacis for your bike and it'll go lots faster.
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