Cycled 35 miles! Am I any good yet?

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Jamie-Spec, Aug 16, 2013.

  1. Jamie-Spec

    Jamie-Spec New Member

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    Hello, first post here. I have recently taken up cycling, I love it. I have a basic Specialised Allez road bike. I'm 32 6ft2"and weigh about 16.5 stone. (I'm out of shape but I have been in good shape in the past) I'm cycling for fun and to get fit and healthy. I went out a out a month ago and after the first hill at a out 2k from my house I sat at the top for about 5miniutes trying not to pass out. I have kept on going and I have been out about 12 times now. 1/2 times a week. 8k, 15k a few times, 20k (going out in the country) 22k (came across a cat5 hill, walked the last bit) 22k (went back and made it up) 25k (stayed in the saddle up the hill) 30k (nearest town and back) 40k (found the long way round). At this stage I felt I was doing ok, but then it was pointed out to me that I was averaging 13mph and that's not very good. I thought it was the hilly countryside! So I went out on the long straight flat highway yesterday (a bit up and down) and finished with the hilly country route. Here are my stats. 35.43 miles (converted to miles as they sound better (57k) 2hours 20miniutes time 15.1 miles per hour average So am I a good cyclist yet, or still a beginner? Jamie
     
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  2. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    In most organized clubs you would probably be considered still a beginner in many club ride ratings. A lot of good cycling clubs in the states will break down categories rated like A Prime, A, B, C, D. For what I have seen in most common ratings you would fit in category C being able to hold a pace between 17 to 14 mph, but you might have to hold that for a 50 to 60 mile route. A Prime are typically people that are capable racers. Myself I would generally fall in the B group for most rides in my area, but at times I might be able to survive an A group ride where the average 20mph over a 60 mile course, but these rides can be relentless and have no mercy rules. This all depends on who shows up and these categories can vary per club. A lot of club leaders will often suggest if you are at the bottom end of a category then drop to the next level.

    I know this was not your specific question, but I thought this might help give you an idea of comparison.

    The best thing I can say though is always compare you to you. Be encouraged that you are out trying to improve. It takes a long time for some of us to see performance increases. Just stick with it.

    If you desire to improve just keep trying to increase saddle time. The more time you invest the better odds your fitness will improve. If you try to increase your weekly time in cycling at a gradual rate, be consistent in this pursuit week after week and gradually increase the intensity you will one day look back and think, "35 miles is just a warm up."
     
  3. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    I think you need to figure how what you want out of cycling. If you want to race you got a ways togo but as a recreational rider you are doing fine.
     
  4. gs12

    gs12 New Member

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    Jamie,

    I'm alot like you, i just started cycling as well. Avg 30-35 miles per ride, around 15.6 MPH.

    I've found, it's really about what you want out of it. For me, i want to go further distances, i've gotten some great advice on this forum in just how to do that. Basically, dropping down the MPH a bit and pacing myself more. I tried to keep up with some more seasoned riders initially, but they were killing it at 20MPH. Now, i just do my own thing and try to push for distance. Sometimes, i go for more elevation (1,500+) other times, miles. It's all good, they key is to have fun - the rest will take care of itself.
     
  5. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yes.... and yes....

    Good on ya for working up to longer rides but there's always something new to learn or more fitness to chase. Sure some folks are probably content doing even less than you've worked up to, but most of us are always chasing slightly higher goals and never quite get to the point where we stop trying to improve.

    For folks that stick with it for the long haul the journey is very rewarding and we never really reach our ultimate goals as even the fittest or fastest usually want to be fitter or faster or do some interesting adventure rides they haven't yet done, there's always bigger goals to chase.

    Good luck and keep it up,

    -Dave
     
  6. vspa

    vspa Active Member

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    i would say 20 mph is your club ride cruising speed, then you can say hey im good, it is also a good barrier to achieve if you ever want to try racing, which by the fact it's not an obligation for good cyclists, you can still be good and don't do races,
     
  7. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    vspa,

    I generally get dropped in a group of A level rides and on occasion get dropped on the B level depending on who shows up. I ride mainly solo these days since it works better with my weekly training goals. The big aggressive group rides with the no mercy rules take so much out of me that I can't train for several days following and it throws the monkey wrench into my training plans.

    Yeah, I am really just happy cycling and training without racing (officially that is). I am sometimes guilty of being the instigator for some of those fast paces and then pay the price of waking up the beasts in the group and then get popped off the back. [​IMG]
     
  8. oldbobcat

    oldbobcat Well-Known Member

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    So good, you win a silver medal.
    [​IMG]
     
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