Do I have Chance at 20 MPH

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by obxbes, May 1, 2007.

  1. obxbes

    obxbes Member

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    I am 53 years old and have been riding for 3 years. I rode around 4500 miles last year. I have a goal to do 20 miles in an hour. Do I have a shot and at what point should I see a decrease in performance that can't be recouped. I have done 10 miles at 20 mph and my best hour pace is 18 mph.
     
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  2. psmalley

    psmalley New Member

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    Gees, I hope so. I'm 49 and plan to get there this year (with enough milage under my belt). There are many more experienced riders out there who can provide better advice, but add intervals into your rides if you aren't doing so already, and make sure to have a recovery day now and then. :)
     
  3. JohnO

    JohnO New Member

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    Sure you can. I just turned 50 (egad - how did that happen?) and have been seeing a steady increase in performance every year, since I started serious road biking about four years ago.

    One of my benchmarks is a 25 mile loop over rolling hills. The day I broke 20mph average on that loop is a day I celebrated. Took me three years to do it, and I really had to fight off pain to keep that average speed up, but I did it.

    However, you do need to push yourself a bit if you want to see improvement. Watch that average speed over a given route, and try to bump it up on each run. Do the same route two days in a row, and try to better it on the second day - you usually can. Every so often, try to ride with a group that's a bit better than you, one that keeps a bit higher pace than you do. You'll push yourself a bit harder when you start falling off the back. I occasionally ride with three women, all in their early to mid 50's, and they can whip me roundly on distance. One thing I love about cycling, is seeing the improvement. I'm getting stronger, not weaker. When you get to our age, that's a wonderful thing.

    My current challenge is top speed. There's a hill near my house that has a brief steep drop, then flattens out into a very slight downhill grade. I'm trying to break 50mph down that hill. Two years ago, I hit 42mph. Last year, with the aid of a set of Zipp 404 wheels, I hit 47.8. I can make 50, it's just a matter of determination. If I don't get wiped out in the process... calls for the utmost in bike maintenance.
     
  4. Pendejo

    Pendejo Member

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    Of course you do. Unless you have some serious physical impediment, you can do awesome things even into your 70s. Forget about your age.
     
  5. kk4df

    kk4df New Member

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    I'm 47, just started cycling this past year with just over 4000 miles total. I normally can't push beyond about 18 mph. But one night I went on a fast group ride, and three of us broke off. They were more fit than me; one was 18 years old and 4th in the state is his age group. I hung with them, and we clocked at just over 20 mph during the 1st hour. I was amazed. It is possible, but you'll probably benefit from doing it with other fast riders.

    Last weekend, I watched a pro criterion race. Those guys completed 54 1-km laps the first hour, over 32 mph. Total race was 80 km, and they never slowed the pace (except for a couple of bad wrecks).
     
  6. mikesbytes

    mikesbytes New Member

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    I'm 46 and I've averaged 33.8k/21.125m over 80k/50m. It does depend on the conditions and circumstances.

    I'm aware of a 55 year old rider who is a fair bit quicker than me.
     
  7. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    damn inspiring.. the day i get a 20 mph average speed i think ill go and celebrate too..! lol.

    I've reached 15.5 MPH average today so i got a fair way to go... but gives me something to work todards eh!
     
  8. FlyingJ

    FlyingJ New Member

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    You can do it. Just keep pushing yourself. You will work your way up to 20mph in no time.
     
  9. RussB

    RussB New Member

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    I think it's possible. I'm 47, just started riding in the fall of 05. (hadn't riden since my teens). Last year I hit a hair over 15 mph on a 50 mile ride twice. And I hit a new top speed of 35.3 last week. I'm looking forward to the summer when I can give a particular rail-trail a shot down at Cape Cod Massachusetts. It's all FLAT! I get a little annoyed at all the hills in my area, It really takes a bite out of my average times. I do have a short 2 mile stretch of flats on one of my rides. I run between 17-21 mph depending on grade. My rides are all solos, I plan on geting into some group rides this summer. I still have to build myself up a little more. Winters are too harsh to ride.
     
  10. Mike Jacobs

    Mike Jacobs New Member

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    I notice from my training log that when I ride with stronger riders, I ride faster myself. The drafting helps, but we usually have a cross-wind so not much. Though I haven't tracked recovery, my impression is that I feel better post-ride, too, after riding with a group.
     
  11. sirantonycartwr

    sirantonycartwr New Member

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    Yeah, you can do it.

    Is it flat terrain?
    Whats your gear config?

    Im only 20 and ive been doing about 20 miles per day (i dont have a car!) for the past 5 years or so. Its only the past 2 years ive really gone crazy with it and started to be obsessed with bikes. But i know someone who is about 48 who keeps up with me easily (sometimes i have to keep up with him!).

    Unfortunately at 60RPM i can only do 18.5MPH because of my gears. I can reach 35MPH if i cane it with 120RPM! But i can only hold it for a few minutes on flat, then i get tired.

    Ant...
     
  12. Olasnah

    Olasnah New Member

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    If you are already at that pace, all you need is a few hard rides with a group to get the extra horsepower. I used to ride a 15mph average over an hour, and now I'm up to 22 or more if the course is relatively flat.
     
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