Beating the system - the cycling commuting section
14 posts • Page 1 of 1
Tonight I was walking along a shared bike path which would of typically be used by cyclists with longer commutes and I noticed how slow the commuters were. Roll back to 2000 when I first started commuting most of the riders were sports riders, but what I am seeing now is a wider variety of rider types due to improved facilities
A helmet saved my life
I suppose it depends on how far you have to go and how quick you want to do the journey, maybe even how deviated your journey is. For example when I commuted to the city, the most direct route, all road, was about 15 kms (best times were around 25 minutes), the longest route taking out as much road as possible was 19kms and on the fixie was about 50 minutes. That's about as far and as long as I would accept, at that time the bus is looking almost as quick.
Roll forward to now, the commute is about 11-12 minutes, 3.5 kms (longest route, no lights) with virtually no roads. Shortest route is just too hard and would actually take longer due to traffic lights.
I think more people are just taking in the ride rather than being worried about getting somewhere in a particularly quick time.
Building more roads to prevent congestion is like a fat man loosening his belt to prevent obesity.
- Lewis Mumford
I have stopped watching speeds and just ride. I get a fast section on
the way to work where I hammer it (2 lane rd, downhill), and coming home I get a 10km stretch along the motorway cycle lane where I can go as fast as I want. Outside of those two sections I just ride and enjoy.
'11 Lynskey Cooper CX, '00 Hillbrick Steel Racing (Total Rebuild '10), '09 Electra Townie Original 21D
I think it will vary with time of day as well. Depending on when I leave work, I see faster riders or slower, more casual riders. I assume the slow guys ate knocking off at a similar time and making a shorter journey.
I'd consider myself one of the faster riders (no speedo though) and generally I'm riding before the episode all come out. My commute is 26km each way.
I have been commuting for the last 8 years and have slowed down myself and not just a result of ageing When I first started riding I would leave late, race to work and always felt in a rush- likewise for the trip home. I slowly discovered the joy of cycling for the fun of it, looking around, the various cooking smells from houses on the way home etc. Now I leave early and stop at my favourite coffee shop on the way, relax with other regulars and life slows around me- very good for stress levels.
Possibly also depends on facilities at work and also what is the motivator for commuting.
I have a shower and locker at work so I lycra it up and shower when I get there plus I do it for the training and fitness rather than just transport even though I enjoy not needing to get in my WRX to sit in traffic. I love thrashing myself and getting to work in a lather of sweet, plus I do about 300m of climbing in just a 13km journey so route probably plays a big part, but generally unless I am cruising because I am sore I am going flat out wherever I go.
To me I ride how I feel most the time and there usually is no big rush. Most the time I simply ride to enjoy the ride; sometimes I have to be at work or home by a certain time so I have to go quickly (my ave speed then will usually go from 22km/h to about 30km/h for my 10km commute)
If I know I have to be somewhere in the afternoon and will need to raise my speed then in the morning I will take it very easy to ensure there is enough energy for the afternoon ride.
Not fast, no style, but still get there.
You guys are fast compared to my efforts (or lack thereof
For my last 4 commutes my average speed has been: 17.8, 16.8, 18.4, 16.4. Let's see, saving my legs for run training?
Technically "bricks" is not where you soft pedal all the way home so that you can do your run training when you get home
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For me it's 26km each way, with ~ 230m climbing on the way in at 28-29kph, and ~440m on the way home at 22-23kph. Can be a bit of a slog, that homeward trip, especially when the nor'easter kicks in over summer..
I have a 14km daily commute each way, -90 metres elevation on the way to work, average speeds between 29-34 km/h, normally around 31-32. On the way home, +90 metres elevation, average speeds 26-30, normally around 27-28. The route has about 6 stops on average, but free flowing for the most part. This is on a basic road bike, clipped in, with backpack etc. Some days are fast and other days I just wonder what happened. I have definitely noticed a correlation between speed and what I eat during the day. Having break days, i.e. weekends, makes a difference too.
I dont normally commute, but times when I choose to ride the 60km/300m elevation return trip, I average about 23-25km/h. Half the trip is on the Cooks River Path where Id be trvalling about 30km/h, and the average speed suffers a bit from the hills from my place to the Cooks path, and from the path to uni as well as the kids, walkers, and slow cyclists on the path.
This takes me ~1hr 15mins each way and Id be fine(no excessive sweat, tiredness, etc). If I didnt have to carry a heavy bag I wouldnt be as tired on the return trip, and prob be a little faster too.
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