The Chainlink

From a scale of 1-33, how much do you typically exert yourself during your commute? Every once in a while I catch the urge to just jam all the way home; sprinting after every stop light, take the lane, and ride as hard as I can. Tonight was one of those nights.

I'd say I typically ride at a fairly spirited pace, maybe a 19 on a scale from 1-to-33. Maybe a 18mph top speed.  I could probably hold a conversation, but not couldn't whistle the national anthem while riding up a hill.

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Back when I was riding nearly every day, and I had a speedometer on my bike, the fastest I ever averaged for 10.5 miles (one way) on my crappy commuter bike was around 17mph.  That day I was really jamming and had a light tailwind, but most days I could keep above a 15mph average pretty easily.  Nowadays it's more like a 10-14mph average over much shorter distances, but I have no way of knowing since my speedometer broke and I haven't replaced it.

If I'm physically up for it and conditions are good, I push myself as much as I can. I enjoy biking, but I want to get home/to work as quickly as possible when I'm commuting. I have no idea how fast, though.

According to my husband, I just don't know how to go at any speed slower than pushing myself to the max. He is probably right, but my "max" is not really all that fast--usually between 10-14mph. Wish I could blame the bike, but I think it's just my absolute capacity. I am constantly being passed by people on ChiLFT, except for in the summer, when it's about 50/50 (passing others or being passed).

on a scale from 1-33?


I normally think in terms of tenths but that's easy enough to convert:

Commuting this time of year I usually ride at 4-5 tenths effort so between a 13-17.

Commuting in warmer weather usually at 5-7 tenths effort depending on mood, wind etc. so between 17-23.

I don't have a computer so not sure what the MPH is but guessing my summer speed is about 12-14.

I define 8/10s as max effort for a good length of time such as 30 minutes. 10/10s as max effort for 30 seconds tops.

I'm around 11 mph average but that's including stop and go on State and Dearborn plus that muddy bit on the lake at Fullerton.

My average speed is determined far more by the environment I ride in (city streets) than it is by how hard I ride, unless I am on an off-street path or out somewhere not-crowded. But I always seem to cruise at a level that keeps my heart rate pretty elevated. On my SS in the winter with a sticky brake that's probably low teens; on my all-rounder in the summer that's probably upper teens. It's not too hard to get a decent workout even if you don't go very fast.

I tend to over-exert myself on my road bike, but when I'm on the city bike, I tend to relax more.

In the city avg is 10 mph but I ride a standard cog and fixed is more about flow than speed and stopping.

Back when I rode the LFP to work on a 21 speed I'm guessing 20-25mph because I could do it in 30 minutes Ardmore to IBM/house o Blues area.

My commute is 13.5 miles one way. When I get going I would say I am going around 18-20. I can't ever get into a good groove because I stop at stop lights. To answer according to your exertion scale, I would say 20-25.


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