Five Actionable Tips to Help You Speed Up Your Cycling Average
by Souke Sports on Aug 20, 2022
Average speed is a key number for cyclists—it’s easy to understand and to use as a benchmark for your performance on the bike. There are, however, lots of variables that affect your average speed, so comparing one rider’s speed to the next, or even your own speed from one day to another, isn’t always accurate.
Souke has summarized four important and actionable suggestions for improving speed and hopes to help those who are pursuing speed.
1. Use Your Bike’s Gears More Efficiently
Poor use of gears can also sap speed. If you find yourself spinning before you change up a gear, or grinding a low gear as you hit a climb, you’ll be using more effort than if you’ve got your gear right for the terrain.
So learning how to use your bike’s gears, reading the road ahead, and preparing for what’s up front can help you ride faster.
Cross-chaining, where you run the large chainring with the largest cassette sprocket or the smallest to the smallest, is less efficient than riding in a gear near the middle of your cassette.
2. Work On Your Cadence
Cadence is the number of times you turn the pedals per minute. It’s not just about pedaling more, pedalling faster can help you ride faster too. There’s less strain on your muscles and, once you get efficient at it, pedaling faster should be less tiring.
There’s no ‘perfect’ cadence but trained amateur riders typically ride at around 80 to 90rpm, while some pro riders may ride with a cadence approaching 100rpm. Chris Froome will famously pedal at around this number, even when riding to an uphill finish.
3. Ride In A Group
Riding in a group can be a sure-fire way to improve your average speed.
By taking turns riding in front, sharing the work to reduce the wind, you pedal faster. It also encourages you to increase your speed if someone is pedaling faster than you. This also helps to boost your physical fitness.
4. Listening To Your Favorite Music
Most people won’t even realize how hard they're pedaling when they listen to their favorite songs on their smartphone or MP3 device. Use music that lets you match the cycling rhythm, as this helps increase your pedaling speed.
Many people are discouraged from listening to music while riding their bikes—for good reasons, though. It’s harder to hear traffic when you have headphones on. You can’t easily hear a car or truck coming up on you or their horn, especially with a lot of the new headphones that eliminate noise. If you plan on riding outdoors with your headphones in, get ones that still allow noise in and constantly look back over your shoulder (watching the traffic).
5. Get More Aero
it is important to wear tight cycling clothes because baggy clothing adds to the drag, which can reduce your speed tremendously. Cycling clothing ensures you stay dry and cool, keeping away the sweat and heat. This reduces the tired feeling you can get.
Be sure to purchase clothing that is tight and doesn’t have any flaps. Invest in some zip-up clothing to help you cycle even faster.
Souke makes professional cycling apparel for cyclists, tailored to fit cyclists of different sizes and made of comfortable, quick-drying, and breathable fabrics, so you won't feel uncomfortable even on long rides.