Ever wondered how fast you can go on your bike?
Your cycling speed is determined by a multitude of factors. The size and quality of your bike, your biking skill, and the environment around you can greatly affect your cycling speed.
On average, your maximum speed will be at about 30 MPH. For professionals, the maximum speed raises to about 45 MPH. If you plan on going any faster, it’s best to get a bike that’s designed for insane speeds.
You also need to understand that there are a lot of subcategories within the biking industry. We’ll keep it simple by telling you the records from unpaced and motor paced biking.
Unpaced biking is for raw, natural biking powder. This means that there is no added technology to aid in the bike’s overall speed.
On the other hand, motorbiking assists the user in their speed making them go at a higher speed than normal.
Before riding, you’ll want to keep these factors in mind to ensure that you ride at your maximum speed.
Factors that can affect bike speed
We're not just talking about your weight here; we're also talking about the weight of your bike. Gravity determines one's weight. The stronger the gravitational force pulling on you and working against you as you move ahead, the heavier you are.
You might have noticed that professional road cyclists don't use backrests, water bottles, or luggage racks because it increases the weight of the cycle. If you want you can go for lightweight bikes.
Tires and wheels
The bigger the tire, the faster you go. The faster you go, the greater the air resistance up against your bike, and that air resistance pushes back to slow you down. But a giant tire can cut through wind resistance better than a smaller tire. It has an advantage over a smaller tire; this is why high-end racing bicycles generally have larger tires fitted on their wheels than ordinary road bikes.
Different types of tires behave differently on different surfaces and depending on how they're inflated. For example, a tire with a low profile can grip the surface better, which means it is more suited for rough or uneven surfaces and less suitable for smooth or flat surfaces.
The same rule applies to the speed of the wheel. The bigger and faster the wheel, the faster you go. Professional bicycles have ultra-lightweight wheels, while ordinary bikes usually have medium-sized wheels.
Gearing systems like easy gears and internal gears are factors in choosing a fast bike. These gearing systems help you pedal at higher speeds without much effort by shifting gears automatically; this means you don't have to worry about it yourself. Internal gears are generally found on high-end racing bicycles, while older conventional bikes will have just two or three external gears.
With their soft suspension cams, Suspension systems are like a spring that absorbs the impact of bumps and makes bumps less violent. This helps you go faster by reducing the load on your muscles. In other words, with the force of the impact being reduced, your muscles don't have to work as hard.
Suspension systems are found in high-end racing bicycles alongside road bikes. Road bikes usually don't have suspension systems; only professional road bicycle racers use them to increase speed.
Two of the most important elements determining cycling speed are leg and thigh muscular strength. The faster you pedal, the more strong you are. Cycling becomes a regular part of your routine over time, making you expend less effort for the same amount of work.
Cycling speed is also influenced by endurance. To produce the energy needed for cycling, your leg and thigh muscles require oxygen, fatty acids, and glucose. If your muscles run out of oxygen, they will generate power from other sources.
As a result, increasing your stamina is critical for increasing your lung's oxygen capacity.
You can be slowed down by drag, resistance, or friction.
Resistance forces such as air density and wind speed prohibit you from reaching your maximum speed on a bicycle.
It's also important to consider your biking stance. Competitive cyclists stoop low on their bicycles to lower their body profile and create a more streamlined form. Instead of slamming them in the chest, their riding position allows air to flow over their curved bodies.
Clothing and helmet selection is also critical. While wearing a loose or baggy garment may be more comfortable and extra fabric can cause resistance and slow you down.
Ways to improve your biking speed
Don't be overweight.
You'll have to either get stronger or shed weight to get faster. Cycling is all about your power-to-weight ratio or how many watts you can create per pound of body weight, especially while going uphill. If your bike, equipment, power, and fitness remain the same, every pound you lose will boost your average speed.
Improve the aerodynamics
You can improve your aerodynamics and expose less of your body to the wind by performing the following instead of riding with your hands on the tops or hoods of your handlebars:
- Lower your body and achieve a flat back by bending your elbows.
- Riding in the hoods is a term used to describe the act of riding in the hoods
- Tuck your elbows in front of your knees so that they are directly in front of them.
- Lower your forehead.
Watch your lactate threshold.
You'll be able to produce a higher power output at the same heart rate if you improve your lactate threshold, which means you'll be quicker for longer and pedal at a higher average speed. Maintain your energy level.
Ride with trained cyclist
While riding with a trained cyclist or friend who is faster than you a few times each week will boost your average speed significantly, it will also aid you when you decide to ride solo. An excellent training partner will encourage you to ride further and faster than you would otherwise. And the more you push yourself out of your comfort zone, the faster you'll improve. But don't push your muscle much as exertion can be dangerous. Be gentle with yourself.
Handle your bike properly
If you're continually slamming on the brakes to slow down, you won't be able to go quickly. And, believe it or not, this has nothing to do with running red lights or rolling past stop signs, or road traffic safety. You'll be able to descend quicker and make sharp curves at higher speeds if you improve your bike handling, which involves using the brakes as little as possible.
Working on your bike handlebar skills will also allow you to ride closer to other riders in order to protect yourself from the wind while remaining safe.
These steps are very important even if you are a pro or a newbie, whether you ride an electric bike or a mountain bike. After following these steps track your performance and compare your previous speed with the recent speed you can see the difference.
Unpaced Biking Records
The International Human Powered Vehicle Association (HPVA) is a group that monitors, inspects, and records unpaced bike records. This means that the cyclist is facing the wind without any added motor-paced support.
The first person to break the record is Sam Whittingham. Sam is a cyclist from Canada who holds several records by the HPVA. His record winning speed was at 82.82 mph.
The current record holder is Todd Reichert whose top speed was recorded at 89.85 mph.
Motor Paced Records
However, there are a few people who have broken this average. For instance, John Howard was the first person to go over the speeds of 152 MPH. He was an Olympic cyclist and a triathlete who had enough power, speed, and precision to reach such a high speed.
Since then, cyclists have planned on trying to break his record. It was only until 1995, where Fred Rompelberg was able to top this by going at a speed of 166.9 mph.
He was able to achieve this record by placing his bike on the back of a dragster of Strasburg Drag Racing Team. Because of this, he was able to reset the record and set the bar for future motor-paced bicycling.
Cycling has become a popular sport in our society for decades. It allows us to test our current speed while aspiring to break our records.
Whether you’re riding unpaced or with a motor, you’ll have fun as a cyclist if you know how to maintain and break your top speeds.
For this, we suggest getting a bike designed custom made for you. The record holders for the fastest speeds had bikes that were tailored to their body size, shape, and speed.
Ultimately, with continued practice and a customized bike, you might reset the record someday.