Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Ideal Conditions For Speed

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Ideal Conditions For Speed

Old 10-07-19, 06:38 PM
  #1  
Payton1221
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Hill Country ;-)
Posts: 105
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 60 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Ideal Conditions For Speed

What's your ideal conditions for producing your fastest pace? Obviously, you wouldn't want any wind, but how about temperature?

All summer and, until recently, it has been very warm with most of my rides in the 90's. Tonight it was 65 and I crushed my old PR on this 11 mile loop that I typically ride. And I rode yesterday too, so I'm not attributing it to just being "more rested" than usual.
Payton1221 is offline  
Old 10-07-19, 07:24 PM
  #2  
Wileyrat
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Tucson Az
Posts: 1,388

Bikes: 2015 Ridley Fenix, 1983 Team Fuji, 1985 Novara Strada, 2013 BD Motobecane 650ht, 90 Trek 850

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 258 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 38 Times in 26 Posts
80 to 85, downhill, with at least a breeze to my back

My fastest times on a known route seem to be when it's in the low 80's.
Wileyrat is offline  
Likes For Wileyrat:
Old 10-07-19, 07:36 PM
  #3  
Lemond1985
Sophomore Member
 
Lemond1985's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1,938
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1141 Post(s)
Liked 448 Times in 302 Posts
55 about is my ideal temp, probably lower than for most people, though I don't tolerate the heat well as a consequence. I suspect most people perform best in hotter than average, rather than colder than average weather. That's why they have the Tour de Fance in July, not January.
Lemond1985 is offline  
Likes For Lemond1985:
Old 10-07-19, 07:48 PM
  #4  
woodcraft
Senior Member
 
woodcraft's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Nor Cal
Posts: 4,392
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1105 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 84 Times in 52 Posts
Seeing red while trying to hang on to a fast group.
woodcraft is offline  
Old 10-07-19, 08:07 PM
  #5  
bpcyclist
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Portland
Posts: 331

Bikes: 56 cm BMC SLR02 w/105

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 148 Post(s)
Liked 72 Times in 47 Posts
I am heat-intolerant, so fifties for me.
bpcyclist is online now  
Likes For bpcyclist:
Old 10-07-19, 08:46 PM
  #6  
wsteve464
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 359
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 101 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 19 Times in 18 Posts
Down hill, fast tailwind, 54/10 gearing no traffic or stop signs/lights. Temperature around 80. Those are my ideal conditions.
wsteve464 is online now  
Likes For wsteve464:
Old 10-07-19, 09:02 PM
  #7  
2manybikes
Dog is my co-pilot
 
2manybikes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 17,688

Bikes: 2 many

Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1068 Post(s)
Liked 39 Times in 29 Posts
Originally Posted by Payton1221 View Post
What's your ideal conditions for producing your fastest pace? Obviously, you wouldn't want any wind, but how about temperature?

All summer and, until recently, it has been very warm with most of my rides in the 90's. Tonight it was 65 and I crushed my old PR on this 11 mile loop that I typically ride. And I rode yesterday too, so I'm not attributing it to just being "more rested" than usual.
That's perfectly normal. Same thing happens to me. Probably most people. Lotsa hot days this year. 65 to75 is pretty good for me. I took photos of my bike thermometer at over 100 a few times

times.
2manybikes is online now  
Old 10-07-19, 09:50 PM
  #8  
guachi
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 130
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 58 Post(s)
Liked 35 Times in 28 Posts
I know that I do far worse when it's hot or even kinda warm outside. My HR shoots up and I can't maintain power. So I'll say 50-65 and sunny.
guachi is offline  
Old 10-07-19, 10:03 PM
  #9  
DrIsotope
Non omnino gravis
 
DrIsotope's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: SoCal, USA!
Posts: 7,331

Bikes: Nekobasu, Pandicorn

Mentioned: 113 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4026 Post(s)
Liked 488 Times in 314 Posts
The effect of ambient temperature on gross-efficiency in cycling

Raise the temperature from 60ºF to 96ºF, and power drops by around 20%. I would say 55-60ºF is perfect. At that temperature there's no need for layers, and humidity doesn't much matter.

I don't think it's coincidental that the bulk of my PRs come in the SoCal winters, from November through March.
__________________
DrIsotope is offline  
Old 10-07-19, 10:11 PM
  #10  
tcarl
tcarl
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 542

Bikes: Roark, Waterford 1100, 1987 Schwinn Paramount, Nishiki Professional, Bottecchia, 2 Scattantes, 3 Cannondale touring bikes, mtn. bike, cyclocross, hybrid, 1940's era Schwinn

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
"Ideal conditions for speed?" Downhill, tailwind, good pavement, no traffic, straight road, stable high speed geometry.
tcarl is offline  
Likes For tcarl:
Old 10-07-19, 11:56 PM
  #11  
caloso
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 38,422

Bikes: Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper

Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2003 Post(s)
Liked 406 Times in 230 Posts
Ride with fast riders.
caloso is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 12:08 AM
  #12  
Ross520
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 35 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 23 Times in 14 Posts
Originally Posted by guachi View Post
I know that I do far worse when it's hot or even kinda warm outside. My HR shoots up and I can't maintain power. So I'll say 50-65 and sunny.
Same here. I averaged 17.5mph on a 30 mile ride today. Temperature was 95-99 Fahrenheit. I felt rather sapped after the ride too, as if I had put far more miles down than 30. Haven't been riding for too long though. I've heard people say your body will eventually get used to the Arizona heat. I have my doubts...

Looking forward to my first (cycling) winter in the desert!
Ross520 is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 01:53 AM
  #13  
bicyclridr4life
Bicyclerider4life
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Florida and Idaho
Posts: 1,074

Bikes: Huffy Beach Cruisers, Miami Sun Trike, Vertical PK7, KHS Montana Summit, Giant Cypress DX, Schwinn OCC Stingray

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 142 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Conditions for me to go fast is a LONG downhill with a brisk hurricane force tailwind.
bicyclridr4life is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 03:46 AM
  #14  
subgrade
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Rīga, Latvia
Posts: 403

Bikes: Focus Crater Lake

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 163 Post(s)
Liked 48 Times in 40 Posts
Aside from the obvious - downhill, tailwind, smooth surface, no stopping, no sharp curves - the optimum temperature for me is 15-20 degrees Celsius (60-70 F), medium humidity.
subgrade is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 04:00 AM
  #15  
livedarklions
Cyclesomatic
 
livedarklions's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: New England
Posts: 5,126

Bikes: Trek FX 3; 1994 Specialized Allez Pro; Motobecane Fantom CX; Giant OCR A1

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2624 Post(s)
Liked 956 Times in 598 Posts
Anything between 50 and 75 degrees is ideal. I've ridden centuries in temperature ranging from 35 to 100 degrees, and haven't kept track of efficiency in different ranges. I do suspect that at humidity matters a lot. It's a lot harder to shed excess body heat when your sweat isn't evaporating quickly.

We had a freak condition a couple months ago where there was 100% humidity at about 75 degrees, and I wasn't the only rider complaining about how miserable that was to ride in. I've been more comfortable in 90 degree weather than that.
livedarklions is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 04:06 AM
  #16  
Troul
:D
 
Troul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Mich
Posts: 1,649
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Liked 42 Times in 28 Posts
Early morning, right before the sun comes up, 70's, no humidity, sunny, tail wind, down a slope & after a night of undisturbed rest.

Last edited by Troul; 10-08-19 at 04:15 AM.
Troul is offline  
Likes For Troul:
Old 10-08-19, 05:30 AM
  #17  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 23,930
Mentioned: 180 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9497 Post(s)
Liked 1,032 Times in 641 Posts
Fully charged e-bike.
indyfabz is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 05:35 AM
  #18  
Lemond1985
Sophomore Member
 
Lemond1985's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1,938
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1141 Post(s)
Liked 448 Times in 302 Posts
... and a 30 pack.
Lemond1985 is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 05:36 AM
  #19  
jadocs
Senior Member
 
jadocs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 1,015

Bikes: Litespeed T2 Disc, Fondirest P4 Carbon, Fuji Cross 2.0, Specialized Fatboy

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 430 Post(s)
Liked 126 Times in 96 Posts
I haven’t noticed much of a difference as long as I’m warmed up.
jadocs is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 05:52 AM
  #20  
nomadmax 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: SW Ohio
Posts: 1,103
Mentioned: 81 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 471 Post(s)
Liked 352 Times in 198 Posts
I can't say for certain what my ideal temp is but I feel like its in the 70-80F range. I don't know what the temps were on RAIN ride this year but I know for a fact it was too hot for me.
nomadmax is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 08:47 AM
  #21  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 5,432

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1051 Post(s)
Liked 97 Times in 69 Posts
Somebody a while back suggested the best place for a fast century was from Leadville, CO to around Canon City. Downhill almost all the way. Throw in a tailwind, perhaps 60-75F, on a weekday with little traffic, and your "conditions" are just about ideal. Of course the biggest contributor is the downhill all the way.
pdlamb is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 08:51 AM
  #22  
Notso_fastLane
Senior Member
 
Notso_fastLane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Layton, UT
Posts: 981

Bikes: 2011 Bent TW Elegance 2014 Carbon Strada Velomobile

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 178 Post(s)
Liked 69 Times in 52 Posts
I like hot. When I lived in Tucson, I would wait until the afternoon in the summer to go on my typically 3-4 hour rides. I had the trails to myself.

Optimal though, is probably upper 70s.

Not sure I've found my optimal in the velomobile. It seems to do better in slightly cooler weather (I assume because I'm warmer since it's mostly enclosed) and just recently set a personal record on one of my 15 mile routes home from work. In a ~70 lb machine with all my commuting gear, so closer to 80 lb, a light wind (mostly head wind, which barely affects the velo) and traffic, I still averaged 19.4 mph over 15 miles.
Notso_fastLane is offline  
Old 10-08-19, 09:06 AM
  #23  
DrIsotope
Non omnino gravis
 
DrIsotope's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: SoCal, USA!
Posts: 7,331

Bikes: Nekobasu, Pandicorn

Mentioned: 113 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4026 Post(s)
Liked 488 Times in 314 Posts
I went into this thread thinking in general terms— a cool day without wind, etc. For me personally, the optimum conditions for speed occurred on December 28, 2018. Winds were howling in from the ENE, so I headed almost directly WSW down the Santa Ana River Trail— pushed by a 25mph tailwind, with gusts into the 40s. Despite around 22 of the 70 total miles being on traffic-filled surface streets, I averaged 23.7mph on my final ride of that year’s Rapha Festive— meaning I had already ridden about 235 miles over the previous 4 days. Had it been my Festive opener, I think I could have managed 25mph.
DrIsotope is offline  
Likes For DrIsotope:
Old 10-08-19, 09:35 AM
  #24  
Flip Flop Rider
Senior Member
 
Flip Flop Rider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: South Carolina Upstate
Posts: 1,246

Bikes: 2010 Fuji Absolute 3.0 1994 Trek 850

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 472 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 73 Times in 48 Posts
downhill, tailwind, any temp
Flip Flop Rider is online now  
Old 10-08-19, 09:41 AM
  #25  
tgenec86
Rouleur
 
tgenec86's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Central NY
Posts: 62

Bikes: Felt FC (SRAM Red), Nashbar Carbon (SRAM Red), Felt BR2 (SRAM Red), Salsa El Mariachi 29'er - solid steel, Peugeot PX-10 1972

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 40 Times in 16 Posts
"Ideal Conditions For Speed" - coming up Dam Neck Road out of the Naval Base near VA Beach, drafting behind a work van. I hit 57mph! The guys knew I was there and kept increasing the pace at a very steady rate until I could not spin any faster.

Real world? Any temperature, any road, anywhere... Time Trials don't wait for conditions to be ideal, so I just go like h-e-double hockey sticks and hope it's fast enough.
tgenec86 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.