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-   -   After how many miles a day do we get diminished returns with our fitness? (https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=1232695)

unterhausen 06-15-21 06:05 AM

I have noticed a positive training effect from rides up to 300 km/day. At 400 km, it seems like I need a lot more recovery. Although I have to say I have felt better after a couple of 400km days when I'm riding a 1200km ride.

Having said that, it's easy to overdo it with longer rides and 100km seems like the longest distance that makes sense to me on a regular basis.

As always, ymmv and working up to numbers like that may take some time.

livedarklions 06-15-21 06:53 AM


Originally Posted by unterhausen (Post 22102724)
I have noticed a positive training effect from rides up to 300 km/day. At 400 km, it seems like I need a lot more recovery. Although I have to say I have felt better after a couple of 400km days when I'm riding a 1200km ride.

Having said that, it's easy to overdo it with longer rides and 100km seems like the longest distance that makes sense to me on a regular basis.

As always, ymmv and working up to numbers like that may take some time.

I think we all have our set points where our gains are going to be outweighed by our losses, and that it would vary a lot from person to person. I can't even imagine riding a 400 km day, although I've come pretty close to 300 (270 km). I'm sure there are factors like body size, age, etc. that are beyond our control that would have an effect on our maximum potential.

Rdmonster69 06-15-21 07:03 AM

So I'm not supposed to stop and have a pizza on my century ? What fun is that ? I'm coming up with my own definition and it will consist of a stop for a couple of hotdogs ....maybe a burger. Lon Haldeman (SP?) won a few ROM events by slamming Big Macs.

Iride01 06-15-21 07:15 AM


Originally Posted by terrymorse (Post 22102162)
From both your words and the title of this thread: "After how many miles a day do we get diminished returns with our fitness?"

"fitness" -- not "diet" or "weight loss".

Is the OP seeking advice on how to lose weight? I may have missed that.

If so, is your advice then: "Better not ride hard or long, or you might get hungry and eat too much"?

I was only replying to one comment of the OP. I quoted the exact comment that I was addressing. Don't try to imagine them as a statement of how the OP should ride or train.

If we were to get together and discuss it, you'd probably find we agree more than disagree. However, while you seem to be looking at this thread as the OP looking for in depth training advice, I'm only looking at it as the OP trying to make small talk.

PeteHski 06-15-21 07:16 AM


Originally Posted by Rdmonster69 (Post 22102783)
So I'm not supposed to stop and have a pizza on my century ? What fun is that ? I'm coming up with my own definition and it will consist of a stop for a couple of hotdogs ....maybe a burger. Lon Haldeman (SP?) won a few ROM events by slamming Big Macs.

We all have different reasons to ride. For me it's a combination of fun, fitness, challenge and general sense of well-being. But the question was about diminishing returns on fitness. I would say a mid-ride pizza is an effective way of diminishing your return on fitness, but not a bad way to spend your day!

Iride01 06-15-21 07:19 AM


Originally Posted by livedarklions (Post 22102200)
I think you're assuming you are the norm here. This is a classic ymmv situation.

Are you the norm?

I just put out there my anecdotal experiences, views and opinions. So of course YMMV.

Even when people point to factual scientific study, many times what they are writing is their opinion of what the study says and means for the situation they are applying it too.

This is BF, a place to share views and opinions. If I wanted facts and scientific study, well, there are better sites for that.

PeteHski 06-15-21 07:23 AM


Originally Posted by terrymorse (Post 22102162)
"fitness" -- not "diet" or "weight loss".

When people casually talk about fitness I tend to think weight loss (or maintaining a healthy weight) is part and parcel of being fit. Obviously weight is only one aspect of fitness, but usually a pretty major one in the western world!

Kapusta 06-15-21 07:29 AM

57

burnthesheep 06-15-21 07:31 AM

1. https://www.bikeforums.net/training-nutrition/

2. Each person has different goals for riding a bicycle

3. Based on those goals, it's the aggregate of TIME and INTENSITY. Miles are like asking "how long is a piece of string".

Lastly, there's a lot of questions like this that boil down to people wanting some kind of answer to something not knowable without knowing their goals. I know a LOT of recreational riders that pour in 200+ "miles" a week just sucking wheel for hours at a time. Absolutely nothing wrong with that. But they always ask "why am I still slow" or some other variant of that complaint. Well, you ride for enjoyment. Do you want a different goal? Why not have enjoyment be the goal instead of something else if you don't need to?

If your goal isn't a specific racing discipline, we're making the topic more complicated than it needs to be.

terrymorse 06-15-21 07:35 AM


Originally Posted by UCantTouchThis (Post 22102583)
I was lifting my fitness level to make my century with 12,000 ft more enjoyable.

That sounds like a great climbing century, what was it?

I enjoy (well, enjoyed--it's been many years) the centuries with 10,000+ feet.

Rdmonster69 06-15-21 07:59 AM


Originally Posted by PeteHski (Post 22102799)
We all have different reasons to ride. For me it's a combination of fun, fitness, challenge and general sense of well-being. But the question was about diminishing returns on fitness. I would say a mid-ride pizza is an effective way of diminishing your return on fitness, but not a bad way to spend your day!

Pizza is a great fitness food. Carbs and protein !! I will just eat a small one with lots of veggies.

PeteHski 06-15-21 08:19 AM


Originally Posted by Rdmonster69 (Post 22102869)
Pizza is a great fitness food. Carbs and protein !! I will just eat a small one with lots of veggies.

Good point. I was envisaging a typical huge NA pizza loaded full of meat and cheese. I do love a proper Italian pizza though.

prj71 06-15-21 08:44 AM


Originally Posted by DreamRider85 (Post 22101710)
What's your opinion? Is it 40? 50? 70? 100? I have done 60 miles recently and 70, but I don't feel like there are many other benefits once you get past 40 or 50. I could be wrong. Maybe it's different for everybody? With cycling, you can't really customize the intensity of your whole ride as easily due to stop signs, different road conditions, hills, downhills, etc... The benefit of cycling is that it's more fun so you do it more. But minute per minute, hour per hour, there are more challenging workouts. Now going up a big hill is really a tough workout, but not all routes are going to be the same.


What you really want to know is what biking volume you should be doing to achieve your performance goals? It is a moving target depending on your goals.

And there is no such thing as junk mileage. :D

livedarklions 06-15-21 10:46 AM


Originally Posted by Iride01 (Post 22102037)
I'd tend to think if you eat more because of that longer ride, then you probably are having to put out too much effort currently to do those longer rides.

Rides I do at very high to max efforts, I tend to eat back all the Calories I expended on the ride. When I ride at low to moderate efforts then I don't gorge myself on food for the next few days after the ride. This seems to be rides of any length for me. Though I've always felt that long rides of any sort let me lose weight. Maybe I just pace myself better on longer rides of 50 to 100 miles.

As for we in your title..... Do you think we all ride for the same reasons? I doubt many of us have the same reasons and desires for what and why we do it. So your bell curve you are trying to figure out might be really skewed.

Don't use we in your next title please. After all we are individuals with our own wants and needs. Being part of a controlled collective is not my desire.


Originally Posted by Iride01 (Post 22102806)
Are you the norm?

I just put out there my anecdotal experiences, views and opinions. So of course YMMV.

Even when people point to factual scientific study, many times what they are writing is their opinion of what the study says and means for the situation they are applying it too.

This is BF, a place to share views and opinions. If I wanted facts and scientific study, well, there are better sites for that.


I've said many times, I'm a genetic freak. I'm definitely not the norm. My point is Norm is a character on Cheers, but there is no such person as :"the norm."

I was commenting on the chain of your comments, and I don't understand what "too much effort" means when you're talking about other people.

I try not to express opinions on other people's hunger, etc., based on my own experiences as I think these factors are too variable to have any idea whether my experience is even remotely related to theirs.

I do know your experience in this regard doesn't match mine, but my eating during ride habits are too weird for me to think they generalize to much of anyone.

Phil_gretz 06-15-21 10:53 AM

The question posed by the OP doesn't concern calories in. He asks about the benefits of fairly high intensity aerobic exercise. This is a throw-away question, because there have been numerous scientific peer-reviewed studies, and countless publications on the topic. The more interesting question concerns how the OP uses bicycle riding as part of an overall fitness regimen tailored to his individual health needs. The rest is simply talk.

DreamRider85 has a particular style of starting discussion threads. If this is a conscious effort to come across a certain way and to stir up chatter, then there's a certain brilliance to it, I think. The staying in character thing especially. If it's not conscious, but simply a reflection of his mental state, then it's a sad thing. Either way, write whatever you will in response.

He simply get's my :love:for each attempt.

BikingViking793 06-15-21 12:24 PM


Originally Posted by DreamRider85 (Post 22101710)
What's your opinion? Is it 40? 50? 70? 100? I have done 60 miles recently and 70, but I don't feel like there are many other benefits once you get past 40 or 50. I could be wrong. Maybe it's different for everybody? With cycling, you can't really customize the intensity of your whole ride as easily due to stop signs, different road conditions, hills, downhills, etc... The benefit of cycling is that it's more fun so you do it more. But minute per minute, hour per hour, there are more challenging workouts. Now going up a big hill is really a tough workout, but not all routes are going to be the same.

great question. I donít have an answer, but am enjoying reading the responses. I would think from a training perspective there should be diminished returns at some point. But from a happiness perspective the more riding the better.

unterhausen 06-15-21 02:21 PM

My previous answer was true for me, and since I ride longer distances I have to worry about how it affects me. I'm not going to go out and do a 300 or 400km ride for training, doesn't make sense to me. 20-35 miles is plenty for most of us. If a ride is much longer than that, quality is going to suffer. Before my first 1200km ride, I mostly did 20 mile training rides during the last 2 months and concentrated on getting faster. That was after a base of plenty of longer rides. There is something to be said for keeping fresh, and after you get a base, you aren't going to stay fresh by slogging through long rides.


Originally Posted by livedarklions (Post 22102775)
I can't even imagine riding a 400 km day, although I've come pretty close to 300 (270 km). I'm sure there are factors like body size, age, etc. that are beyond our control that would have an effect on our maximum potential.

I like to say anyone can ride 400km. However, on a less than stellar ride, I have taken almost the full randonneuring time limit, which is 27 hours. One such ride, I one-legged it for the final 20 miles because my knee hurt. Not recommended, but I'm not going to quit with that small of a distance remaining.

livedarklions 06-15-21 02:33 PM


Originally Posted by unterhausen (Post 22103453)
My previous answer was true for me, and since I ride longer distances I have to worry about how it affects me. I'm not going to go out and do a 300 or 400km ride for training, doesn't make sense to me. 20-35 miles is plenty for most of us. If a ride is much longer than that, quality is going to suffer. Before my first 1200km ride, I mostly did 20 mile training rides during the last 2 months and concentrated on getting faster. That was after a base of plenty of longer rides. There is something to be said for keeping fresh, and after you get a base, you aren't going to stay fresh by slogging through long rides.

I like to say anyone can ride 400km. However, on a less than stellar ride, I have taken almost the full randonneuring time limit, which is 27 hours. One such ride, I one-legged it for the final 20 miles because my knee hurt. Not recommended, but I'm not going to quit with that small of a distance remaining.


This is one of those things I find fascinating--lately things seem to work in reverse of that from me. My 25 mile rides didn't actually get faster until I started doing some fair amount of rides of about 100 miles. I have no idea why it works that way. I'm recovering from a lung injury from last fall, and maybe the compensation for the injury moves faster when I really push the distance.



Did your knee recover quickly?

terrymorse 06-15-21 04:22 PM


Originally Posted by UCantTouchThis (Post 22103506)

Ride Around the Bear, 100 miles with supposedly 10,000 ft. They changed the gain claims after Garmins became more popular. I think now they say it was 9800 ?

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...cfd74cb496.jpg

Breathless Agony, 114 miles 12,000 ft of gain.


https://cimg8.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...0187c4abdb.jpg

Great rides, thanks for the profiles.

Maybe next year they'll be up and running again.

Another of my favorite 10,000+ foot rides is the Grizzly Century, out of North Fork, CA.

And according to the Fresno Cycling site, it's going to be operated this year, on October 2nd. Hope the fires stay away this year.

The Griz route.

Troul 06-15-21 04:46 PM

if i don't do equal or longer length rides prior to a set ride distance, I lag & may huff a little on the climbs.
Doesnt matter (within reason) how long those pre-long rides take, just so long as I go the distance. I can do a slew of smaller rides, & it will not set me up for success to the longer one ride I am after. The body just makes life difficult.

Aroyobob 06-15-21 10:30 PM


Originally Posted by Phil_gretz (Post 22103171)
The question posed by the OP doesn't concern calories in. He asks about the benefits of fairly high intensity aerobic exercise. This is a throw-away question, because there have been numerous scientific peer-reviewed studies, and countless publications on the topic. The more interesting question concerns how the OP uses bicycle riding as part of an overall fitness regimen tailored to his individual health needs. The rest is simply talk.

DreamRider85 has a particular style of starting discussion threads. If this is a conscious effort to come across a certain way and to stir up chatter, then there's a certain brilliance to it, I think. The staying in character thing especially. If it's not conscious, but simply a reflection of his mental state, then it's a sad thing. Either way, write whatever you will in response.

He simply get's my :love:for each attempt.

He/They do seem to have a talent.

https://cimg7.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...8d72646830.jpg

jackb 06-19-21 10:18 AM

Riding longer distances, say 50 or 60 miles, gets you in shape for riding those distances. I'll bet that there is little difference in overall physical fitness between a person riding 30 miles regularly and a person riding 60. When I hike or ski or ride with others we all appear to be in that category called "fit," yet we do all kinds of different activities for pleasure and exrcise and at different levels of intensity.

PeteHski 06-19-21 12:34 PM


Originally Posted by jackb (Post 22108838)
I'll bet that there is little difference in overall physical fitness between a person riding 30 miles regularly and a person riding 60.

Depends how you define overall fitness. I would have thought, all other things being equal, the person riding 60 miles will have more endurance fitness than the one only riding 30 miles (which you kind of implied in your first sentence). There is probably some diminishing return, but my training plan for endurance rides of around 100 miles certainly includes training rides much longer than 30 miles. Obviously non of this matters if you don't need that extra endurance fitness.

shelbyfv 06-19-21 02:51 PM


Originally Posted by Aroyobob (Post 22104091)

Every time I see one of these compilations of OP's threads I'm reminded how impressive it is that he has continued to contemplate cycling when confronted by so many obstacles!


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