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Premium Member
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90 is usually the most widely recommended cadence. Anything lower and you will fatigue your legs more. At a higher cadence you will use your heart/lungs more, legs a little less. Helps a lot over the course of a long ride.

You can try the following drills to help you improve, its worked really well with our riders:

:30 seconds per RPM goal x 2-4 laps:
70 rpms
80 rpms
90 rpms
100 rpms
rest for 2:00
Do it again.

You can gradually jump up 5-10 rpm's every couple of weeks. We've used this drill to get folks who've had trouble hitting 80 to spinning comfortably at 110 rpm's in about 4-6 weeks.

Good luck!
 

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Yesterday tired old man, Today retired old man
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4,311 Posts
My old legs don't like much over 83-rpm. I was getting faster then something happened, it was like some one thrugh a switch and I started to slow at 67.
 

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Registered
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
INTEGRATE said:
90 is usually the most widely recommended cadence. Anything lower and you will fatigue your legs more. At a higher cadence you will use your heart/lungs more, legs a little less. Helps a lot over the course of a long ride.

You can try the following drills to help you improve, its worked really well with our riders:

:30 seconds per RPM goal x 2-4 laps:
70 rpms
80 rpms
90 rpms
100 rpms
rest for 2:00
Do it again.

You can gradually jump up 5-10 rpm's every couple of weeks. We've used this drill to get folks who've had trouble hitting 80 to spinning comfortably at 110 rpm's in about 4-6 weeks.

Good luck!
Thank you for the advice. I will start doing this on my next ride.
 

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Senior Member
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242 Posts
Ok going to show my lack of knowledge here. Please explain this ? I have no idea what you are talking about ? I've heard it mentioned before but didn't and still don't understand what it means ? As in what it is ,why It's important? And how to figure it ? Explain please
 

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Rat Biker
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442 Posts
Me personally I do know what the cadence is yet I have no clue what mine is. I actually go by MPH I don't have a cadence meter on my bike don't think I will either to be honest but that's just me
 

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Eocyclist
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742 Posts
Have been trying to average around 75-80. Is that too fast or too slow?
That's reasonable for most riding, but there is nothing wrong with working towards something higher The League of American Bicyclists Smart Cycling classes suggest a typical cadence range for road riding of 75 to 95 rpm. Lance Armstrong races in the 90-120 rpm range. Some sprinters can hit close to 170 rpm.
 

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Eocyclist
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742 Posts
Me personally I do know what the cadence is yet I have no clue what mine is. I actually go by MPH I don't have a cadence meter on my bike don't think I will either to be honest but that's just me
BikeBum,

You can get a pretty good idea of your cadence by just riding along, counting how many times one foot hits bottom-dead-center in 15 seconds. Then multiply that by 4.
 

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Eocyclist
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742 Posts
Ok going to show my lack of knowledge here. Please explain this ? I have no idea what you are talking about ? I've heard it mentioned before but didn't and still don't understand what it means ? As in what it is ,why It's important? And how to figure it ? Explain please
Cadence the number of pedal revolutions per minute. As you ride along steadily, count the number of times in a minute that your left foot is at the botom of a pedal stroke, and you have your cadence.

The combination of cadence (how fast you spin) and the amount of force you apply to the pedals determines how fast you go.

Suppose you want to cruise along at 18 mph. You have to generate a certain amount of power to overcome wind and rolling resistance to maintain that speed. You can select a high gear and apply a lot of force on the pedals, e.g. pedal real hard at 40 rpm, or you could select a lower gear and use much less force, e.g. pedaling easy at 75 rpm.



Pedaling at the higher cadence and applying less force to the pedals has two advantages.
  • It puts less stress on your knee joints, and
  • It is much more efficient in how it uses your body's energy supply. That is, you can ride farther at that speed before you get to tired to pedal.
For most conditions, a gear which allows you to spin comfortably in the 75 to 95 range is both easy on the joints and efficient. It takes a while to build the aerobic capacity to spin faster than a person's walking cadence of about 55 or 60 rpm
 
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