The answer to that question depends on who you are and why you are cycling.
Let me explain…
If you’re just starting out and want to reap the health advantages of cycling, then 10 miles a day is an excellent target.
If you’re looking to drop a few pounds, Harvard’s research reveals that cycling at speeds of 12-13.9 mph could torch up to 288 calories in 30 minutes! Based on that, the daily goal here is determined by the number of calories you want to burn.
If you’re cycling to prepare for a race, you can expect to go as high as 20,000 miles (32186.88 km) per year or an average of 55 miles per day based on a reveal of Strava year totals from world tour riders.
How many miles should I ride daily?
You just checked yourself in the mirror, and things got slightly out of hand. Whether it was the holidays or you slacked off enough. It’s time to cut some weight and body fat. Cycling 10 miles daily is a good goal to strive for every day.
An example is to not only cycle with the intention of exercise but also commuting. You will see that miles stack up at home, school, work, and between them. Biking daily is the safest way to get cardio without risking joint problems. Just make sure you do regular maintenance so the bike stays in tip-top shape, so you get in tip-top shape.
You have been making a habit of cycling 10 miles a day, and you notice that your body has improved. Your cardio has improved, and you have gotten a taste for cycling as you get a positive kick from cycling. From this point forward, you are entering the intermediate territory, and the pay-off gets only better.
Challenge yourself by adding 5 miles to your total, and if you are feeling particularly energetic, raise the intensity if you haven’t already done that!
At this point, you are getting serious. Doesn’t matter how you look at it. Cycling 20 miles even at a relaxed cadence will still give you a run (cycle) for your money. Most competitive cyclists train in bouts of this distance to prepare for 50 or 100-mile races.
Safe to say that with consistency, and adequate rest, you can develop a highly athletic physique, with body fat less than 15%, which at first glance you could call a “beach body.”
At 45 miles of daily rides, we can safely assume that you are a highly experienced cyclist. There is no mistake that you look like a cyclist. At this point, you are eating a lot of high-caloric food actually to maintain that physique and performance.
At 45 miles a day, you are shy 5 miles of completing a half-century race. How’s that for a sense of accomplishment. You might as well go pro, sign up for official competitive races, and chase fame, fortune, and glory.
Things to consider when you are biking?
In the immortal words of Viktor Frankl: “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.”. Consider what your goals are and the motivation that drives you to pursue those goals.
If you want to do general health maintenance, around 5 miles a day will do the trick. Maybe introduce high intensity to raise your heart rate a bit. One way to build your endurance and start to improve tremendously is to clock in 150-180 minutes of zone 2 cardio a week, which is 2.5-3 hours a week. Zone 2 cardio is an exercise you can do while maintaining a conversation with someone. This will help you tremendously all around.
If you are short on time, perhaps 30 minutes of daily cycling where you are actively pushing your pedaling effort, going faster for longer. If your goal is performance, then you push your distance limits by 1-4 miles or cycle a timer to improve your speed.
You can either add more distance, more intensity, or more frequency, and you can only do 2 of them right.
If you’re just getting started, 10 miles a day is a terrific place to start. If you’re an experienced rider, the extra distance may be OK as long as you take it slowly. Everyone has limits, and your experience and physique will determine yours.
Your medical history, present health, and any ailments like arthritis or other mobility problems that would prevent you from riding a given distance without aggravating an existing illness or leading to new injuries.
A younger person often has more time for exercise each day since they typically have fewer commitments. Our bodies recover more slowly as we become older. And it doesn’t bounce back as quickly as it did when we were younger.
Your degree of fitness will be different from a non-competitive cyclist’s than if you are a competitive cyclist. While a novice cyclist would quickly realize that covering over 40 miles is fairly difficult no matter how you look at it. Less seasoned cyclists may thus need more time and recovery before even being able to ride long distances.
Where are you riding?
A 10-mile bike ride on hilly terrain differs from a 10-mile bike ride on flat ground. When biking over hilly terrain, the distances you’ll cover in a certain duration of time may vary because you’re either going uphill or downhill.
Flat terrain will make biking fairly constant. On the other hand, flat terrains offer their own set of challenges, including traffic, which will hinder how far you may go. One thing is for sure, though, no matter the terrain, always practice safety, wear your protective gear, and pay attention to your surroundings.
There are many different sizes and types of bikes. Others are excellent for longer trips, while some are great for short ones. How far you can go depends greatly on the sort of bike you choose.
The fewer miles you can ride before getting tired, the harder the bike is to ride. To put it differently, a cruiser bike is far easier than riding a road or a mountain bike. Furthermore, the distance you can go on each will vary greatly.
On a cruiser bike, which is much slower than a road bike, you won’t be able to travel 10 miles as quickly or easily as you would on a road bike.
Tips to get more miles per day
- Keep track of your stats, like distance, speed, and time.
- Follow a training structure and mark your progress.
- Get a co-cyclist for friendly competitions.
- Aim for a goal that exceeds your abilities.
- Challenge yourself every other week or so.
- Consistency is key; practice it as much as you can.
- Turn biking into a habit.
Benefits of Cycling
1. Improve your mental health.
Modern life is sedentary; we are meant to be in movement as a species. Physical activity such as biking stimulates your brain’s chemical production, which improves your cognitive abilities such as focus and attention.
2. Help you to lose weight.
It’s a common reality that most people worldwide are getting overweight. Biking is a great way to increase physical activity to lose weight and body fat while making it fun and stimulating.
3. Reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.
The heart is the most important muscular organ in the body, and nowadays, heart disease is a real problem. By biking daily, you are keeping your heart activated, allowing optimal blood flow around the body, and reducing complications such as heart disease and strokes.
4. Improve your joint health.
Your joints deteriorate with age; contrary to popular belief, running can be problematic for your joint health. The best overall alternative to safely training your joints is biking, as the tension is significantly reduced.
5. Increase your muscle strength.
If you don’t use it, you lose it. The more you stimulate a muscle group, the better it will function, whether it is in performance, size, or aesthetics. Biking is a great way to keep your legs strong and develop a strong core.
6. Help to relieve stress.
Becoming stress-adaptive is a very useful trait. Biking puts your body in a controlled, stressful situation, where you are getting tremendous positive benefits. This is what’s called “Eustress.”
7. Improve your balance and coordination.
When biking, you are moving through time and space with speed; naturally, you need to pay attention to your movements and what’s happening around you. Naturally, you are honing your balance and mind-body coordination.
8. Help to prevent mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.
Anxiety and depression are the most common forms of mental health disorders. By biking, you stimulate your brain to release dopamine and epinephrine, which allows your brain in such a state that you subjectively feel better.
9. Help you to sleep better at night.
Better sleep habits are encouraged by biking. You already know how worn out you’ll be if you pass your hours figuring out how to get someplace as quickly as possible. Cycling can assist with this. It keeps your focus on the goal and delays the onset of physical fatigue.
10. Increase your energy levels and make you feel more alert during the day.
As we mentioned before, feeling energized is a subjective projection of your inner workings. When you bike or do any physical activity, your body releases epinephrine in the brain and adrenaline in the body. These two put your body in a state of alertness without panicking, pretty useful when trying to be productive.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many miles can a beginner ride a day?
A: Generally, anything between 5-10 miles a day is somewhat of a standard for beginners; this includes commuting and leisure rides. You can increase your miles every 2-3 weeks, depending on how well adapted you are.
Q: What is the ideal length of a bike ride for a great workout?
A: While there isn’t a universal length of time, anything between 15-45 minute sessions where you alternate your intensity is a great workout. The less time you are biking, the more you should focus on intensity; the more time you spend on the bike, you can take it easier.
Q: Is biking 5 miles a day good?
A: Absolutely yes, 5 miles a day is a good distance for biking as someone trying to commute, maintain health, or even restart to train for longer distances.
Q: How many miles should I ride my bike daily to lose weight?
A: If you are riding a bike for 10 miles every day, you will lose weight, granted your diet is the most important part of weight loss. If you consume more calories than you are burning, you won’t lose weight. Consume fewer calories, and biking will do the rest.
Q: Can I lose belly fat by cycling?
A: Spot-specific fat reduction is not possible. Your best hope is to cycle consistently, lose fat overall, and then lose belly fat. Some body parts can lose fat faster than others, they see the quickest, most notable changes, but that depends from person to person.
Q: How many miles should I cycle a week?
A: Your bike miles will vary tremendously depending on your goals, experience, and health. If you are training for competitions, then daily 120-mile bike rides are your most common recommandation. Great fitness level 30-90 miles with varying degrees of intensity.
Q: How many miles can you bike in an hour?
A: A typical biker on a normal bike could travel anywhere between 8-4 miles per hour. Fit cyclists may travel 20 or even more miles per hour on a road bike if they don’t encounter obstacles.
Whether you are just starting to bike for health benefits or are a seasoned veteran that has conquered great speeds and distances, the benefits of riding a bike are tremendous. Not only are you improving your body but also your mental state, as these things go together.
Biking can be fun with long leisure rides, useful for commuting from different places or provide you with different competitive challenges. No matter your personality or outlook, biking is something for everyone.