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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What's the best way to get an accurate average speed is what I really wanna know (and how to track my "progress" if I'm actually making any)... I only ask because, for some reason, the avg speed is staying at right around 13 mph... even though every time I look down, i'm going like 15-17mph... is this just the way these things work? Should I be doing something differently? (besides riding faster)...
 

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Does your computer have the ability to do an automatic start and stop? Are you using it? Maybe you inadvertantly turned the auto feature off. If you do not have the auto feature, you have to manually turn the computer on and off.

I got the opportunity to beta test an Excel based ride log. I wish that I had used one earlier so that I could track my progress. IMHO this is the only way to chart your progress. When wireless gets perfected I hope to purchase an integrated bike computer and heart monitor that also measures terrain and downloads into a software logging and analysis package. Then you can really track your progress. But the simple programs that you manually enter the data are very helpful to monitor the progress that you woulld like to monitor.

As regarding the average mph, that is why you have a computer. It does not lie. I had the same impression when I first started cycling again. It always seemed like I was going faster than I actually was. Sometimes I would ride really hard (I thought) and other times when I was riding easier I would still have the same average. My average speeds have went up gradually as I have ridden more and got in better shape and lost some weight. Be patient, it takes a while.
 

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Which brand/model computer do you have?
Some computers have arrows on the main speed display screen. An UP arrow means you are currently riding better than average.

I reset the trip computer for each ride. This resets the distance and average speed readings but doesn't reset the Total Distance (i.e. odometer).
 

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Adorable Furry Hombre
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There are lots of different ways to compute "average speed" and every manufacturer has their own way....heck there are several completely different "averages" to begin with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's the Cateye Micro Wireless. I'm thinkin I might just reset it every night and write all the data down on a piece of notebook paper (like an excel type deal but less... computer-ey) to get an idea of my progress and all that.
 

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MWPDX said:
What's the best way to get an accurate average speed is what I really wanna know (and how to track my "progress" if I'm actually making any)... I only ask because, for some reason, the avg speed is staying at right around 13 mph... even though every time I look down, i'm going like 15-17mph... is this just the way these things work? Should I be doing something differently? (besides riding faster)...
The other post could be right, or it could be something else. In my experience, I'm more likely to look at the speed when I'm going fast--I don't want to know that I'm laboring up a hill at 6mph, but I'll always look down and think, "Man, I'm hauling now" on a downhill. That could give you a false impression.
Also, if your rides are any distance at all, it takes a long time to bring the average up. Back when I used to set speed goals for myself, I was often struck by how hard I had to work in the last hour to pick up a tenth or two.
Generally when I figure average, I mean total time for a given distance, including water stops and that hour at Starbuck's. A lot of people count only riding time. There's no right way or wrong way, but if your computer's counting while you're talking to a hottie at a stoplight, that will skew your average.
 

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Room 1201 said:
There are lots of different ways to compute "average speed" and every manufacturer has their own way....heck there are several completely different "averages" to begin with.
The only two ways I can think of are "distance divided by riding time" and "distance divided by total time". What other way to compute average speed could there be? The last time I checked, "speed" is defined to be "distance" divided by "time".
 

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kfurrow said:
The only two ways I can think of are "distance divided by riding time" and "distance divided by total time". What other way to compute average speed could there be? The last time I checked, "speed" is defined to be "distance" divided by "time".
In addition to the points you raise....What "time"? The time since the computer started recording data? The time that wheels were turning (only)? Time that the wheel were turning at a fairly constant speed? Should weight be given with respect to the amount of time spent at various speeds-since we have all these data points recorded anyway? .....etc etc etc....Heck, by "average" most people *mean* or *imply* arithmetic mean average, there is also median and mode averages.....etc etc...You see how this is not necessarily a straightforward simple endeavour in explaining away-when you don't know exactly what was going through the mind of the company that built the computer.


When people start getting serious about training and improving-averages stop telling the whole story quite quickly anyway-and they want to know HR, cadence, power, incline, temp, etc etc to get a clear picture of what and how they were doing. While an average speed might tell the whole story in the long run--it doesn't tell you any salient details.
 
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