As you become more and more familiar with cycling, it’s only natural that you become curious about your skills. One of the most common questions that new cyclists ask is how long does it take to bike 10 miles?
On average, for a cyclist looking to bike 10 miles for the first time, it can take between 45 minutes to an hour. If you’re starting out, you’ll likely be closer to the hour mark.
The more you practice cycling 10 miles, the more seconds you’ll be able to take off your time. As your fitness and skill with the bike increase, you’ll be able to achieve better times. However, there are a few other variables that can impact how long it takes to bike 10 miles!
How Long Does it Take to Bike 10 Miles? – Prepping Beforehand
How Long Does it Take to Bike 10 Miles?
When you’re doing it for the first time, it can be easy to underestimate the 10 mile distance. Consequently, many cyclists go woefully underprepared on their first 10 mile bicycle ride.
Proper planning can go a long way in ensuring that you ride your first 10 miles easily without having anything to worry about. The first thing cyclists should ensure is that they have enough food and water.
If you don’t have the proper amount of fuel, you’ll run out of steam before you manage to reach 10 miles. Keep a high-carb snack with you on your trip in case you need to have a quick bite to refuel. It’s also important to pace yourself properly,
You can quickly burn yourself out by pedaling too aggressively at the start. Also, make sure that you wear proper cycling gear or comfortable clothing on your ride. You don’t want to be riding 10 miles in sheer agony.
What Factors Impact how Long it Takes to Bike 10 Miles?
While, on average, it’ll take an amateur cyclist between 45 minutes to an hour to complete a 10 mile bike journey, there are a few factors that can significantly impact this time. Here’s a rundown of the most significant variables that affect how long does it take to bike 10 miles!
Skill of Rider
The rider’s skill level and overall fitness have a significant impact on how long it takes to bike 10 miles. As you spend more time on your bicycle, your level of fitness and skill will rise.
After spending a few weeks riding 10 miles, your current times will be much faster than your first attempt. If you continue to practice and train regularly, you’ll keep reducing a few seconds of your time.
The highest level of cyclists, who compete in the Tour de France, can manage an average speed of around 25mph. That means it’ll take them approximately 20-25 minutes to cycle 10 miles.
On favorable terrains, they could arguably manage to complete 10 miles even faster. Essentially, as cyclists’ skill and fitness levels increase, they’ll be able to decrease the amount of time it takes to cycle 10 miles.
Before you set any lofty goals for your first 10-mile ride, it’s essential to take a good assessment of your current fitness level.
There are a few questions that you can ask yourself to get a fair assessment of your current cycling skill and fitness level;
- How active are you generally?
- How often do you ride your bike?
- What’s the average distance that you cover on a bike ride?
Answering these three questions will allow you to make a fair assessment of how quickly you’ll be able to bike 10 miles.
If you’re generally active and cover long distances regularly, it’ll be easier for you to post a quicker 10 mile journey time. Inactive cyclists that mostly ride shorter routes will struggle to post a fast time initially!
Type of Bike
Another major factor that impacts how long it takes you to bike 10 miles is the kind of bike you’re using. With so many different types of bikes on the market, many people can potentially approach biking 10 miles with the wrong type of bike!
A BMX bike, cruiser bike, or recumbent bike are examples of bikes that aren’t suitable for a 10-mile ride. While in optimal conditions, you might be able to ride 10 miles on a cruiser bike, any hills, and you’ll struggle.
On the other hand, mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, and road bikes can help cyclists post quicker times on a 10-mile ride.
If you’re riding the 10-miles on pavement, a road bike will help you achieve a significantly faster time. These bikes are lightweight and feature multi-speed drivetrains to make pedaling much more accessible.
A multi-speed bike is a big advantage when it comes to achieving quick 10-mile journey times. The drivetrain allows cyclists to change gear and adjust the pedal ratio to the optimal level. If you can pedal efficiently, you’ll cover distance faster and won’t run the risk of tiring yourself out.
On off-road terrains, a road bike will struggle due to the lack of grip. If you’re looking to cover 10 miles off-road, the best type of bike is either a mountain or a hybrid. With a little bit of tweaking, it’s easy to transform your mountain bike into a long-distance commuter!
The type of terrain you encounter on the journey also has a significant impact on how long it takes to ride 10 miles. If you’re on completely flat land or there are multiple downhill portions, the time it takes to bike 10 miles will be much quicker than an uphill terrain.
Additionally, it’s also much easier to ride faster on paved terrains. You’ll naturally be slower if you’re riding off-road, even if you’re riding on a mountain bike. Before you plan your route, try to find the most favorable terrain, that way, you’ll be able to post the quickest time!
Regardless of the type of bike you ride or the kind of terrain you encounter, if the weather isn’t favorable, you’ll have a hard time posting a quick time.
In the case of too much sun, the weather can become so hot you run the risk of dehydration. Even if you bring water alongside and you don’t struggle with hydration, the heat alone will sap the energy out of you.
If it starts raining during your journey, then it becomes increasingly tricky to cycle faster. You’ll have to be more vigilant to avoid any potential obstacle in the way. With water everywhere, most surfaces become incredibly slick, so riding fast can become dangerous as well.
Aside from the rain, another potential weather hazard that you might encounter is a headwind. Strong headwinds can make it incredibly difficult to cycle forward at a steady pace.
If you encounter a strong headwind, it can almost feel like you’re trying to pedal through very thick syrup. It also becomes more challenging to maintain your balance.
Alternatively, you can encounter favorable weather as well. If you’re riding with a good tailwind, it becomes easier to reach a higher steady speed and improve your 10-mile time!
Anytime you decide to go on a 10-mile journey and are looking to measure the time, it’s a good idea to check the weather beforehand. If the conditions aren’t optimal, maybe it’s a good idea to shift your plan to another day.
It might not seem like a lot, but wearing the proper cycling gear can also impact how long it takes to bike 10 miles. Proper cycling gear is designed keeping aerodynamics in mind.
The goal of the gear is to help eliminate any potential drag that might cause the cyclist to slow down otherwise. While it might be a minute difference, it can matter if you’re looking to improve your best time.
Gear doesn’t just refer to what you’re wearing either. It’s important to carry additional tubes and a pump on a 10-mile journey. You never know when you might run into a deflated or burst tire. It’s smart to carry a multi-tool with you, so you’re ready to deal with any situation.
While it’s impossible to prepare for everything, keeping these variables in mind will allow you to consistently finish 10 mile bike rides and post your best times. Once you’re comfortable finishing 10 miles, you can test your pace on 15 or even 20 mile rides.
It’s important to keep progressing and working hard to improve your 10 mile journey time. As you get better, you’ll find it easier to cycle longer distances and will potentially start cycling even more!
Making that first 10-mile ride can be a big achievement for many cyclists. However, that doesn’t mean you should strive towards improving. Consistently timing your 10-mile journey can help you cycle faster and raise your overall skill.
If you can cycle 10 miles in 40-45 minutes, then you’re well on your way towards becoming a proper cyclist! 10 miles might be too big of a milestone for beginner cyclists, some may be better off asking how long does it take to bike 5 miles!