/ Cycling equivalent of a 3 hr Marathon?
In running I wanted to do a sub 5 min mile (not acheived)
A sub one hour 10 miles (done but not easily and not at first attempt)
A sub 3hr Marathon (done at second attempt and never failed at on several subsequent occaisions)
I also wanted to do a sub hour 20 miles on the bike, all these on certified courses of course. I used to be able to get to work down the A6 in under an hour and that was supposed to be 18 miles, with traffic lights etc, so I was sure I could do 20 ml in a certified race or time trial, I just never got round to it. I'm a bit sad about that now I'm too old, one of the 'misses' of my youth.
Anyhow I got to thinking what is the cycling equivalent of a sub 3 hr marathon? That great fell runner Ray Aucott who only started running as a veteran used to tell me tales of how they would cycle 100 miles to a race, sleep under a bush, do the 100 mile plus race and cycle home again before the weekend was over back for work on Monday. Ray was not a bullshitter!
So I guess it must be something based on 100 miles? Any cyclists out there got any suggestions?
The percentage of marathon runners getting sub 3h is probably similar to the percentage of cyclists getting sub 4h for a 100 mile time trial. (just a guess mind!)
100 mile time trial in 4h is pretty good. The record is 3.22.45
Do you really think that is the case?
I would have thought fewer cyclists do 100m in under 4hr.
Also you probably won't enter a 100mile TT unless you are reasonably good - but entering marathons then doing alot of walking is much more socially aceptable (fun running).
This proably skews the curves
And therefore 66miles in 3h would be comparable to a 3h marathon?
It's difficult to say as busy roads and new(ish) bike technology like disc wheels and aero handle bars have made historical cycle time trialing times a bit meaningless.
Back in my day (mid 80s), on the heavier, quieter roads of scotland, then only the best occassional broke 4hrs(25mph) for a hundred, most riders could beat 5hr(20mph), I once finished 8th with 4hr25 when the winner did around 4hr08.
You'd have easily done the 20miles in an hour. Beating the hour for 25miles was the thing.
> It's difficult to say as busy roads and new(ish) bike technology like disc wheels and aero handle bars have made historical cycle time trialing times a bit meaningless.
> Back in my day (mid 80s), on the heavier, quieter roads of scotland, then only the best occassional broke 4hrs(25mph) for a hundred, most riders could beat 5hr(20mph), I once finished 8th with 4hr25 when the winner did around 4hr08.
> You'd have easily done the 20miles in an hour. Beating the hour for 25miles was the thing.
I must say (without have the cycling pedigree of characters like Enty) my kneejerk reaction was 25m in the hour.
> Do you really think that is the case?
> I would have thought fewer cyclists do 100m in under 4hr.
I think you're right.
I don't know why but I had it in my mind that the WR for a marathon was 2h30 when obviously it's nearly 2h.
Maybe a 2h30 marathon would be the equivalent of a 4h 100miles.
A sub-1hr ascent of Alpe d'Huez perhaps... but that depends where you put the start and finish. To me that feels a bit easier than the others too...
Alternatively, you could go for the traditional sub-1hr 25 miles, which is more in line with your original aspiration. It's probably far more attainable than the others, but still a respectable benchmark for an amateur.
Interesting that. I'd say a sub 1h 25 and a sub 1h Alpe d'Huez (to the top!) are identical in terms of physical exertion.
> I think you're right.
> I don't know why but I had it in my mind that the WR for a marathon was 2h30 when obviously it's nearly 2h.
> Maybe a 2h30 marathon would be the equivalent of a 4h 100miles.
3hr marathon nearly 50% slower than WR, so if 100 mile record is 3'22 maybe 100 miles in 5hrs is the equivalent?
I'll be happy if I can complete the 100 miler I'm doing next month in 12 hours !
Mind you, it's an MTB race, almost all off-road, was won in 8 hours last year and less than a third of the starters finished. It rained all day....
> 3hr marathon nearly 50% slower than WR, so if 100 mile record is 3'22 maybe 100 miles in 5hrs is the equivalent?
To do a 3hr marathon I need to generate 68.7% of the power/kg that the word record holder generates - because there is a pretty much linear relationship between speed and power/kg for running. To do a 4 hr 100 mile cycle I only need to generate 70.8% of the power, because air resistance is dominant, and that's related to the square of the speed (assuming a flat course). So they're pretty comparable - especially if you bear in mind that a few spare pounds will have far more of an effect on the runner than on the cyclist (even if the course is uphill, the fat still gives some energy back when going downhill). Wind and hills affects the cyclist more though....
> And therefore 66miles in 3h would be comparable to a 3h marathon?
Not sure they're comparable, I've cycled from Lochcarron to Inverness a few times in just over 3 hours and thats 65 miles. I felt pretty good during and after it, although we did have the wind behind our back for most of it. I'm nowhere near fit enough to do a marathon. In fact I can't run more than 5 miles without being reduced to a crumpled sobbing heap! I would have thought there are more variables in cycling to make a decent comparison?
I remember doing 21 miles in a hour on a ride near Blackpool without too much effort.
It was only when I turned for home that I realised just how strong the wind had been....
:) ...I think I could do a sub 1h 25 (with a bit more training and a decent TT bike)...but Alpe d'Huiz is uphill :)
"That great fell runner Ray Aucott who only started running as a veteran "
Kinda off topic but i rem meeting Ray in 1984/5/6? It was on the Scottish Islands peaks race. He was a late replacement runner on a boat and when he turned up the sailors were looking at each other thinking "FFS! this guy can't be a fell runner?" Needless to say on arriving at Troon they had changed their minds! iirc he won Jura the year after as a vet! TY Al, you've just brought back some nice memories. RIP Ray.
Cycling is around 3 times more efficient than running
Therefore, running 26 mile in 3 hours = cycling 78 miles in 3 hours
In other words, averaging 26 mph
> Cycling is around 3 times more efficient than running
Purely from memory....
26 miles running WR is circa 123 mins.
25 miles cycling WR is circa 45 mins.
I'd just do the maths Al.
The Fred Whitton in under 7 hours. If you can get an entry...
The problem with comparing running and cycling is technology has a greater effect on cycling performance - more know than ever.
I did several 3'40 100's mid 1990's finishing 4th in BBAR one year ( top 12 3 other years) an equivalent ride now would be a 3'30 - due both to equipment and changes, nutrition and changes in training. Then it was all pulse monitor based - now its wattage based and more of a numbers game.
Of those who have crossed sports my good mate Gethin Butler moved from cycling to running and rattled out a 2'30 marathon and I know Chris Newton has also done sub 3 hour marathon on only a winters running training.
> Cycling is around 3 times more efficient than running
> Therefore, running 26 mile in 3 hours = cycling 78 miles in 3 hours
> In other words, averaging 26 mph
Only using GCSE physics! You have to consider the variable losses to air resistance with increasing speed. At maximum speed I reckon drag drops it to around 2.5 x more efficient than running.
I generally think a running mile is 3-4 times that of a cycling mile, so agree it should be a 100 mile event..
> I did several 3'40 100's mid 1990's finishing 4th in BBAR one year ( top 12 3 other years)
Ah, so I am not the only UKC top-12 BBAR finisher! Rather earlier than you and only 9th.
Chris had more than a winters running training before he did 2:59 at London, I was racing against him regularly for the previous year, given that he was running 16:40 5ks at least a year before his first Marathon, he should really have run much faster, although I appreciate it was a hot day and he has since run a faster Marathon.
Fair play - wasn't that long after he retired from the bike tho heh.
> Fair play - wasn't that long after he retired from the bike tho heh.
Whilst he is faster than me, for someone with such super human CV ability, he isn't that great a runner. I don't think the adaptation is as straightforward as you are suggesting. He may contunue to get faster as a runner, even as his CV ability reduces.
You get into strange interactions of aerobic fitness, muscle bulk, power and efficiency at different things trying to compare running and cycling. The sub 4 hr. 100 teams reasonable tho'.
One point to remember is that people with the will to do 100 mile time trials are pretty dedicated. Running is a bit more accessible and so there are a lot more 'punters' doing marathons, and so a lot more running under 3 hrs.
Yeah not quick - Gethin has done the job sub 2'30 tho but has spent more time training specifically for it.
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