How Long Does It Take To Bike 5 Miles - Thebicyclegeek

A reliable estimate of the time it takes to cycle a distance can be instrumental in planning the rest of your day and evading zombie capture in apocalyptic situations. The road you’re taking and the bicycle you’re using are some of the most telling factors in how long it takes to bike 5 miles. So, how much time should you expect your 5-mile bike ride to take?

Is 5 Miles a Long Bike Ride?

Five miles is mainly considered a short bike ride. A long bike ride for a healthy person with average fitness would be the seemingly magical 20-mile ride. That said, 5 miles can be physically demanding. Still, it is an easy-to-moderate physical task for most people.

How Long Does It Take The Average Person to Bike 5 Miles?

Even for an average person, that answer depends on a slew of factors, from the type of terrain to the fitness and condition of the rider. An average person using a less optimized folding bike for regularly commuting at a speed of about 12 mph can take about 30 minutes to go 5 miles of relatively flat terrain.

But that same person could take 20 minutes or less on a more streamlined road bike pushing around 14 mph. The number can significantly vary if a similarly fit person with lower back discomfort goes 5 miles on mostly flat roads with some elevated sections. That person also riding at leisurely speeds could take 30 to 60 minutes.

So, giving yourself 30 to 40 minutes to complete 5 miles with real-world considerations is best.

Most Important Factors

As with anything out there, many factors impact your cycling performance. A road and its condition can mean the difference between easily evading a band of coyotes or giving an arm to save your legs to continue paddling.

Terrain

The lay of the land will command the most considerable sway to the amount of time it’ll take you to cycle 5 miles. You make the fastest time riding over bike lanes and tarred, flat, or well-kept roads. Your slowest time will be from riding on gravel terrains with sloping hills and obstacles.

You lose and recover less speed the more hills you encounter. So, you’ll have a faster time biking over terrain with fewer steep hills and no downhills than cycling on routes with an equal number of up and down hills.

Rider

Different riders have different strengths. Some riders have powerful quads that allow them to go faster and further when they have bursts of pushing themselves to their limit throughout the 5 miles.

In contrast, other riders might not be as strong but could have incredible stamina and endurance that allows them to cycle at a constant pace for their entire journey. We can’t accurately call which rider would make the best time as the speeds could average to be about the same at the end of the trip.

The important thing here is that you must have a healthy, relatively fit rider familiar with how to ride a bike.

Your Physical Condition:

You’ll have a tough time riding even a quarter mile if you have severe asthma or other similar conditions. Lower back pain can also dash any hopes of making the same time someone with similar physicals as you that doesn’t suffer from the same plight.

Although cycling is often classified as a sport with a low impact on the physical state of your body, the often hunched posture can aggravate back problems.

Your Determination:

As in most situations, your level of motivation and determination could be what cuts down your 5-mile time by chunks of minutes. The more determined you are, the longer you’ll be able to maintain high motivation levels and push yourself to tax your muscles more for longer.

Beginners or Professionals:

On average, professional cyclists can cycle miles 2-3 minutes faster than someone with only a month of cycling experience. A professional can complete a 5-mile trip in about 10-15 minutes more quickly than a beginner.

Bike Type

Bikes aren’t created equal. There are many different kinds of bikes, each with its strengths and weaknesses that’ll determine the final time you make. Using a road bike over a gravely 5-mile will take longer than using a gravel bike with specially designed wheels and suspension to deal with such mountainous rigors.

Weather

You’d be surprised by just how big of an effect temperature has. You’ll take longer to cycle 5 miles during rainy and windy days than you can on sunny and moderately hot days. Cycling against a strong headwind can torpedo your cycling speed by about half the wind speed.

Different Bike Types Riding Time on 5 Miles

You should be aware of what your 5 miles will demand of you when you choose a bicycle to use, as each bike will give you different results.

Electric Bikes:

If you want to cover 5 miles the fastest irrespective of your fitness level and while carrying the most load, then e-bikes are your best bet. E-bikes primarily have three classifications, class 1 to class 3, to help tailor them to the rider’s use case specification and to comply with federal, State, and local laws.

Briefly, a class 1 e-bike gives motor support of up to 20 mph only when the rider is pedaling, and class 2 are much the same, with the sole difference being that they have a throttle that you can engage to keep the motor going even when you’re not pedaling.

Class 3 e-bikes can have speeds of up to 28 mph, have a speedometer, and have the option of a throttle. So, it’s possible to take any rider 15 minutes to complete 5 miles going full speed on class 1 and 2 e-bikes over flat and obstacle-free terrain.

Similarly, you want to avoid crashing on a class 3 e-bike going 28mph as you can complete 5 miles in less than 11 minutes.

Some e-bike manufacturers make their e-bikes somewhat modular to work around governmental regulations. This allows them to ship their bikes in a state the rider can be used as standard bikes with the capability of adding the juice to make them into one or any of the classes.

If daring, you can import these e-bikes from Europe that can remove speed restrictions to give you speeds far beyond the 28-mph cap. Beware that the more you task a throttled motor on an e-bike, the less distance you get out of its battery. Typically, you get between 20 to 100 miles on e-bikes, with many sitting around 25-45 miles on a charge.

City Bikes:

City bikes are built for urban commuting where there might be plenty of bike paths. People use them to get around town and run errands like picking up supplies from the supermarket. Also called utility or commuter bikes, the build of these bikes prioritizes comfort and practicality over speed.

As such, an average person’s speed on a city bike will be on the lower end of the 10 to 14 mph average. With the conservative speed of 11-12 mph, a rider could take 25-27 minutes to cover 5 miles in an urban area without stopping along the cruise.

Road Bikes:

Road bikes are optimized for speed with thin tires, light frames, and forward riding position over comfort and practicality. Even an average rider can pull rates on the upper end of the 12-18 mph road bike estimate. If we conservatively assume speeds of 14-16 mph on well-paved roads with minimal hills, we can give that person 18 to 21 minutes to complete the 5-mile trip.

Mountain Bikes:

Mountain bikes are built for dynamic speed and durability on gravel and dirt terrain. But it’s more helpful to consider the time you’d take riding a mountain bike in the city. You would need to improve your effort on a road bike to achieve the same speeds as on a road bike, as mountain bikes have grippy tires that roll much slower on the pavement.

That said, you’re likely able to sustain speeds in the region of 12 mph which would put your 5-mile time around 27 minutes. Fortunately, mountain bikes are much more durable and will respond better to things that go bump in the road.

Hybrid Bikes:

Hybrid bikes combine the best of mountain, commuter, and road bikes. They bike some of the more relaxed and upright riding postures of commuter bikes and the robustness of mountain bike shock systems while keeping tires and weight as thin and light as possible, respectively.

An average person on a hybrid riding relatively flat roads can pull 12-16 mph and cover 5 miles in 18-25 minutes.

Kid’s Bikes:

Kid’s bikes is a category that encompasses a large sample chunk. The time a kid will take to cover 5 miles can significantly differ depending on their height, weight, and bike type. Generally speaking, an average kid rider between 10 and 14 can sustain 8 to 10 mph and finish 5 miles in 30 to 37 minutes.

Again, depending on the type of kid bike, an adult can complete 5 miles in 20 to 30 minutes over reasonably flat pedestrian routes on the same cycle the kid used.

Time estimates to complete 5 miles on fairly flat urban terrain - Thebicyclegeek

Is Biking 5 Miles in 30 Minutes Good?

Finishing 5 miles in 30 minutes is slightly below par for the average person. That’s because that person would have to be riding at around ten mph when we know that 12 to 14 mph are typical for new riders with average fitness.

If I Bike 5 Miles a Day, Will I See a Difference Over Time?

Yes, you will see a difference over time if you cycle 5 miles daily. You’ll see a more noticeable change right at the start if you were previously more sedentary, as you’d be getting 150 minutes of the recommended moderately intense exercise each week.

You’ll need to adhere to progressive overload by pushing yourself to cycle faster to maintain your fitness growth.

Conclusion

Riding 5 miles might be on the shorter side of rides, but it can still be incredibly beneficial to your health. Choose the right bike for the terrain to be on the faster end of the 18 to 50 minutes to cycle 5 miles. Get yourself an e-bike if you want even shorter times than 18 minutes with less effort.