May’s Magnificent Miles

Thanks to all who sent in their May bike mileage, representing a mix of commuting, pleasure and errand-running miles. We reached 3,161 miles, despite a very soggy Bike to Work Week.

Forgot to send in your miles? Leave a message here, on Facebook or email wwbikeped@gmail com. We can always update.

What do 3,161 miles represent? Interestingly, we burn roughly the same number of calories per mile cycled, regardless of speed (Obviously we burn more per hour the faster we go). The other variable is your weight. You can work out where you stand below, but assuming an average weight of 155 pounds and a moderate pace (45 calories per mile), we burned 142,245 calories. If we hadn’t compensated for the riding with extra food, we’d have lost nearly 41 pounds.

Some of you sent in descriptions of your rides. Don P. used his bike to carry grass clippings to the EcoCenter in Lawrence and hauled mulch home. Dan R. confessed to being in the wrong gear when crossing a stream in Dorchester County, Maryland,? .. I assume that was a wet mistake! He also saw roads there flooded more than he’d ever seen before. All this was part of a one-day 138-mile ride around the perimeter of Dorchester County, in which he only had rain for 20 minutes. Dan also provided the inspiration for the title of this post — thanks, Dan!

Also thanks to Levi, Abby, Jessica, Deniz, Diane, Bill, John W. and everyone else who sent in their mileage count. As for that calorie information…

Vigorous Cycling

Bicycling 14 to 15.9 mph is considered a “vigorous effort” by the Wisconsin Department of Health. More vigorous efforts spur greater calorie losses by increasing your heart rate and the amount of fuel your body burns, according to “Swim, Bike, Run.” When you bicycle 14 to 15.9 mph, you burn 54 to 62 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, 44 to 50 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and 37 to 42 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

Moderate Cycling

Bicycling 12 to 13.9 mph is a “moderate effort,” according to the Wisconsin Department of Health. Your heart rate should be 45 percent to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate–220 beats per minute minus your age–when you exercise moderately, according to Dr. Dean Ornish in his book “Dr. Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease.” When you bicycle 12 to 13.9 mph, you burn 50 to 58 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, 41 to 47 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and 34 to 39 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

Light Cycling

Bicycling 10 to 11.9 mph is regarded as a “light effort” by the Wisconsin Department of Health. If you’re 40 years old, you can bicycle lightly if your heart rate is under 81 beats per minute–220 minus 40 times .45 percent. When you bicycle 10 to 11.9 mph, you burn 44 to 52 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, 35 to 42 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and 30 to 35 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

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