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Cycling speed tips: how to get faster on your bike

Advice to get you up to full speed on your bike and keep you there

Everyone wants to ride faster – even those people who say they don’t! – and we have a whole load of articles here on that will help you get there. If you want to be fit and fast by the summer, you need to be focusing on it now.


We’ve run a Six Weeks to Fitness series that shows you how to get into shape for a sportive or a big ride.


(NB this series was originally published in association with the now-defunct retailer Cycle Surgery, hence the company's logo appearing on the pictures etc)

Six Weeks to Fitness - getting started 
Six weeks to Fitness - Week 1, developing strength 1
Six Weeks to Fitness - Week 2, moving from strength to greater endurance 
Six Weeks to Fitness - Week 3, working on threshold 
Six Weeks to Fitness - Week 4, taking the intensity higher 
Six Weeks to Fitness - Week 5, leg strength work and sprinting 
Six Weeks to Fitness - Week 6, tapering 

Zwift Richmond

Check out our article on 15 personal training and coaching apps to help you get fit too. There’s bound to be something that works for you, like Strava or TrainerRoad, for example

If you want to do some of your training indoors, find out how to get started with Zwift and make your home trainer sessions more fun.

But there's more to connected training that Zwift, deservedly popular as it is. Have a read of our guide to 12 of the best indoor training apps.

Fitness advice

What about if you just want to get thinner? Dave Smith’s article on fat burning myths will help you there. 

If you're planning long rides this year, here's our advice on how to ride further without breaking yourself!

mango point r riding shot - 1

If lower back pain is holding you back, as it is for many cyclists, check out Dave’s article on how to prevent and treat it... including a trick with a tin of rice pudding!

Take a look at Ric Stern’s Fitness Q&As too for some bitesized advice on everything from getting training back on track after illness to tackling knee pain

Food - 4 (1).jpg

Don’t forget that your diet is crucial. Here’s our advice on how to eat right for sportives and longer rides.


Kinesis Aithein - climbing (Geoff Waugh Photos

If you’re lacking fitness, chances are that it’ll be exposed on the hills, so make sure you read our 10 top tips to becoming a better climber.

You can gain time on the downhills too if you get your technique dialled, so make sure you take a look at our 14 tips for better descending.

Kinesis Aithein - fast corner (Geoff Waugh Photos) 1.jpg

Fine-tuning your cornering skills will make you faster and safer. Here are our 11 tips for better cornering

Pyractif 2013 - Day Two -  Peyresourde Descent Corner (Photo - P Diprose)

Along similar lines, and particularly relevant if you're heading off to ride a Continental sportive this year, here's our video showing you how to ride hairpins.

If you're going to ride fast, you need to know how to control that speed effectively, so read our 12 tips for better braking.

Riding fast might make you nervous, so check out our guide to curing speed wobbles too.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

Add new comment


FrankH | 2 years ago
1 like

Ride faster up the hills. Any fool can ride fast downhill, see me riding downhill  1
but going faster uphill makes much more difference to your average speed.

Woodknacker | 4 years ago

Buy a nice shiny new lightweight aero pushrod.....obvs.

OnTheRopes | 5 years ago

Six weeks to fitness is stretching it a bit?

It takes me 5 months to go from zero to hero

NZ Vegan Rider replied to OnTheRopes | 4 years ago

Six weeks to fitness for a young puppy......

jlebrech | 6 years ago
1 like

push more watts

Fluffed | 6 years ago

Get out of the saddle, apparently. Even Zwift guy is at it.

ChrisB200SX | 6 years ago
1 like

Read guides about how to ride faster.

oldmixte | 6 years ago

Pedalling faster helps.

CXR94Di2 replied to oldmixte | 6 years ago

OldMixte wrote:

Pedalling faster helps.


Or slower in a bigger gear  1

More power, greater endurance and less weight

capedcrusader replied to oldmixte | 2 years ago

so does riding downhill.

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