Riding long distances in a fixed gear, you must be joking right, that is the response I get all the time when I say I use fixie for long-distance rides.
Just because it is fixed gear that doesn’t mean it is impossible to cover a long distance in it.
Yes, you can ride long distances in fixed gear bikes since it requires low maintenance sometimes zero maintenance and fixie does not carry other stuff that adds weight to it, this makes riding fixed gear more fun and enjoyable.
Before taking on a long ride in fixie make sure your body and mind are prepared for it.
To take your fixie bike for a long-distance ride first start riding 5 to 10 miles (8 to 15 km) a mile a day this builds the stamina and energy you need to finish your journey without feeling much pressure.
After riding for like more than 15 km, the ass gets soar so try to get a gel seat pad for a little cushion, and also add griper to your handle it will help you in long-distance rides.
How many Miles can you cover in the day on a fixie? On average!
It really depends on different factors like the type of fixie bike you using, your body weight, gearing ratio, how much weight you are carrying, and your stamina.
It also depends on the terrain you are riding in is flat roads, uphill or downhill roads, or gravel roads.
Some bikers manage to cover a lot more distance than others.
On average you can cover up to 100 to 150 km a day on a fixed gear bike even if you are not a pro cyclist, with the typical gearings of 46:16 will go at the speed of 25 km PPH (15.5 miles PPH) you can cover the distance in about 4 to 6 hours, taking breaks after an hour ride really does recharge your batteries.
Pro cyclists can cover more than 200 km on a fixed gear in a day and that is the low-end number.
And another factor that also counts is how many years of experience you have riding a bike but the above answers are given considering that you are an average cyclist.
Best gear ratio to ride long distance in a fixie bike?
The best gearing ratio for long-distance riding in a fixed gear would be 2.875 to 2.722 in (46 tooth on crankset 16 on the cog To 49 tooth on crankset 18 on cogs)
This gear ratio will help you to easily smash the uphill and flat roads, pedals won’t run off like crazy on decent.
Choosing the proper gear ratio is an important task to consider but the problem is you have to choose which works best for you.
Because everybody is built differently.
And the majority of bike riders ignore this part some won’t bother to understand it but choosing the best gear ratio for your body type and the type of bike you are using, is important.
The only way to know which one suits you best is for your riding style and the type of terrain you ride in.
The method is to try different gear ratios in a different environment, you definitely can feel the difference and choose one and stick with it.
Do you need to install brakes for long-distance rides on a fixed gear?
When you are going for a long-distance ride on fixie it is always a good idea to have brakes on your bike.
Even if you are an expert or beginner riding a fixie can be tricky, fixed gear is different from other bikes.
Having a front brake on a fixie is one less thing to worry about stopping the bike by just relying on skid stops.
Brakes can really come in handy in some situations and most of the time you won’t have to use them as well since it is a long ride.
Brake weight on your bike is not a matter to consider, it does not affect you on long rides, bottom line is having brakes helps in a long-distance ride on a fixed-gear.
How much weight can you carry on the long-distance ride?
Carrying weight while riding a bike is something to consider especially when you are going for long-distance rides.
You can carry 3 to 5 pounds (1.2 to 2.2 kg) carrying more than this can put pressure on your body and knees, try to carry less weightage as possible.
If it was a short distance ride of 5 to 10 miles ( 8 to 16 km) you carry 7 to 10 pounds on your backpack, this weight won’t affect your ride in short distances and it is an ideal weight to carry back and forth from home to shop.
The first thing is a typically fixed gear bike itself carries around 20 to 25 lbs (9 to 11.3 kg) weight, considering your body weight and how well you have been training for riding long distances will also determine whether it will be easy for you or not.
Since we are talking of caring weight while riding, another advantage of owning a fixed gear is that it does not weigh much like other single-speed bikes so it is an advantage.
Does riding long-distance on fixed gear hurt your knee?
In fixed gear you always have to keep on pedaling, fixed gear does not have a freewheel where you can cruise down the hill without pedaling.
So it is a common question to take into account.
Compared to riding single-speed bikes to fixed gear bikes is that you can’t rest your legs on a fixie bike so that means you are worried about pedaling too much and hurting your knees.
Riding fixed gear or freewheeler bikes you almost pedal the same amount of RPM, there is a difference of just a few numbers.
The only time you will pedal more is on the downhill roads where fixed gear bike pedals are constantly rotating, on the downhill you can pedal or you can rest your legs on the frame of your bike.
The last one-sentence answer is that riding long distances on fixed gear won’t hurt your knees because you have a tiny difference in RPM (Rotation Per Minute) riding in a freewheeler and fixed gear.
Which pedal gives the most comfort while riding long distances on fixed gear?
Flat pedals are the most commonly known pedals all around the world, they are popular among fixed gear riders.
When riding fixed gear, flat pedals are comfortable but not much reliable while pushing hard on the pedal there is more chance of slipping your foot and hurting your leg
Since flat pedals do not have a clip to hold the pedal from your foot, which is important when riding a fixie.
- Flat pedals are comfortable for riding
- Simple looking pedals
- Easy to use pedals for everyone
- Foot Can slip off anytime, may end up hurting your legs
- Not a lot of grip
Straps are another popular type of pedal, people don’t use strap pedals a lot o fixed gear bikes
With straps pedals, you have control to jump lift the bike couple of inches to pass speed humps
In strap pedals, you can fit boots to sneakers into the strap of the bike without a problem.
And to be honest, straps pedal are not that pretty looking, especially on fixed gear bikes.
- The strap pedal allows you to lift the bike in the air
- You can ride comfortably with straps on
- Strap pedal can fit boots, sneakers, crocs with comfy
- Not so good looking while riding fixed gear bikes (you can say ugly too)
- Before stoping the bike need to remember to remove your foot from the strap pedal
Toe clip with strap pedal
Most commonly used pedal on a fixed gear, but some people do not feel totally comfortable with toe clips pedals
Because of its unique way of resting your foot, and it is also hard to get used to riding in the toe clip pedal it takes some practice to get used to it.
But the toe clip gives you full control of the bike, you will feel a direct connection of road and bike, using a toe clip is a better option for fixed gear compared to other types of the pedal.
It looks cool and you can feel more control over your bike but the only downfall is that not many people try to use toe clips.
- With a Toe clip, you will have full control of pedaling in full rotation
- Allows you transfer power directly and gives more stopping power on fixed gear
- Neylon double strap pedals are way better than aluminum toe clips pedals
- Requires some efforts to get used toe clip straps pedals
- Need to sacrifice comfort
One sentence answer for which is the best pedal for a long ride on a fixed gear, my recommendation is to go with toe clip with straps
Yes I agree with you, it might be hard for you to get used to riding with a toe clip at the beginning
But once you build brain memory by riding the toe clip pedal you will not change to any other pedals ever again.
Make sure your fixed gear bike is prepared for the long-distance ride
Before taking on long-distance rides, it is a good idea to keep your bike in mint condition, you don’t want to stuck in the middle of the highway, that sucks.
Make sure to lubricate your chain and add grease if necessary.
Install fronts brakes, that will help you stop the bike without just depending on skid stop.
You can ride in tubeless or with tube tires but make sure to pump air in the proper PSI of 70 to 120 for long rides, not too much or not very less.
Make sure you are prepared for a long-distance ride on a fixed gear bike
Your body will feel fatigued after riding for 30 miles or more, if you don’t want that make sure you are physically fit to complete your ride.
2 or 3 times a week go out for a ride of 5 to 10 miles, this builds the stamina and energy you need on a long ride.
Practicing riding on fixed gear vs other bikes is not the same, fixie bike is more effective and burns more calories than other bikes.
My final thoughts are you can ride long distances in a fixed gear bike without any problem, just make sure you are physically fit and your bike is in good condition.
Now you know that you can ride more than 100 km per day without feeling much pressure, and the best gearing ratio is 2.875 to 2,722 gearings will help you on your long-distance rides.
While riding long distances on fixed gear carrying little weight as possible because even a tiny weightage can feel like a burden, try to ride fixed gear on a toe clip strap pedal it gives you better control over your bike and looks pretty cool on a fixie.
Riding long distances on a fixed gear bike is totally achievable, it gives you a better workout, burns more calories and it will be a fun enjoyable ride, hope you are ready for a long ride on a fixie if not practice riding for 5 to 10 miles 3 times a week then you will be ready, have fun riding.
- It is totally possible to ride long distances on a fixed gear bike
- You can cover more than 60 to 80 miles (100 to 120 km) without any problem
- Don’t carry more than 2.5 kg on your backpack
- Riding in 2,875 to 2.722 gearing will not hurt your knee in long-distance riding
- Toe clip strap paddles are best suitable for fixed gear bikes
- Practice riding for 5 to 10 miles at least 3 times a week before taking on long distances