14 mph is a good pace but only if you are a beginner. Most studies have found that most beginners will attain an average speed of between 10 and 14 mph on flats.
Beginner cyclists that had been active in other types of endurance sports such as running or swimming may attain speeds of up to 15-18 mph or higher which is deemed a moderate speed.
However, 14 mph is not a competitive cycling speed as 25 mph or higher is when you can start to be considered as going really fast.
The professionals such as those that ride in the Tour de France usually maintain speeds of between 25 – 28 mph on the flats. Still, 14 mph or a little higher is a very respectable speed for a beginner
Factors that Impact Cycling Speed
There are several factors that determine the average speed that include things such as weight, fitness level, age, cardiovascular system capacity, and to a lesser degree the type and efficiency of the bike you are riding.
On a given ride, the average speed you can attain may also be impacted by weather conditions (riding in headwinds could significantly reduce your speed), traffic, road surface, route chosen (number of stop signs and traffic lights, city riding), distance, and terrain (riding on hilly terrain will make you slower).
When you start out riding you may likely have a lower average cycling speed. This speed will likely increase as you gain fitness and ride regularly. You may improve with a better bike or by shedding a few pounds which will make you more nimble.
Your average cycling speed could also be impacted by preexisting health issues. For instance, you may not have the endurance to ride so hard and fast if you have a congenital heart defect.
How to Improve Your Cycling Speed
While 14 mph is a respectable speed, you can always improve your cycling speed. Some of the things you can do include:
- Do high-intensity interval training by focusing on stamina and lower body strength development
- Wear appropriate aerodynamic clothing and shoes to reduce drag and improve your speeds
- Get a high-quality heart monitor and cadence meter to help develop endurance and strength training
- Learn to ride in the correct posture which is often bending down and tucking in your elbows to become more aerodynamic
- Reduce weight by eating a well-balanced diet and by exercising regularly
- Examine your bike for any unnecessary items such as bottle holders and carriers that you may not need and remove them. You could also get rid of your ordinary bike and get a high-performance road bike for a real upgrade in speed.
As an ordinary rider or beginner, 14 mph is a respectable speed to cycle your bike. However, with proper training, resistance reduction techniques, a good bike, and proper riding technique among others, you should be able to improve your cycling speed over time.