Eddington Number (Cycling)


The Eddington Number is defined as E, the number of days a cyclist has cycled more than E miles

For example an Eddington Number of 70 would imply that a cyclist has cycled more than 70 miles in a day on 70 occasions. Achieving a high Eddington number is difficult since moving from, say, 70 to 75 will probably require more than five new long distance rides since any rides shorter than 75 miles will no longer be included in the reckoning.

I keep a Bike Rides Diary, but I haven’t always done so. I had the wrack my brains to remember the longer rides I’d done in my cycling career.

I remembered the rides to Brighton and back when I was in the RN stationed near Gosport, I remembered the tour that me and a school friend did in North Wales in '68, I remembered the long rides I’ve done in USA for charity in '86, and also when I did a mini-tour of Tasmania in '88. I’d ridden JOGLE in '94 and LEJOG and Back in '06, then a Grand Tour in '08 – all these had to be vectored in.

Since then, I’m a Garmin Edge owner and have a program on my computer to keep a record of every pedal stroke, so I had to do a little research through my notes from ‘before’ to add to the recent to come up with a reliable figure for my personal E Number as per today/now.

Sadly, the weather was awful for October and November, so my ambitions to extend my E Number went for a burton, but next year is nearly here and spring is just round the corner. My ambition will be met, I’m sure of it.

By now, all you readers out there are wondering what your own personal E Number is, and also wondering what my E Number is too! Remember, this Number is a Lifetime Number. It is yours and reflects your own personal achievement. You may be kicking yourself that every time you ride a bike you do 45 miles and always knew you could go further. You are sitting there with E45, knowing that you have to ride 46 more rides of 46 miles to get to E46!

I want to get to E80 by the end of 2010, and I’m sitting here at E69. I have ridden over 80 miles 50 times in my life, so I have to squeeze in 30 more 80 mile rides to attain E80.

Can I do it?

Can you do it?

What is your E Number?

8 comments on “Eddington Number (Cycling)”

  1. Garry wrote:

    I've been doing big distances since maybe 1986. I've certainly done 70 x 70 and 80 x 80. I would not have records of how many 100s I've done. I know I've done at least 8 125+. I've done one 215 and will never repeat it. I'm not really into records though, as that leads to obsession and when you become obsessed you drive yourself too much and stop having fun. Then you quit. I've seen so many people go down this road! I don't keep a yearly mileage any more. I used to do about 8000 per annum. Maybe I'm doing that again as I'm retired, but I'm enjoying it too much to count it.

  2. Patrick wrote:

    Mick F wrote: Can you do it?

    What is your E Number?

    I don't think I can. I ditched my cycling computer a while back. I find I prefer not counting the miles, although I do count the time. The way I look at it now is that time cycling means more than miles. The terrain really matters. Two miles up a steep hill obviously means more, in terms of effort, than two miles on the flat, and vice versa. Twenty minutes of effort is the same, no matter how many miles.

    Having said that, I do have an general idea of my annual mileage because I know my weekly average is roughly 150 miles. So I reckon I do between 6,000 and 7,000 per year. The precise number doesn't matter, although I understand why some cyclists enjoy statistics. I have a Garmin xTrex Legend HCX for use on tours. That does measure mileage.

    My Eddington Number is probably around E40.

  3. Garry wrote:

    I have Garmin eTrex Vista HCX. It's a little bit out in distance measurement. I've noticed this when comparing it to several electronic speedos. It may be that it's not taking the extra little bit up and down hill into consideration. Have you had a similar experience?

  4. Patrick wrote:

    I used them both together only for a short time. They were pretty similar, I think. My Garmin picks up several satellites dotted around in a rough circle. There's rarely one right overhead. I don't know exactly what they're measuring or how.

  5. Mick F wrote:

    Just a quick update to this thread:
    I'm now E70.

    I have 28 more rides of 80 miles or more to reach E80. I don't think I'm going to make it by the end of 2010. I had a single ride on my May 2010 JOGLE of 89 miles, and yesterday I managed 102 miles.

    E80 is difficult to reach. Six months to do 28 rides, means more than once a week.

  6. Martin wrote:

    "The Eddington Number is defined as E, the number of days a cyclist has cycled more than E miles":

    Wikipedia and everywhere else, including here, has that definition wrong. It should read "The Eddington Number is defined as E, the number of days a cyclist has cycled AT LEAST E miles."

    Striclty speaking, under the definition that you have, a ride of exactly 70 miles would NOT contribute to an E of 70 (because 70 is NOT more than 70).
    There is also an issue of "days" versus "rides". It is extremely doubtful that Eddington ever heard of amateur riders doing long randonneuring or similar rides that would stetch past 12 midnight from one day into the next. However, whether one counts rides or days, in the end, it matters little ... because it will have little impact on the ultimate E ... and because ... it doesn't really matter, anyway. This is all just for fun.
    My E currently is at 72. I need 5 rides to get to E = 73; 33 rides to get to E = 80.
    I have an acquaintance who currently has 110 consecutive months of at least one 100-mile ride. I don't know for sure, but I'm confident that his E is somewhere beyond 125.

  7. JaReD wrote:

    Who really Cares, all we kno is its one big As* number

  8. George wrote:

    31. I have not ridden 32 miles 32 times but have ridden 31 miles 31 times in the last 365 days. I am 75.

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