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Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?(24 posts)

Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?AllUpHill
Mar 11, 2002 4:59 AM
For those of us in the U.S., how many of you have your computers set for metric units and think of your distances and speeds in those terms for cycling purposes? Of course, most of us can convert roughly back and forth on the fly (or maybe some of you can instantly convert with 10 decimal places of accuracy...), but do you go to bed and think "I'll do a 100km ride tomorrow and try to average 40km/h" or "I'll do a 60 mi ride tomorrow and try to average 25mi/h" ?

For those outside the U.S., you obviously use km, but are you aware of our silly measurement system? Do most people have even a vague idea how heavy a pound is, or how long a mile is?

We should have switched to metric way back. Maybe at this point, feet and inches will not fade from the earth until someday America crumbles. I wonder if that will happen in my lifetime. Off the topic, but interesting to ponder.
re: Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?Velocipedio
Mar 11, 2002 5:24 AM
I'm generally think metric. I have no idea what the Farenheit scale means except that 103 degrees is a high fever.

In almost everything, I think in terms of kms mls, and the like but, for some strange reason, I mentally measure weight in pounds. I can do the conversion pretty well, but it's still pounds in my head...

I mean, when I'm cycling, it's always kilometres and metres and the like, but weight is pounds.

Of course, I'm Canadian, so I've been exposed to a whole lot of US pop culture, to that might explain it... And I did enter kindergarten in 1969, the year Canada began the metric conversion process, so there might be some vestigial imperial system stuff in my brain...
re: Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?mackgoo
Mar 11, 2002 5:58 AM
I hve two I talian bikes so the speedos are set metric. I am constantly making calculations in my head though (.6 X Kph) to see what I'm doing in Mph.
re: Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?netso
Mar 11, 2002 6:03 AM
Even though as a Physiologist, everything is metric I still find myself thinking in MPH, lbs,etc. I know better, but this is the way I grew up.
Those outside the USmuncher
Mar 11, 2002 6:03 AM
like here in the UK - we use miles. All road signs are in miles, and vehicle speedos are in mph. Drive in miles, cycle in miles, speed in mph. Kms - ptooopth!
metric convertDuane Gran
Mar 11, 2002 6:22 AM
I switched my computers to metric about 6 months ago. At first it was pretty disruptive to see the higher numbers on the display, but now when I hear about some guy launching an attack of the front at 60km/h I know that he is seriously hauling it. Before, I figured it was fast but I didn't internalize it. It basically helps me empathize when I watch European racing and they show the stats.

Otherwise, its just a number.
Miles of smilesTig
Mar 11, 2002 6:28 AM
In the early 70's we were told in school that we were about to convert to metric and started learning it. A really good teacher later told us it would be easier to just learn to understand metric and not mess around with conversions. Sadly, it never happened in the US. Resistance was too strong. Too bad, since it is a much better system of measurement.

So, everything here is in miles, and so is my bike computer and brain. Everything I measure in relation to the bike itself is metric at least. Everything I do with wood and carpentry are standard feet and inches. It all depends on what we learned in the first place.
Just so you know,TJeanloz
Mar 11, 2002 6:29 AM
Any of you who refer to your speed in kilometers/hour or distance in k's sound like total bike weenies. When in Rome, fine; but in the U.S., it's miles until we all change.

Nothing worse than some jack*ss going on and on about the century he rode, yup, that 100k really hurt...

Nothing makes you sound like an aloof roadie than using metric measurements- and it isn't flattering.
Just so you know,Velocipedio
Mar 11, 2002 6:57 AM
Yeah... when in Rome...

Except I'm in Canada, and we converted to metric a long time ago. I can't remember EVER hearing anyone on a ride refer to Imperial measurements... And if we agree to keep the pace to 40, it's pretty much understood that we're talking km/h...

Sorry if that offends you.

[BTW, most of the guys I ride with refer to a 161 km ride as a "century."]
Just so you know,TJeanloz
Mar 11, 2002 7:08 AM
If you're somewhere that uses a metric standard, by all means, use metric. But if you're in a country that uses imperial standards, you sound like a weenie if you go metric.
Just so you know,weiwentg
Mar 11, 2002 7:21 AM
well ... I can't help it, because I think in metric (the exception is weight; I'm OK with pounds). I'm a foreign student in the US, and I'm the only guy with his cyclocomp in metric. if that offends anyone, so be it. besides, 32 km/h sounds faster than 20mph, does it not? :)
Just so you know,TJeanloz
Mar 11, 2002 7:24 AM
As the self proclaimed arbiter, I think it's fair game if you are from a foreign land and know metric as your first language. The weenies are the people who have no reason to work in metric except that they want to be euro.
You're coming up Short. . .MisJG
Mar 11, 2002 7:23 AM
161 km = 99.82 mi
162 km = 100.44 mi
To be exact, 161.29 km = 100 mi
LOL! Hope you took this as the humour it was meant to be!
You're coming up Short. . .Velocipedio
Mar 11, 2002 8:10 AM
Good point! :)

Actually, I rounded-down... HONEST!
re: Do you think in Miles or Kilometers ?AllUpHill
Mar 11, 2002 7:01 AM
Personally, I'm completely in miles and there's no reason not to be, but every once in a while I think about trying the computer in metric mode for a while just to be more familiar with it.

Yeah, it is annoying when someone in this country purposely speaks in metric as if to flaunt their superior euro-coolness. Still, I wouldn't bash someone who opts to run the computer in km as long as they're polite enough to answer in miles when someone asks how far they rode yesterday.
you'll feel fastertarwheel
Mar 11, 2002 7:55 AM
Last summer, my battery went dead in my computer, and I replaced it the day before a large group metric century ride. My computer defaulted to metric when I put the new battery in, but I didn't realize it at the time. I was amazed at the pace I was riding during the first 10 miles and briefly thought I must have reached a new level of performance. About then, I realized the computer was running in metric. So, I rode the whole race not knowing exactly how fast I was going or how far (being too lazy to do the math in my head). At the end of the ride, I did the calculations and couldn't believe it -- I had ridden the fast long ride I had ever done, topping my previous personal best by about 1.5 mph. Just goes to show, you're often capable of much more than you realize, particularly if you don't realize it at the time.
Mar 11, 2002 7:59 AM
Finally we've stumbled across some thing to talk about when we get board with the age old C VS S debate.
My car gets six hogsheads to a rod...Ahimsa
Mar 11, 2002 10:38 AM
...and that's the way I like it.

If I remember my conversion foctors...Spoke Wrench
Mar 11, 2002 12:30 PM
A rod is about 16 feet and a hogshead is around 50 gallons. You must have a real fuel inefficient SUV. The environmental police are going to get you.
Eh? Oh. Obscure Simpson's reference....sorry. [nm]Ahimsa
Mar 11, 2002 2:33 PM
Mar 11, 2002 10:44 AM
grew up with Imperial measurements, learnt them in school, then the country switched to metric, so had to learn those too.. I've made the switch on running, think in terms of minutes/mile and can barely convert to minutes/km anymore. But on the bike I'm still doing kilometers. Of course, this may be because I've lost the manual for the computer and can't remember how to set it to miles.. hah!
inches is good enough for me (nm)john holmes
Mar 11, 2002 10:59 AM
hours, took my computer off.Woof the dog
Mar 11, 2002 11:20 AM
Me too, Woof!guido
Mar 12, 2002 8:34 PM
I took the computer off my commuter bike at least, or rather, it gave up and I didn't replace it. I never looked at it, anyway. It was a distraction. I like to ride by feel. It gives you a much more accurate feedback on your efforts.