Touring - How do you prepare for a tour?
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10-13-03, 11:20 AM
There is a group of paramedics from Boston that started an annual tour each spring from Boston to Roanoke, VA. They ride about 100 miles for 8 days straight. I'm working on building up to this, but due to working swing shifts, it's hard to get the days to ride in. I figure what I'll do are club rides, and even leave from my house to the ride on the bike, or do other rides I have cue sheets for starting from my house. I will work on adding what ever needed extra miles after the ride by using the trainer. I want to know that I will have little trouble finishing this ride. This usually takes place in mid May, so I have plenty of time to work on it. I would just like some tips from those that have done something similar. The web site for the ride is www.emsbikeride.org
First off, what kind of tour, 8 days fully loaded or supported via a support wagon? Staying in hotels, eating out, or camping and bringing a stove? If you are going on a loaded tour of any type and have never ridden with panniers/trailer before, I suggest you first build up to feeling the extra weight and extra drag, eventually adding more weight and miles. Start slow, perhaps just building up a good base of exercise regimen with long rides and the trainer. Unfortunately, it's getting darker earlier and colder but by spring you should be ready to tackle this endeavor. Try to incorporate the bike into things like biking to work, getting groceries, going to the bank because they don't even feel like exercising. Learn to enjoy many days with miles, learn to eat for tomorrow if you're not prepared riding many miles day after day...
You've got a lot of time to prepare and you have made a great start by posting this now, rather than in April :D so enjoy it now, don't worry too much now about surviving, you should be having fun now and working on building the miles. Have you ever done a century yet? Not talking about a loaded touring century, just a basic road bike century?
10-14-03, 07:05 AM
It is a fairly well supported ride. They usually have stops every 20 miles or so. Since it is a ride consisting mostly of paramedics, the stops are at local fire stations along the route of travel. My understanding is that they put out a decent amount of food. We would be staying in hotels as well, and would need to buy dinner each night. I guess the best thing would to be italian or chinese food. Pasta or rice.
10-14-03, 07:08 AM
No I have never done a full century. I'm hoping to accomplish one in the next 2 months.
I looked on the internet and EMS week is May 16th I believe in 2004. Thats when the ride will be and I figure by then I should have no trouble doing the ride.
You'll be surprised at how far you can ride if you ride at an easy pace. When you're touring like you sound like you will be, you do not need to be speedracer and ride at the 18mph average. I find that by riding at around 14-15mph, I feel like I can ride forever. So one hint that may work for you or may not is when you do your first century, do it at a brisk pace, but obviously not to fast that you can't finish. Then get some training in at a more leisurely pace and you'll feel like you can go forever. Plus, you have all day to do 100 miles, no need to get it over in 5.5 hours. The most important aspect in your training is to have fun, enjoy the miles, enjoy the scenery, it'll make the 100 miles appear like 10. There are some people who never seem to look more than 10 feet in front of their tire, but if you go out there and enjoy the ride, you'll not only be happier, it'll be easier.
I've ridden in Delaware a little, my father has a house in Lewes so I'd ride from the ferry to his house, only about 6 miles but you have some nice country roads down there, pretty flat though!
10-14-03, 07:47 PM
Lower Delaware is much, much flatter than the northern third due to being coastal flood plain. Next time you are in Delaware, and can drive 1.5 hours, I'll take you through the remainder of Delaware that's not so flat.
10-18-03, 07:24 AM
I have always enjoyed riding my bike as a hobby, but nothing really all that commited. However a year ago after talking about it for years. My son then 16 and I decided to ride from washington to calif. I was 45, we decided to do it in with only one month to prepare. (june) So I rode 25 miles a day everyother day. Still not knowing if I could really bike the 40 to 60 miles a day needed. We were hauling all our own gear.
Well the first four days it was hard, (it was a nine day ride) after the fouth day I started getting stronger every day the last two days we rode 70 miles each day. And I could easily see that 100 miles a day was possible. However being in Oregon there is just too many things to see to ride that fast.
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