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  1. #1
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    Gearing Up for Longer Rides

    I wanted to ask about any necessary tips for doing longer rides. Like gear to look into (probably gloves, my hands were feeling it after the 10 mi I mentioned before), how to handle eating/drinking during the ride, etc?

    My big wall I noticed with the 10 mi was at about the 5 or 6 mile mark I needed something to drink - even more so on warmer days. Some days with the walking, I just notice all the energy go out of me (not just general muscle fatigue but all over), which I guess means that I'm undernourished for the moment and needed food?

    I notice many people mentioning centuries and from reading these pages, I get the feeling that 10 mi is nothing in the grand scheme of things, so I'm just wondering how one plans for longer rides in that respect?

    Edit: How do people handle their route planning? Is it usually consideration for rest points, places to eat, and so forth, as well as road conditions? I notice for where I live about 15 miles is the extent of a non-repeating route, so this is going to start being a factor for me as well.
    Last edited by Glenn1234; 06-04-08 at 09:14 PM. Reason: Added question about route planning.

  2. #2
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    10 miles seems like a lot when you're starting out, but once you get going, it won't seem like much at all.

    If you're interested in riding a century, or other long distance rides, check out these sites:
    http://www.machka.net/century.htm
    http://www.ultracycling.com/

    Carry a bottle of water and/or sports drink on your bicycle so can drink while riding. For rides of 10 miles, a sports drink should provide you with enough energy. Once you get up over 2 hours, you'll want to start eating food on rides. Or are you on an island?

    And what do you mean that "15 miles is the extent of a non-repeating route"? Can't you get out of town and ride country roads?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    10 miles seems like a lot when you're starting out, but once you get going, it won't seem like much at all.
    I definitely get that feeling. I definitely have goals that I hope to set.

    thanks for the links and the tips!

    And what do you mean that "15 miles is the extent of a non-repeating route"? Can't you get out of town and ride country roads?
    I mean 15 miles is the maximum distance I could go without going out on those country roads (for here read "high speed limit, no shoulder") or going over my tracks twice. I have my reasons, but for now, I want to get a whole lot stronger before I consider going long distances in isolation. And given those two factors, I thought I'd ask about route planning (definite avoids, etc) so I don't get myself into problems for trying to ride out 5 or 10 miles in the middle of nowhere by myself.

  4. #4
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glenn1234 View Post
    I mean 15 miles is the maximum distance I could go without going out on those country roads (for here read "high speed limit, no shoulder") or going over my tracks twice. I have my reasons, but for now, I want to get a whole lot stronger before I consider going long distances in isolation. And given those two factors, I thought I'd ask about route planning (definite avoids, etc) so I don't get myself into problems for trying to ride out 5 or 10 miles in the middle of nowhere by myself.
    Well, when I'm route planning it usually involves me being out on a long ride in the middle of nowhere and suddenly noticing an interesting road, and either taking it, or making a mental note of it for my next ride.

    Or ... pouring over land ordinance maps and checking out possible paved roads, other than the main paved roads.

    And as long as I've got somewhere to stop to refill my supplies every 100 kms or so, I'm fine.

    However, for you, you might stick with loops on your 15 mile route for a while until you feel more comfortable with your bicycle handling skills and traffic.

    Meanwhile, if you can, get ahold of some good detailed paper maps (online maps rarely give as much detail as a paper map, i.e. paved vs. gravel), and look to see if there are less busy country roads. Around here, there are some main roads, but there are lots and lots of small empty paved roads.

  5. #5
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    The shortest route I have is 15 miles. This is if I have no time and I try to ride faster and harder for this route. I have a 17 mile loop, 22 mile, 30 mile, 35 mile and a 42 mile ride. I vary according to how I feel. I do try some different routes every once in a while. The only time I stop is to check my blood sugar. I am a type 1 diabetic so I carry a water bottle and a sports drink bottle. I carry a Granola bar and 3 packets of Gu. I have needed them often and anything over an hour will take something to eat. My rest stop takes me about 45 seconds. I do not like to stop as it takes a mile or so to get my legs back to normal if I stop to long. Heck I hate to stop for traffic lights.

    My motto is always be prepaired. I have had to deal with diabetes for 34 years so I am pretty good at it by now. BTW I am on an insulin pump.

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