Cycling is something that you can do casually or seriously. It is one of those outdoor adventure sports that you can take as far as you like. You can go for a gentle two-mile tootle around a lake or spend hours plowing down muddy tracks in the high mountains.
If you’re planning an epic cycling adventure – longer than, say fifty miles – you’ll want to check out this post. Here, you’ll learn about all the ways you need to prepare for your next cycle adventure, the moment the authorities lift the lockdown in your neck of the woods.
Decide How Far You Can Feasibly Cycle
Before you even embark on your adventure, you’ll want to figure out how far you can actually cycle. You don’t want to find yourself stuck in the wilderness with no phone signal, feeling exhausted. You want a challenge that you can complete.
People often like to cycle from one side of Britain to the other. The Lands End to John O Groats cycle distance, however, is tremendous – over a thousand miles by bike. It is excellent for people who’ve put in hours of training, but not the sort of thing you want to do if the furthest you’ve cycled this year is to the local shops.
Be careful with your route planning, work out how far you can go in a day laden with panniers, and plan your route accordingly.
Prepare Your Bike
The next thing to do is to make sure that your bicycle is in a suitable condition to survive the adventure. You might be fighting fit, but if the bike is in a sorry state, you won’t get far before you experience a mechanical failure.
Here’s your checklist:
- Try the brakes. Make sure that hydraulic brakes don’t feel sloppy or spongy
- Make sure that your brake pads or contacts aren’t worn
- Check the tire pressure and make sure that you don’t have any slow punctures
- Check that your wheels are true
- Make sure the bearings in the headset and bottom bracket are running smoothly
- Clean and grease your chain
- Check that your drivetrain isn’t too worn
- Check the tread on the tire. If it is too worn, change it
Prepare Your Kit
While you’re on your biking adventure, you’ll also need plenty of kit to keep you going.
First, you’ll need to pack all your maintenance tools. Most people like to carry a multitool with hex wrenches, wrenches, and star keys all in one place. You’ll also need puncture repair patches if you still use tubes, a pump, extra sealant, and a spare derailleur hanger.
Second, you’ll want to pack some high-energy food in your backpack or panniers. Think nuts, dried fruit, energy gels – even chocolate bars. You’ll burn a massive amount of energy if you cycle for several hours at a time.
Finally, you’ll want multiple layers you can quickly take off and put back on when it gets cold. Unless you’re cycling somewhere tropical, you’ll likely feel chilly when you stop.