Preparing For Your First Long-Distance Tour: What New Cyclists Need to Know
Cyclists tend to spend quite a bit on their passion. In fact, those who participate in outdoor activities like cycling spend over $10 billion every year on bicycling gear, accessories, and vehicles. But while there are some components that are worth dropping a bit of cash on -- like the most comfortable bike seats you can find -- there are other more pressing factors that new cyclists, in particular, need to focus on. If you're preparing for your first long-distance cycling tour, here's what you really need to keep in mind.
- Be honest about your abilities
No matter how old or experienced you are on a bike, you need to have a realistic idea about your abilities and how they may impact your tour. Any tour on which you embark will come with challenges and some physical pain (although the best leather bike saddles will help eliminate perennial pain). But if you overestimate how much you can handle, your trip could actually result in long-lasting injury. Be sure to plan out a trip you can feasibly and safely execute, even when you're pushing yourself.
- Find the right saddle
Before you ever set out on a tour, your need to find a comfortable bike seat for your adventure. Riders both brand new and seasoned often find that leather bike saddles are the best option for staving off pain and creating comfort on long distances. Every body has different needs, but for long-distance tours, you don't want a saddle with a lot of padding. That'll actually cause more friction and pain in the end (literally). You should consult an expert to help you decide what kind of saddle will work best for your route and individual needs.
- Start training early
You definitely can't launch into a long-distance ride without working up to it. Ideally, you should build up your stamina and fitness levels at least a few months prior to your tour. This can help you become more comfortable, identify potential equipment problems, and prevent injury. You don't have to ride great distances every single day, but you should at least stay on top of your cycling activities and ride frequently beforehand.
- Get your equipment checked out
Leather bike saddles can help keep you comfy during your ride, but the rest of your bike needs to be in tip-top condition, too. You'll want to get your brakes, tires, and gears checked out before you start your tour to lessen the chance of problems during your ride. You may even want to put new brakes on altogether. To lessen anxieties, some riders may practice changing a tire or may want to become more familiar with bike repairs in general. But you certainly don't have to become an expert in bike repair prior to setting out. A knowledge of the basics will do.
- Plan your itinerary
There are countless options for the route you take on your long-distance tour. You can travel across the country or even into Canada, in some places. Take advantage of resources at your disposal which can give you ideas for routes, places to stay, and sights to see along the way. After you decide on a route, you should make a fairly precise itinerary to follow. You'll want your loved ones to know where you are and make sure you're staying on schedule.
Whether you're an old pro or a complete cycling novice, a comfortable bike seat can help see you through. To learn more about how our leather bike saddles can eliminate pain and create a smoother ride, contact Selle Anatomica today.