As any cyclist will tell you, there’s no method of fitness quite like it. The same can be said of a holiday. The truth is that a biking holiday is as much work as it is a break. But that’s part of the joy. With a biking holiday, the payoff is all the better for the strain to get there. So, if you’re planning a cross-country journey, how do you prepare?
Prepare your body
There’s no denying that any kind of biking holiday is going to be physically strenuous. That’s putting it very mildly. It’s an endurance ride that will have you aching by the end, no matter your fitness levels. You can get as much rest on the road and stop for as long as you like. It’s still going to be difficult. Make sure you’re done plenty of training before you hit the road lest your trip end very prematurely.
Prepare your bike
You need to make sure your bike’s ready for the hassle of a long distance ride just as much as your body is. Check the tires, obviously. Make sure you also check the nuts and mechanisms holding your wheels in place. If your brakes or seat post need replacing, do it before you take off. Same for your chains and gears. It’s best to get a professional to look it over and tell you if it’ll survive the journey. At best, get some bike insurance so you’re not losing money if things do go wrong on the road.
You’re going on a journey, so pack like it. First of all, make sure you have the right clothes for any weather. Then make sure you have the bag to fit everything you need. First aid is important, as is a phone turned off with full battery in case you need to make emergency contact. Money’s also important, so stash it safely. Besides that, there’s a lot of accessories you should be making a checklist of.
Where to go
If you want to go freewheeling, by all means. Though it’s a smart bet to have a route planned. One of the most popular ones is from Land’s End to John O’Groats. A route that will take you from the southernmost tip of England right up to the top of Scotland. It’s a famous challenge as well as a road full of pit stops and things to see.
Where to sleep
Yes, you are going to need to sleep. Any cross country trip is going to be an affair that takes at least a week. Make sure you look at your route and prepare some rest stops you can use, whether you’re using the Land’s End route or not.
Going off route
Don’t be afraid to go off route either. So long as you know somewhere relatively close you can stay and how to return to your path, feel free to explore. There are loads of great places to see across Great Britain. Spare a couple days off your road and add plenty of value to the trip.