My day job keeps me planted in front of my trusty laptop for hours on end. On nice days, when the glare isn’t too bad, I take my stuff outside to a deck or nearby coffee shop patio.
But writing my latest credit card review or how-to guide in the bright sunshine isn’t quite the same as getting away on a true outdoor vacation.
When I really need a break, I like to disconnect as completely as humanly possible for a few consecutive days. The fewer distractions, the better. I put together a guide to preparing for a long-distance hike for just this purpose (along with a separate roundup of the best long-distance hiking trails in the U.S. – some of my favorites are on there).
Explore the World on Two Wheels
In this guide, I’ll explore another popular fitness vacation idea: a long-distance bike ride.
This is new territory for me. I’m an avid bike commuter and regularly take long rides for fun, but I didn’t complete my first multi-day ride until the summer of 2017.
In the sections below, I’ll share everything I learned in the months leading up to that week-long adventure, along with tips and best practices from experts with far more experience than moi:
- How to train safely and sustainably
- How to choose your ride type and route, if applicable
- Basic logistical and safety considerations before, during, and after your ride
- Equipment and supplies you’ll need for a safe and fun experience
Train for Your Ride
If planning a long-distance bike ride isn’t enough to get you on the regular exercise bandwagon, what is?
You’ll need to adjust your personal training regimen to account for your:
- Baseline fitness level
- Medical status, including chronic conditions and prior sports injuries
- Time horizon (time between training start date and ride start date)
- Total ride length and duration
- Ride difficulty (total elevation change and daily distance)
Successful training programs follow this format: