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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I plan on biking from mass-tenn next june to a music festival. I'd have to average over a century a day, and hopefully get there in 10 days. I plan on getting all my camping gear out and camp out a few weekends and do some local runs before to make sure I have a good idea whats in store. I have youth on my side as I'll just be turning 21, and the fact that I did some ridiculous biking without training in the dead of winter over the berkshires makes me think if I attack the training properly it wont be so difficult. Hah, I know, but I figure you live once, fight for your right to party.
So people with experience, any advice is good advice.
 

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It is going to be very, very difficult.

BikePUNX said:
I plan on biking from mass-tenn next june to a music festival. I'd have to average over a century a day, and hopefully get there in 10 days. ........
1000+ miles in 10 days carrying everything on roads you have never ridden over hills and mountains you have never seen in summer weather. Everything is going to have to work out just right for this to happen. Of course you have a year to get ready........you are going to have to be awfully good and extremely lucky on the weather and your health for this to work.

I'd strongly suggest you have some backup plans starting with finding a way to add at least 2 days to your trip.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Bad luck and hardships are what will make it memorable. I know it's gonna be one of the hardest things i'll do, espicially since I have to bike back haha. Maybe i'll just take the whole month off, but that seems like cheating.
 

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Too Much

BikePUNX said:
...I'd have to average over a century a day, and hopefully get there in 10 days...
I have done a weeks worth of centuries at Texas Hell Week. That's 700 miles in seven days without hauling camping gear. By day four or five things are starting to suck and that was with camping out in a hotel room. Add in the search for food and a campsite, setting up camp and tearing down each day and you are going to be pretty miserable when (if) you get there in ten days. Maybe find someone to drive/transport you the first 200 miles, perhaps over the mountains. Then you are looking at 800 miles over 10 days which is a little more realistic.
 

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You're Not the Boss of Me
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A century a day loaded touring in hilly terrain? Even in perfect health and perfect weather I'm skeptical. At best, you'd succeed and be miserable.

Ditto to the others who suggest extending the trip bya few more days OR get a driver to haul stuff and sag and make those miles unloaded.
 

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From past experience

jtolleson said:
A century a day loaded touring in hilly terrain? Even in perfect health and perfect weather I'm skeptical. At best, you'd succeed and be miserable.

Ditto to the others who suggest extending the trip bya few more days OR get a driver to haul stuff and sag and make those miles unloaded.
Two years ago, Richard, 67, and wife, Susan, 65, after training extensively in Orange County, CA, headed out from Seattle on their tandem loaded with tent and camping gear pointed eastward for West Point, NY, and his class reunion.
They left in July destined to arrive at the Military Academy for the Sept. homecoming football game between Army and Louisville. Their goal was to average 60 miles/day. Impressive cross winds in Washington, Idaho, Montana, and South Dakota made their ride challenging. Then, the overnight temperatures were below average falling into the low 50s and high 40s.
Once a week, I asked them to phone in their progress to my radio talk show. They were always in good spirits when they did; but, they confessed that it was a difficult journey; and, they had phoned their church "back home" seeking friends who had family, friends, and contacts along their route. Due to the exhausting winds and cool night time temperatures, they found themselves often sleeping in churches, libraries, and private homes. Nothing beats a hot shower in these conditions. The local town newspaper somewhere in Wisconsin had a reporter meet them and their efforts were memorialized in one of their editions.
Richard and Susan remained on schedule as they arrived in suburban Detroit--where they had their only crash when bad streets and morning rush hour traffic forced them to bail.
Detroit was not bicycle friendly and for the only time, they decided to ride on the sidewalks--self preservation. At Detroit, they crossed into Ontario; then back into New York at Niagara Falls. They worked their way to Syracuse; then to their destination, West Point on schedule.
The next week, they had planned to ride from West Point to New Jersey to meet some
friends. After what they had experienced, they cancelled the New Jersey leg of the trip.
And, yes, they flew home. A couple of weeks after their return to Southern California,
I had them as in studio guests on my radio program. I asked Susan where they were going to ride the next summer. She had a one word reply: "nowhere."

Susan and Richard are members of the Mustard Seed Tutorial Society which their church sponsors; their ride was a fund raiser for the society.
-o-
Ten centuries in ten days?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
And then it was me against the world. The huge difference between Susan and Richard, and myself is over 40 years, and the climate differences- i'll be heading south; earlier in the summer. So i'll sweat more but have better nights, essentially. I enjoy nay sayers and doubters, if it was going to be easy, i wouldnt do it.

Those that do extensive touring, when do you put all your gear on the bike to train before your date of departure. Its a lot to cope with all the extra weight and wind resistance it cause, must mean a lot more muscle than usual.

Thanks!
 

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Mosquitos, chiggers, ticks and no-see-ums

BikePUNX said:
And then it was me against the world. The huge difference between Susan and Richard, and myself is over 40 years, and the climate differences- i'll be heading south; earlier in the summer. So i'll sweat more but have better nights, essentially. I enjoy nay sayers and doubters, if it was going to be easy, i wouldnt do it.

Those that do extensive touring, when do you put all your gear on the bike to train before your date of departure. Its a lot to cope with all the extra weight and wind resistance it cause, must mean a lot more muscle than usual.

Thanks!
I wish you success; take repellant for all the insects. I suggest a shortened shakedown cruise well before your start-date maybe starting at the day three/four portion of your route. Your youth will serve you well.
 

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it sounds like you've never done any loaded touring - how many centuries have you done? how many centuries back to back?

you asked for advice from people who have some experience touring and with centuries and got it but it seems like you really wanted a rubber stamp of your plan rather than advice

please let us know how you get on
 

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M.J. said:
it sounds like you've never done any loaded touring - how many centuries have you done? how many centuries back to back?

you asked for advice from people who have some experience touring and with centuries and got it but it seems like you really wanted a rubber stamp of your plan rather than advice

please let us know how you get on


You hit the nail on the head. Advice, and a dose of reality, was apparently neither sought nor wanted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
M.J. said:
it sounds like you've never done any loaded touring - how many centuries have you done? how many centuries back to back?

you asked for advice from people who have some experience touring and with centuries and got it but it seems like you really wanted a rubber stamp of your plan rather than advice

please let us know how you get on
Well the subject was touring advice, as in, how do you prep for a bada$$ tour. This isn't the only advice plan I've had, I've heard the don't do its, add extra days, and have a caravan to help you. Its my fault for not saying this, and all are unreasonable at this point.

My main goal for this thread is how do you prep and train for you tours? What type of exercises, just long endurance runs for the most part, or otherwise? When do you pack your bike up with all your gear and train with that?

I've always been a viewer of forums, not a poster, so my activity here is still getting tinkered with hah, you people can't read my brain, shucks! Darnit!
 

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Ride lots.

BikePUNX said:
Well My main goal for this thread is how do you prep and train for you tours?
I figure that you are going to have to be really comfortable riding at least 300 miles a week each week for at least a month before your ride. You will have to work your way up to that level so start now.

Yes, do as many practice rides carrying all your equipment as you can so start now (do this just a few times and you will really know what you need to do and if you will be able to do this ride at all).

Running isn't going to help. The problem is that your planned ride is so hard (I know what those roads and climbs are like-the hills never end) that you are not going to be able to work your way into shape-every day you are going to be a little (or a lot) more tired than the day before. Having to do something that long in 10 days does not allow for any rest or recovery days.

BTW do you have a cycling friendly route yet (it could end up being a lot longer than driving on the Interstates)? If not get started finding one now. Do know where you are going to eat, camp and resupply? If not get started planning now.

So what I am saying as a really, really experienced cyclist is that this really, really hard trip you are thinking about will have a lot better chance of success if you start planning and training now.

BTW2 do you have a bike that is reliable enough for the distance and strong enough for the load? Do you know how to make basic repairs such as fixing flats, replacing spokes and chains? If not you better get this going now too. How are you going to carry all your equipment and food (I like BOB trailers)?

BTW3 what is your backup plan if everything falls apart in Podunk? How are you going to get home? If you don't know this you better figure it out now.

Ride your bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
MB1 said:
I figure that you are going to have to be really comfortable riding at least 300 miles a week each week for at least a month before your ride. You will have to work your way up to that level so start now.

Yes, do as many practice rides carrying all your equipment as you can so start now (do this just a few times and you will really know what you need to do and if you will be able to do this ride at all).

Running isn't going to help. The problem is that your planned ride is so hard (I know what those roads and climbs are like-the hills never end) that you are not going to be able to work your way into shape-every day you are going to be a little (or a lot) more tired than the day before. Having to do something that long in 10 days does not allow for any rest or recovery days.

BTW do you have a cycling friendly route yet (it could end up being a lot longer than driving on the Interstates)? If not get started finding one now. Do know where you are going to eat, camp and resupply? If not get started planning now.

So what I am saying as a really, really experienced cyclist is that this really, really hard trip you are thinking about will have a lot better chance of success if you start planning and training now.

BTW2 do you have a bike that is reliable enough for the distance and strong enough for the load? Do you know how to make basic repairs such as fixing flats, replacing spokes and chains? If not you better get this going now too. How are you going to carry all your equipment and food (I like BOB trailers)?

BTW3 what is your backup plan if everything falls apart in Podunk? How are you going to get home? If you don't know this you better figure it out now.

Ride your bike.
THANK YOU! Now this is advice.
I am starting off now, switching my whole sched around to be a morning person, riding each morning, and hitting a trainer later on in the day. 300 miles seems a bit minimum however, 40ish miles a day.

My major fear is, with getting it all packed and practicing with it on a new bike. But I think waiting two months for that won't be a shame. I'm gonna start diy'ing my bike now with adding weight and such to get ready for the future.

I've started researching my routes, stops, and stay overs, but thats gonna probably take me a month to finalize at least.

I've been saving for a new bike for a long time now, I plan to fully research it the whole month of august and purchase it by the end of august/beginning of september.

I know my basic repairs, and with having to do them on the fly along with other repairs will improve on my way with training.

My back up plan is I know others going to the festival, who could come to my rescue, but if I break a leg on day one, won't head out till day 10.

Thanks again, start now, be prepared for later is your moto it seems.
 

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look at the Adventure Cycling website: http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes/atlanticcoast.cfm for route ideas

they have all sorts of tips and route suggestions - also do some online searches on people who do long distance rides etc. - look at their daily mileages after they've ridden in to shape - big miles for most seems to be 75 miles per day for day in day out loaded touring

age may work against you - the more miles in your legs the stronger you are for touring and long distance - youth favours sprints and short distances - big effort with little thought doesn't usually translate well - you can't just out tough 1000 mile in 10 days - if you look at any average cycling club with a range of members - you'll see the guys that win the club's 20 mile time trial are young (you don't have to do anything but go fast on short distances) - the guys who win the 75-100 mile time trials are all older - they're smart and know how to use their resources properly - experience and miles in the legs are what touring's about

for me preparing for a tour / serious ride means putting in as many miles as I can - if I were you I would first aim for a few back to back centuries over a weekend then aim for a few back to back loaded centuries over a weekend - remember to keep mileage up during the week too - if that doesn't hand your arse to you on a plate then you're doing well, better than most

please let us know how you get on with training, bike selection, dry runs and the trip - no need to remain a lurker here
 

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From personal experience MJ is right on the age. Age will help in the short run.

A good buddy of mine and myself did light loaded touring around (literally, we went around) the Pyrenees last summer, credit card touring. I was 23, Keith was 44. Coming out of the Med over the coastal mountains (Sitges to la lacunna) I was clearing the stronger rider, as we progressed along the north side of the Ebro river valley. We were averaging 40 miles a day as we being tourists and not getting point a -> b; there was also a 'little climbing' and alot of beer. As we approached Pomplona Keith started doing better and better, and by the time we circled back up the coast and headed towards Talouse in France we were equal if not he was the better. I kicked his ass up pla d'adet though before stage 15 of the tour, non loaded. But age will only get you so far. There is something to be said for legs that have put in thousands more miles.

One note on schedules- they aint worth a damn, you wont be on schedule; if after 10 days you're on the schedule you seem to have laid out, I'll give you a cookie. Keith is a boat captain, he loves to plan things out, on day 3 he threw away the schedule and we played it by ear, we took trains where needed and we decided to make the trip fun and livable instead of getting here on this day at this time.

good luck,
 

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Kids!

BikePUNX said:
...I have youth on my side as I'll just be turning 21...
You say that like it is a benefit. Listen to the old guys, we know what we are talking about. My kid can beat me in any sprint, even if he gives me a leadout, but come the long hard century ride and I can outsmart him and out discipline him every time. The only place age may help you is in your recovery each day. Once again being smart goes a long way here too. In addition to logging miles for your training you better figure out how and what to eat for fuel on the bike as well as appropriate food for recovery. Where are you going to find this stuff to eat? Think about it.

Here is a link for those folks that do ultra long rides. Perhaps it will help some.
http://www.ultracycling.com/training/training.html

Hate raining on your ride but be sure to work on that BTW3 and line up that backup plan. Good luck, you will need it.
 

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my experience

As a 33 year old smoker I ran the New Orleans Marathon, took a day off and then rode the flat land to Daytona Beach - 760 miles in 8 days. My longest ride prior to the trip was 75 miles on an unloaded bike. Even without mountains to contend with the trip was freakin hard. 15 months later and 40 pounds heavier I rode from the Bronx to Columbus, OH, 700 miles, in 11 days. That was even harder.

My advice would be the same as other posters, but should you choose to ignore us all, here are some suggestions.

2 fifty mile rides with a long lunch and nap were easier for me than a 100 mile ride. 7:30 to 11:30 and 2:30 to 6:30 give you a good shot at 100 miles on reasonable terrain.

Cross train - running and cycling, focusing on long rides and two-a-day rides.

WHEN you totally bonk on the 3rd or 4th day out, wait a few days before you try to make up any miles.

Expect to be miserable some of the time almost every day. Eat something when the despair starts to hit.

LEARN TO EAT WITHOUT GETTING OFF THE BIKE. It's not always as simple as you'd think. My stomach had to get used to it.

Have at least 3 pair of shorts. Carry nothing that you can't ride in. Pack all your stuff in plastic bags in your panniers. Carry nothing on your back.

12 days at 85 miles would be a helluva lot better!
 

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I said you have to be really comfortable riding 300 miles a week, week after week.

Not just ride 300 miles in a week but be very comfortable doing it (and you are right that may not actually be enough but any more is really hard to do). Have you ever ridden 300 miles in 1 week let alone several weeks in a row? Do as many 100+ mile rides as you can too-the more the better.

As far as buying a bike goes, the late fall or winter is the best time to get a deal on last years models. Trek makes a nice touring bike that is around $1,200. Do not get any bike that doesn't have a triple crankset, cantilever brakes and a mountain bike rear derailleur.

Even if you don't buy the Trek check out the parts on the thing. That is a good basic setup for what you are going to do.

Good luck
 

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Bet he bails

Keeping up with Junior said:
You say that like it is a benefit. Listen to the old guys, we know what we are talking about. My kid can beat me in any sprint, even if he gives me a leadout, but come the long hard century ride and I can outsmart him and out discipline him every time. The only place age may help you is in your recovery each day. Once again being smart goes a long way here too. In addition to logging miles for your training you better figure out how and what to eat for fuel on the bike as well as appropriate food for recovery. Where are you going to find this stuff to eat? Think about it.

Here is a link for those folks that do ultra long rides. Perhaps it will help some.
http://www.ultracycling.com/training/training.html

Hate raining on your ride but be sure to work on that BTW3 and line up that backup plan. Good luck, you will need it.
After reading his bravado, I bet he doesn't make it to the start line on his projected start date. He'll place himself on the DL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I agree half way with the age problem. My body will recover much faster than older riders, but experience does usually play out. Same goes for driving, you aren't officially a good driver until you're 26 I believe my drivers ed teacher told me, I forget those reasons- but he made them seem edged in stone.

As I said in my original I plan, MJ, I plan on making a handful of weekend trips to test everything out. I should as you suggest do a couple just from the homestead, then a couple loaded, then a couple loaded and camping. Makes a whole lot of sense

I've kept trek in good mind MB1, I've probably looked over the one you speak of, but I'll make sure to look for it now that youve given it such credit.

I'll check out those links tomorrow, I'm sure there'll be of great use, thank you!

If I fail I fail, i'll give it my best and thats all I can do. My "bravado" as you put it, I say yes im overly positive. I mean why would I be so down on myself with something I want to do, I have to be confident or I'll fail. But i'm certainly humble and thats why I seek all of your advice.
 
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