We all know that riding a bike around the park or down a long country road at a leisurely pace is different from setting out on a journey of 10 to 25 miles in a cycling road race, but what some people do not know is how best to prepare their body to make rides of that length. Even if you are planning a 10 to 25 mile ride that is not part of a competition, you still must make the proper preparations. Cycling for 10 miles could take you forty-five minutes or as much as two hours; therefore, you must prepare for participating in this activity for at least this length of time.
Your first concern will be to wear the proper clothing for the ride. You need padded cycling shorts that are comfortable to wear and you will also need a cycling jacket. A 10 to 25 mile ride may take a greater length of time than you might expect. You must have a cycling jacket with you so that you are prepared for possible cooler temperatures, especially in the morning or in the late evening. Your jacket will also protect your body from overexposure to sun, wind, or the possible rain that you might encounter. Remember that you can plan for everything perfectly, but the weather is unpredictable so you have to also plan for the unexpected alsoin order to be properly prepared.
You need a helmet to wear during a ride. This is a piece of safety equipment that you cannot ride without. You should also have reflectors on the bike to help increase your visibility for other motorists that you may be sharing the road with. You can buy jackets and clothing with luminous stripes that will help you to be more visible to other motorists.
You should know that you cannot simply get on a bike and ride for 25 miles without some previous training. You have to get your muscles conditioned to withstand that type of vigorous ride. You need to start riding shorter distances on a daily basis and gradually increase the length of your rides. If at all possible, do your practice riding on a straight stretch that will allow you to set a steady pace and keep with it. Pacing your ride is one of the crucial aspects to being able to ride for long distances.
If you do not have a straight-away that you can ride on, a looping cul-de-sac or some other path that will allow you to get into a steady rhythm will do just fine. You simply want to avoid riding paths that will make you have to stop frequently at cross-roads or stop lights.
You will have to have the proper carbohydrate levels throughout your ride in order for your energy level to be high enough to get you from the beginning to the end. You will want to take along easily consumable carbohydrate items, even when you are starting your conditioning training. Each person is different so you will learn how much of this energy packed substance you will need to consume in order to keep you going.
You should not embark on a 10 to 25 mile ride without having an emergency kit along with you. Planning for the unexpected will help you to successfully finish what you set out to do. Your emergency kit should include a bicycle pump, the materials to make an emergency patch on a tire, and your cell phone. You should have your cell phone with you at all times. You can keep it set to vibrate so that callers do not interfere with your concentration, but keep it turned on so that the GPS portion of the phone is working at all times. You want to have the assurance that people will be able to find you if something were to go wrong, and the GPS system in your phone will give you that security.
Pick your route
You want to pick a route for your ride and map it out carefully. Plan which roads you will be on and the approximate locations you will be in when you want a rest period. Give a friend or loved one a copy of the map of your intended route. This will help you to be safe, keep you from getting lost, and will enable you to mentally judge your progress during the ride.
Proper route planning lets you see areas that might be under construction or have other hazards that you should prepare for before biking. Planning ahead keeps you oriented mentally and that means you will do better physically.
Stretch and Warm up
Be certain that you stretch and warm your muscles up before you start out on your ride. A 10 minute warm up should prepare you for this physical activity. During the ride, take breaks when you need them. If you feel tired, you must stop and rest. When the ride is over, make sure that you give your muscles a cool down period by walking around and allowing them to de-stress. This will save you from cramps later in the day.