Tips And Tricks For Preparing For Your Next Bike Trip

Tips And Tricks For Preparing For Your Next Bike Trip

One of the best ways you can become a better cyclist is by strapping on your helmet and going for a ride. Each time you get back on the bike and go for a ride, you get better and better. You may even feel so confident that you’ll want to begin preparing for a long ride!

Ride on bike on the beach.

If you’re already at that stage, it’s important that you know how to prepare for a bike tour so that the trip is fun and comfortable. Here are bike tips and tricks that will help you prepare for any kind of bike touring trips you may want to make!

What To Gear Use

  • Make sure you wear the proper cycling clothing. A good rule of thumb is to have a decent pair of padded shorts that will give your rear a little extra comfort while on the seat – even if you already have a padded saddle.
  • Always wear a helmet that fits properly. A well-fitted helmet could be the very thing that will save your life should something happen and you fall off your bike.
  • Use clipless pedals instead of toe clip pedals. The clipless pedals will play a big factor in how efficiently you pedal.
  • If you’re a mountain biker, you will want a good pair of gloves and knee pads to keep your hands and knees protected while you learn new skills and tricks. If you intend on doing more extreme downhill trails or if you want to do high jumps and tricks, you’ll also want to get a good set of elbow pads and a back protector as well.
  • As you prepare for a long ride, you are going want protective sports eyewear. These glasses can be range from very affordable to quite expensive, but the main purpose of them are to keep your eyes safe from stones, bugs, and the elements. More expensive glasses will have interchangeable lenses that you can swap in and out depending on the weather.

How To Ride Comfortably

  • Don’t hunch your shoulders when you’re riding. This will prevent muscle soreness and fatigue. Be sure to tilt your head from side to side every so often to loosen neck muscles.
  • Adjust your position on the seat to work different muscle groups. Moving forward will engage quadriceps while moving back slightly will engage hamstrings and glutes.
  • Try not to move your upper body much. Your back should act as a fulcrum and your bike should sway from side to side under it.
  • Your shoulders should remain behind the front wheel axle. If you lean too far forward, there will be too much weight in the front, the bike will be harder to handle and it could cause the back wheel to skip upward.
  • Relax your grip as you ride. When you are practicing on smooth surface that is free from traffic, drape your hands over the handlebars to ease muscle tension. This will also reduce how much vibration from the road your body will feel as you ride.

Important Bike Maintenance

  • While you are riding, you will want to clean your chain regularly and after each cleaning, you will want to keep it lubricated too – this is especially important if you happen to ride during bad weather. Keeping the bike chain in good working order will also prevent chain rings and other expensive parts from wearing out too soon.
  • When you stop to take a break, check your tire pressure. A track pump and a pressure gauge are going to be your best friend while riding.
  • Install mudguards or fenders on the back of your bike, as it will prevent mud, water, and dirt from flying up onto your back, your clothes, and in fellow rider’s faces.
  • Learn how to fix a punctured tire. A tire repair kit will include tire levers, patches, a new inner tube, and pump. You’ll find that when you’re out in the middle of nowhere and far from home, you’ll be very thankful that you’ve learned how to repair the tire yourself!
  • Clean your bike every so often to prevent grime from building up too much on the bike. You will want to keep a degreaser specially made for bikes, as they will clean the trickier parts like the cassette, chain, and crankset to name a few.

Should I Use A Cargo Trailer?

As you prepare for your tour, you may want to use a cargo trailer if you are going on especially long tour. Most of the gear that you will need can fit in a cargo bag that usually comes with the trailer. It’s a good idea to keep the load between 15 to 30 pounds, but no more than 45 pounds.

Bicycle cargo trailer.

When you’re packing the cargo trailer, you will want to keep the heavier items on the bottom and toward the front of the trailer – but you should experiment with  the weight distribution prior to going on the tour.

Items To Put In A Cargo Trailer

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    Extra clothing (shorts, pants, shirts, undergarments, jackets, gloves and hats)
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    Extra shoes (both for biking and for leisure)
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    Swimwear (if applicable)
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    Tire repair kit
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    Lubricant for the bike
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    First aid kits
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    Toiletries
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    Sunblock
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    Sewing kit
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    Camera
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    Rechargeable batteries
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    Water bladders or containers
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    Flashlights or a headlamp
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    Bike light
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    Spare brake pads
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    Plastic zip ties
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    Hose clamps
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    Nuts, bolts and wire
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    Screw drivers
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    Spoke wrench
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    Electrical Tape
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    Sleeping bags
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    Tent
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    Cookware and fuel
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    Mylar blanket
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    Blankets

As you prepare for a long bike tour, there are a lot of things that you may want to bring with you, but it’s always a good idea to bring along the essentials first, and then tack on extras like books, journals, and other non-essential items.

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