About to start your very first bike tour? If you want your experience to be a positive one (hopefully enough to spur you to have a second and even third tour!), you need to make sure that you properly plan for your trip. Here are some of the mistakes you definitely need to avoid making on the trip!
- Not having the right gear and equipment – the number one mistake that rookie cyclists make during their cycling vacations is simply not using the right equipment for their body type and stature. Equipment and gear need to fit you properly, as ill-fitting gear can wear you down even more quickly, and they can just be plain uncomfortable to ride in. Gear does not only extend to your cycling costume, helmet, shoes and other items and clothing you will have on your person, but it also refers to your bicycle itself. If you thought any bike would work on long-distance tours, then you will have to think again – mountain bikes and other long-distance bikes will be far lighter and more comfortable than the average bulky bike people tend to purchase for short distance riding.
- Carrying too much – having the right equipment and gear is definitely a plus, but you still need to make sure you are not packing too much! Since you will be travelling for the entirety of your tour by bike – and that is a long distance to travel, especially if you consider world-renowned tours such as LEtape France cycling tours – a heavy load to carry means you will spend a greater amount of effort and energy, and that can prevent you from riding leisurely. Stick to the minimum requirements (and make sure that you are packing the right essentials!).
- Picking longer distances than what you can manage – another rookie mistake people make, especially those who have never been on a bike tours France before, is packing too much into their schedule. If you are travelling across beautiful countries in Europe, or even large countries such as America and Canada, it is only obvious that you will feel inclined to include as much as possible into your routes. However, do not do this – you are likely underestimating how taxing it is to ride a bicycle for a long distance. Even healthy individuals and athletes who run, pole vault or do other intense activities will find riding tiring. This is because bicycles use different muscles, and these are not likely to be as trained (unless of course, you are a hobbyist or professional cyclist!). Do yourself a favour and reduce the number of kilometres you have to cover each day.
- Not packing the right clothes – and lastly, make sure to pack the right clothes for your tour. Packing clothes is not only about your own comfort, you should also carefully consider the weather! Even if you are planning to travel in summer, have some clothes suited for rain, and likewise, even if you travel during the colder months, have some warmer clothes you can use if the weather gets unexpectedly warm.