This October I’m planning a month trip from here in Massachusetts to visit my son in Silverado CA near Los Angeles, then ride back.
I’m 53 years old and have never considered or undertaken such a journey. Most of my previous riding was local trips, four to six hours in duration.
Any words of advice, as far as physical, mental or equipment preps? (I’m not worried about psychological or spiritual issues; I’m a lay member of a religious community and my son is studying to be a priest in a religious order out on the left coast, so I’m looking forward to the relative solitude.)
I have 5 months to get ready and plan to walk every day till then for exercise.
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I'm a 58 year old with a 58 year old wife.
We are planning a trip around the Great Lakes this summer. Time may force us to cut the trip a bit. The minimum route will be Lake Michigan and Lake Superior, hopefully farther. Full trip is right about 6500 miles.
We are also walkers. Walked coast to coast across England. Walked 600 miles from Southwestern France through Northern Spain to the Atlantic Ocean along the Camino de Santiago Catholic pilgrimage trail for the Feast day of St James festival. Looking to walk the Way of St Francis in Italy next May (Florence to Assisi to Rome). Plenty of others too. I'm reasonably fit, I'm an olympic style saber fencing coach at a couple high schools and the local fencing club. But a run to the mail box out at the end of the driveway will have me seriously winded so I'm not super-fit.
Best advice I can give from my limited time with our NC700DCT and an NC750DCT is to break up the riding into 60 to 90 minute rides. Stop, walk around, eat, whatever. Get back on and ride another 60 to 90 minutes. Take another break. Ride another 60 to 90 minutes. Take another break. Ride another 60 to 90 minutes and be done for the day. 3 to 4 rides per day, running 60 to 90 minutes each. Plan for an occasional rest day or, at very least, a "short day" with maybe a maximum of 2 60 minute rides, and do those short days or rest days at least 1 time every 7 days. This is based on our long distance hiking experience.
What I have found is that the body can run some long runs over short durations but over the long term the body will fail miserably if a daily grind is too intense. Run a 1000 miles in 1 day? Yup it can be done. Run 500 miles a day for 2 days. Sure, that can be done too. But run 500 miles a day for a week and you will probably be recovering in bed for a week. Daily runs of 200-to-250 miles per day for 30 days with some 'short' or 'rest' days mixed in to travel 3000 miles each way is probably reasonable for a 50+ year old body.