My fitness philosophy starts with my attitude, my outlook on myself and my life. It boils down to the fact that I want to take care of this one body, and this one precious life, so I am able to experience as much joyful living and experiences as possible. It follows I eat well (much of the time), I rest well (as often as possible) and exercise well (although some may agree and others disagree). What’s your attitude? Is your outlook aligned with the joyful events you want to experience? Are you content to live within your own self-imposed boundaries?
My biggest challenge is balance. Beyond balancing my personal travel budget, my schedules must be balanced and my fitness must be maximized through balanced training. When either time is limited or I over-extend my reach and injure myself, my desired tour-prep fitness level may be jeopardized. (I did conquer my 1st climbing wall at left intact.)
I wager you face the same situation. Training excessively if you have the time could still be a problem if it leads to injury or illness. Training minimally may not result in the tour experience you’d desired. Hills may seem too hard, climbs too difficult, distances too insurmountable. Within your exercise regimen, you may need to include aerobic endurance, anaerobic efforts, core strength workouts and flexibility routines. So achieving balance is a common dilemma. If you have the time and funds, hiring a coach may be your perfect solution. And Build Your Tour says “Go for it!” But if you don’t, then what?
The Build Your Tour approach demands consideration of all factors when training for a one-day event, a tour or a season of bicycle tours. You only have so much time to spend preparing for your tour and only so much time on your tour. Our suggestion to maximize your enjoyment of your tour – balance these characteristics by “training to the test”. Increase time, distance and efforts gradually during the months and weeks before your event.
- Duration – hike for the time you’ll be hiking. Train to run for an hour if your event is planned to last an hour; 5 hours for 5 hours.*
- Distance – ride the distance you’ll be riding. Cycle up to 20 miles if your event is planned on a 20 mile route.*
- Climbing – prepare for the vertical distance as well as the horizontal mileage.* We once met a couple from Miami and they floated up California coastal hills with great ease. How did they do it? Lots of boring training on Miami bridges.
- Daily – if one day a century (100 miles) is planned in a week long tour, ensure your fitness will meet that maximum challenge and not just a smaller ‘daily average.’ *
- Weekly – for endurance activities lasting a week or longer prepare for several months so your body adapts.*
- Carrying weight – if your tour or adventure entails you transporting gear, prepare by carrying the gear.*
- Equipment – train with the equipment (bicycle, shoes, hiking boots, sunglasses, water bottles etc) you will use on your tour as much as possible. You’ve heard it before – don’t swap out for new equipment (even the same model) leading up to your event.
- Flexibility – maintaining flexibility helps avoid training and exercise injuries.* How many of us do enough stretching? This includes stretching during and after extended airplane rides!
Final Countdown to Your Tour
There is only a week or two before you leave for your tour. In years past, this was my panic time. My frenzied mind frantic believing I had not trained enough. You probably don’t experience quite the same anxiety but I know I’m not alone. Some of you have these exact same niggling concerns.
But now is the time to tour not to fret. You are beyond training, go easy on yourself and have fun. You did the best you could do with the information, time, resources you had. So be flexible and enjoy whatever comes your way on your most excellent adventure. If your training worked and resulted in a very enjoyable, memorable experience, HURRAY! If not quite right, you’ll know what to tweak for next time. Ready to plan your tour?
In no way will Build Your Tour or any persons associated with Build Your Tour be held responsible for any injuries or problems that may occur due to the use of this website or the ideas and suggestions contained within. Before you start a fitness or exercise program or make any changes in your lifestyle and diet consult your doctor or physician. This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant as medical advice, training advice, nor is it a substitute for medical or training advice. Build Your Tour products and services, including this blog, are designed for fit and healthy individuals only. We advise that you should take full responsibility for your own health and safety. Before exercising make certain your equipment is in good condition and be sure to know your own physical limits. Please understand that you are solely responsible for the way information on Build Your Tour website and in our products is perceived and utilized and you do so at your own risk.