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Training for end2end

robertboekeerobertboekee Posts: 9
edited November 2010 in Tour & expedition

Myself and a friend are planning on cycling from John O Groats to Lands End next year and would like to try and do it in a respectable time.

We're planning on using road bikes with panniers and travelling light, about 5-6 kg each maybe less. I'm aware that we'll both need to train but I'm not sure how much, I'm fairly fit already and can knock out 100 miles in a day but we'd like to try and do it in 6 days which means doing 160 miles a day.

If anyone has any training tips or links to appropriate training routines that would be great, as would any other advice.

Thanks for any help



  • You will find that you go less distance than expected in a day, I'd say try and do what you would like to do in two days over a weekend, see if you run into any problems. It's best to sort out niggles when training rather than when on the real thing.
  • I did LEJOG in 10 days last year, averaging 94 miles a day. A lot depends on your route and what you want out of the trip. If you can already do 100 miles easily in a day, you need to build the miles up a bit, and i agree that practice 160 miles (fully laden) is a good idea.

    With that kind of weight it'll still take a fair amount of time to do each day, and you won't get much time to enjoy it, bear in mind recovery time each day is critical. If you are just after a fast time/quick record, fine, but if you want to enjoy yourselves, have a laugh, see something new, you won't do it in 6 days.
    “I ride my bicycle to ride my bicycle.”
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    I did LEJOG last year in 5 days averaging 300km/day, carrying probably the same amount of stuff as you and didn't find the 6kg or so made much difference at all to my speed.

    My preparation involved (unsurprisingly) lots of long rides. I guess I was probably in a similar situation to you in that at this time of the year before I did my LEJOG I was comfortable doing 100 miles. Starting January I then tried to get out for a long ride at least every other weekend and slowly ramped up the distance. I did a 200km ride in Feb and my first 300km in April I think. My shorter higher intensity rides were taken care of by a 20 mile/day hilly commute.

    I did the ride in July having done a total of six 300km rides and one weekend where I did 300km then rode the following day (planned 300km, but the weather was terrible and my legs felt good so I decided I was ready after 100km and didn't subject myself to yet another long ride in the rain).

    You won't really see much other than fleeting glimpses of things as you ride past, but if you aim for around 12 hours/day on the bike (including lunch stops, etc.) then you'll have plenty of time to eat well in the evening, stock up on supplies for the following day and recover. I guess you're doing it more for the challenge anyway rather than as a sightseeing tour.

    If you're interested here's my Garmin logs:

    Day 1 (start of ride is missing)
    Day 2 Pt1
    Day 2 Pt2
    Day 3
    Day 4 pre-puncture
    Day 4 post-puncture
    Day 5 Pt1
    Day 5 Pt2

    (the splits in the rides are from battery changes - Garmin Etrex)
    More problems but still living....
  • Thanks for the replies. It's nice to see someone doing it in a similar time to my target without ridiculous amounts of training. Thanks for the Garmin logs too.

    Now I just need to plan a route, buy the rest of the kit I need etc. etc.

    Did you use a sat-nav of any description or just maps.

    Thanks again
  • I did it ten days last year, going the 'scenic (hilly)' route of just over 1000 miles. I carried a bit less than you. I had regularly done 100mile plus day rides in preparation, including back to bak weekenders. What I would not underestimate about end to end is the fatigue caused by washing kit, soting stuff out, sleeping in an odd bed, eating what is available where you are staying (often only pub food). We especially found this in the first few days of our ride when the weather was very wet and we had scheduled longer days of 120 miles and more.

    Remember, Cornwall and Devon are tougher than Scotland

    It's a fabulous trip though, especially the northern half.
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