SEAN CON­WAY

The record-break­ing ul­tra-cy­clist talks us through es­sen­tials for tack ling along haul ride

Cycling Plus - - TRAINING CAMP -

1 BREAK IN YOUR BIKE

Ahead of a ride stretch­ing over days or weeks get com­fort­able with your bike, learn its nu­ances through train­ing rides. For my round-the-world trip I got a sec­ond-hand Trek Madone off eBay and made it my own. For my tran­sEurope at­tempt I tweaked it a lit­tle, fit­ting elec­tric gears - Shi­mano Ul­te­gra Di2 – with a con­trol at the end of my aero bar to make chang­ing easy.

2 DO YOUR STRENGTH WORK

I’m for­tu­nate to have plenty of ‘en­durance’ in me. I can ride for hours no prob­lem, but I find do­ing hill climbs ahead of a long ride is great for build­ing up ad­di­tional strength and stam­ina. When you’re car­ry­ing your own gear it’s easy to for­get that you need that ad­di­tional strength in the sad­dle.

3 KEEP YOUR MIND AC­TIVE

It pays to have some men­tal stim­u­la­tion along the route – some­thing to mo­ti­vate you on the tougher parts. For my Euro­pean record at­tempt my vi­tal stats and body re­ac­tions were be­ing mon­i­tored for a sci­en­tific study, which kept me fo­cused. Also up­dat­ing so­cial me­dia with my progress and car­ry­ing mes­sages from loved ones that I open ev­ery 1000 miles helps.

4 TIME TO RE­FLECT

I’ve cus­tomised my cy­cling gear with re­flec­tive tape and ma­te­rial to en­sure I’m seen on the road af­ter be­ing hit by a truck while cy­cling across Amer­ica. I’ve sewn re­flec­tive fab­ric into my arm warm­ers, stuck tape ev­ery­where and I’ll cover my pan­niers with my re­flec­tive wa­ter­proofs when I’m not ac­tu­ally wear­ing them.

5 PACK FOR EMER­GEN­CIES

I’ve put to­gether a home­made toolkit with the tools best suited to my bike. Generic ones are fine but if you’ve adapted your bike make sure you can fix it eas­ily when on the road. I’ve got a first aid kit too with es­sen­tials like caf­feine tablets to keep me awake, parac­eta­mol to ease the pains and a se­lec­tion of plas­ters, just in case.

Sean is sup­ported by Yel­low Jer­sey Cy­cle In­sur­ance cov­er­ing UK res­i­dents cy­cling world­wide

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