Many people do cycle for the sole purpose of staying fit or losing weight. The exercise bike is a prime example. However, maintaining your health while cycling is one of the most important aspects of the sport. Even the completely out of shape person can manage to peddle around d a few city blocks, but drop that person in the middle of the Himalayas and let them loose and you have a whole other story. If you are not properly prepared to cycle on a serious excursion you will quickly confront the effects of sore muscles, blisters, nausea, dizziness, or altitude sickness.
Different muscles are used for climbs, or ascents, than for descents, so a proper workout regimen will go a long way. Taking breaks, particularly after a challenging segment is vital in not wearing yourself out and keeping your muscles fresh. Eating regularly and foods with a high level of carbohydrates is necessary to maintain the energy output necessary to cycle.
Preparation and proper medicine are extremely important. Eating strange foods and drinking tap water, even though the locals do it daily, is one of the surest and most unavoidable ways for a common travel illness. Protection from malaria and yellow fever is necessary if cycling in certain parts of the tropics, while antibiotics and medicine to stop and prevent diarrhea and kill parasites are something that can save your trip from disaster.
Ideal cycling weather is not too hot and not too cold. Too hot and you cannot keep hydrated or carry enough water. Snow and ice are generally bad signs for a bike and keeping control is next to impossible. Therefore, much of the world’s best cycling is done in warm or temperate climates. Much off road cycling needs some form of altitude change; therefore, you will often find yourself in hills or mountains where the air is fresh and cool. Desert areas are also quite popular, although the heat can reach extremes. Keeping hydrated is on of the best things you can do to make sure your trip goes smoothly and you stay in good health. Drink lots and lots of water and always have extra water. Bring Iodine tablets, water filters, or purification drops if you are in a place where you cannot purchase purified water and intend on drinking from rivers and streams.
Biking can be dangerous. Bolivia’s world’s most dangerous road is called that for a reason. Although many people cycle down the road every day, deaths do occur every year. There are thousands of obstacles to watch out for while cycling, especially in locations you are unfamiliar with. Cars, potholes, pedestrians, other bikers, cows, snakes, trash, and drying hay are among the things you might encounter. Using safety equipment, reflective gear, going slow around corners, and traveling with a group will help prevent serious injuries. Even the most experienced cyclers have accidents, though, so having good insurance that covers things such as extreme sports and foreign destinations is a huge plus that will save you future headaches in more ways than one.