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Discussion Starter #1
I've gotten to the point where I can stay on the bike three or more hours without feeling tired or uncomfortable, but I've noticed that at the end of those rides I tend to drift all over my lane and have difficulty keeping clean lines around corners. I'm afraid that this disconnect between how I feel and how I ride could easily lead me into a situation I can't handle.

Any suggestions or tips?
 

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Troublemaker
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Open your face shield and let the bugs beat up your face.

I sometimes start weaving in my lane trying to hit targets. If there is no traffic, I use the dash lines in the center of the highway as slalom flags. Try and calculate how far away a landmark is by the odometer.
 

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American Legion Rider
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I've gotten to the point where I can stay on the bike three or more hours without feeling tired or uncomfortable, but I've noticed that at the end of those rides I tend to drift all over my lane and have difficulty keeping clean lines around corners. I'm afraid that this disconnect between how I feel and how I ride could easily lead me into a situation I can't handle.

Any suggestions or tips?
Sounds to me like you just need to take a break whether you feel like you need it or not. Your mind is telling you it's tired of seeing bots dots or stripes. You need that break to stay alert. 2 hours is about as long as I can go without taking a break. Fortunately my bike says it's ready about that time too. Maybe 2 1/2 hours.
 

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I find that l can ride pretty actively for a while, but every now and then l need to change things up. Slow down, switch lanes, take a potty break even if you don't need to, have a coke and a smile. Monotony tends to make me lose focus after a while.
 

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Driftless Rider
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First of all, it's great that you realize the issue in the first place. I often fall into the "just a few more miles" trap, or "I'll stop in the next town." By the end of a long day, I notice that I too am not functioning at prime.

I have found that carrying a camera is a good solution. Stopping once in a while to take pics is a great way of slowing down and keeping aware. Hunger and dehydration can also sneak up on us.
It's been proven that the human mind can only focus on a task for 40-90 minutes without needing a break. That break must be longer than a fuel stop and be something to switch the mind to something else for a little time.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks. You've given me some things to think about. I hadn't thought about dehydration, but a camelbak would probably be a good idea.

I'm going to try taking more breaks and playing mind games too. A "problem" for me is that my bike seems to be able to go forever between refuels. I've never had to put more than three gallons in my five gallon tank.

Maybe I should start carrying a book to read during break times too, to help switch gears.
 

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I really like the camera idea but maybe for a different reason. It will keep your mind active looking for those good camera shots. "I wonder if that would look better from part way up that next hill." etc.
 

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5 Hour Energy. Works wonders. No jitters. Half up front and half after 2-3 hours.
 

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Dehydration. This is often the number one reason why you experience brain fog or you space out when riding etc. You need to hydrate, eat regular snacks and take small breaks. Wearing a camel back will help TONS. I remember the first time I wore one and I could almost feel the energy level and alertness rising when I took a sip.

Great that you noticed this disconnect and that you asked for some help. I have an article written on this very topic, I'll dig it out in the next day or two and post it up.

Cheers and safe riding!
Misti
 

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Super Moderator
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If you know you're getting sloppy then pull over and figure out why. I don't think boredom is a reason you're drifting around the lane. Odds are you are in some way impaired. Fatigue and dehydration can get you in a place where you're not fully engaged in what you're doing. Be careful you don't start "Running home to the barn" which is a problem I still have. You get excited/bored and hurry home and take chances you wouldn't normally take because you don't even realize you're taking them.
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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Be careful you don't start "Running home to the barn" which is a problem I still have. You get excited/bored and hurry home and take chances you wouldn't normally take because you don't even realize you're taking them.
^^^^This! In flying we used to call it, 'Get Home-itis'... wanting to just get home so bad decisions about weather or running low on fuel are made.

Whether in a cage or plane or on a bike... sometimes ya just gotta stop and take a break.
 

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American Legion Rider
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I normally hit a wall at the end of day 3 traveling. So that day 4 is most often a very short day. Maybe just 100 miles. It's called getting tired. And if you don't listen and really rest you'll make very bad decisions. Same can happen on any day. You have to stop and really rest.
 

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American Legion Rider
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Yeah, you kids can just go and go. Strange thing is I'm okay after day 4 on out to whenever.
 

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CDRW

OK ... first thing. It's GOOD that your brain made the call ... something is going wrong after you've been riding for 3-4 hours. As soon as you feel that happening, you need to STOP riding. Go take a break! Eat some food. Walk around, look at some stores. Let your brain re-charge. Never push yourself into that zone of "bad mental concentration".

Over time, you will increase the time it takes for this to happen. Most of the improvement comes from staying relaxed on your bike. Take a look at how you are riding ... is your body tense, or totally relaxed? Do you have a windshield, or are you getting beat up by the wind? Is your brain relaxed when you are riding? Are your sunglasses clear, with no distortions or dirty lenses - maybe your eyes are getting tired. ALL this stuff can add up.

Hang in there. Enjoy your rides!

dT
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Dang, so much good advice coming in the last few days, and I can't go out to test it until I get my bike fixed.
 

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2015 BMW K1600GTL & 2008 Harley Davidson Dyna Super Glide Custom
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5 Hour Energy. Works wonders. No jitters. Half up front and half after 2-3 hours.
Excedrin too. Besides the pain reliever it has 65mg of caffeine in each pill....Takes care of my back ache AND I don't rock myself to sleep on my bike:smiley_drinkcoffee:
 
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