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ZAMM Fanatic
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Discussion Starter #1
It seems the better a rider you are the less a long ride takes out of you.

My pal Warren can ride 10, 12 hours and not be totally whipped.

After 8 I'm spent. Whipped. Exhausted. Need a nap AND food AND a drink, not necessarily in that order.

But my "duration" seems to be increasing.

For example, wind. I can ride on a windy day now without becoming totally exhausted in only 2 hours. I don't deathgrip the bars as much, just seem to be able to deal with it better.

Cold. Experience has taught me to ALWAYS carry extra layers, even in the middle of (early) summer. Rain gear, always. And how to use plastic bags, even food service gloves to keep hands dry if I don't have my waterproof winter gloves with me. Result: Even though 2" of hail greeted me on my way into Grants, NM, I wasn't becoming "cold to the core." Bone-chilled shortens your ride AND your safety considerably.

Another lesson -- layer up at the FIRST twinge of being cold, first few drops of rain. Wait 5 miles and you're either cold or soaked or both, and it's TOO late for those extra layers to work their magic. You can never regain lost core temperature.

Ipod / MP3 tunes. Part of what makes biking long distance relaxing is just zoning out, NOT allowing the worries of life to do laps in your mind. For me, a good set of earbuds and a great playlist, to drown out the wind noise, allow me to just pass the miles by in a more relaxed fashion. I ride 5mph faster with tunes as the wind noise/buffeting seem muted.

All in all, it seems the better rider you become, the more relaxed you are for more of the ride, and the less the miles wear you down. I don't panic when a gust hits me (or fails me) and I'm already leaned over in a curve anymore, I just correct.

Since I learned to ride late in life, for the first few years on a bike I had to THINK a lot about what I was doing, and wanted to make the bike do. A lot more of it is just instinct now, I hold my line better, better speed control, everything.

My next goal is a week at Superbike school (or similar) to improve my skills. Anyone been to any of these camps, got any recommendations or "avoids?"

So what has helped YOU to enjoy riding more, further, more relaxed?
 

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It seems the better a rider you are the less a long ride takes out of you.

My pal Warren can ride 10, 12 hours and not be totally whipped.

After 8 I'm spent. Whipped. Exhausted. Need a nap AND food AND a drink, not necessarily in that order.

But my "duration" seems to be increasing.

For example, wind. I can ride on a windy day now without becoming totally exhausted in only 2 hours. I don't deathgrip the bars as much, just seem to be able to deal with it better.

Cold. Experience has taught me to ALWAYS carry extra layers, even in the middle of (early) summer. Rain gear, always. And how to use plastic bags, even food service gloves to keep hands dry if I don't have my waterproof winter gloves with me. Result: Even though 2" of hail greeted me on my way into Grants, NM, I wasn't becoming "cold to the core." Bone-chilled shortens your ride AND your safety considerably.

Another lesson -- layer up at the FIRST twinge of being cold, first few drops of rain. Wait 5 miles and you're either cold or soaked or both, and it's TOO late for those extra layers to work their magic. You can never regain lost core temperature.

Ipod / MP3 tunes. Part of what makes biking long distance relaxing is just zoning out, NOT allowing the worries of life to do laps in your mind. For me, a good set of earbuds and a great playlist, to drown out the wind noise, allow me to just pass the miles by in a more relaxed fashion. I ride 5mph faster with tunes as the wind noise/buffeting seem muted.

All in all, it seems the better rider you become, the more relaxed you are for more of the ride, and the less the miles wear you down. I don't panic when a gust hits me (or fails me) and I'm already leaned over in a curve anymore, I just correct.

Since I learned to ride late in life, for the first few years on a bike I had to THINK a lot about what I was doing, and wanted to make the bike do. A lot more of it is just instinct now, I hold my line better, better speed control, everything.

My next goal is a week at Superbike school (or similar) to improve my skills. Anyone been to any of these camps, got any recommendations or "avoids?"

So what has helped YOU to enjoy riding more, further, more relaxed?
Curious Wade, how long have you been riding?
Last year I bought a cruiser, kept my CBR1000, I can last pretty much all day on the Vstar but I have found that when on the CBR I have to get off the bike every 2-3 hours, due to my hands and fingers going numb and my shoulders becoming very tired. The CBR pretty much just sits in the garage now. Thinking it may be time to sell it.
I have been riding motorcycles for just about 36 years, starting out on dirt bikes as a kid and purchasing a street bike at 17. Back in the early eighties you found a friend to teach you how to ride. I was fortunate, I had an uncle who had been riding for years, he spent a lot of time teaching me how it works on the street, the safe way. As a kid I read every article on riding technique in MC magazine. At this point I find that I am less interested in speed and racing as in riding safe. I am sure that Super Bike school will teach many great things. At this point I am considering the MSF experienced rider course.
 

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ZAMM Fanatic
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
"How long you been riding" is a difficult question for me to answer.

I rode a Honda Elite 250 scooter for 15+ years, around town, errands, virtually every day in spring/summer/fall. Learned to deal with motorists, etc. Even began leaning it hard over on certain corners.

Took the MSF, bought my first bike about 10 years ago, it was too tall for me, sold it rather soon thereafter. Honda Saber. Froze my ass off on a couple of rides and decided riding MC's really wasn't for me.

Began riding MOTORCYCLES seriously about 5 years ago when I picked up an old Ninja, loved accelerating and cornering like a wildman, met Warren and started doing some distance work. Upgraded to a CBR929 which was simply too much bike for me, too powerful, too uncomfortable, too everything.

Now (I'm still on scooters) I ride a sport/touring bike and it has been on this Kawasaki Concours I've actually learned to ride, learned to deal with weather instead of hiding every time it rains or blows, etc.

As others have pointed out I"m a liberal/Dem, so obviously I'm a slow learner ;)
 

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Try earplugs if you're not already wearing them.

Also, the more experienced the rider the more likely they've learned coping skills. Simple things like stretching on a break. Or taking breaks. Or not fighting with the bike. Or riding in a manner that isn't as mentally taxing (read: good habits and low fear).
 

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Learning to deal with crosswinds helped me a lot. Time in the saddle taught me to trust the bike wasn't going to get blown out from under me, and how to lean into the wind.

Rain still wears me out. Mostly because I'm a metroplex commuter. I've got the rain, the wet roads and all the crazies who get even crazier when it rains. It's ultra high alert the whole time.
 

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Try earplugs if you're not already wearing them.

Also, the more experienced the rider the more likely they've learned coping skills. Simple things like stretching on a break. Or taking breaks. Or not fighting with the bike. Or riding in a manner that isn't as mentally taxing (read: good habits and low fear).
:71baldboy:
 

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"How long you been riding" is a difficult question for me to answer.

I rode a Honda Elite 250 scooter for 15+ years, around town, errands, virtually every day in spring/summer/fall. Learned to deal with motorists, etc. Even began leaning it hard over on certain corners.

Took the MSF, bought my first bike about 10 years ago, it was too tall for me, sold it rather soon thereafter. Honda Saber. Froze my ass off on a couple of rides and decided riding MC's really wasn't for me.

Began riding MOTORCYCLES seriously about 5 years ago when I picked up an old Ninja, loved accelerating and cornering like a wildman, met Warren and started doing some distance work. Upgraded to a CBR929 which was simply too much bike for me, too powerful, too uncomfortable, too everything.

Now (I'm still on scooters) I ride a sport/touring bike and it has been on this Kawasaki Concours I've actually learned to ride, learned to deal with weather instead of hiding every time it rains or blows, etc.

As others have pointed out I"m a liberal/Dem, so obviously I'm a slow learner ;)
I dont think politics has anything to do with that. I try to leave that alone here. I come here to have fun.
so as a "liberal Dem" is a zero cycle in your future? http://www.zeromotorcycles.com/ As a an independent, I find these very fascinating, as well as the Tesla cars. But I really still love the sound of the bike, prefer just to listen to the motor when riding.:biggrin:
 

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I
My next goal is a week at Superbike school (or similar) to improve my skills. Anyone been to any of these camps, got any recommendations or "avoids?"

So what has helped YOU to enjoy riding more, further, more relaxed?
I've been coaching with the superbike school for over 11 years now so please ask me if you have any specific questions about any of the curriculum or format. I pretty much learned everything I know from Keith and the school and it has helped me become a much better ride than I ever could have become without it :big grin: Plus it's so much fun!!

The most important things for me to enjoy riding more, further and more relaxed have to do with body position- how to sit correctly on the bike to reduce any extra strain or stress on my arms, and how to steer correctly so that you get the actions done with much less effort, and vision, how to visually pick up things and see things around you with less overall mental stress and strain.

Other things that help with riding long distances are proper nutrition and hydration (this is huge) and riding with earplugs to reduce wind and engine noise.

What are some ways your body position and methods of steering can help or hinder your ability to ride long distances?
 

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ZAMM Fanatic
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Discussion Starter #9
Warren taught me about proper hydration.

As a result I have a water bottle holder on my bike.

"If you can't see it, if you can't reach out and take a drink, you're going to end up dehydrated" he said.

It's true. water or gatorade in the saddlebags might as well be on the moon.

Not everyone wants a gimbal'd drink holder dangling from their handlebars. But ifyou're going distances...you must. You MUST have water in sight and within reach.

Crossing the Nevada AND Arizona deserts on a 100+ degree day Warren became disoriented, dehydrated DESPITE massive infusions of water. Almost dropped the bike at a GEICO sponsored rest stop east of Flagstaff!

Ran out of electrolytes!

Gotta throw some Gatorade in with the mix if you're sweating out gallons of water. One bottle out of the vending machine, 10 minutes, and he wasn't loopy anymore.

THANK YOU, GEICO.

p.s. Agree on earplugs. And Ipod/earbuds for the long boring stretches.

Also agree on position. Handlebar risers, highway pegs, the right seat...all make a big difference, even...having the RIGHT BIKE for you.

State of mind: Being able to enjoy the hours instead of fretting about some problem to be dealt with upon arrival, etc. Confidence about your bike's reliability, tire condition, brakes, etc.

Warren's rear brake was soft and when we swapped bikes all I could think about was "But what if I really NEED it?"
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The more I have ridden the better I judge correct corner entry speed, and the more cornering "reserve" I have if I misjudge.

That alone brings a whole lot of peace where before there was stress.
 

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Good stuff but what else can help or hinder your ability to ride long distances and still remain alert and attentive?
 

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I can't go long distances without standing up as I ride. An hour in one of two positions isn't enough. Stand up after closing my visor and I'm good for another hour. You got to be able to move around I guess is one option then.
 

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Yeah, you don't want to let go of the bars for sure. And you definitely want the visor closed or you'll get your head yanked off. But just a few seconds standing helps tremendously when going for distance. And as you might guess, not all bikes make doing it very easy. In fact some people just plain can't do it. I must admit the first time I did it, it scared the heck out of me. 55mph isn't too bad. It gets harder on up and I rarely do it up there. But rarely means I have. An hour and a half on interstate just calls for a change. But that's also why I prefer secondary roads.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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Forward controls does make it a bit harder to do. I thought everyone stood on the pegs every once in a while?
 

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I dont think politics has anything to do with that. I try to leave that alone here. I come here to have fun.
so as a "liberal Dem" is a zero cycle in your future? http://www.zeromotorcycles.com/ As a an independent, I find these very fascinating, as well as the Tesla cars. But I really still love the sound of the bike, prefer just to listen to the motor when riding.:biggrin:
Because you have to be liberal to want a bike that costs you $1.50 to "refuel" vs $11 in gasoline?

Maybe only a dyed in the wool lefty would bite the bullet now when financially that don't make sense just to be able to say they ride an electric bike, but they are improving in range and cost, so when you say "a zero bike in his future", how are you attacking his political leanings?

I'm a registered republican who votes libertarian, and I want an electric bike in the next couple years.
 

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I love the idea of an electric bike. I can foresee a time not too far off when the world is all set up for it. You travel a couple hundred miles, pull in, trade your empty battery and a $5 bill for a charged battery and off you go. In fact, when electric bikes become mainstream, l am going to open a charging station. I just decided that.

Oh, and l hate politics. I do vote, only because l hate one group more than another. But l find it hard to find an ounce of integrity among the whole lot of them ;)
 

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American Legion Rider
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You ever have a potable drill battery be fully charged yet only last the time it takes to screw half dozen screws? I will never trust battery power. EVER!
 

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My drill has two batteries. When one dies, I grab the spare and put the dead one on the charger for a couple hours.

They last a long time. The only time I went through a whole battery was when I built a shed from scratch.

What brand do you buy? Mine's a Dewalt.
 
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