Getting in shape for a 530.8-mile bike trip that includes 51 hours and 27 minutes of actual pedaling over 11 days, including total ascent of 21,370 feet and total descent of 21,090 feet, wasn’t all that tough.

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riter Louise Palmer and her husband say they aimed to ride between 30 and 40 miles in a day. That adds up to about three or four hours of actual cycling time (they go slowly – about 10 miles per hour – on hybrid touring bikes, not racing bikes). That leaves lots of time in a day for sightseeing and serendipity, she says.

Palmer recommends preparing over a few weeks, slowly increasing your weekly total cycling distance. During the summer months, try a 45-minute ride twice a week – early evening is a good time of day for a ride. On weekend days, ride a little longer – maybe one intermediate distance ride and then a longer one the next day. Slowly and steadily work up to 40 miles a week (or more) and you won’t have any trouble, she says.

Or, she suggests, taking a regular spin class at your gym. Be sure to tell the instructor what you’re planning to do so he or she can create a training plan that will get you to your goal.

Or just download this travel tunes playlist from Janeane Bernstein, host of  Momz Rock Live and start pedaling!