Cycling ‘end to end’ as it is known, is a fantastic endurance challenge that almost anyone, with training, can undertake. If you want to do something incredible and take part if a cycling event that you will remember for the rest of your life, the Lands End to John O’Groats cycle is for you. This is one of the ultimate charity cycles, taken on by hundreds of people each year in the UK.
The entire journey can range from the shortest route of 800 miles to the longest exceeding 1000 miles but however you decide to tackle this cycle it is perfectly achievable for almost anyone given the right pace and planning. Cycling this journey for charity is a great way to spur yourself on when the going gets tough, and there are many ways you can take it on. You may want to go solo, cycle as a small team, or even as a relay team. There are no rules, so it’s up to you!
You’d be daft to attempt this challenge without training, so put your plans in place a few months in advance to allow you to build up your stamina. Think about how far you feel comfortable cycling in one day, and this will give you an idea of how long you will need to complete this epic challenge. The record is set at around 44 hours to complete the journey but you could take as long as a month. Most people take between 10-14 days, but plan it out to fit around your own needs.
Think about logistics and whether you will be completing the journey alone, if so you’ll need to train with panniers on your bike; or will you have a friend or relative acting as your support vehicle to lighten your load for all or some of the way? Will you stay at hotels, B&Bs, campsites, or with friends/family on your journey?
You can start at either Lands’ End or John O’Groats, depending on where you live and your logistics. Some people say the Cornwall section is one of the toughest of the ride, so prefer to get it out the way first, others would rather finish with it.