Instead of letting it affect your training, there are ways to prepare yourself and ride through even the harshest days of winter. Use these tips to make the right decisions and keep yourself safe while cycling this offseason.
Check the Weather1 of 7
Check the weather forecast before you head out the door. This will allow you to choose the best possible clothing options and to be aware of any storms on the way. It only takes a few seconds and can keep you from getting caught in extreme weather without the right clothing.
Prepare Your Bike2 of 7
Snow, salt, and sand will take a toll on a frame. Here are a few ways you can prepare your bike for the rigors of the winter training.
1. Waxing the frame. It will help to protect the paint from chips and damage.
2. Add a fender to keep your backside and your bike clean.
3. Use wide-knobbed or studded tires to improve your traction.
4. Run tires at a lower pressure. This will improve grip and help prevent punctures.
5. Use a wet lube. Wet lubes will keep the chain running smooth in bad weather conditions. Make sure you clean the chain on a regular basis.
6. Rinse off your bike after every ride. This will make your parts last longer and run smoother.
Wear the Right Clothes3 of 7
There's nothing that makes a ride more unpleasant than cold ears, hands and feet. Here are a few extra precautions you can take:
1. Wear a hat underneath your helmet. A lot of heat escapes through your head.
2. Try larger frame sunglasses. The extra coverage will help keep your face covered.
3. Always use windproof gloves. Having a few versatile pairs that can be worn together is also good idea for really cold days.
4. Get your booties out. Cold, wet feet can make you miserable quick. A warm pair of socks will help too.
Get Off Road4 of 7
Winter roads offer a lot of challenges. Instead of doing all your miles on the road, head to the trails. Giving mountain biking or cyclocross a try can help to rejuvenate your cycling. There's nothing like a little mud, slush, and snow to make you feel like a kid again.
Stay Indoors5 of 7
Let's be smart. Some days are better spent on the indoor trainer. Risking injury is not the way you want to start the new year. If you don't have an indoor trainer, there's always a spin class at your local gym.
Riding Tips6 of 7
A lot can go wrong out on the road. To stay out of harms way, it's important to ride defensively and to not take unnecessary risk.
1. Ride on less-traveled roads.
2. Always be aware of dangerous situations.
3. Ride at a pace that's safe. Make sure you always have enough time to stop or maneuver around obstacles.