Winter Cycling: Our Top Tips to Stay Motivated

Doug Williams
 
Photo credit: Maasaak
 
SHARE:

Don’t hang up your cycle over winter, cycling is a yearlong sport so don’t let the wet and cold put you off.  Keep that summer fitness and explore the world of winter cycling.

Tip 1: Clothing

Layer your clothing.  The latest cycling clothing is here to help keep you insulated and protect you from the elements.  If you don’t want to buy the latest clothing, at least invest in a good base layer and waterproof top layer and use what you already have in between.

Tip 2: Preparation

Get everything ready the day before, whether you are going on a cycle through the countryside or commuting to work.  This includes clothing and checking over your bike.  It also helps to stop you finding excuses on why this morning you can’t do it.

Tip 3: Lights

To be honest, all bikes should have lights and reflectors.  You are not the only one on the road and safety comes first.  Try night cycling.  It can be exciting, and the sounds are completely different, and traffic is lighter.  Modern cycle lights are really quite powerful and will light up the way ahead, no problems.

Tip 4:  Events

Enter an event.  This will help your motivation to cycle every day to maintain your fitness.  Check around as there will be events, big and small, and many that go ahead rain or shine.

Tip 5: Have a Plan

Set goals for yourself.  They can be small, like choosing to commute to work two or three times a week, or setting distance goals.  There are apps aplenty to help you with this.  Don’t let the wet weather put you off – you’ll find it’s not as bad as you initially thought.

Tip 6: Commuting by Cycle

Winter is an awesome time to try this.  It certainly beats crawling through traffic by bus or car.  You can also impress your work colleagues with the zeal you show in embracing life.  Remember to plan ahead, e.g., have fresh clothes already stashed at work.

Tip 7: Explore

Dig out the maps, plot new routes, see new places.  You may discover the coffee shop of your dreams or a route that shaves time from your commute to work.  Your motivation will grow as you become more confident.

Tip 8: Cycle Buddies

Cycle with others, friends or colleagues.  After a few weeks of bouncing into your office, you’re bound to get some queries from keen work colleagues.  Share your knowledge and create new friends.  You will have the incentive not to let them down and make sure you are on time.  Cycling in bad weather is not only better with a buddy, it’s good for safety reasons as well.

Tip 9: Join a Club

There are cycling clubs all over the country, and they organize weekday and weekend events regularly.   These meets are rarely put off by the weather unless it is dangerous to their riders.  Meet new people, and pick up hints and tips you never thought about.  Learn how to ride in a large group and have fun.

Tip 10: Velodrome

These are not just for Olympic hopefuls.  There are indoor and outdoor velodromes, and clubs often organize training sessions.  There are beginner classes so you can learn with a qualified instructor.  Track work gives you a high-intensity workout, and it teaches you how to ride safely in close quarters with other riders.

Tip 11: Turbo

Nowadays you can easily convert you cycle into something that’s usable indoors.  Turbos and rollers give you the opportunity to maintain and improve your fitness indoors and in the dry.  There are plenty of videos on how to use them, and some clubs offer turbo training evenings.

Tip 12: Coaches

Are you becoming competitive? Thinking about racing?  Hire a professional coach, they can help all levels and abilities.  If a coach is beyond your budget try training books and videos to help you further your skills, Road.cc reported.

Tip 13: Weather

You aren’t going to melt under a bit of rain.  It’s only weather, and if you have planned and organized yourself you will quickly find yourself becoming hooked on cycling in all weathers.  It’s very invigorating cycling through rain and then hopping into a hot shower when you get home.  It’s a challenge to cycle against a strong head wind, to cycle against the elements.  It gives you a sense of accomplishment that can be hard to find in today’s age.  Most importantly, it gives you thinking time and a way to burn off that crazy itch you get in winter.  At the end of the day, you’ll be a healthier and happier person for it.