Cycling in Winter
In this short guide, we want to give you a few tips on how to survive winter when you are a cyclist.
1. Stay Warm
If you decided to go out and ride your bike, even if there are a few inches of snow, remember to wear warm clothes, from the top to bottom.
The extra cap under helmet covering your ears as well, winter jacket, extra t-shirt, gloves, arm, and leg warmers, winter shoe covers. Keep your workouts shorter than usual, increase your cadence to keep yourself a little warmer. After workout takes a hot shower or bath and don’t forget about stretching.
2. Do Indoor Cycling
A good way to go is to stay indoors and do a workout in better conditions.
You can go to a local gym and signup for spinning classes, even merge your strength workout with easy cycling after it. You can use Zwift and ride with your friends online. You just need trainer, computer and an internet connection to be able to ride with anyone in the world. Use Discord or another communicator to talk with your friends while you ride. Cycling in winter doesn’t have to be cold, remember about turning on the fan when you are riding in a room.
3. Take a Break
After a long season, thousands of miles, hundreds of our on your saddle, it is the best time to just take a little break. 4-8 weeks without a bike is a very good mental and physical release from the training regime. Don’t forget to lower the number of calories you consume and focus on stretching, balance and core training.
4. Try Other Activities
The off-season is better than any time during cycling season to try other activities, sports and add strength training to your calendar.
Try to pick a sport where you can spend time in the aerobic zone, like running or swimming. It is very important to work on other groups of muscles during the winter, which you don’t really use during cycling. Weights can be a very good solution to work on every muscle separately or try CrossFit to add more dynamic to it. Group sports can be a great way of spending free time and have fitness benefits from it.
5. Don’t Go to Hard
Remember that it is off-season and your activities don’t have to be very hard and intensive. Focus on keeping your intensity lower and adding just some short intervals to it.
6. Don’t Try to Lose too Much Weight
Weight in cycling is very important especially during uphills. Winter is a time where you can get a few extra pounds and let your body rest and recover. It is a good time to test new diets and experiment with products and calories you consume but don’t try to lose too much weight.
7. Spend More Time With Family and Friends
Yes, fewer hours on bike = more time for you, your family and your friends, it is a perfect time to keep up with everyone and have some fun!
8. Take Care of Your Bike
Don’t forget to clean and lubricate your bike before winter break, don’t let rust eat your bike and take care of it in good time. The bike is a thing that actually lets you be a cyclist so it is extremely important to keep it in the best shape.
9. Visit Physiotherapist
Take care of yourself too, by visiting physiotherapists you can fix some of “issues” like knee pain, back pain and more. It is very important to manage those things as soon as possible to not make it worst. If you want to push your body to the limits you need to maintain it and take good care of it so you can use it for years.
10. Plan Next Season
Winter is the best time to analyze you last season. What was wrong? what was good? what needs more work? And make plans for next season. Come up with events you want to attend and prepare for them.