It’s easy as we head into winter to lose motivation to cycle. Grey gloomy views make you think maybe I’ll just take the tube or bus today. However, as someone who’s given up on the bike only to come running back, I can tell you it’s worth sticking to it. Here’s some tips that work well for me and that should help you stay part of the cycling brotherhood and sisterhood.
Having the right gear
If water keeps splattering on your back, your feet are wet and your hands feel cold then it won’t be too long before you turn your back on cycling to work. Upgrading your kit shouldn’t be too painful an expense.
For the hands the Endura Strike Waterproof glove provides warmth and waterproofing. The cost is £27.95 which is nearly the same price as a week long TfL Travelcard. The Endura Strike comes in both male and female styles.
Keeping your feet dry is a little more of a challenge. DIY solutions such as a plastic bag over your socks work surprisingly well but a pair of Seal Skinz socks should also be considered, especially at the current clearance price of £17.38. If wet feet remain a persistent problem, then a pair of winter cycling shoes or overshoes should put the problem to rest for good.
Keeping the rest of your body dry and warm is a matter of grabbing a good waterproof cycling jacket and a pair of waterproof trousers. The DHB minima cycling jacket and waterproof trousers are exceptional value for money and will pack down nicely in your bag. Alternatively, you may already cycle with waterproof shorts. It’s a matter of personal preference.
How to get organised for winter cycling
Winter cycling may mean a couple of tweaks to your normal cycling routine. Whereas previously you may have got away with cycling in the same kit you wear all day, in the winter you need to be ready for the changing weather. Otherwise, you’ll end up arriving at work too sweaty or soaking wet. The best way to tackle this is to have a couple of layers ready. As your body temperature rises, you can lose a layer.
A change into dry clothes is another essential part of getting organised for winter. Getting these clothes into work without them getting soaked is possible using waterproof panniers, a waterproof bag or buying a waterproof cover for your bag. The Hump Cover is a popular option as it has plenty of reflective material.
Using the stats
Keeping an eye on your cycling computer is another way to stay motivated. Stats such as distance cycled and calories burnt keep the motivation high and mean you can avoid feeling bad when tucking into those hearty Christmas meals.
Consider the alternative
If all else fails then there’s nothing like a quick stint on public transport to get you back on your bike. Not only is it expensive but it’s also often overcrowded and slow. Give me the bike any day!