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Elements of Nature: A Guide to Surviving Winter Cycling

It’s that time of the year again when the prospect of taking on the elements can seem about as appealing as an ice cream in the arctic, but with the right apparel for the fall and winter can in fact be a time of pleasure (or as pleasurable as possible!). Let’s take a look at some of the essentials to get you through your winter training in comfort.

DECISIONS, DECISIONS.

Two considerations to make when choosing your riding kit are weather conditions and the time you’re going to be exposed to the elements. Check the forecast and understand exactly what you’re likely to face before you set out the door – wind, rain and temperature are all key factors to help you make the right clothing choices.

START WITH THE BASE-ICS

Layering your kit will allow you to regulate your temperature more easily, as you warm up or the conditions change. One of the most essential items is your very first layer, in this case your base layer, which will help wick sweat away from your skin, transferring it to the next layer to keep you dry and warm. Depending on the conditions we have options to cover the coldest of days with our Cold Ride+ and Cold Ride base layers through to our Wind Ride items that offer wind protection in the harshest of conditions.

OUTER PROTECTION

Protecting you from the cold, wind and rain. To determine the best outer layer depends exactly on the conditions of the day. As the weather drops from fall to winter, look for something with extra thermal insulation while minimizing bulk with a high neck to keep out cold air. Windchill is an invisible evil that haunts every cyclist so if this is going to be a factor on the ride then look for a jacket that provides additional protection incorporating windproof material in key areas like the front of the torso and arms.

KEEP THE LEGS SPINNING

Although your legs are going to be working hard it’s important to keep your muscles warm and dry in order to get the most from your ride and training. Often, riders will make the mistake of under dressing which can be damaging to your muscles. A good rule of thumb is that it’s better to slightly overdress with the option of unzipping or removing layers, rather than under-dressing and never being able to get warm. Brushed thermal tights with a water-repellent coating help bead off the rain and are a staple in any kit bag.

EXTREME ENDS

One of the goals when riding in the winter is to keep your core body warm and this often starts with our extremities. If we don’t protect our hands, feet and head properly, blood will be directed to these areas in an attempt to keep them warm – this takes the attention away from warming your core. Make sure that you don’t overlook the importance of protecting your head with things like an under helmet cap or headband as well as thermal, windproof and/or waterproof gloves and booties for your hands and feet.

BE SAFE. BE SEEN

There’s nothing more important than being seen and safe in the winter. Reflective accents and high contrast colours help keep you visible to other road users. Our Vision range including jackets, vests, gloves and shoe covers have been specifically designed with visibility in mind.

 

 

 

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