Braving the Elements to Stay PMC ready. Winter Riding Tips

Bill Alfano's picture
Bill Alfano

Braving the Elements to Stay PMC ready. Winter Riding Tips

While the weather outside is frightful, thousands of cyclists around the nation have visions of pedaling through heat and humidity, up steep hills and over the dunes of the Cape next summer.  In order to stay PMC-ready, many cyclists continue to train in the off-season, enduring the often unpredictable winter elements. Below are five tips and tricks to stay warm and fit when riding this winter.  

Wear layers: The key to dressing for success on a bicycle in the cold is to wear several layers of varying weights of fabric. Light-weight breathe-able fabrics are suggested for the closest articles of clothing to your body. Outer layers should include fabrics of thicker weight to trap in the heat and act as a wind-blocking water resistant agent. Thermal underwear and gloves are also recommended. Helmets are always required.  

Wear bright colors: When it is snowing or raining, it can be hard for drivers and pedestrians to see cyclists approaching. Wear vibrant colors to stick out from your surroundings. Be aware of reduced driver visibility due to frosted windows as well as a glare from rain, snow and sleet.  Riding with a head-lamp or bicycle light is also suggested day or night in harsh winter conditions.  

Warm-up: Increase the amount of time you take to warm-up prior to your cycling departure. It is important to get your blood flowing and properly stretch before braving the cold. In low temperatures, muscles tend to stiffen and pull.  

Hydrate: When cycling in colder weather, riders often forget to drink enough water. Rather, they concentrate on staying warm or are distracted by the sight of their own breathe. Although you will not sweat as much, it is important to increase fluid intake with any exercise no matter the temperature outside.  

Stick to main roads: In snowy conditions, only ride on well-lit roads that have been treated with salt and plowed. Avoid ice and be cognizant of snow drifts that may have been blown or plowed into designated bike lanes. Brake earlier than usual as sand and salt on the roads may cause you to skid.  

The 35th annual PMC is set for Aug. 2 and 3, 2014. Online registration opens Jan. 15.  

Be safe on the roads. We hope to see you next year.  

Ride on!

 

Thank you Teak Media + Communication for tips!