How to Cycle in Inclement Weather

Winter is fast approaching, and for many people around the world, that means dealing with rain or snow. This can be a real bummer for cyclists who enjoy spending time outdoors practicing their favorite sport. However, just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you have to give up cycling. There are plenty of ways to deal with the weather and still have a great time out on the bike. Here are our tips.

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Get the right clothes.

If you’re just dealing with some gentle rain or wetness, you can likely still cycle as normal with the proper gear. You’ll want to invest in clothing that will keep you warm and dry. Look for things like a waterproof and fleece-lined jacket, windbreaker pants, wool socks, and waterproof shoes. With the right clothing, you’ll minimize the uncomfortable cold feeling you would otherwise be experiencing.

Stick to the path.

Many bike paths and roads stay paved during the winter, so you’ll likely be safe as long as you stay where the plows have been. Many cities also use salt to reduce ice on the road. You can do a search for road conditions before you leave the house to make sure you’ll be safe. Resist the temptation to go off-roading, as this is when you are most likely to hit a patch of ice or even injure yourself.

Go on a road trip.

workEven if it’s raining or snowing in your area, it might not be in a town an hour or two away from you. Check the weather reports and look for places that are warmer and drier than where you are. There’s a good chance you’ll find somewhere you can go biking that will be much more enjoyable than your current conditions. Bring a friend and make it an adventure if you feel silly doing it on your own.

Designate a specific ‘winter bike’.

You don’t want to use an expensive bike in the rain or snow, as it will just get dirty and worn down quickly. Designate a specific bike as your bad weather bike – make sure it’s one that’s tough, but that you don’t mind putting some wear and tear on. Take the time to put some extra weather appropriate gear on it, like a headlight and tires that are specifically designed for winter.

Head to the gym.

If it’s pouring down snow or the roads are really icy, your best bet is to just head to your local gym and cycle on a stationary bike. You can use a traditional stationary bike for a workout that is most like what you are used to, or you can use the recumbent bicycle for a more leg-focused workout that allows you to relax, watch TV, or read while you cycle. You could even opt for a spinning class if you want something more high energy. While this may seem a little depressing, just try to remember that winter will be over soon!

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