Winter riding doesn’t have to be a frosty affair it can be good fun and very beautiful especially if you are prepared.
“If you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail”
My advice would be look at what rides / training you want / need to do then head to trusty (or not so) BBC weather forecast and look at the week ahead this will help you plan longer rides on days when the weather is better and shorter sessions in the rain.
One thing to mention on this is that if you’re doing sprints, wet / icy weather and slippery roads are not a good combo so be ready to change your session accordingly if you can be flexible in your training around the weather and expect that, it will rain, you will get wet and it may be cold for the first 5 minutes until you warm up then riding will be enjoyable.
It is true what they say there is never the wrong weather just the wrong gear.
My top kit list would be:
- Grip Grab overshoes – warm and dry feet make riding in wet and cold weather so much more comfortable. Make sure you buy a size that hugs your shoes I recommend The Hammerhead, it is a warm and waterproof coated neoprene winter shoe cover. Designed and tested to keep your feet warm and dry in wet and cold weather conditions.
- Altura Night Vision Evo jacket this versatile jacket is labelled for ‘commuting’ however I love mine for every occasion it’s great for training the big vents on the sides give adequate breathability whilst knowing I have the waterproof and high visibility factors Altura say: The Night Vision Evo features lightweight, waterproof, windproof and breathable fabrics in a soft touch 2 Layer Altura Shield™ EVO fabric, which help to keep you both dry and warm on your rides. You then have the benefit of critically positioned reflective details and an ingenious integrated i-Lume™ rear flashing light to ensure you are easily seen. With the addition of NV360° performance you have 360 degrees of reflectivity for maximum after dark visibility from all angles.
- The cloudburst glove from Grip Grab is waterproof and windproof glove, like slipping your hands into hot water bottle covers whilst you ride with a soft fleece lining. The OutDry® Waterproof and Breathable membrane makes the Cloudburst gloves that will serve you well as an all-round high-end glove.
Riding through winter tips:
- Early mornings are stunning wake up and get out before the sun rises and watch it come up also a bonus around Christmas is seeing everyone’s Christmas lights!
- Put a little warm water in your bottles if riding in freezing conditions to stop it freezing.
- Get your kit on the radiator ready to go!
- Check your tyre pressure riding in a lot of mud – decrease the air in your tyres to help with grip
- Get a good pair of lights, ideally helmet and handle bar Exposure lights are fantastic but pricey for a cheaper option search amazing from 1000 lumen lights
- Invest in thermal underwear and a good rain / windproof
- Let people know where you’re going and how long you will be out