Gear Up for Cycling

Bike training advice to make your ride go round

Gear Up for Cycling
Treat yourself to the beauty of cycling through the great outdoors while improving your fitness. Photo: Allen Krughoff

Cycling can be one of the most invigorating activities in any fitness routine. You get to soak up the beautiful outdoors, feel the rush of speed on a serene country road and get in an amazing aerobic workout. Here are a few tips to help you build your fitness, elevate your strength and enjoy your rides this cycling season.

Choose Quality Over Quantity

Having a hard time finding 25-30 hours a week to ride your bike? That’s OK, most amateur cyclists are in the same boat. Prioritizing your time on the bike to squeeze every ounce of quality training you can get is vital in finding success. Work with a coach to build a training program that will allow you to maximize your efforts on the bike. Every ride is a new opportunity to work on a weakness. While time spent at a café in cycling shorts does not equate to fitness, sipping an espresso with your cycling cap tilted at the perfect angle will make you feel like you are about to start the Tour de France.

Listen to Your Body

Your body can be an amazing tool when it comes to letting you know when it’s time to slow down and rest. Knowing the signs of fatigue (which is different for all), can save you from months of time off associated with sickness or overuse injuries. Toss the legs up, catch some shut eye, and watch as your fitness improves from the couch.

Treat Yourself

Cycling is too hard not to enjoy the small things, so keep things in perspective. Did you hit a PB for distance ridden? Have a second glass of wine. Did you move from 35th to 30th on the last lap of your local cyclocross race? Pull open that bag of chips. Find the small wins and celebrate them.

Enjoy the Process

Go back to the basics and enjoy the simple pleasures of riding a bike. For some, that means taking off the Garmin and exploring new roads. For others, it’s simply the social aspect of riding with friends after a long week at work. Find the things that make you truly happy while riding and do them more often. The best coaching advice ever was “a heathy mind equals a healthy body.”