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05 February 2013

Cold It Is, But Cycle We Must

When I fell in love with cycling, it was late May. I spent the summer cycling on days filled with sunshine and warm breezes and t-shirts. Even on the muggiest days of July I'd be out on my bike, covered in dirt, sweat and the occasional dead bug. 

And then it was winter.

Now, I know a lot of hardcore cyclists on Twitter are like KEEP RIDING, SUCK IT UP, YOU CAN DO THIS - but I'll be honest, I'm not going to cycle when it's snowing. 

Photo (16)
I also managed to avoid cycling at all throughout most of December (I went out twice, it was cold) and I went the better half of January with my bike in the garage and me on the sofa. The muscles I had built up for my Cycletta ride had softened, and I swapped spinning for drinking and training for cheese. To be fair, the trade wasn't all that difficult but the self loathing has been pretty intense.

However, this year I plan to do the London to Brighton ride. And the London Ride 100 - so I can't exactly spend the entire winter season on my ass.  I finally went back to Richmond Park last weekend, and my body was like, "Soooo if you had been doing this all winter, this wouldn't be so hard, WOULD IT?!"

If you're like me, and you despise cycling in winter but you have to do it anyway - I can recommend some wonderful bits of kit that will make the journey much more enjoyable. 


The Jacket

PI jackets

Pearl Izumi make gorgeous cycling jackets that fit wonderfully, and shield you from unforgiving wind chill and the inevitable rain. I've been wearing the Women's Select Wxb Jacket on my current traininig rides, and you'll recognise the bright pink Elite Barrier Jacket from my Cycletta ride photos!

The Arm Warmers

Photo (15)
When it's cold, you don't want to have so many layers on that you start to sweat - so wearing arm warmers means you can keep your arms warm, without adding any more layers to your core. Smart, eh? These beautiful black and white C.neeon arm warmers from Saddle & Spoke are gorgeous, soft, and very affordable at only £24! 

The Base Layer

PI base

The perfect garmet to wear with your arm warmers, Santa brought me this sleeveless Pearl Izumi base layer at Christmas and I love it. At the moment I wear this under my heavier Peral Izumi jacket and it keeps me ventilated, but toasty. When it comes to base layers, don't just wear a cotton t-shirt...unless you're a fan of sitting in your own sweat. Blargh.

The Jersey 

Photo (14)
Wool may not sound like the best thing to wear when you're cycling, but Vulpine knows its stuff. The women's Marino Button Jersey is not only so cute you could just wear it as a top, but it's fantastic to wear when you're riding. It keeps you cool in the summer, and works as a great layer underneath a jacket in the winter. Plus, Vulpine is just plain awesome and is run by a fantastic group of people, including Lady Velo



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