Winter is upon us. But don’t let a few snowflakes and a little bit of cold force you to hang up your bike and forgo winter weather cycling!

It might seem more convenient to stay indoors where it’s warm. But those reruns and frequent showings of holiday movies on television are gonna get old fast.

Plus, there are benefits to cycling in the winter.

Not only are you getting some good ol’ exercise and staying in shape, but you actually burn more calories. Your body has to work harder and burn more fuel to keep warm outside.

Shorter days in this season can alter your mood and increase the chance for winter depression. But cycling outside will help improve your mood and keep you happy as your body creates more endorphins.

Most importantly, cycling in the winter can be just as fun as any other season. All it takes is a few minor extra preparations.

You can then be outside in the fresh air, enjoying yourself and your love of cycling.

Keep the following tips in mind and find freedom instead of being trapped inside the stuffy house. Unless you want to relate to everyone else in the spring, when they are complaining about the extra pounds they gained.

Clothing for Winter Weather Cycling

It’s a little bit obvious, but that doesn’t make it any less important (if not the most). It’s gonna be cold out there, so make sure you are wearing the proper clothing.

It may seem like a good idea for some thick layers of fleece and waterproof material, but don’t forget that you will be sweating.

If that sweat is trapped under your clothes, you will become wet and cold, which is counterintuitive to what you are trying to accomplish.

The wisest option is cycle-specific clothing with the correct qualities to keep you moisture-free.

The Best Cycling Jerseys

When it comes to the best cycling jerseys, look no further than Red Bear Sports.

These jerseys will keep you warm and comfortable with their innovative design and high-quality performance fabrics. They also have Christmas patterns available just in time to keep you fashionable this season. And we mean fashionable in a good way, not in a way to win you an ugly Christmas sweater contest.

Hands and Feet

Keeping your core warm is important, but your extremities will get cold before anything else. It’s difficult to enjoy your ride if any part of you is shivering.

Make sure you have some good winter or windproof gloves for your hands, and some overshoes and toe covers for your feet.

A good way to determine if you have too many layers is if you are warm before you begin your ride. You are going to warm up as you are cycling, so you want to be slightly cold before you get on your bike.

Increase Your Warm Up

Warming up is vital before every exercise session at any time of the year. Muscles and tendons need a steady blood supply to work comfortably.

Cold temperatures impact your blood vessels. You are going to need a little more time in your warm up to ensure there is a good amount of blood flow.

Add an extra five to ten minutes to heat up your body and to warm up those muscles.

Stay Hydrated and Full of Energy

Eat for the Fuel

You need to keep your energy up in the cold. As we mentioned earlier, your body is burning more energy to maintain your body temperature.

Be mindful that some energy bars will become very hard in lower temperatures. I doubt you will get much enjoyment out of sucking on a brick of cereals like a jawbreaker. Keep them warm or find a softer alternative for this season.

Drink for the Hydration

Don’t decrease your water intake either, it’s just as important in the winter.

It might not be easy to tell with the distraction of the cold, but you will be sweating under your cycling jersey. Sweat is fluid loss, after all, which always needs to be replaced to keep you hydrated.

Also consider a double-insulated mug or flask, as a regular water bottle will be more prone to freezing. A double-insulated mug will also give you the option to take a warm liquid, such as coffee. And we all know a cup of hot coffee is actually happiness in liquid form.

Wash Your Bike After Every Ride

Cycling in the snow, slush, and salt on the road is going to cause havoc on the condition of your bike. Be sure to clean and wipe off your bike after every ride.

Not only is this going to prevent corrosion and damage from all that salt, but it’s going to keep your bike in proper working order.

Salt is going to affect all of those moving parts, such chains, gears, and cables. You don’t want a mechanical failure to occur while you are out in the cold.

A few minutes of cleaning will keep your bicycle running smoothly, and help prevent a potential headache and a very bad day.

Be Prepared

Punctures

Punctures are never fun. You especially don’t want to have to deal with one while you are out in the snow.

Wet road conditions mean more debris stuck to the road and more potential chances for something to stab a hole in your tyre. Have a pump and some extra tubes handy in case the worst would happen.

Let There Be Light

Lights on your bike are always important. But they are especially important in the winter season, as the days are shorter and overcast is common.

Make sure you have good batteries and your lights are recharged before any ride. Even if you aren’t planning on staying out that late, you never know what sort of emergency could happen (see previously mentioned in this section).

Have Extra Gloves

You should at least bring one pair of extra gloves, stashed in a plastic bag. It’s not terribly difficult to get your gloves wet if you aren’t careful. Wet gloves are an easy way to make yourself uncomfortable and ruin the ride.

Dire Emergencies

Let’s hope they are objects that will never have to be used in an emergency situation. But with any trip, make sure you have a fully charged cell phone and some cash money.

Remember, unlike other parts of the year, if you have an emergency in this season, you will be stuck out in cold weather.

Cycling is not just great exercise, it’s an enjoyable hobby.

A little bit of cold never hurt anybody. Once you are out on your bicycle in the fresh air, you probably won’t even notice the weather.

Get yourself one of the best cycling jerseys and enjoy the ride. If you have extended family over for long periods of time during the holidays, this is your chance to escape for a few hours. Remember these tips, stay safe, and have fun.