Essentials – Cool/Cold Weather Riding

norway-bike-ride-feat

Safety gear aside (lights, helmet, bell, repair kit & $20 for a cab ride) here are the essential cool weather riding kit you need this Fall. Much of this can be used into the winter and if you take care of them, they will last a long time. All this gear is also what will get you through the early season just a few months away. (links provided are for illustration purposes and are not meant as endorsements)

Arm Warmers – covers your upper arm, forearm and breaks the wind for you on the cool mornings. Worn under the jersey. (http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/SearchResults.aspx?Search=arm+warmer)

Knee Warmers – Absolutely essential, protects your joints from the cool air and keeps your legs warm (http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/SearchResults.aspx?Search=knee+warmer)

Gillet or Vest – Lighter than a jacket but can be rolled up and shoved in your back pocket should it get warmer on your ride. And it almost always does.  (http://www.mec.ca/AST/ShopMEC/Cycling/MensClothing/Vests/PRD~5018-650/mec-pinna-vest-mens.jsp)

Thick Bib Knickers or Bib Tights – Bib knickers give you protection over the knee and keep your undercarriage cosy. If the budget is tight, go for bib tights that will last through the winter and just keep your jersey open a little to cool off. (http://www.mec.ca/AST/ShopMEC/Cycling/MensClothing/PantsTights/PRD~5029-257/castelli-sorpasso-bib-knicker-mens.jsp)

Leather Gloves – not yet cold enough for insulated gloves, but too cool not to cover up leather offers wind protection, sweat absorption and a little bit of warmth. I use these year round for wet weather on the road or for mountain biking as well (http://www.knog.com.au/gear-gloves/ride-hard.phps)

Hat, Ear Cover – A light cap made of wool will do nice and some ear covers if the temperature drops below 10 degrees to keep your ears warm (http://store.haloheadband.com/ANTI-FREEZE-s/28.htm http://www.chariandconyc.com/chueybrand-cyclingcapcrossa-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1.aspx)

Wool Base Layer with Tall Collar – Long sleeve is preferable, as it may then remove the need for arm warmers, having a short sleeve will do as well for the earlier days of Fall. I also have 2 different weights of base layers and use these for running as well. (http://www.hincapie.com/products/womenswear/accessories/RBL-LSWW09/)

Toe Covers/Shoe Covers – The right amount of insulation and wind break is required for your shoes, and my preference is to use toe covers and wool socks in the Fall. This allows the sweat to evaporate, preventing clammy feet. If all you have are full shoe covers, that is fine but make sure they can breathe a little or your feet may get wet. (http://www.louisgarneau.ca/ca-en/product/305541/1083027/Shoe_Covers/TOE_2)

Wool Socks – Absorbs sweat, breaks the wind, insulates & antimicrobial. (http://www.defeet.com/60309/i1367209/734128/Wool-Socks/MONDO-Flanders-Charcoal-Wool.html)

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coaching for road racers, triathletes, charity riders and mountain bikers