At Croydon Cycleworks we say “there is no bad weather just bad clothing choices”. Well almost – ‘no bad weather’.
We understand the importance of choosing the right clothing for every ride. Whether, it is the autumn morning chill, the icy weather of winter, the wet days of spring or the extreme heat of summer, choosing the right clothing is important to your enjoyment rating of your ride. Not only do they help with thermoregulation, but they also become that extra protective layer. So with winter about to arrive soon, we thought we would take the opportunity to talk through the options.
We are big fans of undershirts. In fact regardless of the temperature, whether it’s 2 degrees or 42 degrees, we encourage wearing a base layer. Base layers come in a variety of weights and styles, each with their own purpose depending on the weather conditions. Some will be long sleeve or short sleeve. Some will be lightweight and some will be merino wool. Each with their own purpose.
With winter base layers, the first obvious benefit is to place an extra layer between you and that icy winter weather. In fact what a quality base layer will do is wick away sweat and move it away from the body – keeping you warmer. We recommend a great BBB Merino base layer, that will not only keep you warm but will keep you dry.
Your hands (along with your feet) are one of the most impacted areas of the body when riding in winter.
Being the extremities they are most susceptible to the cold. They can become numb and therefore lose feeling. Now its important to avoid this as having feel is imperative when feeling your brakes engage or change gears. Not having that ‘feel’ is very disconcerting when riding in the cold, so don’t compromise on it.
Your feet like your hands are very susceptible to the impacts of the cold. But not all shoe covers are equal. They tend to fall into two main categories, and we won’t complicate it any more than that. Let’s remember they are shoe covers, not rocket science. So our first type of shoe cover is purely to keep out the chill. Often these are bulky, made of neoprene, and often they really do the job of keeping your toes warm. Our second category is one of being rain proof. These often have a band across the top to keep rain from running into your shoes, but understand if your shoes have breather holes underneath, the water off the road may still get in. Either choice they are an absolute must.
Our final item in this piece is a jacket. Jackets have changed vastly in the last few years and the options are almost endless. Gone are the days of wearing a coat that doesn’t breathe and flaps around in the breeze like wearing a garbage bag. Today they can be waterproof/water resistant and breathe so you don’t cook from the inside out.