How to ride on a road bike in snow?Liverpool – Denbigh (North Wales) & back in the saddle, all day endurance training in frosty, snowy winter weather


 Yeah, some of my friends are just typically told me, when heard about my recent winter cycling plan: “You’re crazy!” (Usually colleagues, friends, who never really been involved in sport. Especially not in high-intensity, so got not much experience of the joy & real fun of any sports.)

Also some of them added: “You’re crazy, but in the best way ! Good luck lad!”

(Usually colleagues, friends, fellow riders, close friends & family members, who know me a little bit better & also most of them more or less but was involved in sport.)

Well, I have to agree, winter cycling -especially, during proper winter with snowing & frost- isn’t for everyone, I would write, it’s more like some kind of extreme sport instead of a regular outdoor endurance sport. Which means, yes: can be dangerous if you are not careful enough. And in every extreme sport, actually I think you just can’t be careful enough. Never. Ever.

On the other hand if you are still wanna be -or your are maybe already- one of the most avid road cyclist, who still want to enjoy all rides outdoor even if outside the roads are currently have the deepest snow in the last 15 years, then just carry on & read my full article, and maybe you can find a few good tips, some great guidance to do so or just find enough interesting to read about my one day solo challenge ride in the harsh, winter weather conditions.

DCIM125GOPRO

Three things are the most important if you wanna ever go

for a long-distance winter ride

First: preparations. Second: preparations.

And the third thing is: yep, more preparations for an epic ride.

I mean, c’on! Just like in work, you don’t wanna work without proper tools & equipment or totally without any of them, isn’t it? If you wanna get the best experience during your spare time from your cycling, want some decent rides, you must be properly prepared in every aspects.

1. PREPARE YOUR BODY

Fuelling

Yeah, we need proper tools & equipment but also need to make it body prepared too, so do not forget to start in time to fuel your body with some extra amount of  calories by some healthy foods… Because you will need this extra calories! Oh, yeah. You will burn them easily and not just by your long-term, all day winter ride, not just by the difficulty level of your route but especially because your body wanna stay warm enough outside in the very cold & harsh weather conditions!

I’m not a vegetarian, so for example I prefer chicken with rice in almost any form.

I also do a lot of shakes from eggs, fruits & nuts & vegetables.

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I just eat from them much as possible 1 night before I go for an epic all day ride. I usually wake up early on the morning, when I wanna do my all day training cycling & have a nice breakfast too, before I go to prevent, avoid the too bad situation of to be hungry too early &/or too often during my all day ride. I also always start to drink a lot too (mostly some of my favourite flavor of tea), 1 day before my any race/training of epic ride or/and run to avoid dehydration during my epic day(s).

Fitness level

 Your current fitness level shouldn’t be affected by any kind of sickness, if you are ill already, got flu already or whatever, then 1st give it a chance to your body to recover and you should just after think about an epic all day ride.

Also, if you never ever did before an all day ride, you are not enough confident about your current stamina & overall fitness level you must try out in perfect weather conditions instead of in blizzard, frosty, harsh winter weather!

Winter weather conditions are great only for well experienced riders to do any cycling training outdoor! If you never ever tried out how is your bike can respond for the icy, frosty roads & weather, you shouldn’t go yet for an all day winter ride.

Also, you should practice on snowy roads where the traffic is nearly zero, so almost no traffic at all!

So any bad things happens, still at least don’t have to worry about you can injure others too, plus you also have less chance to get even more serious injuries by a car for example. Just like in anything, always think before you do something on your bike in snow: so if you are just experience first time your ride in snow, you should watch your every spin of your wheels during your ride, focus on the road & your bike only and if you are interrupted by anything just slow down (But don’t do any sudden movement on ice or snow!)  and stop with your bike until the circumstances are OK to go again without any kind of interruption. Your every movement must be nicely, gently controlled all the time when you are in the saddle. So if you are never done it before an all day ride, you probably not gonna be able to properly focus all day, you just can’t make it yet a too long ride in snow without the serious risk of to get injured. 

Yes, you must have a really good core-strength level too but now maybe you are realised, you must have really good nerves, clear mind too, to be able to react, respond correctly and with enough efficiency in time on the icy & snowy roads. It comes with regular training, with good routine too, so you just can’t jump in the middle to an epic all day winter ride, first you must build up gradually your overall fitness level & skills for any serious winter rides.

Or you can try ofc., but then you will have a good chance, higher level of risk to injure yourself as I mentioned before.

…OK, so what if you are eating well, training well, and also have the right skills & enough routine and also crazy enough to do an all day winter ride?

PROPER WINTER CYCLING TOOLS & EQUIPMENT

Warm winter cycling clothing

Well, still you will need really very-very warm clothes on you to be able to keep you warm all day, even the top of the mountains in the strongest & coldest winds!

Myself for example bought approx. a 2 yrs ago a pretty decent winter cycling shoes (made by Northwave, this one: Northwave Fahrenheit Arctic 2 GTX Road Boot ), so I do not have to put on my feet triple socks to be able to keep my toes warm. Still, when outdoor too cold and you wanna spend your all day outside, maybe you will consider to use even some neoprene overshoe too, just in case. I got mine from Northwave too. 😉

To be continued…

 

2. PREPARE YOUR BIKE

To be continued…

I try to finish this article soon, stay tuned!^

My short GoPro video in Full HD / 1080p on YouTube about this ride:

My short Relive video about my route during this ride on a 3D map:

Relive ‘Winter ride to Snowdonia – Drifting in the deep snow during heavy snowing & frosty blasts r really great on road bike too, not only on mountain bike! XD ;D (Approx. 50km wasn’t recorded when I rode back to Liv, so btw 100mi)’

If you want to know more about this route & about my performance during this ride in the snowy & icy winter conditions, check out on my Strava page too.

My 1 day solo challenge ride (approx. 100 miles)

from Liverpool to Denbigh (North Wales) & back in pictures:

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…More pics to come, also some commentary

 

 So, there is one more thing left here: Now, I think I should show on some pictures,

how you should ride on a road bike in snow! 😉 🙂

To be continued…

I try to finish this article soon, stay tuned!^

…Always be careful, not just at the turns but even on climbs & downhills & actually on any segment of your cycling route if it’s covered by snow! Watch out for black ice! Black ice can be easily hidden, covered by fresh snow! 😉 Basically, you must focus, watch, feel of your every spin of your wheels and must be ready, when/if your wheels are spin out in the frosty winter weather. If you want to admire the view or drink/eat, you must first stop with your bike!

Riding in snow is not at all for fainthearted riders,

YOU must be able to have a full, total control over your bike & body at all time!

You must know also, how to fall down from your bike if you are in a situation, where you just can’t avoid & just must happen.

 

Keep your bottom in the saddle when you climb! 

 My reason for that, why I do like this, short explanation:

To be continued…

I try to finish this article soon, stay tuned!^

 

 

OK, so how to fall down, when you have no other option, so you just must to do so?

Just like in football for example, everyone in sports should be able to handle without any serious injuries but of course (almost 100% percent sure), you will need some luck as well to do properly. Since, in most case, when you fall down, you don’t do on purpose but because of some really bad circumstances with your condition or/and with the condition of your bike or/and also because of bad weather condition, big traffic on roads, roads in bad quality & so on… So, yeah. You got already some bad luck in something if you must fall down but with the right technique to fell down, you can avoid some really very serious injuries & you can turn out luck from this bad situation at the end. So with some “how to fall down skills”, you can be the smith of your own luck.

Right, now I tell what I do if I for example go downhill for the top of a higher hill and a road are full of deep snow, covered by snow like a great & nice white blanket!

My technique to prevent to fall down on icy & snowy downhills

and also my technique about how to fall down if I must to do so

To be continued…

I try to finish this article soon, stay tuned!^

 

 

 

You can find me:
 https://heyjoecyclist.com/

https://www.strava.com/athletes/6667997

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLyaxWOw0XkZ0gDbQNQBrve0X-hokolql4

https://www.facebook.com/cyclistheyjoe/

https://twitter.com/HeyJoeHUN

https://heyjoecyclist.tumblr.com/

https://uk.pinterest.com/CyclistHeyJoe/

https://www.reddit.com/user/hedzsoooAkaHeyjoe/

https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/103194981627125004647/103194981627125004647

 

 

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