Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Winter Resolve

Last night while I was enduring yet another trainer ride I noticed that I didn’t have a fan in the window blowing cool air on me. Lately I’ve been doing this to prevent a total body meltdown.

This got me to thinking about the impending wet winter riding season and how I’ve avoided winter riding in the past. My resolve this year is to get out in cruddy wet weather and do some riding this winter.

I recently read “There is no such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes or the wrong attitude”. How true is this? This year I’m going to alter my winter riding attitude and hopefully my collection of amphibious riding gear will hold up their end of the bargain as well.

Here’s my list of amphibious winter assault gear.

Waterproof riding pants
When I bought these pants at performance cycle the tag said they were water proof and breathable. Well, they sure are water proof but breathable is definitely not one of their qualities. These babies are like a sauna to wear so your legs end up wet from sweat but hey it’s a warm sweat. I’ll take this over freezing cold rain water soaking through them any day.

Amber colored sunglass lenses
I have an extra lens for my sunglasses that is amber colored. These are great to wear during the winter because it keeps the cold wind out of your eyes. More important than this is it makes the whole world look brighter which gives you the false sense that the weather is really better than you think. I’m good with artificial good weather.

Knit gloves
I own one of those pairs of tiny cheapo knit gloves. OK, actually I stole a pair from the kids. I think these gloves set us back a whole buck. They’re not gortex or anything fancy but they are great for winter riding because they fit my cycling gloves. This is one of the most important pieces of winter riding gear because if my hands are cold the rest of my body follows suit.

Detachable back fender
Last year I invested in a detachable back fender. This is one of those mtn bike models that clips on your seat post. This baby works great at keeping the brown stripes from forming up your back. For some reason people stare and point if you walk into a store with a brown stripe up you back. I guess not everyone sees these as something you have to earn.

Plastic shopping bags
My cycling shoes are anything but waterproof. In fact, a couple of years ago Jenny and I got stuck 15 miles away from home in a good downpour and by the time we got home I was able to literally pour water out of my cycling shoes. This makes for a miserable ride. To combat this I plan on putting plastic shopping bags over my socks and under my shoes. If I feel self conscience I’ll trim the bag that sticks out of my shoes. If I’m in a hurry I guess people can just wonder what’s up with my shoes. They probably wonder anyway.

I’m sure I don’t have all of my bases covered with my gear but I think I’ve got enough for some fun rides this winter. All of this talk of winter riding makes me think that global warming might not be such a bad thing after all.


Anonymous said...

Dude, you make it sound like fun to ride in the winter. I think you are right, it is all in the attitude.

Lizzylou said...

Instead of the amber sunglasses, get a pair of ski-goggles, much better wind protection and warmer too. But I draw the line on rainy winter days. No thank you. You can have all that fun for yourself!