THE FIRST RIDE BACK:
With the winter in the UK seemingly leaving us in the dust, in favour of warmer, wetter rides It’s time to be happy about no more frozen free hubs, gears that work and dropper posts (if you ride on the dark side) that do their job without freezing.
The topic of today’s blog is going to be about getting that road bike out, after the winter and getting back into it. If you aren’t blessed with a winter bike, zwift or have just got out of the habit then this one is for you!
So, let’s get into it, three tips for getting back on your bike:
*Bonus tip* Get some proper training done, A training plan can make the world of difference in not only your physical preparation, but also your accountability. Knowing you have something to follow can take away that pressure of route planning, and thinking how far your first ride should be etc..
Now, into the blog:
1: Stretch and mobilise:
If you have not been on a bike in a long time. The chances are you are going to find it extremely uncomfortable if you just get on the bike and try and put a 100-miler in. You body isn’t used to the position of being on a road bile and you may feel like your back, shoulders and core start to hurt.
So, I would spend some time during your preparation for your first ride doing some form of stretching/yoga routine. It will help your body become more supple and limber and will reduce the risk of any soreness creeping in mid ride. Which we do not want. You should also dedicate some time (if you don’t already) to stretching after the ride, walking the position off and completing a short 5–10-minute stretch routine that focuses on the lower back, hamstrings and hip area. All of which can feel tight after a ride.
2: Don’t go all in:
If you haven’t been riding through the winter, you will probably feel quite unfit. So set some realistic expectations here. Don’t expect to be smashing 100-mile rides straight away. Keep it local and keep it relitivley flat or short (or both). It’s a really good idea here to have a ride pre designed for this, something that is about 20-30 miles and allows you to ease back into breathing, leg work and riding positions on the bike. You will finish your ride wanting more, more than likely. But that is better than finishing your ride in a ditch, calling your partner as you have bonked, never wanting to ride again due to embarrassment and an annoyed wife telling you that was a stupid thing to do (not personal experience).
3: Ride with friends:
We all know the advantages of group rides. Banter, fun competition, route planning being left to your mate with the map. But what about support, encouragement, and the feeling of being in this together. Riding with your friends for your first ride back can make it less daunting, that feeling of knowing it is going to hurt is replaced with meeting up with a friend. And getting out of the house.
So, arrange a small group ride (if covid permits) and take it casual.
There you go, three little tips about getting back on a bike after a decent chunk of time off.
I hope you enjoyed this blog.