Cold weather is finally upon us. Here's some lesser known tricks for dealing with riding in cold or wet weather.
Flying with an Airport Ninja has its perks. You probably don’t pay any crazy baggage fees for you bike anymore, which means you can fly with it more. The downside is by traveling and flying with your bike more, you’re more likely to end up in cold and wet weather at one of your destinations. If the weather goes south, and you didn’t pack any rain or cold weather clothes, don’t worry we’ve got you covered with some tips we’ve picked up over the years.
- Latex gloves. If you’ve ever rode in the rain you know that waterproof is the only way to go. Neoprene gloves are a must have, nothing else will keep you warm with spray from your tires and other riders. A cheap alternative is using a latex glove inside whatever gloves you have. It acts as a vapor barrier liner and is very efficient at retaining heat/moisture (it's why your hands sweat using latex gloves in warm/hot conditions.
- Plastic bags. Booties always seem to be hit or miss. Racing and training in Vermont we were always dealing with 40-50 deg rain and snow. One trick is to stock up on some plastic grocery bags. Put on your wool socks, place the bags over them and insert them into your shoes. You can tuck the upper opening of the bags inside your legwarmers, as well as placing booties over your shoes for extra warmth.
- This is the trick you’ve all seen if you watch the Tour de France. Place newspaper (or more plastic bags) over your chest beneath your jersey.
- If it’s too cold outside, you can keep your insides warm with hot tea or coffee. The insulated bottles out there are great for this.
- Homemade embro. The teammate who did this will remain nameless to protect his identity. Back in the frozen north that is Vermont, at one of my first ever collegiate races a teammate pulled out a bottle of homemade embro. It was vaseline/oil mixed with cayenne pepper. Use at your own discretion.