Monday, November 29, 2010

Do you have what it takes?

No... literally... do you actually have all the stuff necessary to ride your bike in New England in late November?

When I got back from my last trip, which by the way was Jakarta, Indonesia, my first stop was to meet with Coach Martha.  Together we crafted a workout plan that works around my travel plans and still has me improving my fitness.  One issue with traveling the way I do is that I don't have access to a road bike when I'm away.  This means I need to ride when I'm home... even when it's cold and nasty.

Getting ready for a bike ride in 30 - 40 degree weather requires some preparation and lots of "stuff".  So here are the things that I use to get me through a 2 hour ride and not freeze my butt off.

First you need a bike, for obvious reasons.  This one is nothing spectacular, just an aluminum framed road bike, but it gets the job done.  The bag on the back has as spare tube, CO2 to inflate after a flat, a multitool, tire levers, and tire patches
 Next we have the clothing for the lower half of the body.  Bike shorts, windproof leg warmers, cycling shoes, wool socks, and neoprene shoe covers.
 Now for the clothing on the top half.  I wear a long sleeve polypropylene jersey, a fleece designed for cycling, and a bright yellow windbreaker with reflective strips.  Hopefully this means I don't get run over by any cars.
 Next comes the helmet, windstopper gloves, ear muffs, and Ipod.  Yes, I do ride with an Ipod sometimes.  I ride the same if I hear cars coming or not, so screw it, at least I will get hit while enjoying some tunes.
 This is for when I do get hit... it's a Road ID and it has all the necessary emergency contact info.  The string around my wrist was tied on by a buddhist monk and is supposed to keep me safe.
Last we have a Garmin 310XT GPS that tracks my performance and allows me to work using heart rate zones.  The finishing touch is a sweet set of Oakleys that makes me waaaaaaayyyy faster (in my mind).