Taking up cycling for the first time, or getting back into it can seem daunting, especially when you witness the squads of athletes kitted out head to toe in the top gear and dominating the mountains every weekend!
I myself have been properly cycling for the best part of 5 years and I aspire to step onto the podium like Lance Armstrong, as you may have guessed from this articles featured image. I certainly encountered plenty of fears and challenges before I could I felt comfortable and confident out on the hills. Hopefully this article will make the transition easier for you readers and help you to avoid some of the pitfalls which I encountered.
Invest in proper gear, as the quality can vary massively. The following items are crucial:
· A helmet: Safety first! Ensure to get something that’s fits and is comfortable, for those long rides.
· Cycling shorts: I cant overerstate the value of padded cycling shorts. Head out for a 50k cycle without them and you will understand.
· Puncture repair kit: Attach a repair kit, spare tube and pump to your bike. This avoids a long walk home if you get a flat tyre.
2. Get a proper bike fit
Irrespective of the quality or age of the bike it is crucial that you get it set up at the proper fit. Any bike shop will do this for you. This ensures comfort and maximizes your capabilities on the bike.
3. Know the rules of the road
Cycle as if you are driving a car. Obey the rules of the road, traffic lights and use hand signals. This will ensure the safety of you and others, allowing to enjoy all that the sport has to offer.
4. Hydrate and provide your body with fuel
Consuming the right food and liquids before during and after a cycle will make all the difference. Drink and eat a little and often to avoid dehydration and a drop in energy levels. Cycling burns a lot of calories. Carry snack bars, fruit and plenty of water.
5. Join a cycling group
Joining a group is hugely beneficial, allowing you to learn and develop your skills. It also helps to have company for the long journeys, while providing a great social activity.
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Have you found this article helpful, or do you have any further queries or suggestions on getting started? Please comment below.