Coach Holly’s Cycling Tips for Summer
July 4th, 2019
We know our cycling experiences change with the seasons so we’ve asked our friend and experienced Cycling Coach, Holly Seear to share her top tips on what we should be doing to get the most out of enjoying life on two wheels.
Finally…Summer is here
Now the weather is finally hotting up here are a few thoughts on summer rides and training.
Riding in the heat will increase sweat rates so hydrating properly on summer rides is vital. Always carry at least two bottles (Richmond Cycles have a couple of nice branded ones) of fluid and plan a route with stops to refill. It is important to not just take on water which can dilute the salt balance in the body. Adding electrolytes to your water is a wise choice – try Nuun which is available in the shop.
Don’t burn…especially at altitude
Suncream is obvious, but don’t forget the back of the neck and the tops of the ears and remember if you are lucky enough to be riding at altitude you are closer to the sun, so although it might feel cooler, with every 1000m gained the levels of UVA/B increase by 10-20% so you need a higher factor cream and should apply more frequently.
A funky cap is a good addition to your cycling wardrobe to keep the sun out of your eyes, off the back of your neck depending which way round you wear it, and if it is really hot you can soak with water to keep your head cool.
Make new friends
Group rides are brilliant in the summer sunshine, fun and social, but often not purposeful training sessions so less pressured while still keeping up the miles. Join Richmond Cycles on their shop rides every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday.
Why not also sign up for a local club 10-mile timetrial; these are relaxed events usually run on weekday summer evenings. With no need to be a member of the club, you can enter on the day for a small fee and race on any road legal bike (no need for flashy aero kit) and with a number on your back you will certainly put in more effort and complete a really good training session at/above threshold effort. Details can be found on cycling clubs’ websites.
And what have I been up to?
To ‘force’ myself to do some high intensity speedwork over the summer, I have been racing in the Herne Hill Velodrome Womens Track League (https://www.hernehillvelodrome.com/). Herne Hill has opportunities for complete beginners (with free bike hire) though to elite racers with sessions every day of the week, so plenty of opportunity to learn new skills and great fun.
Photo credit to k.rotchelle