In support of Strava’s Global Bike to Work Day, Condor Cycles, offer essential tips for commuting to work by bike.
- Merino base layers
Everyone wants to stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter so wool is the obvious choice. Its natural oils absorb bad odours unlike polyester, or get heavy like cotton when wet. Merino will always dry faster than a cotton tee, and did we mention you won’t stink in front of your colleagues? Base layers can be worn under a jersey or cycling jacket.
Available in long and short sleeve, they usually have a sporting cut but are not figure hugging, so you can wear it as a casual tee, too.
- Puncture beating essentials
Punctures are indiscriminate and can strike anyone down at anytime. Adding a small saddlebag with a tube and tyre levers to your bike means you can leave it there and forget about it until you need it.
Saddlebags keep everything you need in one place, instead of having to fish out a stray tube or lever from the bottom of your bag.
- Cycling specific trousers
Lycra is never going to be suitable for after-work drinks. Enter the ‘cycling Chino’. What’s the difference between cycling chinos and regular trousers? A diamond-shaped gusset. The theory is that standard seams generate pressure in places you really don’t want it. Cycling Chinos are reinforced around the butt, and often have reflective features and anti-snag material in the cuff.
Padded undershorts provide ride extra comfort if you want to ride with cycling jeans or just your regular trousers.
- Protect your electronics
It is likely you keep your phone in your pocket or backpack when cycling and, even snugly tucked away, moisture is likely to get in there, especially if you go splashing through puddles on a wet commute. Cheap and cheerful and available from every supermarket worth their salt, the humble sandwich bag will provide basic moisture protection. At the other end of the price range durable touch-screen waterproof phone cases are available.
- Fit mudguards to your bike
Mudguards are a trusty commuting necessity. After a ride on wet roads we recommend taking a cloth and wiping off excess water. Why? Often road spray contains salt and grime that will erode components and if left without being wiped off can even corrode paint. A full guard will protect your bike frame as well as your bum from wet weather whereas a simple ‘emergency guard’ clicks onto the rails of your saddle and blocks spray from flying up your back.
11th May 2017 is Global Bike to Work Day – a challenge initiated by Strava, the social network for athletes, to encourage commuters to cycle to work and to make a difference as a worldwide movement of cyclists on one single day. Strava athletes can join the Challenge at www.strava.com/challenges/720
Picture: Condor Cycles