Need An Idea? 10 Popular Resolutions For Cyclists!
With the New Year just around the corner it’s time for us to start thinking of some practical New Year’s resolutions. While some people choose to give things up or get into shape, why not focus your resolution on improving your two wheeled hobby? As a cyclist, you’re probably already pretty fit or on the way to it and you’ve probably already shed most of your bad habits so why not make improving your cycling experience your overall goal? If you’re stuck for ideas, we’ve compiled a list of popular cycling resolutions; you can try and adhere to as many or as few as you like!
Cycle Safe And Legally
If you’re a regular cyclist, you’ll know a few tips and tricks that help you get from A to B on the road but you need to ask yourself ‘is this legal?’, read up on the law and try to lose those bad habits. If you look through the millions of Youtube helmet cam videos from any major city in the UK, you’ll easily find those who run red lights, take to the pavement when the moment suits and even ride on the wrong side of the road! Sure, fatalities are down but serious injuries are up and the only sure fire way to stay safe is to play by the rules AND if you do find yourself in an accident, good luck getting compensation if you’ve broken the law to get there. Approach the New Year on the right side of the law and you’ll be fine!
Be More Observant
This one is easier said than done; everyone looks but not everyone sees and everyone is guilty of this from time to time. The best way to be more observant is to talk yourself through every move that you make; create an inner monologue or even speak it out loud – what are you doing? What’s going around you? What hazards could be coming? By asking yourself these questions, you’ll make a conscious effort to answer them and perhaps you’ll see something that you may have otherwise missed. This method always keeps you on your toes and stops you getting lazy!
Practice Calm Cycling
Road rage is another one of those afflictions that plagues everyone, cyclist, motorcyclist, pedestrian and driver alike. Granted, nine times out of ten you’re not to blame for a situation but shouting and swearing doesn’t solve any problems either. As we all know, cyclists regularly have to suffer abuse from other traffic on the road but the best way to deal with it is to simply ignore it, rise above it and don’t dish it out either! If you want to enjoy pleasant rides in future, a bit of courtesy and self-control can go a long way! Patience is the key!
Join A Club
Joining a cycling club is a great way to keep active within the cycling community and help you keep more focused on your hobby. Joining a club isn’t about wearing matching gear or joining a cult, it’s about becoming part of a useful, cycling community that has a passion for pedaling. The advantages are great: have you ever wanted to learn a new skill or try out a different form of cycling? Sure, you could do that on your own but why do that when a club will be able to offer discounted rates, rent equipment or organize the whole thing for you and other like-minded individuals. Joining a club can also open up a whole new social circle too. Give it a try!
Recruit A Friend
Perhaps you want to join a club but you’re a bit timid about doing it? Cure that by convincing a friend to take up the two-wheeled cause and join you. Club or not, converting a friend to cycling can be hugely rewarding; you can cycle together, compete against each other, have a good time and get fit whilst doing it. Some people take a bit of persuading though and you might find that many people require a lot of convincing at first!
Support Your Local*
In this instance, we mean your local bike shop and mechanic. These days it’s too easy to buy from a large faceless company – sure, many things are cheaper that way but you lose the interaction element and help force many businesses to close their doors. Rather than asking a faceless sales assistant a question and receiving a generic answer, head down to your local bike shop and talk to someone who really knows what they’re talking about. It’s more fun, it’s more personal and it helps to guarantee someone’s livelihood.
*Ok, we can stretch to ‘pub’ here too. Break up your weekend ride with a quick one in the local!
Explore That Road
If you’ve ever wondered where that road goes then take the time to find out exactly where it leads. Make time for exploration. Cycling the same tired route can quickly get boring but delve deep into uncharted territory; you might find a shortcut or a pleasant scenic route. Who says you can’t have an adventure in your own ‘back yard’? Set aside some time to go exploring, perhaps on one day of a month, a day where you can get nice and lost…you can only find something new if you’re prepared to take a chance!
Get On The Tools!
If you’re not mechanically minded, you can easily change your situation. Many bike shops hold maintenance classes and ‘how-to’ courses aiming to teach cyclists anything from how to change their tyres to how to set their derailleurs. If you can’t find a class, get on the internet and learn how to perform anything from basic maintenance to advanced racing setups. Buy a cheap bike or salvage one and practice your skills until you know all there is to know. You’ll learn useful skills but having a session on the tools is good for the soul too!
Enter A Competition
Set yourself a long term goal by entering yourself into a competition. If you’ve ever wanted to have a go at a sprint or endurance race then enter the New Year with that goal in mind. Contact your local clubs to find out when these competitions happen, select a date, get entered and prepare yourself with a training regime. By setting yourself a goal, especially a race, you can be sure that you’ll dedicate your time to cycling otherwise you’ll only end up embarrassing yourself! You might even win…who knows?
Now this is an easy one to do; as long as you cycle regularly and watch what you eat, you’ll be doing your body a favour. Of course, getting ‘fitter’ means consistently raising the bar. Begin the new year by assessing your weak points and then spend the rest of the year addressing these problems. Are you lacking in stamina? Are you a slow sprinter? Check online to find the best training regimes for your weaknesses and have them eradicated by this time next year!
Until then, CAMS would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!