As you head into the new year, it is common to reflect on the year gone by – your accomplishments, your regrets, and the things you would like to do differently in the coming year. As a highly-individualized sport, cycling involves training against yourself: finding ways to improve your speed and increase the number of miles you cover each week.
Take time to ponder your own approach to cycling: do you need a little more balance? Do you need a new challenge? Maybe it is time to shake things up a little bit. As you approach 2018, take a moment to consider our list of New Year’s resolutions for cyclists as a way to take your personal cycling goals to the next level.
1. Add a group ride into your training regimen.
As you enter into the winter months when training is a little harder, consider adding in a group ride to change things up a bit. Road cycling with a group can be a great way to sharpen your personal training routine. You could end up riding with a cyclist who is in the top of their field: if racing is your thing, being on the road with a top-level rider enables you to learn a lot more than you could from the sidelines.
Unstructured group rides can enhance your pack riding skills and give you a mental boost that you cannot achieve during your normal solitary training rides. Taking even one day a month to get out of your normal routine to go on a group ride can prove very beneficial.
2. Get off the bike and do some circuit training.
In recent years more and more information has come to light regarding the benefits of circuit or cross-training as a way to enhance your chosen sport. Circuit training is not only for the days when weather or personal circumstances keep you off the road: instead, consider dedicating one day a week to this and see if it makes a difference.
Cyclists need to stay fit and trim, so your goal is not to add muscle weight but to strengthen your core. Weight training can help you handle your bike appropriately, increase your strength for climbing hills, and also improve your endurance. An additional benefit to circuit training: if you join a class, you will reap the benefit of socializing with like-minded individuals.
3. Take time to smell the roses.
Take a moment to consider why you spend your spare time on a bike. Biking is fun, right? Sometimes it is easy to forget why you first started cycling; as time went by, it became more important to set performance goals, stick to training regimens, or maybe even obsess over miles achieved or timing goals met.
Well, take time this year to get back to the original source of your joy when riding a bike. Take time, even if it’s just once a month, to go on a joy ride, just because you can.
4. Share cycling with a friend.
Cycling is a solitary thing for many, but it is an activity that is available to almost anyone. Maybe there is someone in your life who could benefit from the joy of cycling. Extend the invitation. If that doesn’t fit your particular circumstances, then go back to suggestion #1, and strive to make some friends during that group ride.
The people you find who share your love of cycling can be just the cure for days when you cannot find the motivation to step out the door and go biking alone.
5. Expand your horizons.
Your bicycle can take you places you would never see from the inside of a vehicle. Take time to seek out unusual routes, those off-road biking trails that will take you to new places. You could even plan your vacation around cycle trekking. You don’t have to limit yourself to your current location; you can find some amazing cycle tours anywhere in the world. You have a unique opportunity to explore the world from the seat of your bike: take advantage of it.
With these New Year’s resolutions for cyclists in mind, we hope that you can enter into 2018 feeling renewed, goal-oriented, and excited about the upcoming year. Happy Cycling!