Acclimating to winter riding

So it occurred to me that I was out riding around yesterday in very windy 35-40 degree weather wearing shorts, a pull-over with a t-shirt underneath, some thin gloves and shoe covers.

I was cold but not COLD like I would have been any other winter. Comfortable I guess, did the entire ride without sweating, something impossible in the past.

This isn’t the first ride like this, just the most recent. I’ve really been handling the cold weather well this year. I was ok last year but 2011-2015 were pretty abysmal. The only thing I can figure different is that I’ve been hiking early morning and the afternoons I don’t ride. I do about 30 to 90 minutes in the cold and it seems to really have changed how well I can handle colder temperatures.

I guess there’s something to acclimation. Thinking back the first few cold rides were painful and then like a switch being flipped I was fine, I think it took about 2 weeks of 20-25 hours outside a week to get used to the weather. Going to keep this going and see if it works through the real winter season. Misc notes below.

  • Hands and feet are the more important. If they’re warm everything else can be accommodated.
  • Eyes are next, watery blurry eyes are too hard to deal with. Need good coverage safety glasses.
  • When adding layers, after the hands and feet add to the next and core first.
  • Legs and arms last.
  • Don’t necessarily need to be warm, just less cold.
  • When hiking, get moving and take deep breaths. Suck in all the cold, it’ll make you stronger.

Here’s an interesting article I found: