Essential items for summer cycling

If you’ve put your cycling hobby on pause over the colder months, there’s finally light at the end of the tunnel — sunlight that is! Now that the warmer months are here, you’ll need to invest in some essential items to stay cool, comfortable and safe this summer. Here are the must-haves:

Base layers

Think of base layers and you’ll probably think of winter and keeping warm. However, what many people don’t know is that the layers are just as essential in summer.

The fabric used to create base layers has been specially designed to wick away sweat from the skin, helping to keep you dry and comfortable as you ride. Specialist retailers, like Leisure Lakes Bikes, are usually the best place to find base layers, as they tend to offer dedicated cycle clothing ranges.

Whether you choose a top or shorts, make sure your layers fit closely to your skin. If they don’t, the clothing won’t be able to wick away sweat as effectively.

Sunscreen

Depending on the length of your ride, you can often spend hours at a time cycling in the sunshine. It goes without saying that you’ll need to apply sunscreen to protect your skin. Choose a lotion with a high SPF factor and apply to your face, arms and legs. If you don’t want to have to reapply during your ride, purchase a lotion that will last for the duration of the day.

Gloves

Gloves in summer? It may seem like a weird choice for the warmer weather but gloves will do more than just keep your hands warm. Specialist cycling gloves have padding across the palms to cushion the impact of rocky terrain, preventing nerve damage occurring in your hands. Some gloves even have a wipe on the thumb that you can use to mop sweat off your brow.

Sunglasses

Glare can seriously affect your ride — after all, if you can’t see the road ahead clearly, how will you navigate the twists and turns? Sunglasses are a must for any summertime rider, as they protect your eyes from both sun and oncoming insects. If conditions take a turn for the worse, they’ll also keep mud, rain, hail and whatever else the weather throws at you at bay.

Cycling tracking app

If you’re the kind of cyclist who regularly goes off-route or is biking to stay fit, you should download a cycling tracking app. Map My Ride by Under Armour is available on the App Store and is free to download. Simply load the app on your smartphone during your ride and let it use its GPS functionality to record details of your ride, including pace, route, distance, calories and elevation.

It’s really interesting to see how far you have cycled. If you’re trying to get fit, you can challenge yourself to up your distance even further the next time you cycle.

By investing in a few simple items, you can enjoy every second of your bike ride this summer.

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