Things To Do In The Off Season
The winter months are always difficult for riders. The days are shorter, the weather is colder, the weather is more unpredictable…and when you add all of these factors together…that equals less riding. A rider that is not able to ride…is not happy. I see the attitudes change every year in the online forum sites. As mountain bikers get less mountain biking in, the fuses get shorter and tempers flare!
The off-season does not have to be a dreary time for the mountain biking community. There are certain things you can do to get through the tough times! There is hope yet for all of us mountain bikers to strive to be on sweet single track every weekend! (I am typing this as there is cold rain falling from the sky…).
So What Do Mountain Bikers Do In The Off Season?
- Ride – That is right…you can still ride! You will need some different gear to get out comfortably but at least you will be out on the trail doing what you enjoy the most. Get a good riding jacket, some leg and arm warmers, winter gloves and some toe warmers and you are set for some good, old fashion cold weather riding. The truth is…cold weather riding has its own different kind of fun that goes along with it. You might be surprised…get out there and try it!
- Training – The winter off season is a great time to get stronger while other riders are enjoying fattening holiday food. During this time, go to the gym, spin classes, work out at home videos, riding on a trainer…anything that will make you stronger for next season. The harder you work in the off-season, the stronger you will be when those perfect spring days roll around. All of your over-weight and under-trained riding buddies are going to hate you as they try to get their rhythm back.
- Learn New Wrenching Skills – Use this off time to learn how to work on your mountain bike. A lot of riders have the desire to learn, but lack the free time to make a serious run at it. Short days and cold weather provide a perfect excuse for some great garage or basement time. Go by your local bike shops during the off-season to ask for tips and tricks while they are slow. It will pass the time for the employees and give you some much needed knowledge. A good local bike shop will be more than happy to help during this slow period.
- Time To Upgrade! - The winter off-season is a great time to upgrade the mountain bike. With the holidays as a perfect excuse, get that new SRAM X.0 rear derailleur you have always wanted. You know those new Avid Elixir CR brakes have been calling your name! The winter off-season is full of sales and holidays that will make your credit card scream for mercy. Use this time to upgrade those components that you didn’t have time to while you were riding constantly.
Off-Season Antics for Mountain Bikers
As you can see, just because the weather and lack of daylight is taking away your prime mountain biking pleasure, it does not mean you have to sit idle and wait for the coveted spring single track madness. Get out and enjoy the sport in new ways. It will keep you mind off of things and increase your abilities at the same time.
What do you think?