Cycling events, just like all other competitive events, require and demand that you prepare for them in advance and adequately. This is because the level and quality of your preparedness will go a long way in ensuring that you weather through the challenges that you will face and also the level of competition that you will encounter during a cycling event. The bottom, line of this is simple: you either prepare for the event or you will despair during and after the event. The preparations that we are going to discuss in this post are going to bolster your ability to face the following types of challenges: human challenges from your fellow and competing cyclists and; environmental and weather challenges that you will encounter during the cycling event.
Having said all the above, it is important for us to look at some of the ways through which you need to prepare. In this post, we shall examine two main areas of preparation for the real big day. These two forms of preparation will be a great complement for all the training sessions that you have been undergoing for during the months that have passed. The first form of preparation will revolve around your dressing for the big day while the second form of preparation will involve the packing of the necessary personal effects that you will need during and after the cycling.
Under the dressing category, we shall look at the following key dressing components that you will require during the event and they are listed below as follows: the helmet; socks; leg warmers; knicks; arm warmers; cape; sunglasses; shoes and jersey.
Under the second category, we shall examine some of the personal effects that you will need to pack for your use and they are highlighted below as follows: cotton scarf; entertainment; bag balm; rain gear; extra footwear and; U-lock.
1.The dressing code
In this list we start from head down by examining the most important head gear that will protect you during the cycling event. This is important because during cycling accidents do happen and they can happen to anyone including you. With a proper gear in place, you are actually taking the first protective measure that you need while cycling. However, there are a few considerations to take to heart while selecting a good helmet for a professional cycling event.
First of all, you need to don the helmet the right way so that you can enjoy maximum protection. By this I mean that you need to don the helmet over the forehead, 2 cm above your eyebrows without tilting it backwards.
Second, you need to ensure that you don a helmet that is in its optimal functioning condition. You need to ensure that the helmet is at least three years old and below. This will go a long way in bolstering your protection compared to wearing a tired and retired helmet that may expose you to unnecessary head injuries in the event of an accident.
From the head we go all the way down to the feet and take a look at the kind of professional socks that you need to don during a major cycling competition. For a professional look and efficiency, you need to wear socks that are specifically designed for cycling and make sure that the pair of socks that you are wearing is clean. Moreover, you need to wear socks that are not low cut and the color needs to be just right and by right I mean the socks should be colored white. You need to dress in a manner that will not just enhance your efficiency but also boost your professional image as a cyclist.
In addition, you need to ensure that as much as possible, you wear a new pair of socks for every cycling event. The socks should be at least 12 cm high and anything below or above that height should be ignored.
However, they should be donned in a manner that produces a perfect match with the knicks that you will be donning. This too will go a long way in bolstering and projecting your professional outlook on the road.
Your knicks on that big day are also an important part of your dressing code and you should treat them with the seriousness that they deserve. You need to make sure that you wear knicks that have a bib so as to bolster your professional image. In addition, you will need to avoid wearing knicks that have a plain black color. Make sure that you choose a color that is professionally esthetic and appealing in order to enhance your visibility during the competition.
Arm warmers are another important piece of your cycling dressing code and it should be handled with the gravity that it deserves. You need to ensure that your arm warmers are fitting properly and when you do this, you paint a great professional picture of yourself that you are a cyclist who values and delights in professional layering principles.
In addition to the above, you need to ensure that the arm warmers are creating a symmetrical and esthetic balance with the jersey that you are donning. The length of the arm warmers should also be just right; but just in case you are not very much sure of the length of the arm warmers, it is better for you to have shorter arm warmers instead of long ones.
The cap is another essential part of the dressing code you will need during the cycling event. You need to ensure that you wear the cap facing forward and not backwards as if you were are out for a stroll in the streets during sunset in summer. You also need to understand that the cap needs to be donned in the company of arm warmers. This means that the prevailing weather conditions in that particular area and at that moment to determine the suitability of the cap. In addition, you need to select a cycling cap that is made by a reputable manufacturer.
The kind of sunglasses that you bed for this event needs to be professional. For instance, you need to avoid every form of sunglasses that have a wire frame and are designed for causal adventures or escapades. You need to make sure that you go for suitable sunglasses that are design for professional cyclists and also ensure that you use the best brands in the market. At this point, you need to remember that you are not just dressing for professional competence but also image and hence your sunglasses must balance between the two interests.
As a professional cyclist, the dressing is not complete without donning in the right shoes that are designed for that purpose. This means that you need to wear the right kind of shoes for the right biking event. For instance, you don’t need to wear mountain bike shoes and yet you are participating in a road race within the city. Additionally, the color of the shoes needs to reflect a professional image and this means that you need to wear white shoes.
The jersey that you need to wear for the big event is also another important part of your dressing code that you need to approach with utmost consideration and care. You need to wear a jersey that has a full zip. In addition, the jersey’s color needs to reflect a professional image and hence you need to avoid colors such as pink, green yellow and the like. Moreover, you need to wear long a sleeved jersey unless you have been advised otherwise by your doctor!
2. Things to pack for your cycling event
In the preceding paragraphs, we have taken a comprehensive look at the dressing code that you need to don in order to maintain a professional image and also attain professional efficiency on the road. It is now time that we move on to the second part of our discussion and have a thorough look at the things that you need to pack for the big cycling event ahead of you. These personal effects will ensure that during and after your cycling event, you will not get inconvenienced in any way. Keep on reading below to get a clearer and deeper insight into this section.
The first item that we are going to examine in this section is the cotton scarf. Any professional cyclist who has been on the road for more than two years and has cycled in different climatic zones during different seasons knows too well the importance of this little piece of cloth. The cotton scarf comes in handy during cold weather because it can be used to provide a light head covering. In addition, the scarf can be used to cover your mouth and nose during dusty moments, not to mention that when it is raining, the scarf can also be used to wipe the bike.
You don’t need to make a drudgery of your cycling day out. You need to ensure that the moments you will not be riding are punctuated with some beautiful form of entertainment that will sooth and psyche you up for the remaining stages ahead. You can carry your music player in order to listen to cool music or you can decide to carry your favorite book in order to read as you relax. Additionally, you can carry a fishing rod and reel if you will be cycling through areas that are rich in rivers and other fish-laden water bodies. Whatever form of entertainment you elect to carry, just make sure that you pack something that will keep you refreshed during the journey.
All forms of long cycling events will exert some form of pressure on different parts of your body. For instance, spending a long period of time the saddle will definitely strain your body and hence you need to carry the right kind of soothing balm so that you can be able to get relief from the sores you will incur during cycling. You will need to apply this balm on all the affected areas so that you can minimize the effects of the sores incurred from the saddle.
Packing a rain gear is not just going to protect you against the inconveniences of weather elements. On the contrary, it will also ensure that you are safe from all manner of illnesses that may follow after being beaten by the rain. You need to make sure that you carry the gear even if it ends up not raining. This puts you in a better position than assuming that it won’t rain, and then end up getting caught in the rains.You can only use your guesswork if you are riding through Sahara or Tundra desert.
Extra footwear is another key item that you need to pack for your long distance cycling event. You will need to carry another set of footwear so that you can use it when you are not cycling. Make sure that you get the best match that blends well with the shoes you will be using for cycling.
The last item that you need to pack for your big day out in the field is a U-lock. You need to ensure that you pack a lock that will keep your bike safe when it is out of your sight. This will go a long way in ensuring that you don’t win a race and lose your cherished machine that enabled you to win that particular race. You need to ensure that you purchase the best brand and model that is suitable for your bike and also from a reputable manufacturer so that it can serve its purpose effectively.