As it gets colder, and wetter, and colder, and snowier, it’s easy to leave the bike at home in favour of the car or the bus. But winter cycling can be fantastic – as long as you’re prepared, you shouldn’t have a problem.
It might be cold at first, but pounding away at those pedals will soon get your heart pumping and the warmth spreading through your body. Make sure you’re wearing gloves (I wear two pairs – one with fingers, with some waterproof mitts over the top) and good thick socks. Buffs are terrific for wrapping around your ears, and topped with a woolly hat/ear muffs/helmet you will remain nice and snug.
As long as it’s not icy, cycling can be easier and more reliable – the roads will be more congested with traffic as everyone tries to avoid the cold, meaning you get extra satisfaction from sailing past the people stuck in their motors.
In the snows last year, I was one of only two people who made a scheduled work meeting, because I’d arrived by bike – almost all my colleagues either couldn’t get their car to start, or were stuck in massive queues of traffic, or couldn’t get off their driveway. I felt so smug arriving on my mountain bike – the simplest things are sometimes the best!
And for those days when none of us have to go to work because it has snowed a lot, playing around on a thick-tyred bike in the white stuff is just brilliant fun.