The equinox has passed and the clocks will be changing soon. The days are shorter and the temperature is dropping fast. Soon, cyclists in their droves will be retreating to the shed for a season of Zwift racing. But before then, why not embrace the unique enjoyment an autumnal ride can bring? You don’t need to be a seasoned pro to warrant changing up your riding routine as soon as the summer is over – it’s great for your mind and your motivation to change things up a bit and rediscover why you love cycling in the first place. We’ve put together a few ways you can get the most out of your autumn rides this year before you scuttle off to the pain cave for laps of Watopia.
Take the pressure off
The road season is winding down, with hill climbs the only thing left to attend to domestically, and the mountain bike season is also at an end. If you’re into hill climbing or cyclocross, then you’ll be in the full throws of training as the season kicks up. But if you’re not that way inclined, then this is the perfect time to relax your training and go back to the basics. Try to remember why you enjoy cycling in the first place, take the pressure off, leave the cycle computer at home, and just enjoy being on your bike. Now is the perfect time to do this before you start thinking about rebuilding your base fitness over winter.
Get the ride in early
Autumn often blesses us with some of the most beautiful sunrises of the year, and with the leaves changing colour, it’s no wonder everyone goes crazy for the harvest season. Whether it’s for great shots on Instagram, (who doesn’t like a picture of a bike in the leaves), or if you want to make the most of the dwindling daylight, getting out in the morning means you’ll most likely get to witness some of the best light of the day.
Take your training off-road, or vice versa
No matter your usual cycling discipline, autumn is the perfect season to change things up a bit and try something new. If you’re a die-hard roadie, why not clip into some SPDs and see what the fuss is about on a gravel or mountain bike? The trails are not quite as dry and dusty as summer, and they’re less boggy and muddy than in the depths of winter, so it’s a great time to test your mettle.
Likewise, if you’re a hardcore mountain biker, why not consider getting some miles in on the road? Change up your scenery and you might find your motivation to ride is stronger throughout winter without burning yourself out.
Enjoy the temperature changes
For some of us, autumn represents the best of seasons to ride in. It’s often warm from the last dredges of summer, but not yet cold enough to bring out the full winter thermals. Make the most of the changing of the seasons and enjoy the last shorts-weather rides of the year.
Take advantage of group rides
As the temperature drops and it starts to feel like the sun has gone into hibernation, it can be easy to feel less motivated to ride your bike. One way to help counteract this is by riding with a group. Not only do the miles pass more quickly, but you may feel more accountable by agreeing to ride with others. Riding with your fellow cyclists is also a great way to discover new roads or trails that you might not have known existed, thus broadening horizons in whichever cycling discipline you choose to ride.
Autumn doesn’t have to signify the end of your cycling season. Sure, it might be time to start thinking about putting the mudguards on and getting out the long sleeves, but autumn rides can be just as fulfilling as summer ones. Whatever riding you end up doing, make sure you’re covered, particularly away from home. We are specialist cycling insurers who know what we’re talking about. Get a free, no-obligation home insurance for cycling quote to see how much it would cost to keep your peace of mind this autumn.