WHAT TO WEAR
FOR COLD WEATHER CYCLING
As the days get shorter and the conditions get colder, the key to enjoying your time on the bike is being dressed right for the conditions. But when you start cold, warm up during the ride, get caught in an unexpected shower, dry off and then find yourself covered in a cold sweat at the coffee shop afterwards, it can be hard to know what to wear!
When it comes to nailing your cycling wardrobe, it’s all about the layers. Here’s our guide to preparing for a Sydney winter on two wheels:
Step 1: Insulate your core.
A base layer worn next to the skin will help you regulate your natural body temperature, as well as wicking moisture away to avoid that horrible ‘clammy’ feeling when you stop. Get one that fits nice and close to the skin for the best effect.
Pearl Izumi transfer base layer $69.95; Ozone Elite Chamois Cream $25.95
Step 2: The basics
Investing in a decent cycling jersey and knicks (bib shorts) will take you through all the seasons in comfort.
Jersey pockets give you somewhere to tuck your phone, wallet and snacks; Quality bib shorts reduce pressure and chafing, particularly over longer rides.
Still tender? Chamois cream is your secret weapon against chafing, especially in wet weather. Applying a half-teaspoon directly to the skin in all the sensitive areas before you put your shorts on will make things a lot more comfortable!
Giant Sydney jersey $129.95; Giant Sydney bib shorts $169.96
Step 3: Cut the wind
A cycling vest or jacket blocks the cold airflow to your core, and is easy to unzip while riding as you heat up (and stuff in your back pocket at the lights). You can pull it out again if it starts to rain, or at the post ride coffee shop.
Consider something with hi-vis and reflective properties so you can be safe and be seen.
Proviz Reflect 360 Gilet $99.95; Giant Proshield Rain Jacket $159.95
Step 5: Arms and legs
Arm warmers are a cycling wardrobe essential, transforming a short sleeved jersey into a trans-seasonal layer. They’re easy to push down or pull back up while riding if your temperature changes.
When it gets into winter proper knee or legwarmers will do the same thing for your cycling shorts. Make sure the fit is firm enough that they won’t wiggle down while riding.
Pearl Izumi elite thermal arm warmers $49.95; Velotoze toe cover $19.95
Step 6: Hands and feet
Your hands and toes take the brunt of the wind while you’re cycling, and can end up feeling like ice blocks by the end of the ride. A decent pair of full finger gloves with a windstopper fabric are a lifesaver. Toe or shoe covers do the same thing for your feet, slipping over top of your cycling shoes to protect them from wind and rain. Pair them up with a pair of thin woolen cycling socks and you’ll be super snug.
Giro Blaze Gel gloves $54.95; Defeet Classico Woolie Socks $29.95
Step 7: Still cold?
You lose a lot of heat through your head. Add a cycling cap or ear band under your helmet and you’ll be surprised how much warmer your whole body feels.
Campagnolo fleece cycling cap $29.95
Now you’re ready to ride in all conditions! (And be really glad we don’t live somewhere *actually* cold… )