Did you watch Sunday's stage in the Tour de France?! The theme of the day was... WIND!!!
The stage traveled over 100 miles on perhaps the flattest course ever, in a direction that ended up towards the North Sea. While the wind coming off the ocean may be great for sailors and flying a kite, it is definitely a challenge for any cyclist.
You have to be confident, you have to be strong-willed, and you have to be smart about where to position yourself when cycling in the wind. If you don't, you may end up working harder than you like, and traveling slower than you ever imagined.
The mantra I like to repeat to myself when I'm battling a headwind or a crosswind is this.
"The Wind is my Friend. The Wind is my Friend."
I repeat this mentally, and within my breathing pattern, and it helps me focus. I focus on holding an aerodynamic position on my bike, I focus on the fact that I'm still moving forward, I focus on trying to keep my cadence a little higher than I'd like, and I focus on the realization that most of the time, that headwind will turn in my favor and become a tailwind, be it in five minutes, an hour, or another day.
Cycling in the wind is inevitable. Some wind brings cooler temps and feels great. Some wind brings boiling, humid air to your skin and works to deprive you of energy. Some wind works with you, and some wind tries to blow your wheels out from underneath you.
The trick is to embrace it, stay focused, and penetrate it like scissors on fabric. Cutting through the wind with style leads to a smoother ride, and the ability to "ride" to the challenge!
Thanks for reading, and if you have any questions about this tip or your cycling fitness, give us a call or just stop by before our evening classes!