We live in some of the most beautiful places of the world. Each of us can vouch for an area, upon returning from abroad, as to why our home is far better than anywhere else in the world!
Some might say its the language, others the terrain, others the people and most, the weather.
But, what happens when winter hits? This article is directed at everyone, barring the upper eastern coast, you have a lucky escape.
Winter in South Africa can be brutal. Persistent rain, chilly wind and often below zero deg C can make training a nightmare. I have a couple of reasons why you need to stay motivated and also how to do it.
1. We head into winter with bronzed, lean bodies, having spent the better part of the hot 14 hour days in the african sun, and we exit the winter with a pasty white complexion, spare tubes gripping our middles and longer leg hairs than a monkey in Alaska.
Don’t stop training, drop the mileage and the hours, but keep moving throughout the winter, it makes starting the summer training much easier.
2. There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad gear… Don’t let the wind, rain or cold stop you from going outside. Invest in some proper kit and you will be wishing for the colder days.
3. Set goals. There are plenty of races throughout winter. Pick a couple to keep yourself motivated and get there.
4. Find a group of riders who share the same goals. Hold eachother accountable and organise sessions at times when it suits you all. It will also keep you motivated to get out of bed.
5. When its windy, you might opt to leave the road bike tucked away behind the garage door, but hey, the mountain bike is rearing to go! There is no excuse.
6. Divide the longer sessions with indoor sessions. If I need to do a 4hour ride and the weather is atrocious, I jump onto the IDT for 1h30min as a warm-up and then head out onto the road.
7. IDT should never be under estimated. Although there is no replacement for time on the road, this comes close. You can get all your interval training done this way.
8. Make sure your equipment is prepared. Get mud tires for the mountain bike, a proper chain lube (wet weather) and waterproof gadgets. Makes the time outside more enjoyable when you avoid mechanical incidences.
9. Embrace the weather. It only comes once a year and lasts for a little while. Don’t allow it to deter you and don’t allow yourself to use it as an excuse. Time waits for nobody, make it count.