The outbreak of coronavirus, or Covid-19, has already had a significant impact on the pro cycling calendar, with races canceled indefinitely. Many local races in Colorado have delayed registration and cyclist in other parts of the world are finding themselves restricted to indoor riding only. With much uncertainty at present, it’s difficult to maintain a normal daily routine, much less a training regimen. As Covid-19 continues to cause concern and uncertainty around the world, what do cyclists need to know?
First and foremost, remain healthy! Continue to wash your hands regularly, practice social distancing, avoid touching your face, stay at home, and avoid interacting with anyone who has had—or even may have had—contact with others who may be contaminated. Now, what about riding your bike? Can you ride it outside? According to the post, Everything you need to know about riding your bike during the COVID outbreak by Bicycle Colorado, riding your bike is a great way to stay healthy—physically and mentally—while living in a socially-distanced world.
“In a USA Cycling conference call with bicyclists and bicycling event organizers on March 17, 2020, Dr. Michael Roshon noted that riding bikes also carries little risk of contamination or infection. For bicyclists, Roshon notes that you are very unlikely to contract COVID-19 while riding outside, and especially not while riding by yourself.”
The following are recommendations made for people who race on their bikes and event organizers, yet also apply to everyone who rides a bike.
- First and foremost: if you think you’ve been exposed, self-quarantine. Including being outdoors. Do not ride outside.
- Maintain six feet of distance when riding with or around others.
- If you are going to ride with others, do so in a small group of 3-4 people you know very well. If in doubt, ask them about how they’ve been feeling and their recent travel experiences. Conversations we’ve had with CDPHE confirm this thinking.
- Practice good hand hygiene at all times.
- Get your sleep! Your immune system is stronger when you practice healthy sleep habits. Roshon recommends 8-9 hours.
- Eat healthily. Now is not the time to fast; fasting hinders your immune system.
- But keep in mind that it’s important not to overdo it. When you push yourself too hard, you can limit your immune system’s response to a virus.
- Do not spit or snot-rocket in group rides or around other people walking or biking.
- If you have to do so, move to the back of the group and make sure no one else is around you. Check out this article from Bicycling Magazine which dives deeper into the topic.
- If you’re in a shelter-in-place area, it’s important to heed those rules and stay home. Don’t put yourself or your loved ones at risk because you want to go for a ride. For a list of communities with shelter-in-place orders, scroll down to the “What We’re Hearing” section.
- Finally, don’t ride risky. This is an especially bad time to be in a bike crash. You don’t want to go to the hospital right now, and doctors don’t want to see you unless they need to, so taking reasonable precautions while riding is especially important right now.
What if you don’t want to ride outside at all? You have a few options available to get your cycling fix.
Your first option is to ride indoors. We’ve written quite a few posts on indoor training which you may find helpful. This includes Indoor Cycling Made Easy and Making the Most of Winter with Trainers, Rollers, and Indoor Riding. Both posts offer trainer suggestions and the bike parts needed to keep you comfortable and motivated to ride at length, indoors.
Next, focus on bike maintenance. Check out our post, Spring Cleaning! 4 Essential Bike Maintenance Tips to Get Your Bike on the Road, so when you are ready to ride, your bike will be too.
Get your cycling apparel and gear in order. With the extra time on your hands, take an inventory of the jerseys, shorts, gloves, and other cycling accessories that are worn out and need replacing. You can easily take advantage of our huge Specialized sale going on right now to stock up and save money at the same time.
No doubt, these are challenging times. Yet, all of us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop are still here for you. We’re open if you need to come into the shop and we welcome your support of small, local business. Please keep in mind our current policies for Covid-19. which includes no groups larger than 3 and no casual “browsing” in the shop. We have temporarily discontinued bike rentals and demos. Remember, we have a huge Spring Sale going on that will bolster your spirits! Save up to 40% on select Specialized bikes and gear through April 19th.
Where there’s a will – there’s a way! We’re all in this together and we will get through it together. Be well and be safe friends!