The apparent wind speed if you are cycling along at 15 mph can add significantly to the wind chill factor. This is something that you don't get running.
When it gets cold, the body responds by restricting blood circulation away from the limbs and the surface of the skin, thus conserving heat for the vital organs in the torso and head. So if your hands and feet are cold, don't start with winter gloves or booties - focus instead on insulating the torso. If your core is warm, then the body will return blood (and warmth) to the limbs.
One of the first places to start is a good base layer. I use a smart wool top from Ice Breaker. These ultrafine wools are natural, aren't scratching like old wool jumpers, and retain their warmth even when wet.
A wind vest can also be of significant value in staying warm.
The other thing to think about is flexibility - it can be hard to judge the exact conditions. And getting too warm and sweating into your clothing can leave it wet and provide far less insulation. Things like zippered tops, or arm warmers can be adjusted easily to how you are feeling on the day, without having to stop and remove clothing.
Fitness Minutes: (31,713)
2,093 10/27/13 7:57 P
I make sure to wear layers while riding in cold weather. My typical get-up is: skull cap that I can pull over my ears and wear under my helmet lightweight thermal technical long sleeve t-shirt fleece vest to keep my core warm capris or tights cold weather gloves wool socks and if my feet are still cold I wear shoes covers or I put small baggies over my socks then put on my shoes If I'm still cold I put on a jacket that is waterproof but has zipper armpits so I don't overheat As I warm up, I shed the layers It's best to be a little cold or you will overheat quickly. I also invested in protective eye-wear that wraps around my eyes and does a great job of warding off the cold air. My eyes do water when the air is very cold and dry.
Fitness Minutes: (214,000)
20,982 10/26/13 3:18 P
Biking in cold weather is no different than running in cold weather. It's all about wearing enough layers. You really don't have to buy anything fancy or high tech. A hat and scarf will keep your face warm and a decent jacket will keep your body warm. If you're wearing bike pants, they do make winter cycling pants. They are pricey, but if you want to wear bike pants instead of regular pants when riding, they might be your best option.
Fitness Minutes: (53,410)
714 10/26/13 10:48 A
I need some suggestions on how to stay warm when I ride my bike in the cold weather. I live in the southeastern US (Southern Appalachian Mountains) where it doesn't get too terribly cold but cold enough. I consider it to be cold when it is less than 60 degrees outside. I am more interested in knowing how to be comfortable when I ride my bike and it is between 35 and 50 degrees outside (legs, arms, and face).
I think it is harder to be comfortable on a bike in cold weather than if you are walking or running in the cold.
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