There are many things i wish people told me before i started to bike, things that i eventually learned by experience, in fact, the factors that are the most important in biking are:
Now, if you are an experienced biker like me, you surely know that these two factors are strongly correlated, in fact, it’s hard to enjoy your biking session knowing that you could be fucked up at any moment, either by a car, by the weather, or by yourself.
That’s right, you could fuck yourself up, but how?
Simply by not checking that everything is ready before you start, simple things that could make a great difference for your daily biking session
For this reason,we made a list for you to follow :
1) Get your bike ready and checked up
As you don’t want to find yourself walking three hours pushing your bike around to go back home, you should always do a complete checkup before starting a riding session, especially at night where the visibility is diminished.
Be sure your bike is in good condition
This point isn’t obvious to many, but riding a bike in bad condition could be a threat to yourself and others, some parts can break making your bike dangerous to ride or even a dead weight to carry turning your night session into a nightmare
Check your brakes cables
Especially if you like riding fast, having a reliable way to stop is precious, look up for rust on the cables or any misplaced parts on the brake system that could be problematic
If you fear some part could break be sure it could be fixed on the road if you really have to ride
Check the pressure of your tires
Your tires should be inflated enough to survive the ride, you can find just after some indication about the target pressure recommended for different tires
Check the condition of your chain
Your chain should be greasy and not have traces of rust that could become fragility spots, if your chain is in bad condition you should consider purchasing a new one, if it is too dirty, cleaning it could be a great idea to extend its longevity
If so, you could get some here
2) Dress accordingly for the weather
There’s nothing more important than having the right clothes!
3) Wear high visibility gear
You surely know how it feels like when you bike at night and a car just crosses you from behind, that fearing of not being seen, the closeness to them when they cross you, it’s surely something that affects all of us. If you want to be sure to be fully protected by accidents,these are the things you should look up for:
A reflective vest will light you up every time a car is about to cross you, giving it the time to slow down before crossing you. However, who really wants to wear that ?
This is the best option you should go for if you want to vest different from others, a reflective windbreaker is nowadays more and more chosen by people because of the cool look they give you, distinguishing you from the crowd of bikers
Bike reflective tape
A bike reflective tape will not also improve the outlook of your bike , but it also makes it easier to find your bike back when you leave it for a walk at night
3) Get lighted up
Be sure to be able to see the road properly at night is almost essential, to do this you should:
Put some light on the front of your bike
Put some light in the back of your bike
Put some lights on your helmet
4) Pack up your bag with treats and water
It is important to keep your energy level high during sports, lowering the risks of potential accidents caused by your mental or physical downfall, here are some tips:
Study showed how hydration impacts your attention level, to prevent that,you should always have a filled up water bottle with you.
Eat enough beforehand but not too much
While eating is necessary to keep you active, too much food can result in nausea and stomach ache if you do intensive sport right after eating a big meal.
Get some sweets for the session
If you don’t have the time to eat , you can also keep some sweets in emergency cases, eat them when you need extra energy
5) Take the terrain in account
I can only recommend to prepare your route before an escape at night for different obvious reasons:
Depending on your objective you will want a different level of difficulty and effort strongly linked to the slope you will encounter in the path
But also because knowing which sections could present high risk of collision could avoid you plenty of risky situations I would recommend three advices that proved to be valuable by the past:
Stay on road you already know well
Going on a bike adventure is always fantastic and I’m definitely an advocate of exploration, but exploring at night is kinda senseless as everything is or will be dark soon, instead focus on riding a route you already trained on by day to avoid any unsuspected surprises on the road as gigantic potholes for example or even low visibility road sections as we address just after
Avoid if possible dangerous road sections
You know what I’m talking about, Those high speed road sections full of selfish and intoxicated drivers or even those 90+ degrees turns without even a mirror to see.
Just try to get far from those and stay on safe tracks
Check the terrain slope beforehand
This should be applied for day too but it is by far one of the most important thing to know before putting your feet on the pedals, luckily, a lot of tools will help you to plan your trip difficulty in advance
6) Don’t forget security
Last but not least, there are some rules that one should always follow:
Put your helmet on
I know that it can be uncomfortable, but there chances you’re gonna fall from your bike at least once in your life,be always sure that your head is protected is fundamental
Always ride in the cars direction
I see people do this a lot, riding against the traffic may seems like to be the fastest way to reach your final destination, but remember, car drivers are not always able to stop in time in dangerous situations, especially in intersections
Stay aware of your environment
Be careful of your surroundings and always take a look on every side of the road.
Now that you prepared for everything you’re ready to start your biking session!