We are smack dab in the middle of winter here in the USA. The roads are snowy and icy in most parts of the country, leaving many of us stuck on trainers, riding indoors. Our bikes haven't seen pavement in weeks. But all is not lost: spring is just a few months away!
During this period of winter training, it's easy to forget to maintain our equipment. But right now is actually a great time for maintenance. If you're a triathlete, your bike is most likely your most important piece of equipment. If you're a cyclist, your bike is your main piece of equipment. Take time now to run through the following list of preventive chores:
- Clean and lubricate your drivetrain and gears.
- Replace your brake pads.
- Clean the rims of your wheels.
- Check and tighten up the screws and bolts on your bike, and make sure they're all at the proper torque.
- Check your pedals and shoes. You may want to replace your cleats or at least tighten the screws that hold your cleats to your shoes. You may also want to replace the insoles inside your shoes and any piece of your cycling shoes that's worn out.
- Replace the batteries in your power meter and, if needed, send in your power meter to get calibrated.
A little bit of winter maintenance will make your winter training a lot easier and set you up for success in your early spring training.
If you do ride outside during these winter months, remember that the salt left on the road often causes corrosion on your bike. Don't forget to clean your bike well after these “salty” winter rides.
Stay warm and safe!
Chris Myers is a USA Cycling Level 2 coach, a USA Triathlon Level 1 coach, a USA Swimming Level 2 coach, a certified nutritionist, and a Peaks Coaching Group elite coach. He and his fellow PCG coaches create custom training plans for all levels of athletes. He can be contacted directly through PeaksCoachingGroup.com or email@example.com.