Ten Things for the New Guy

There are simple things to help with day-to-day cycling activities. Here are ten simple things I have learned:

  1. Always keep a new tube of super glue in your saddle kit for quick repairs on cleats, seats, etc.
  2. Never Armor All your saddle. Lycra and a slick saddle do not mix.
  3. Keep your helmet strap loose. You don’t have to cinch it so tightly.
  4. Never ride within one hour of a heavy meal. Do and you’ll see why you shouldn’t.
  5. Make it a point to learn what you personally need in the way of water and food during a ride. The rule of thumb is drink every 10 and eat every 30 for a ride over 2 hours long. This will very depending on you and how hard you are riding.
  6. Use denture cleaning tabs on a molded water bottle, next day like new!
  7. At first, don’t dump large amounts of money on lighter things for your bike. Work on the engine.
  8. In group rides, watch and learn. . . then watch and learn. Shhhhhhhhh
  9. No matter how you broke it, don’t lie to your mechanic.
  10. Make a habit of understanding and knowing your bike tires’ PSI (for road condition, performance, etc.) and always check and maintain before a ride.

Have fun. Enjoy what made you fall in love with a bike when you were a kid. Don’t worry about your kit (clothes you wear) or if don’t have an expensive bike.

19 thoughts on “Ten Things for the New Guy

  1. Good piece. Some solid tips in there buddy! Of course everything is always applicable to the individual…
    though I do disagree with number 3, coming from a motorcycle racing background I’m in the habit of cinching up the helmet straps tight. I’ve seen helmets pop off of people that had fallen both on the road and mountain bikes, who weren’t wearing their helmet with the straps tight. I know it’s all personal preference but I think there’s something to be said for keeping the ‘ol lid on tight!


  2. Nice post man! I’d amend the expensive clothes part to not include shorts/bibs. Those should be expensive as possible (or bought on sale) for anything more than 30 mile rides.

  3. Looks like the nutrition and hydration issues are not as simple. Some current research indicates that drinking when thirsty is a good strategy and for the vast majority of us eating sandwiches are as good as all these expensive fancy gels. Also agree about the helmet being reasonably tight. (Ex motorcyclist as well)

    1. Absolutely, FC! That’s why I wanted to point out what’s best for the individual. I have tried to eat things that people swear by, and it did nothing for me or drink when others drink and end up dehydrated. I have done many trial and errors on many rides until I found my niche. Thank you as always for commenting 🙂

  4. I’m with FC – I like pasta before I ride – but I have a quick metabolism and half am hour is all I need. I also get hot quickly so don’t wear much layers and drink a lot but layer up when I’m off the bike.

  5. Number 7 strikes a chord! I know that losing a few kilos would lead to better performance but somehow buying a new stem or whatnot that’s 10 grams lighter than the old one is so much easier to achieve.

    1. That’s true, Aaron, but what is easiest does not make the best rider. The engine is the most important part of a bike. A brand new Ferrari with a Volkswagen engine is no good.

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