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Showing posts from December, 2021

Review – Hydro Flask Insulated Coffee Flask with Flex Sip Lid

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How can you have great coffee on every ride? How can you reduce plastic waste? How can you conform to social distancing guidelines? One simple solution, is a quality insulated coffee flask… The Hydro Flask Flex Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Coffee Flask is a superb example of a portable coffee solution; allowing you to take steaming hot coffee with you for those deep winter mid-ride breaks. I have always been a great fan of #coffeeoutside —it just tastes better. There is nothing like the feeling of sipping on a mug full of freshly brewed coffee sat on the side of a mountain or sheltered from the wind in a forest. Taking a hot drink with you on an outdoors adventure, particularly a bike ride, can be a little problematic though… you need a flask that is robust, leak-proof, and will keep your beverage warm for several hours. After much searching and testing, I came across the Hydro Flask Flex. This insulated bottle, when combined with the new Sip Lid, makes for the perfect cycl

Kit Care – How To Clean and Cure Smelly Cycling Shoes

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It is that time of year when your cycling shoes begin to pong. Over the summer months, a build-up of sweat, dirt, and body oils creates the ideal environment for bacteria to breed in; then, with the constant damp of winter, your cycling shoes may never fully dry out—letting the bacteria multiply and emit unpleasant odours. Smelly cycling shoes are not uncommon, even in almost new footwear. I have taken new pairs of shoes on month-long touring trips and been on the verge of throwing them away at the finish because the stench is too severe. Bacteria build-up in shoes not only causes smells; if you leave your cycling shoes dirty, bacteria will lead to the decomposition of the materials and stitching, especially in synthetic and natural leathers. Removing bacteria will therefore reduce the chance of the fabrics rotting and extend the life of your footwear. The good news is that I have found a solution to cure smelly cycling shoes; as well as a means to keep them fresh forever more… Nikw

5 Best Strength and Conditioning Exercises for Cyclists

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Riding a bike is not just about turning the pedals. Your body and cycling will benefit from integrating strength and conditioning exercises that build your core strength, leg power, and help reduce the risk of injury. These five exercises are simple strength-building drills taken from yoga and 'functional trunk strength' (a.k.a. core stability) workouts; they will help increase your comfort on long endurance rides, and also aid cycling performance improvements. 1. Squats If you do one thing, SQUAT. Squatting is the most natural but most powerful weight training exercise that we can use for building cycling strength. The motion uses our powerful quadriceps, glutes, and lower back muscles in one fluid motion. The key thing with squatting is to display good form. You do not want to be bent over like a hunchback. A simple set of instructions for good squatting technique: Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart, splayed at 30 degrees With your arm

Review – Victorinox Bike Multi Tool Kit

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I have a Victorinox Swiss Army Knife that has featured in my 'every day carry' for almost a decade; it still performs like new and is an invaluable asset. I recently discovered that the Swiss brand makes a bike tool, and I was keen to see if it lives up to the same exacting Swiss standard. The Victorinox Bike Tool is effectively a mini socket set: the magnetic 5mm hex key detaches from the tool holder and then you fit any bit piece to it: the range includes 2-6mm hex keys, a T25 Torx key, and flat and cross-head screwdriver bits. All the bit pieces are made from high tensile stainless steel and have a very good fit in bolt heads—promising not to round off fittings, if used correctly. The body of the tool also features two clip-in tyre levers that are made from strong plastic composite, and do a good job of levering stubborn tubeless tyres from wheel rims, as well as having a nice rounded profile to protect the tube. The whole bike tool weighs just 92 grams and is 100mm

Gift Ideas for Adventure Cyclists 2021

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Cyclists can be difficult people to choose birthday and Christmas gifts for, but I hope that this selection of products will offer some new and interesting options to fill stockings, put under the Christmas tree, or wrap up as a birthday gift for a two-wheeled fanatic in your family or friend group. From bar tape to body lotion, and hip bags to hand torches; there is sure to be something in this gift list that would be a good present for the cyclist you know and love. Marvellous Maps Great Britain Adventure Map I love maps, and I love adventure. This Great Britain Adventure Map was always set to be a superb Christmas gift idea in my opinion. It did not disappoint when it arrived; with incredibly detailed coverage of the best adventure possibilities that the UK has to offer. From ideas about hiking trips, to beaches, historic highlights, sea kayaking destinations, bicycle touring routes, and long-distance driving routes; there is sure to be something that tickles your fancy and inspir

Kit Tips – A Guide to Cold Weather Winter Cycling Clothing

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Low temperatures and winter storms push wind-chill factors to sub-zero. Bike riding does not have to cease in freezing conditions though; with the right clothing, there is no reason not to enjoy your cycling, even in the icy months of winter. In this blog post, I offer my tips and advice for the right clothing to keep you comfortable when cycling in the depths of winter… 1 – Long Sleeve Base Layers Cold hands when cycling in low temperatures? Long sleeve base layers are the key to comfort here. Your hands are an extremity—they are one of the furthest points from the central boiler pump that is your heart. In order to keep them warm, you need to keep the blood that is flowing to them warm. Protecting your lower arms from wind-chill and insulating them with a long sleeve base layer will aid warm blood flows down your arteries all the way to your hands. The best long sleeve winter cycling base layer I have used is the GripGrab Expert Seamless Thermal Long Sleeve Cycling Bas