Reid rider from Australia, Nick has been training and prepping for Melbourne’s Around the Bay ride, put on by Bicycle Network. Here, he takes us through his checklist of road riding essentials for his big 160km ride…
Getting a pack together for a challenge as great as 160km Around the Bay is a bit like packing for camp when you’re 12. Well, that is at least how it feels for me. You are keen, a little nervous, and convinced you haven’t packed enough, even when you’ve been through your checklist several times.
So, what should we have to undertake the big ride?
Road Riding Essentials
This is a given, but what’s equally important is that it’s colour-coordinated to your flash ride. I personally love that the blue on my Evolution helmet matches the nice big ‘Reid’ running up the side of my bicycle. Who says you can’t be safe and stylish at the same time?
2. Water bottle cage and water bottles
I took the advice of the guys in the workshop at my local Reid store and got, not one, but two bottle cages installed. During a 160km cycle, keeping hydrated is ESSENTIAL!
I have never seen these before I got one. They’re handy bags which hang under the bicycle seat. Now, I can’t imagine getting around without one. It fits my bike lock, mobile and wallet – everything I need to get around town!
4. Track pump with gauge
Just in case the wheels get a bit flat – which they inevitably will. In terms of over 160km, it’s going to be imperative that my wheels are at the right Psi. Hence, having the gauge on the pump is really handy.
I am obsessive about good quality lights. I prefer LEDs and have hi-powered lights on the front and back. Visibility is so important, not just in the evenings, but during the day also.
6. Road shoes and pedals with cleats
I’m just about to start using these, after innumerable people from the cycling world have recommended I use them. Cleats allow you to use the power from raising your feet as you cycle, which means less energy is exerted and more power is realised. However, the trick is to not get caught up when putting your foot down!
Because my lungs are eternally failing me.
Around the Bay hasn’t happened unless it’s documented. I’m planning to take a timelapse of the event so you can see it all as if you were there!
9. Cycling sunnies
These make a huge difference on the road. They do everything standard sunnies do, but the tighter fit helps keep the wind, bugs and other bits and pieces from nailing you in the eyeball. Being able to keep your eyes wide open also helps you to see more and be more alert.
10. Cycling gloves
Cycling gloves make you feel more in control of your bike – and definitely help on the cold mornings!
Our rider Nick has everything he needs for a charity bike ride. Whether you’re doing an event or just keen to hit the bike paths on the weekend, make sure you have all the essentials!