This March has seen a cold snap in South Wales. While today we have returned to heavy rain and 5 degree weather, last week saw -3 up to -12 with windchill.
It was f*ing cold.
My cycle to work is 3 miles. It takes about 3 miles for the body to adjust to being in the cold. My housemate sometimes cycles 12 miles to work. For him the first 3 miles are the warm-up, and then he's good to go. For me, the first 3 miles are all I have, and I know I will freeze for 20 minutes if I don't layer up good.
So here's what I do!
Step 1 - Base layers
This is just a cheapie set from Go Outdoors. I have a really nice Merino Wool set from Wiggle but they're so nice I save them for road riding
Step 2 - Fleece and ski socks
True fact - my Brewer Half got me ski socks for Christmas. Though this may be the most laughable gift ever, I use those ski socks nearly every day for half the year. And they're pink. Though I teased him about it a lot, they're actually pretty awesome socks
Step 3 - Tracksuit bottoms, buff, arm and ear warmers!
Tracksuit bottoms keep the legs warm, buff keeps the neck warm! I love the ear warmers from Wiggle! The arm warmers are my own invention because I was once told that how warm the hands are is very affected by how warm the wrists are. I use arm warmers to cover any gaps between hands and gloves.
Step 4 - Softshell and gloves
Now that I'm layered up it's time to go! This awesome Montaine soft-shell is wind proof and water resistant. I'm wearing my Outdoor Designs summit gloves which are wind and water proof.
And then I cycle. My fingers are still cold but everywhere else is fine, and by the time I get to work I'm at a good temperature. If I cycled much farther I would be way too warm in all this kit, but for short cycles with lots of lights it's nice to be bundled up warm.
And sometimes, if I'm super freezing, I break out one of these grabber hand-warmers. I don't know what they're made of, where they're from, or how they work, but they make heat like magic:
Hopefully all this will be of the past soon, as it's March now and summer is here! So stay tuned for my post about cycling in the summer --- a lengthy review of the best waterproofs.
The original joke was about Wales!