Successful Cycling in the Rain

Sometimes you’ve just got to get into the saddle—even if the wind reaches gale force, the rain comes in sideways and the road looks more like a bayou than a bike path.

Whether you’re braving the storm to vent your frustrations, to reach your natural high, or simply because you can’t afford to miss a training day before a race, you need to take some precautions. Riding on wet roads is hard enough; riding in a downpour is another matter entirely.

Take heed of these warnings and tips to stay safe (though not dry) if you absolutely must ride in the rain.

Be realistic

No matter how long you’ve been riding
bikes, San Diego roads can offer surprises at every turn. If you don’t feel confident in your ability to ride in the rain, don’t ride. It’s not worth the risk if something should happen to you.

With that being said, create a Plan B. Your training regimen should already have alternative exercises built in, so a rainy day is the perfect time to use them. Work on your core, do some yoga or just stretch for an hour while watching old Tour highlights.

Be seen

If you saddle up and hit the road, be sure to wear your brightest reflective clothes. You may have no problems guiding your bike through slick roads, but that doesn’t mean the cars around you have your steady hands. The more obvious it is that you are there, the safer you’ll be when a maverick motorist darts ahead of traffic to be the first person waiting at a red light.

If you’re riding on one of the triathlon bike rentals available, why not get a model with some extra shine to it? It might be ugly, but it’ll keep you safer in the rain. Besides, you don’t have to keep it.

Be alert

Felt triathlon bikes
may be top of the line, but they can’t save you from the frictionless surface of a painted crosswalk. Be mindful of your turns; we’ve all seen what can happen when a cyclist hits a corner too hard.

In fact, you’re best not going full speed on a rainy day. Take this opportunity to relax a little, do a lighter workout, and get yourself back home without any bumps or bruises. There are even plenty of ways to get a workout in at home. Jump on your stationary rollers and do some speed training or head to the gym and grab a stationary bike—but if you’re driving there, watch out for bikers on the road.