September has rolled around and after enjoying a long hot summer in 2018, Autumn is setting in. The air is fresh, the dirt is moist and here at off-road, we rather like it. Here are our top eight reasons from around the office to keep riding into the autumn.
1. 30 minutes of exercise a day keeps winter blues away
There’s lots of advice on the big wide interweb telling us that 30 minutes of exercise a day is good for us. It’s supposed to keep your heart happy, help you loose weight, reduce stress, improve your mood, give your more energy and increase your productivity. Whether 30 minutes a day is right or not, exercise certainly does have an effect on the factors listed so we reckon every day should be a cycling day! It’s all too easy to put the bike in the shed once the nights draw in and leave it there but if you manage to roll it out for a ride a couple of times a week, supplemented by some other exercise on the other days of the week, you’ll be grateful you kept up the momentum come winter.
2. Fallen leaves make great roost
OK .so this might involve your inner child but fallen leaves do make great roost! Pile ‘em up and hit your favourite corner as hard as you can, and BOOF, fun times. We also might have once or twice piled them up on the inside of a corner and attempted to drag our bars through them, then elbows, then faces….. maybe just maybe. But we didn’t film it. Who are we kidding, of course we did!
(N.B. Apologies for the shoddy phone photo - we thought you'd want evidence....)
3. The trails will be quiet
The trails are quieter in the Autumn, fewer walkers, fewer riders, fewer dogs, which all means less time getting held up and more fun! Trail centres will be free from traffic and you’ll probably be able to park closer to the café too – win-win. Watch out for trail builders on the tracks repairing after a long hard summer.
Although saying that we like quiet trails, we do also quite like a chat with a stranger we meet on the ride or snack breaks chewing the fat with other trail users.
4. It's a good excuse for new riding gear
The change of season is a good excuse to buy new mountain bike or cycling gear. Usually this consists of a new waterproof jacket, replacing the waterproof shorts with holes in and making sure you have a good supply of waterproof socks and base layers. With all that new kit, there will be no reason not to get out and ride!
5. There will be bike sales everywhere
The model year for bike and bike kit seems to fall around August as bike brands get new kit ready to display at the various bike shows around the word before Christmas. If you aren’t bothered by the latest and greatest at full retail prices though, there are plenty of bargains to be had in the sales from bikes to clothing, to helmet and shoes in both shops and online Keep an eye on our Dealclincher for the best internet deals we find daily!
Then just see point 4 – no excuse not to ride….
6. Riding in the dark is rad
Night riding is pretty fun and definitely something we look forward to come Autumn. Riding in the dark makes you feel like you are going much faster than you actually are and we reckon it’s pretty good for skills too, it really makes you look up ahead to check out the trail in front of you, well, what little you can see!
There are plenty good lights to buy too which means you can actually see rather a lot when out in the dark, just remember to keep your batteriesr charged after every ride and if you wear a helmet mounted light, don’t look at your mate when you talk to him, its the only time looking at the ground and talking is acceptable!
7. You'll find out you missed the mud - no really
Yep, we love the mud and as much as we liked the dry trails, not having to wash our bikes and not grinding our gears hearing the ££££’s fall off with each pedal stroke was nice. But mud is a staple of a British mountain bikers life and we’ve missed it’s soft, slippery goodness. Be gone hard packed trails, bring back the loam, the hero dirt, the bogs and the toothpaste on the trail, it’s what we are really good at riding after all!
8.Type two fun can actually be really fun
Autumn and winter riding can sometimes be a bit ‘Type Two’ fun. Type two fun is defined as “an activity that should be fun but is miserable while it’s happening, but fun in retrospect” or from the Urban Dictionary “an activity that is fun only after you have stopped doing it”
Type two fun, when in the moment, creates feelings of suffering, pain, often anger and usually a feeling that it was a mistake to embark on said activity or ride. After the fact though and in reflection, you realise with a great feeling of satisfaction that the activity was quite fun after all.
For those of you who are interested there are two other types of fun as follows:
Type one – “an activity that is is enjoyable while it’s happening”, put simply it is actual fun.
Type three fun – “Type 3 fun is not fun at all. Not even in retrospect.” Although we suspect the passage of time plays a part in the movement from type three to type two fun.
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