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“It’s too cold.” “I do not have the right kind of clothes.” These are the common statements I hear when I ask athletes to ride outdoors during the winter. After encouraging clients to purchase a few items and take them out for their first wintery ride, almost always, the original statement’s tone changes. They respond more positively: “that wasn’t bad” or “I did not feel cold once we got moving.” With layers of clothes and items comes expense, but it does not have to break the bank if you look at other non-brand-named options! In this article, I will give some last-minute Christmas gift ideas on a budget to help you move outdoors during frigid temperatures.

ARSUXEO Winter Warm UP Thermal Softshell Cycling Jacket Windproof Waterproof

When it is 15-30 degrees, wearing a long-sleeved jersey or sweat-wicking shirt is optimal to reduce the chill when the wind sneaks through your jacket. A cycling jacket that has gotten many of my athletes and me through frigid, wet rides and events is the ARSUXEO Winter Warm UP Thermal Softshell Cycling Jacket Windproof Waterproof 15-k for $39.99. Though inexpensive, this jacket has performed better than some of the expensive ones I have purchased before. With a long sleeve jersey underneath, this jacket works wonders for fighting the cold. The sizing is unique, so please be mindful of measurements and look at reviews for guidance! For reference, I wear a Women’s Small to Medium t-shirt, and my ARSUXEO jacket is a US Medium.

4ucycling Mens Fleeced Windproof Winter Cycling Pants

The least expensive and most successful route for the lower portion of your body is layering cycling shorts, inexpensive non-cycling specific tights, and then these windbreaker pants on top. The 4ucycling Mens Fleeced Windproof Winter Cycling Pants for Biking,Skiing,Running Outdoor Sports (RED & BLACK) for $34.99 keeps you warm.

DeFeet’s Woolie Boolie wool cycling socks

The next step is seeking out wool socks! DeFeet’s Woolie Boolie wool cycling socks are well known, are sold at local bike shops, and keep your feet warmer than standard cotton. 

Shoe Covers

My favorite, and what has gotten me through many muddy, cold events, are the Pactimo Storm+ Shoe Covers for $51.00. Sadly, I see they are out of stock currently. Still, another option is any Gore product that also protects very well. I will say foot, and hand protection is ESSENTIAL to your comfort during the winter, and this is the only place where I say to “not go cheap .”We have tried knock-off versions of hand and foot protection; do NOT do it! We recommend swinging by your local bike shop with your cycling shoes handy so you can ensure the sizing is correct. 

Bar Mitts

Bar Mitts are a staple for essential hand comfort in < 35-degree weather, and add a decent full-finger glove; you are set! Please know there are different sizes and types of Bar Mitts (I suggest Large for Shimano), so be careful when purchasing. Maintaining warmth during your ride is crucial; you can accomplish that with the products above. The other requirement is to keep moving; otherwise, it gets too cold due to your sweat freezing. A mylar blanket is always an idea if you ride far within rural areas and potentially have a mechanical.

Stay warm, and enjoy the ride!

There is nothing more enjoyable than riding your bike in the sun on a crisp winter day. The sights, calming sounds of nature, and overall mental and physical health promotion are worth the money spent. Send your Christmas list to your family to optimize your winter training with new, cost-effective gear and get riding!


Adrienne Wayman

Adrienne Wayman is a triathlon, cycling, and running coach at Move Up Endurance Coaching. She is a Registered Nurse and Exercise Physiologist with a Masters in Kinesiology. During her Master's education, she focused her studies on nutrition for the endurance athlete. She also holds certifications through the American College of Sports Medicine as a Certified Personal Trainer and is a USA Triathlon Level I Certified Coach.

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