As golden leaves begin to fall and that crisp cool air begins to move in you know that fall is in full swing. Evenings become dark sooner and the opportunities to go for a bike ride dwindle. But just because you don’t have as many chances to ride doesn’t mean you have to lose that hard-earned fitness from riding all summer long. Continue to exercise throughout the off-season months and you just might be able to stretch your summer fitness all the way into next spring. Here’s 5 ways you can stay in shape for fall.
Be sure to take advantage of those beautiful fall days while you still can! Summer is a common favorite time to ride, but fall can certainly offer some spectacular days of riding. Try going out for a long ride where there’s gorgeous fall foliage to be seen. Not only do you have the chance to experience the changes of fall, but you’ll also maintain your endurance base longer and have a stronger foundation when you switch over to indoor rides and shorter workouts.
You might not consider doing a spin class during the summer when the weather is nicest, but during the offseason it’s certainly one of the best ways to stay in cycling shape. For those who’ve taken spin classes, you know that just one class can kick your butt. You’re almost guaranteed to come out feeling sore and covered in sweat. Sometimes it can be hard to stay motivated during an indoor workout, but it’s not likely you’ll have an unmotivated workout during a spin class. With a high-intensity workout playlist and your instructor pushing you to ride faster, you’ll surely have the motivation to power through your workout.
When the weather is cold and you wouldn’t even think of going out for a ride, try going for a run or a swim instead. With running, it isn’t so bad being outside granted you’re warmed up and have proper clothing on. Now, compare that to freezing your hands and face off while riding and you just might rather run.
The best thing about indoor pools is that they are a consistent temperature year round. You could be swimming when it’s below freezing outside and you wouldn’t even feel the difference. What’s nice about swimming is that it’s completely impact free and does a serious wonder for your core.
For the outdoor cycling enthusiast, cross training at the gym is probably the least desirable place to exercise. It’s hard to blame them either when the weather is nice during the summer. However, during the winter indoor cross training is an excellent way to stay in shape for the offseason. It gives you the chance to return to some resistance training to help bolster your strength, balance out any muscular imbalances and improve your core stability and endurance. Incorporate cross training consistently in your workout and you’ll have a stronger platform to train on when the season starts back up in the spring.
It’s tempting but try and avoid those snacks! While it’s not necessary to count calories and put yourself on a diet, try to keep your diet in accordance with how much you workout. Most Americans consume around 600 calories per day , which isn’t bad for someone who rides them off but isn’t the best for a cyclist not training during the offseason.
 Source: ARS-USDA pg. 1
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