Summer Fixed Wheel Revelation (Just For Cyclists)

‘Ride a fixed wheel in winter’ is – I’m told – the old British approach to training and I guess I’m traditional enough to do just that. I don’t ride to train, I ride because I enjoy riding, I enjoy riding a fixed wheel and because they’re such simple bikes, they take the winter battering very well. I tend to do 15-20 milers, and do fewer geared road and off-road miles.

However, this summer I’ve been doing one or two short (10 mile or so) fixed wheel rides a week on top of longer geared road rides and I’ve been surprised at how beneficial it’s proving. The improved fluidity in pedalling is marked; there’s something about how your legs ‘learn’ to keep turning regardless that I find they don’t unlearn when on another bike. The result’s very positive – particularly so when you’re faced with a bit of a slog like I was today – the last 10 of 40 miles were into a stiffening headwind.

It might not work for everyone, but if you’ve a fixed wheel that you can get out on, try it in summer and see.