Packing for a training ride

Simple but effective gear-packing and snack-planning before a training ride means you can focus solely on your performance, explains pro rider Dani King...

Bottle it

“First up ahead of a training ride I’ll prepare my drinks,” says Dani. “For a four-hour ride I’ll take two 500ml bottles of water mounted on the bike frame, and a tube of Zero tablets for hydration. Food-wise I’ll pack the High 5 energy bars we’re supplied by the sponsors – I’m a fan of the protein snack bars as they use a lot of natural ingredients. I’ll mix a variety of snacks in each of the outer pockets.”

Weather watch

“Over time I’ve fine-tuned what I take on a training ride. I’m based in South Wales, where the weather can change in a moment, so the middle pocket of my cycling jersey is home to the ever-present lightweight waterproof top,” says Dani. “For longer rides or all-day events some riders will carry a few extras to cater for temperature changes, such as a cap, a sleeveless gilet and arm warmers.”

Tooled up

“The saddlebag is home to two spare tubes, levers and my mobile phone – for emergencies that replacement tubes can’t fix – and I have a pump fitted to the frame. I don’t like to take much more than that, as the weight starts to tell. Still, riding a bike that’s heavier in training because of the accessories than on race day makes training more challenging too, which is a good thing.”

Longer haul

“On training rides the weight of your equipment won’t dramatically affect your performance,” says Dani. “But for longer rides or sportives, try to condense the increased amount of kit you’ll need and split it between pockets and a bike-mounted bag.” Pack or mount a patch kit, multi-tools, lights and extra fuelling. “Carry enough food and drink to get you round the course – don’t depend on feed stations.”

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