The summer cycling season is fast approaching, and it's going to mean that riders need to consider what they can do to stay safe and healthy all season long.
In New Mexico, that starts with fighting the heat. Temperatures can soar in the summer months, and it's crucial for cyclists to check the weather before heading out. Extremely hot temperatures can lead to issues like heat stroke and cramping.
A key step they can take to prepare for the heat is to acclimate to it. You should go on shorter rides and spend time outside doing less intensive exercises. You don't want your first main exposure to the summer temperatures to be a massive all-day ride with a lot of elevation gain. Start small and let your body adapt.
The biggest focus for any summer activity, though, should be hydrating. Nothing is more important on those hot rides. When in doubt, drink more than you think you should. Always bring a cool bottle of water with you, even for short rides.
Of course, with schools out and tourists both leaving and entering the state, you also have to contend with high traffic levels. Safety in the summer isn't just safety from the sun or the heat. You also need to understand how to ride carefully around cars, how to watch for common mistakes drivers make and how to become a defensive cyclist who focuses on avoiding accidents.
This focus isn't always enough. If you get hit by a careless driver, you may need to seek financial compensation for your medical bills and other expenses and damages.