Cycling Books For Beginners And Beyond

FTC Notice: I was provided copies of these cycling books to review with no further obligation. This post contains Amazon affiliate links which means I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

It’s official. I am hooked on cycling. While I used to plan my weekends around a long run, I now find myself trying to figure out how I can fit a long run and a bike ride into my busy weekend schedule. Not only that, but if there just isn’t time for both I might actually give priority to the bike ride. Who am I?

Bike 2

In all  honesty, cycling gets priority on weekends because it is easier for me to run on weekdays, but still! 

Last weekend I had it all planned out: an early bike ride Saturday and then a 6 mile run on Sunday before my late-morning flight to San Diego. But then this happened:

Weather Forecast

I am not comfortable riding my bike in the rain, so I ditched my cycling plans and went for a rainy run instead. The rainy Saturday gave me a chance to catch up on things around the house and finish my review of three new cycling books from Bicycling Magazine.

Essential Road Bike Maintenance

Bicycling Essential Road Bike Maintenance Handbook is 166 pages divided into color-coded sections:

  • Foundation (Frame, Headsets)
  • Contact Points (Pedals, Saddle and Seatpost, Handlebar and Stem)
  • Controls (Shifters, Disc Brakes, Rim Brakes)
  • Drivetrain (Front Derailleur, Crankset and Bottom Bracket, Chain, Cassette, Rear Derailleur)
  • Wheels (Hubs, Wheels, Rims, Tires)

It has lots of pictures and url’s for videos on bicycling.com — how cool is that?

I asked my husband to review this book because he takes care of all of our bike maintenance. He gave it a thumbs up which is saying a lot–he’s an engineer which I think makes him very particular about these types of things!

Big Book Of Cycling

I was excited to read the The Bicycling Big Book of Cycling for Beginners. Now that I’ve been cycling for almost two years, I am ready to learn more about form and technique, and even though I usually ride with my husband, I probably should learn some of the lingo in case I want to hold my own in a conversation with other cyclists.

This book is 268 pages and covers topics including:

  • Selecting a bicycle that best fits you and your needs
  • How to appropriately outfit yourself with gear and equipment
  • Basic riding and etiquette skills, including how to navigate traffic
  • The anatomy of a bicycle and its various components
  • Body tune up for greater endurance, strength, and speed
  • Training and Nutrition
  • Maintaining your bike, how to perform routine repairs

It has a fun, light tone which makes it easy to read (even the technical parts). In my first skim through, I learned that I’m not supposed to wear undies under my cycling shorts–how could my husband not have told me that!  😉

Bike Your Butt Off

Bike Your Butt Off! was less interesting to me because I do not need to lose weight, but it has lots of great information for anyone interested in cycling their way to better health. Its 288 pages include cycling tips, workouts, nutritional advice, and personal testimonials. Chapter 1 includes core strengthening exercises and stretches that I know I should do as a cyclist and a runner, and Chapter 8 has a whole section on foam rolling.

The book is divided into 12 chapters, and the end of each chapter has an exercise plan and diet/nutrition goals that you can work through as a 12 week program. The diet/nutrition goals build from simply tracking your food, to paying attention to hunger cues, portion sizes, and food choices, etc. The diet/nutrition advice covers not just what to eat, but also other aspects of eating and overeating like cravings, snacking, special occasions, etc. It takes a sensible approach to build long-lasting healthy habits and the advice and suggestions are useful even if you are not trying to lose weight. (This means me!)

Do you like to read up on your fitness activities or do you prefer to “just do it”?

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10 Responses to Cycling Books For Beginners And Beyond

  1. ugh we’ve had so much rain here in st louis too! i don’t read many fitness books – just blogs! 🙂
    Linz @ Itz Linz recently posted…1000 Meter Swim WorkoutMy Profile

  2. I definitely could have used that book last weekend on maintenance. We should hook up for a bike ride sometime!
    Deborah Brooks @ Confessions of a Mother Runner recently posted…Reston Relay TriMy Profile

  3. Lea says:

    very cool! maybe I need to pick up one of these books.

  4. jill conyers says:

    I read! Sometimes too much and I end up with information overload 🙂
    jill conyers recently posted…Build Your Own Burger BarMy Profile

  5. I do a lot of reading, but not about sports. Occasionally I thumb through a book a sports book if it looks interesting but I think I am more of a do it on my own girl:)
    However, I would love to get into cycling. I used to really love mountain biking and would go all of the time, got pretty good at climbing mountains and slickrock. But I think it would be great to get a road bike!
    Kristy @Runaway Bridal Planner recently posted…Five Things About MeMy Profile

  6. Pingback: The Bicycling Big Book Of Training - Got2Run4Me

  7. Ryder says:

    when I was a school student, I read different kinds of the sports book. Most of the time I read cycling books which gave me much knowledge about cycling and mountain biking. Yet, I didn’t ride on cycle. But now I’m a chain cyclist.

  8. Revu69 says:

    Hey buddy, really admirable. Being grateful as you posted such a useful and informative post. I would like to save it for later. Thanks a lot for sharing your great thoughts. Looking forward for more from you

  9. Cikilu96 says:

    Admirable!!! Such an amazing post with bunch of info and touching pics. Thanks a lot for sharing your moments. Looking forward for more.

  10. Gioko Pat says:

    Great read this one, I would love to start mountain biking soon in future. I will be looking out for one of these books; the Bike Your Butt Off one.

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