Christmas is pretty much upon us now – the organised among us have browsed the stores, chosen perfect presents and tucked them away, the less organised have hopefully got their gift vouchers ready in an envelope.
But, what are you planning to do on the day itself?
Christmas day can often consist of a lot of chocolate, some very cheesy TV, and visits from various family members you may or may not have seen for some time.
If you’d like to inject a little bit of cycling joy into the festivities, click through to find a couple of inspired ideas:
[part title="Christmas Day Cycling Activities"]
Join a Christmas Ride
Going for a ride might seem a really obvious suggestion, but lots of people feel that Christmas day isn’t the time to be pounding out some solo miles.
Why not turn your ride into a sociable celebration by bike?
Many organisations lead rides on Christmas day, for example the London Cycling Campaigns’ “Mithrasmas Mass 2013 Christmas Day Ride" which has been a feature on the calendar since 2001.
The Mithrasmas Mass ride begins at 10am and finishes at 2pm, incorporating a lunch stop for those who don’t have family plans, and an earlier return time for those that do.
Rides like this give you the opportunity to mingle with other cyclists, and meet new people.
But, if you’re more keen to stick with your gang, why not arrange a Christmas route with your ride buddies? Come mid-morning the roads are quiet, trails are free - it’s a perfect way to work up an appetite for that turkey.
[part title="Christmas Day Cycling Cuisine"]
Bake a Christmas cake - with a difference!
Fancy decorating the dinner table with a dessert that shows off your hobby? The internet is crawling with fantastic images of cakes decorated to celebrate cycling - so why not have a go?
You could get creative with a cookie cutter like this one from Bisk Art - with a little crafty icing these could make some fun creations:
If you'd like a step by step guide, the BBC published this fantastic velodrome cake recipe this year and it went down a storm with cyclists everywhere. The recipe doesn’t contain any extra special baking skill witchery, and just requires a steady cutting hand – so take a look here.
[part title="Cycle-themed Christmas Games"]
Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without the usually family argument around the board game table, so why not at least try a game that involves your hobby and will have you spinning with joy (hopefully!).
Sticky Forehead Game – with popular cyclists
How well do you and your gang know the most famous cyclists? A two-wheel themed version of the sticky forehead game will reveal all.
The game, if you don’t already know it, is simple:
Everyone writes a celebrity (in this case pro cyclists’) name on a piece of paper. You swap papers, so you don’t know what is on the one in your hand, and then stick it to your forehead - hence post it notes are recommended).
Then, you take it in turns to guess which cyclists’ name is stuck to your forehead by asking questions of the group.
Here's one we prepared earlier:
[part title="Cycle-themed quiet time"]
Learn more about some of the legends
While we’re on the topic of the cycling greats, why not use your holiday time to learn more about the riders who inspire you?
Biographical accounts can give a great insight into the peloton, and sometimes the passion for cycling can rush off the page and into your heart and lungs and have you pounding the pedals through January with renewed vigour.
One of my personal favourites is “The Flying Scotsman", the story of Graeme Obree, and it’s a film too so could be a family experience, though the story is a little sad, so be ready with tissues!
Another favourite is “The Hour" by Time Trialist and Cycling Weekly columnist Michael Hutchinson, who really is an amazing writer.
If you want to learn about one of the inspirational women in cycling history, check out “Racing Is Life: The Beryl Burton Story DVD" to see more of the phenomenal legend who proved herself the Best British All Rounder 25 times in a row.
[part title="Christmas cycle shopping..."]
Pick up a January Sale Bargain
The January Sale hasn’t always been a crucial part of the cycling store calendar – in the depths of winter, it doesn’t necessarily make sense for bike shops to be handing out reductions on items such as winter warmer clothing which will be relevant for a couple of months to come.
However, to be in keeping with the rest of the high street and other retailers, the big shops usually bust out their January deals on Christmas day or soon after.
If you find yourself sprawled across a comfy sofa with time on your hands, why not take the opportunity to be one of the first to visit the online clearance rail?
What are you planning to do to celebrate Christmas day this year?