Eight brilliant biking books you should buy
- Monday 20 September 2021
Calling all novices, experienced peddlers, and self-proclaimed cycling legends!
Looking for inspiration and advice about where next to go for a spin? Want to find out how you can preserve your cycling body for years to come? Or maybe you just want to bolster your bookshelf with yet another book about a cat that cycles (kinda) all around the world.
Chiz Dakin takes on the Tour De Peak District in Big Rides.
Great British Bike Rides is the book you’ve always wanted without knowing it. Dave’s done all the heavy lifting to put together this compendium of stunning rides. Rides which treat you to the best of Britain’s countryside panoramas but also test your perseverance. This isn’t a book for the faint-hearted. With celebrated and more obscure rides packed together in these pages, anyone who ticks off every ride in this book can claim to be a true British cycling fanatic. Watch out, Mark Cavendish!
Traffic-Free Cycle Trails by Nick Cotton
If forty bike rides isn’t enough, how about 400? This truly is a bible of British cycling, and it’s perfect for novices and families because every single one of the 400 rides in this book avoids traffic. No matter where you live in England, Scotland or Wales, Nick has you covered with a wonderful selection of short, accessible routes. So, slip on your cycling gear, wheel out your bike, drag your kid off the Xbox, and get cracking!
Nala’s World: One Man, his Rescue Cat, and a Bike Ride Around the Globe by Dean Nicholson
Nala’s World is the wholesome story to top all wholesome stories. Three months after leaving Scotland to cycle around the world, Dean Nicholson encountered an abandoned kitten on an isolated mountain road between Montenegro and Bosnia. Soon after, Nala became his globetrotting companion and a social media sensation, visiting refugee camps and helping Dean rescue animals across Asia and Europe. It’s a heart-melting memoir if there ever was one.
Cycling routes can often take you on rougher terrain, this path is found near Scremersto and featured in Big Rides. Image taken by Stephen Ross.
Mountains According to G by Geraint Thomas
Apart from cycling them yourself, there’s no better way to really get to know some of the world’s grandest ascents than to hear about them from one of Britain’s best cyclists; somebody who’s conquered them all. In his typical playful style, Geraint Thomas transports you into his own body as he crawls up the slopes, telling you how they feel and hurtling down memory lane as he digs up some tortured, but fond, memories about these punishing mountains.
Epic Bike Rides of Europe by Lonely Planet
Noted for its gorgeous photography, this book is an inspiring and useful companion for anyone yearning to master Europe on two wheels. Curated by distinguished riders and journalists, Epic Bike Rides of Europe focuses on fifty trails, each complemented by context, maps, and suggested similar routes. It’s Lonely Planet at their best, offering a detailed and fact-driven catalogue of everything you could possibly want to know about the rides recommended.
The Midlife Cyclist: The Road Map for the 40+ Rider Who Wants to Train Hard, Ride Fast and Stay Healthy by Phil Cavell
A gift sent from the cycling gods. Phil Cavell, a cycling biomechanics pioneer, investigates the science behind staying in top condition, avoiding injuries, and optimising your performance even when your birth certificate says you shouldn’t! This is a must-have guide for anyone who wants to thrive in the bike seat into their wiser years.
The long climb up from long preston on the Penine Cycleway. Image by Joolze Dymond
The Greatest: The Life and Times of Beryl Burton by William Fotheringham
Beryl Burton is beyond compare. She was perhaps the trailblazer for all women cyclists, with a brutal determination etched into her competitive spirit. She ended up with roughly 100 national and international titles, set dozens of records, and ripped up the script by beating men in a world that didn’t take female cyclists seriously. William Fotheringham tells the story of a British cycling icon in detail for the first time.
Full Gas: How to Win a Race: Tactics from Inside the Peloton by Peter Cossins
Ever wanted to know the tactical intricacies of running the peloton of a Grand Tour? Well, now you can. Peter Cossins brings us an in-depth understanding of everything tactics: the science behind a breakaway, how teams deal with crosswinds, the machinations behind bluffing – and all from the horse’s mouth … or at least the mouths of the cyclists and sporting directors that Peter spoke to. After reading this, you’ll be able to understand the thrilling chess game of the Tour de France peloton in no time. And if it’s any endorsement, Cossins scooped up a ‘Cycling Book of the Year’, courtesy of The Telegraph, for this.