If you’re stuck indoors while you do the sensible thing and not go and infect anyone else, here’s our pick of how best to use that time.
Instead of climbing the walls, becoming insufferable on social media, completing the new Call of Duty or spending too much time with your hands in your pants, here’s our top tips for making the most of self-isolation.
Work on your fitness
What better to way to head back to the trails when Coronavirus disappears from our collective conscience than not being a shadow of your former self?
Get on the turbo trainer and smash those Russian Steps, or if you haven’t got a turbo, you can check out Strength Factory’s free home bodyweight workout below.
Strip and rebuild your bike
It has been a long and wet winter here in the UK and your bike probably needs some love. Dust off the tools, get your bike in the stand and give it the love it deserves.
Winter is especially hard on drivetrain and bearings. If you don’t have the time or the now-how to do the rest, get them checked, cleaned and running sweet.
If you need some tools, check out our mega deals on tool kits here.
Learn to do a lower leg service on your fork
Lower leg services are likely what will keep most modern suspension forks running sweet far longer than you might think, and it’s one of those things that is much easier than you might think too.
How your suspension works can have a massive effect on your ride enjoyment, and most mountain bikes will come with at least a decent set of forks. Them working smooth and sweet will make your ride so much better.
Check out TF Tuned’s lower leg service guide below.
Learn to index your gears
Whether your bike is brand spankers or you’ve just fitted a new cable, your gear cable will stretch and the gears simply won’t run as smooth as you’d like.
One of the easiest and often overlooked things is knowing how to index your gears so they change where you want them to when you want them to. None of that annoying skipping chain sound around every ride, balls to the stem when it decides to jump two cogs under power.
Learn how to bleed your brakes
Unless you ride World Cup downhill, it’s highly likely that you use your brakes a fair amount. While throwing a fresh set of pads or larger rotors on might well improve braking performance, there’s far more you can do with a brake bleed.
A freshly-bled should feel responsive and the lever should feel direct, giving you more confidence, while the brake also deals with heat build up better.
Get your tyres setup tubeless
Tubeless tyres offering better rolling resistance while increasing grip and reducing the chance of punctures. Most modern mountain rims will come tubeless ready, so might just need to be sealed with tape, and most mountain tyres will be tubeless ready.
There really is no excuse not to run your tyres tubeless.
Get your suspension setup dialled
If you’ve done everything you can to get your bike rolling like a dream, you can still work on suspension setup. More often than not, riders will learn to ride a bad setup, rather than spend the time dialling in their dampers.
A well setup bike will change the way you ride for the better, meaning you’ll have more fun, and that’s the whole idea, right?
Tidy your toolbox
Instead of storming around the house questioning the ether about the disappearance of your trusty 5mm, why not round all your tools up and put them back in that box you bought specifically for that purpose.
Why not get some different coloured electrical tape and mark the different sizes so you always know which one is which without looking?
Re-proof your waterproofs
During the endless cycle of washing and drying your kit over the winter, you’ll no doubt have noticed your waterproofs have stopped beading water in the rain as it loses it’s ability to deal with the rain.
There are plenty of re-proofing products out there that will get even the biggest wardrobe back to its best.
Learn a new language
While it’s not specifically bike-related, everyone has had that awkward moment where they’ve had to point and wave while on a riding holiday abroad to get themselves understood, much to the chagrin of the locals.
It really doesn’t take long to advance beyond “dos cervezas, por favor”, and there’s plenty of apps out there that can get you flying in no time.
Get on Zwift for a virtual group ride
We’ve not spent huge amounts of time on Zwift here at Wideopenmag but maybe now’s the time?
You’ll need a smart turbo trainer and a Zwift subscription… but when you’re all setup you’ll be able to ride online with real people. You can go for a casual potter or race head to head against the others for fame and glory. You could also arrange a group ride with your mates to get out on the trails when you’re stuck at home.