The off-season really sort of snuck up on us. It was the early season, then all of the sudden we were in Asheville with Worlds around the corner. What happened? When we started thinking about how we were going to fill some of our downtime we turned to our archives to see what we’ve done in the past. 

A few years ago we polled you, our readers, and got some great ideas on how to fill the void that the end of the season brings. We also asked around the Cyclocross Magazine offices what everyone’s plans were. The ideas everyone came up with then are still pretty spot on.

Back then we were getting Issue 20 to printers. Fast forward to today and we’re putting the finishing touches on great coverage of the 2016 Cyclocross National Championships as well as the 2016 Cyclocross World Championships before getting ready to see Issue 32 of to the printers.

Enjoy this look back at some solid ideas for off-season down-time. 

by Molly Hurford

Guilty pleasures like soft serve ice cream are an off season goal for many.

Guilty pleasures like soft serve ice cream are an off season goal for many.

When sitting down for breakfast this weekend, we suddenly realized: we didn’t have anywhere to be. No race to get ready for, no muddy kit to wash. It was a disconcerting feeling, so of course we squelched it by heading out on a ride. But it did leave us with the question: what do you do now that weekends are free? Sure, some people are racing again, and most of cyclocross pros are getting to their second jobs of mountain and road racing. But even for the most hardened roadies out there, unlike cyclocross season, there aren’t races nearly every weekend. Surely, you get some time off. So how do you spend it?

We asked our online community, and here were a few of our favorite answers:

  • Train for next season
  • Sleep
  • Chores
  • Stay sober(ish)
  • Wish for ’cross season and ride my road bike on the grass
  • Mountain bike, brunch with friends, sleep in late
  • Catch up on all the stuff we put off during racing season
  • Spend less time in the car traveling, more time around city of residence doing “stuff” (and riding)
  • Ride my mountain bikes more and not drive so much
  • Trail ride on my cyclocross bike. Not like it gets hung up for eight months
  • Breakfast in bed with my wife and kid. Sometimes I make it.
  • Eat some friggin’ waffles. Train. Dinner on restaurant patios.
  • Ski and train for next ’cross season, of course.
  • Drink wine, eat cake, have a holiday with no bikes, eat roast dinner and more cake! (from Helen Wyman)
  • Sit

Our favorite, from the Director of the Cross Crusades series: “#1. Not have ulcer/hangover/freakout/all before 4:30am.”

How does the staff at Cyclocross Magazine spend the off-season? Our top five:

  1. Seeing our poor, neglected families
  2. Finally enjoying watching races that we don’t have to write about
  3. Taking long, leisurely rides, or racing our road and MTBs now that we have time
  4. Instead of having mountains of laundry to do, using that hot water to soak in a bath with Epsom salts
  5. And, of course, working hard on Issues 21 and 22, while Issue 20 heads off to the printers!