In my last post I mentioned the essential beginner cycling accessories that you will need for any type of biking that you are doing. Here is some other beginner road cycling gear that you will need if you are venturing a good distance from home, whether on your first group ride or on your own (many of these can be mountain bike accessories also):
Bicycle Saddle Bag: A small bicyle bag that fits under your bike’s saddle that can hold the essentials for changing a flat, plus maybe a few small items like a cell phone and cash or credit card. Here’s the wedge bag I have: Topeak Aero Wedge Pack. This pack also has a loop on the back to hang your bike taillight from.
Inner Tubes: I suggest carrying two bicycle innertubes that fit your specific bike. You could carry a tire patching kit, but if you need to get moving quickly again it’s best to carry tubes and patch the old tube later.
Tire Levers: Bicycle tire levers can give you some assistance in getting your bike tire off of the rim so you can fix a flat. Here’s an example: Serfas TLV Tire Levers
Tire Pump or CO2 Tire Inflator: You’ll need to either have a frame mounted tire pump (like this: Topeak Mini DXG MasterBlaster Pump with Gauge) or a CO2 cartride tire inflator (like this: Planet Bike Red Zeppelin) to pump up your tires and get rolling again. I carry a CO2 inflator with two CO2 cartridges in my saddle bag. Update: I’d actually recommend carrying the CO2 cartridges to get you started, then using the frame pump to make sure you have inflated the tire enough.
Bicycle Multi-Tool: It’s also important to have a compact bike multi-tool in your saddle bag to tighten up your saddle or handlebars, if they start to loosen, and make other adjustments. Here’s an example: Topeak 9 Function Mini Tool
Cycling Eyewear: With the possibility of getting dust or even rocks sent your way by passing cars, it’s a good idea to have some protective eyewear — something like these JiMarti Cycling Sunglasses. Don’t tell anyone I told you, but you can also accomplish the same purpose cheaply with safety glasses like these Dewalt Safety Glasses (many come in either clear and smoke lenses), and I also have several of these cheap but good glasses: Radians Safety Glasses.
Cycling Gloves: Last, but certainly not least, if you are going to be riding for a while on a bike then cycling gloves are a must to keep your hands comfortable, like these Planet Bike Cycling Gloves or these ladies Pearl Izumi Cycling Gloves.
Clipless Pedals: Most beginner road bikes come either with regular flat platform pedals or pedals with cages and straps with clips to tighten. However, you will eventually want to move to “clipless” pedals to get more power from pedaling. For beginners, I like the kind of pedals that are flat platforms on one side and the other side is set up to ride with shoes with “cleats” to lock in, so I have these Shimano M324 Pedals on my road bike.
I know it sounds like a lot, but most of these items are pretty inexpensive, and all but your gloves and glasses will just sit in your saddle bag until you need it — and then you’ll be glad you are prepared with these essential cycling accessories. Happy cycling!
Other relevant articles: