women

Can I Wear Guys Cycling Shorts?

The easy answer to the question “Can I wear guys cycling shorts?”

Yes!

The hidden answer after that is, as long as they fit you.

For a very long time women were lucky to have various types of moderate level shorts.  There has been a few companies that come to mind that have been doing women’s cycling shorts well. These companies are : Pearl Izumi, Giordana, Sugoi, and Sheebeast.

Even with these brands, for one reason or another I’ve still worn about 50-75% of the time, guys shorts.   One of those large reasons are bib shorts, which is another topic in its own, I love them and not one company has made a good women’s design bib.  This has left me wearing guys bibs.  Other reasons are team sponsorship, right now the shops team kit are guys bibs, which is fine with me.

Reasons Not to Wear Guys Shorts

Length of chamois.  The pad/chamois goes high on guys shorts as they have more “package.” This freaks some women out as it comes well in front of the pubic bone.
Chamois size.  Remember that whole women’s design?  That goes with shorts too.  Women tend to need wider chamois in their shorts.  Just make sure the chamois doesn’t end too quickly for you or end where the saddle will rub.  That will leave you with several saddle sores.
Inseam length.  Companies tend to put a shorter inseam on women’s shorts compared to men’s.  This is another reason that I wear guys, I have long legs and the 6″ inseam on girls shorts are just too short normally.

Recommended Guys Shorts/Bibs to Try

Bontrager RXL
My go to shorts for the past year since I found them.  They have different materials through out the short to help with compression and the chamois is made to mate with their inForm saddles.

Gore Power Bib
– One of my new favorites if you read my article a couple days ago.  One note, do NOT get the Men’s Xenon bibs as the chamois has a break in the middle.  Can you say “camel toe?”

Final Thoughts

Don’t let your local bike shop confuse you, your favorite pair of shorts are two fold.  The first is the dressing room test, is it comfortable?  The second is to make sure it fits well on your favorite saddle.  Seams away from the edge of your saddles and that the chamois doesn’t “fold” in half and start pushing up on soft tissues.

Men’s or women’s : who cares as long as it fits?

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Batavus BUB Review : Introduction

Batavus BUB

Batavus BUB

A quick introduction was posted over at CommuteByBike.com to introduce the Batavus BUB I had teased about a couple weeks ago.  The BUB is a watered down version of most Batavus bikes.  It’s for the person wanting a true city bike but not all the bells and whistles like full chain guard and generator lights.

We are fortunate enough to be one of the first bike testers for the prototype Batavus BUB.  The bike we had in for review was a one speed with a coaster brake.  Slowly I’ll be unveiling my own thoughts, along with a friend who is a pretty new cyclist/commuter.  Let’s start with an introduction from a shop called Renaissance Bikes that was our contact for the BUB.

This product was given to me at no charge for reviewing.  I was not paid or bribed to give this review and it will have my honest opinion or thoughts through out.

Preventative Maintenance : Lube Your Chain

Prolink Lube

Proper technique in lubing your chain will help prolong the life of your drive train also a clean bike is a happy bike!!

1. Pick a lube.  There are dozens and dozens of decent lubes out there depending where you ride.  I could write a whole post about the different lubes and when/where to use them.  For now consult a good riding buddy or a local mechanic.  Here in Charlotte I like to use ProLink for everyday riding, in the winter rainy months or when I head up to Asheville in the winter I swap over to a more wax based lube.

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Wednesday Round Up

VO Mixte Cyclelicious reports on 3 different recalls for the day from Felt Bikes, Burley Trailers and Nirve Bikes.

Velo Orange has photos of their prototype mixte’s that will be available early 2010.

The Safe Routes to School Conference started today in Portland.  Follow BikePortland on twitter for more updates.

Chic Cyclist gives her impression of the bike share program in Paris called Velib.

What’s in Your Bag?

Seat Bag

A common question seems to be : What’s in your bicycle bag?

The bag they are referring to could be my seat bag found under most of my saddles, one of my messenger type bags slung over my back on the way to work or the store, or maybe my Camelbak on the way to the local mountain bike trail.

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Basics : Cycling Computers

There is a great accessory for your bike called a bike computer or cyclometer.   Like a cars dashboard it can tell you many things about your speed, average, time and even get into more detailed things like cadence*, heart rate or incline.  The computer works on your bike by either a cable running from the computer head unit on your handlebar/stem area down your bike to a sensor that zip ties on.  Then a magnet is placed on your wheel, every time the magnet spins past the sensor it sends a transmission to the computer head.  It computes how many times per minute or second the magnet goes around, does some math and tells you your speed/distance.   The wheel diameter is very important as that is part of the calculation to get the right speed/time so make sure to set your computer head unit for your wheel and tire size.  If you change tire sizes, reset the settings.

There are many ways to separate computers, especially if you start getting in to a lot of data capturing.  For this article we will start basic, wired or wireless.

Trek Incite 9iWired Versions :

Entry Level :
Basic featured include speed, time and average speed.  Utilizing a cable that runs from your handlebars down to your front fork on the bike.  They range from $24-35 and many type or colors are available. The Trek 6i and Cateye Mity 8 are my picks in this category.  For this category, go down to your local bike shop and buy what they recommend.  This way they are familiar with set up if you need any help at all.

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Urban Outfitters Bike Shop

The popular store, Urban Outfitters has seemed to have teamed up with Republic Bike to offer Republic’s popular under $400 singlespeed/fixed gear wheels.  What makes this bike popular?  The price and the fact you can change almost every part on the bikes color.  A good time waster is to press “Random” to see what color options it comes up with for me.

Republic Bike

Everyday Cycling Clothing

Our poll last week to answer the question “Do You Wear Cycling Clothing” had a great response and one of the common questions were what can I wear if I don’t want to be caught dead outside in skin tight spandex?  There are many clothing options out these days that aren’t skin tight and do a great job of keeping you dry and comfortable but styling.

auroratTechnical Shirts :

Many people are familiar with the brand Under Armour, or before that Adidas and Nike had a great following for “technical clothing.”  This was clothing that wicked away your sweat but breathed well.   There are some technical shirts geared towards riding which have a lower cut back for when you bend over so you aren’t exposing anything and built in basic pockets to hold a gel or key.  Budget between $35 – 70 for a good wicking shirt.  Be prepared that polyester is a key make up of these shirts and can trap stink.

A couple of my favorites include the Aurora T (pictured right) from Pearl Izumi for around $35.  Also, one that I plan on picking up for the fall is the Sugoi Crossroads Henley.  Perfect for fall riding, grocery trip hauling or mountain biking when it is chilly.

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Wrapping Your Handlebars

After playing most the weekend with video editing and voice overs, I decided to continue learning and pull YouTube video’s from TriSports for your viewing pleasure. (The guy isn’t bad looking either.)

Here is a great video on wrapping road handlebars:

A couple notes from my personal experience :

  • Go slow
  • Make sure to overlap half way as you go around the bar
  • Have all your supplies ready to rock prior to starting
  • Clean your hands, it is very frustrating to get done a perfect wrapping job to have grease marks every where.
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