Keeping warm and dry in the cold and wet



F

Fay

Guest
My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up. It's even
harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.

I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
clothes. I'm sure my grandmother, who cycled most days into her 70s
with a wicker shopping basket on her ancient bicycle, knew answers to
this problem. I'm sure that with today's modern materials there are
even better answers to this problem than she knew. But going into
bicycle shops staffed by muscular teenagers wearing cycling tights I
don't seem to heading in the right direction to find an answer :)

Fay
 
W

wafflycat

Guest
"Fay" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up. It's even
> harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
> wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.
>


Hello from another middle-aged woman who cycles :)



> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes. I'm sure my grandmother, who cycled most days into her 70s
> with a wicker shopping basket on her ancient bicycle, knew answers to
> this problem. I'm sure that with today's modern materials there are
> even better answers to this problem than she knew. But going into
> bicycle shops staffed by muscular teenagers wearing cycling tights I
> don't seem to heading in the right direction to find an answer :)
>
> Fay



When cycling I wear RonHill Bikesters (I wear a pair of padded Lycra cycle
shorts under the Bikesters).

See
http://www.wiggle.co.uk/images/ronhill bikesters 06 new.jpg

I wear the all-black ones. I don't mind the thin reflective stripe on the
back, but if you really didn't want it there, it would be easy to remove. I
know Wiggle calls them tights, but they are actually looser than thights -
more like a sort of loose ski-pant with a higher back then normal to stop
your back getting cold when cycling.

The answer to colder weather is layering. Several thin layers are useful as
you can shed or put on layers as necessary.

Cheers, helen s
 
D

David Martin

Guest
Fay wrote:
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up.


How far are you riding and on what sort of terrain? I ride to work
about 1.5 miles and don't bother with anything special. During the
winter I wear a fleece and a raincoat (cycle specific cut but an
ordinary one does fine) when the weather demands. If it doesn't demant
I put it in the pannier bag. In summer I dispense with the fleece and
usually the raincoat as well.


This is the typical layering problem. You have two options:

1. cycle slowly so you never get too warm. Not really an appropriate
option in anything other than very flat lands.
2. Take a jumper/cardigan that you can take off when riding and put
back on when you stop.

> It's even
> harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
> wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.


A modern fleece with the appropriate cover/lining will provide
showerproof cycling wear. There is no option but getting wet from
exercise in a downpour except to wear waterproofs and slow down.


> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes.


Cycling or running tights will provide appropriate warmth in the winter
and can be disguised easily with a skirt or baggy shorts/trousers as
appropriate.

> I'm sure my grandmother, who cycled most days into her 70s
> with a wicker shopping basket on her ancient bicycle, knew answers to
> this problem.

She probably cycled at a 'ladylike' pace and carried a spare pullover
in the basket.

> I'm sure that with today's modern materials there are
> even better answers to this problem than she knew. But going into
> bicycle shops staffed by muscular teenagers wearing cycling tights I
> don't seem to heading in the right direction to find an answer :)


Find clothes that are comfortable. Avoid cotton. Be prepared to be cold
as you start off and warm up underway. Take clothes off and put them on
as appropriate.

Sorrry I can't give you any specifics. It depends on how far you are
riding, for how long, how prepared you are to change clothes, what sort
of things you are happy to wear to go shopping and so on.

...d
 
C

Clive George

Guest
"Fay" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up. It's even
> harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
> wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.
>
> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes. I'm sure my grandmother, who cycled most days into her 70s
> with a wicker shopping basket on her ancient bicycle, knew answers to
> this problem. I'm sure that with today's modern materials there are
> even better answers to this problem than she knew. But going into
> bicycle shops staffed by muscular teenagers wearing cycling tights I
> don't seem to heading in the right direction to find an answer :)


As a female lady-type person, I'd say you have a distinct advantage over the
other half of the population, in that black tights are acceptable dress (not
that it stops me anyway - I'll happily go shopping in full lycra). Winter
cycling tights - ones with a slightly fleecy feel - are jolly good in both
cold and wet. Then a skirt over the top takes care of the looks.

Top is harder though - I've never really solved the sweat vs rain problem,
although my rather expensive goretex XCR jacket with pit zips is getting
closest. I wear a wicking t-shirt type thing underneath, and try to warm up
by pedalling.

The traditional granny solution of a big thick coat and pedalling slowly
enough that sweat isn't an issue wouldn't work for me.

cheers,
clive
 
A

Andy Leighton

Guest
On 4 Jan 2006 08:44:04 -0800, Fay <[email protected]> wrote:
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up.


[snip]

> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes.


Well wool is pretty good - so I usually wear a woolly jumper in the
cold weather. Another thing to look at is a windproof/showerproof layer
- which can be a fleece or something like the Montane Featherlite.

If things have zips you can unzip them as you begin to heat up.

It all depends on how cold you feel - there is a big difference between
comfort levels from individual to individual.

--
Andy Leighton => [email protected]
"The Lord is my shepherd, but we still lost the sheep dog trials"
- Robert Rankin, _They Came And Ate Us_
 
P

Peter B

Guest
"Fay" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up. It's even
> harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
> wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.


I think that you have to accept being cold on some points of a winter bike
ride if you want to avoid getting too hot <1>.
Based on my own experience when I first go outside I'll feel cool but as
soon as I start cycling I'll feel cold until my body generates heat from
work due to wind chill.
If I then cycle slowly up a hill I'll get very warm but feel colder
descending the other side fast.
Maybe Grandmother was just more accepting of being cold and didn't expect
the ambient temp to be a constant 22c which we now come to expect ;-)

On a longish ride it's not a problem to use the layering technique: Base
layer to wick perspiration, mid layer for warmth and shell to keep out wind
and/or rain but this isn't cheap and may not be practical for a short
commute, I'll leave the commuters on the group to provide tried & tested
solutions.

<1> When winter mtbing we might drive in a snug car to somewhere remote
then have to get out into the cold and sort out bikes and stuff, the
temptation is to over-dress which results in a mass strip half way up the
first climb :)
--
Pete
http://uk.geocities.com/[email protected]/Stuff
 
C

Cheryl

Guest
On Wed, 4 Jan 2006 17:04:04 -0000, "Clive George"
<[email protected]> wrote:


>
>I'll happily go shopping in full lycra


Quote of the year and it's only the 4th of Jan. :)

C.
 
C

Chris

Guest
Fay wrote:
> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races. My problem
> is that it's hard to find clothes which are warm enough when I'm cold,
> but cool enough that I don't sweat a lot when I've warmed up. It's even
> harder to find something reasonably rain proof which doesn't make me
> wetter than rain because of sweating inside it.
>
> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes. I'm sure my grandmother, who cycled most days into her 70s
> with a wicker shopping basket on her ancient bicycle, knew answers to
> this problem. I'm sure that with today's modern materials there are
> even better answers to this problem than she knew. But going into
> bicycle shops staffed by muscular teenagers wearing cycling tights I
> don't seem to heading in the right direction to find an answer :)
>
> Fay
>


You're not the only one to feel nervous in some cycle shops!

There's a teensy weensy flaw in your logic that I can see. Cycling
to/from work in the winter (which is a Good Thing!) will inevitably mean
cycling in dark/dim/foggy/wet conditions, not to mention busy roads.
Under those conditions you don't want to wear "normal" clothes - at
least on the outer layer - you want something that shouts "I AM A
CYCLIST, KEEP OUT OF MY WAY". Something bright, Hi Vis, and reflective
will do it. You can get gillets that are so thin they're hardly there so
will go over everyday clothes, and will shine up like a bugger in car
headlights.

I'm assuming we not talking any great distance here. Anything more than
5 miles or so, and I would think you'll want to use separate clothes.
Modern fabrics have come a long way since your Grandmothers time - the
trousers that Helen mentions will go from sodden to dry in about half an
hour on a warm radiator, and are warm enough even for sub-zero conditions.

I'll give way now to others here who know much more than I do about this
stuff :)

Good Luck

--
Chris
 
J

John Hearns

Guest
On Wed, 04 Jan 2006 08:44:04 -0800, Fay wrote:

> My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet.


Wear a scarf. Seriously - it keeps cold draughts going down the neck,
and keeps the carotid arteries warm.
Even better, get a fleece neckwarmer. I have one from Decathlon which
turns into a bobble hat using a drawstring. Costs a few pounds.

Sorry - I can't suggest a jacket which doesn't say 'cyclist'.
Try maybe Marks and Sparks, or the Hawkshead web page.
For cycling clothes and jackets, I like the Parrot range of clothes.
 
J

John Hearns

Guest
On Wed, 04 Jan 2006 16:58:08 +0000, wafflycat wrote:


>
> I wear the all-black ones. I don't mind the thin reflective stripe on the
> back, but if you really didn't want it there, it would be easy to remove.
> I know Wiggle calls them tights, but they are actually looser than thights
> - more like a sort of loose ski-pant with a higher back then normal to
> stop your back getting cold when cycling.

Seconding what Wafflycat says, if you don't want to look like a cyclist
think 'skiing'.
Must be plenty of ski stuff at Marks and Spencers.
In Tchibo I got a microfibre ski jacket before Christmas for £20.
Everyone who saw it commented how good it looked.

Going with what others have said - wear a reflective Sam Browne style belt
if you go for dark ski clothes.
Also for jackets think windproof more than waterproof. A 'showerproof' ski
jacket would be just fine for cycling.
 
D

dkahn400

Guest
Fay wrote:

> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes.


Unfortunately cycling-specific is best, particularly for your jacket.
This is both for the cut and for visibility. A cycling jacket will be
cut longer in the back and the sleeves to make sure your lower back and
wrists remain covered. The pockets will be positioned so things in them
won't get in your way as you reach forward for the handlebars. It will
also have reflective strips built into it that will help you to be seen
at night. These can be quite discreet so it doesn't have to shout
"cyclist". There are styles that are quite wearable off the bike.

I understand the problem with being intimidated by the lads in the bike
shop, so why not have a look on-line? Go to <http://www.wiggle.co.uk/>
and then pick "Waterproofs - Cycle Jackets" from the bar on the left.
Then have a look, for example, at the Altura Womens Nevis Jacket. Both
the blue and grey versions could pass for ordinary leisure jackets in
spite of the relective piping and zipped rear pocket. It's a well
respected make and currently at a very good price.

Underneath you should wear wicking layers. Avoid cotton. Polyester is
good.

But then I'm just a bloke so I really have no clue what you'd feel
happy wearing.

--
Dave...
 
D

dkahn400

Guest
David Martin wrote:

> Fay wrote:
> > My New Year resolution is to return to the cycling to work I enjoyed in
> > the summer, and in future not to stop when it gets cold and wet. I'm a
> > middle aged woman just cycling slowly to the office for some exercise.
> > I'm not concerned to build up super fitness or enter races.


Fay, you don't have to be an athlete to be fit for life. That's exactly
the kind of fitness that utility and leisure cycling will give you.

> > I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> > which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> > clothes.

>
> Cycling or running tights will provide appropriate warmth in the winter
> and can be disguised easily with a skirt or baggy shorts/trousers as
> appropriate.


How about a skort over plain Roubaix tights? For example there's an
Endura one at Evans
<http://www.evanscycles.com/product.jsp?style=20281> or this Sugoi one
from Team Estrogen in the States
<http://www.teamestrogen.com/products.asp?pID=12096>. Again I have no
idea whether that's something Fay could wear but it would work very
well on the bike but not look too bike specific off it.

Wow, I'm really going out on a blokey limb today. :)

--
Dave...
 
T

Tosspot

Guest
Fay wrote:
<snip>

> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
> clothes.


<snip>

Buffalo jackets used to work well. Theres probably more modern, better
stuff about these days. http://www.buffalosystems.co.uk/dpthumbs.htm
 
D

Danny Colyer

Guest
Clive George wrote:
> As a female lady-type person, I'd say you have a distinct advantage over the
> other half of the population, in that black tights are acceptable dress (not
> that it stops me anyway - I'll happily go shopping in full lycra).


But would you go shopping in full *red* Lycra? I have, on occasion :)

I wonder if Helen goes shopping in full celeste Lycra.

> Then a skirt over the top takes care of the looks.


I must say I'm a little surprised by this confession.

Anyway, Fay, John recommended Parrot but I didn't see a link. I will
second that recommendation and provide a link:
<URL:http://www.daleswear.co.uk/>

You will find that it is currently of little use, but after following it
you'll be able to phone them up and request a paper catalogue. Whatever
you get, look for woman-specific clothing. I know that Parrot sell some
woman-specific items, but I haven't actually tried them (they probably
wouldn't fit me terribly well). ISTR I bought a Parrot top for my
middle-aged mother a couple of years ago, though.

<URL:http://www.mwdyason.ltd.uk/> is also well worth a look for plain,
VFM clothes that won't make you look like a billboard on wheels.

--
Danny Colyer (my reply address is valid but checked infrequently)
<URL:http://www.colyer.plus.com/danny/>
Subscribe to PlusNet <URL:http://www.colyer.plus.com/referral/>
"He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
 
W

wafflycat

Guest
"Danny Colyer" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]

>
> I wonder if Helen goes shopping in full celeste Lycra.
>



Akchewalee, I have no Celeste Lycra. An omission in my wardrobe. I do,
however, have a wide spectrum of yellow shades of Lycra. But one always has
a balck bottom, so to speak.

Cheers, helen s
 
M

Mike Civil

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
wafflycat <w*a*ff£y£cat*@£btco*nn£ect.com> wrote:
> But one always has
>a balck bottom, so to speak.


Um, is this some female type medical complaint?

Mike
 
W

wafflycat

Guest
"Mike Civil" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> In article <[email protected]>,
> wafflycat <w*a*ff£y£cat*@£btco*nn£ect.com> wrote:
>> But one always
>> has
>>a balck bottom, so to speak.

>
> Um, is this some female type medical complaint?
>
> Mike


Aye, affects the fingers when using a keybaord ;-)

Cheers, helen s
 
P

Pinky

Guest
"wafflycat" <w*a*ff£y£cat*@£btco*nn£ect.com> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
>
> "Clive George" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]
>
>
>> I'll happily go shopping in full lycra

>
> I do go shopping in full Lycra....
>
> Cheers, helen s
>

So do I and have no problems with it. Mind you at 68 years old I am not
terribly fashion conscious!

I have spent the last 3 weeks bikeless after mine was stolen and I was
suddenly wearing "normal clothes" instead of being more or less permanently
in my bike gear. Well I prefer the bike gear -- lighter and warm without
being so cloying and confining! I take delivery of my new bike in a weeks
time and then it is back on the road for my daily runs thank goodness.

I must also admit that I found walking on pavements beside busy roads on
which I normally cycle made me feel very exposed and uncomfortable -- I
feel much safer on the road on my velo.


--
Trevor A Panther
In South Yorkshire,
England, United Kingdom.
 
P

Pinky

Guest
"dkahn400" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> Fay wrote:
>
>> I don't want to buy special cycling clothes. I want to buy some clothes
>> which will pass equally well as ordinary walking about and shopping
>> clothes.

>
> Unfortunately cycling-specific is best, particularly for your jacket.
> This is both for the cut and for visibility. A cycling jacket will be
> cut longer in the back and the sleeves to make sure your lower back and
> wrists remain covered. The pockets will be positioned so things in them
> won't get in your way as you reach forward for the handlebars. It will
> also have reflective strips built into it that will help you to be seen
> at night. These can be quite discreet so it doesn't have to shout
> "cyclist". There are styles that are quite wearable off the bike.
>
> I understand the problem with being intimidated by the lads in the bike
> shop, so why not have a look on-line? Go to <http://www.wiggle.co.uk/>
> and then pick "Waterproofs - Cycle Jackets" from the bar on the left.
> Then have a look, for example, at the Altura Womens Nevis Jacket. Both
> the blue and grey versions could pass for ordinary leisure jackets in
> spite of the relective piping and zipped rear pocket. It's a well
> respected make and currently at a very good price.
>
> Underneath you should wear wicking layers. Avoid cotton. Polyester is
> good.
>
> But then I'm just a bloke so I really have no clue what you'd feel
> happy wearing.
>
> --
> Dave...
>


The Altura Nevis is a very reasonably priced Waterproof jacket which has
seen me through two winters and two long cycle camping tours. I bought a new
one just before Christmas ( at a discounted price of £38 from Wiggle) which
I shall wear after this winter is over and take on the road when I travel
down the Rhein in April/May this year. It is light enough to travel with and
distinctly wind/waterproof in severe conditions
( I haven't written up my journal for 2005 but my journal for 2004 to Spain
has some photos of me in full "winter warfare kit!
www.tapan.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk -- I encountered some snow on four days in
Northern Spain!)

--
Trevor A Panther
In South Yorkshire,
England, United Kingdom.