Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) - Ladies: What do you like to wear while riding?
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07-28-09, 08:20 PM
What do you like to wear while riding your bike and why?
I'm looking at buying some bicycle appropriate clothing because the last time I rode a bike it was in 100 degree weather while wearing jeans and big puffy sneakers (I'm a flip-flops girl), which was less than comfortable. But there's no way I'd go out in public in those skin tight shorts or flashy tops either. I was thinking of putting buttons around the waistband of a pair of bike shorts and then sewing a knee length A-line skirt which would be buttoned over the shorts so I'd feel covered. Would this look silly?
Can you give me tips on what you have found to be comfortable and cute without being too flashy?
07-28-09, 08:25 PM
There is such a thing called a "Skort". Bike shorts with a skirt type covering. Almost a tennis skirt type look.
07-28-09, 08:45 PM
I'm trying to picture myself riding a bike wearing jeans in 100 degree weather, but I melted all over the floor. Not good, my friend. I know some people swear by wearing regular clothes while cycling but I find jeans too stiff to ride comfortably, never mind the jeans soaking up all that sweat. Eww.
So, a little intro: I'm Cyclokitty, a proud Athena! I ride a KHS comfort bike for physical fitness, errands, commuting, and happy little trips around the city. I do wear bike shorts but under another pair of shorts that have a bit of lycra in it for stretchy comfort. And yes, your idea of making a skirt to go over your shorts is a fab idea. You can also buy bike skorts that have bike shorts built into a skirt too: I have several I bought from Terry's (http://www.terrybicycles.com/). They do a good job of making plus sized bike clothing. As does Team Estrogen (http://www.teamestrogen.com/product/plus-size/c0-atspecialty_03.html) (they also sell other brands of women's cycling gear).
Other cycling clothes:
Capris: I don't know who invented them, but someone needs a medal. If you don't feel like showing off lots of leg then capris are a good solution. Fresher than long legged pants and easy to wear bike shorts beneath.
Pants: as long as it's stretchy and tapered at the ankle I'm happy to wear the bike shorts beneath. When it gets colder I wear cycling tights beneath pants to stay warm.
Tops: yeah you can go cycling jersey but if you can't find a cut you like (sometimes they are cut rather slenderly) then the fall back is the cotton t. Some cyclist will burn you at a stake for riding in a Hanes T but I think this is a great reason for wearing colourful tshirts. My favourite ride shirt is a white (ok, it's gone all funny white) with a Mystery Science Theatre 3000 logo on it (I wear what I love!) and my next fav is a shirt that brags about my surfing skills (in reality, none, but don't tell).
Shoes: I like wearing skateboard shoes because they have a good flat tread that doesn't make my foot wobble on the pedal like the treads on a running shoe. They also fit wide and that stops any foot numbness like in the running shoe. They also come in lots of colours and patterns (pink skulls!) and are pretty inexpensive. I have worn sandals but my current pairs are too flexible to wear on an all day ride.
Gloves: I've stopped wearing gloves because I'm tired of the weird tan marks. When it gets colder I'll return to gloves.
Helmet: my opinion is: if I fall off my bike and hit my head, I want to at least remember the alphabet after I recover. So I wear it on every ride. Mine is a bmx style helmet because I like the back of the head coverage. Also, I have a small head and bmx style kids helmets aren't generally printed with scenes of prancing ponies like other kids helmets.
07-28-09, 09:03 PM
hmmmmm.... I'm trying to picture Mr. Beanz in a skort..... also, not a good idea. Switching to picture Mrs. Beanz in a skort..... ahhhh, much better.
07-28-09, 09:44 PM
My rides are generally 9-45 miles; for shorter rides my bike clothes aren't as important.
Somehow a skort just sounds like another layer trapping heat instead of allowing the bike shorts to properly wick sweat and allow it to evaporate, helping to keep me from overheating. If I am running errands I'll just stuff a pair of nylon windshorts in the saddlebag to put on when I'm off the bike. Also, what you may think of as "flashy" will probably be what I think of as "visible". When I am driving my car the cyclists in HiVis yellow catch my attention early. I also prefer wicking shirts as they don't show big sweaty wet splotches outlining undergarments as cotton T's would.
Somewhere on the route to being in my 50's "cute" became less of a priority for me and "safety" took precedence. That's also because I bike commute in low light or in the dark a lot including some busy intersections. For daylight rides I do have some pink jerseys so I look more like a girl. Picture is in the Athena hangout post.
07-28-09, 10:33 PM
Here's my wife n her usual cycling garb. She wears Lycra shorts and various shirts.
taking a nap at the top of a big hill. :p A recumbent trike is really nice sometimes.
Or, she also likes a Hawaiian Shirt my Mother got her as a gift.
07-28-09, 11:01 PM
I guess a kilt would be out of the question even with a Brooks saddle.
I'm currently making a very vintage-esque set of riding clothes in this wonderful silk-wool blend fabric I found. Very lightweight, very breathable, and moves wonderfully. I'm putting a mesh panel in the center of the back of the jacket for extra breathability.
Haven't yet decided on how to design the pant or breeches, but I'm wondering if I could make a short skirt and modify it and a pair of Lycra shorts to work together.
Anyway, wool and silk might not be as durable, but it's hopefully more fashionable.
Believe it or not, heh... I like Starter/NBA Men's Reversible Shorts. Like basketball shorts, hang to about the knee. Underneath that, I'm buying padded shorts tomorrow. that way I have this meshy breathe-able short but I am not showing off my thunder fat thighs with lycra.
They just don't seem to make comfy loose shorts like this for women :\ at least I'm terrible at finding them. Also, I ride in a tank top or an A-shirt with a loose button up shirt hanging off of my shoulders. Yea I know, way unfashionable.
Edit: My hockey playing days have now introduced me to Reebok Speedwick clothing, which is breatheable and wicks sweat away from the body. Similar to underarmor, more affordable than it. They do a toasty line of compression shirt/pants/leotards for the winter/pond hockey season, too.
07-29-09, 07:45 AM
You could always buy a pair of mountain bike shorts which is a regular pair of bike shorts with a nylon "shell" overtop that resembles cargo shorts. Not exactly the pinacle of style but the general rule of thumb is function > style. Mrs. Bautieri wears a regular pair of gym shorts, however we did find her a womens specific saddle that made a world of difference in comfort.
For the sake of safety wear something bright.
07-29-09, 10:29 AM
Just something to throw out to you ladies that do your own sewing. http://wkdesigner.wordpress.com/2008/08/11/waterproof-rain-cape/
A little bit of rain gear for you. I'm trying to work something out where it wouldn't look quite so girlie. Maybe add some length, a hood, keep the belt internal and in the back. I think it needs some velcro loops for the wrists too.
07-29-09, 01:37 PM
magicalpup: I normally wear knee- or calf-length Lycra bottoms and a tank top or t-shirt made out of wicking fabric of some sort. I have one Adidas yoga top that has short sleeves and a mesh panel in the back that is really good at keeping me cool. I don't have padded bike shorts yet, but they're definitely on my short list of things to buy. I don't mind wearing Lycra shorts or capris -- I seem to forget the size of my thighs as soon as I get on the bike! Very nice positive side note to riding.
I like your idea of making a knee-length skirt to go over the top of your shorts. It's a great idea because commercially available skorts are generally too short to be of much use to modest types. You would want to be careful about what fabric you made your skirt out of, so that you wouldn't negate the wicking properties of the shorts. You'd also want to make sure that you place your buttons in a way that minimizes the possibility of chafing.
I've also decided (after reading the other posts in this thread) that I'm going to focus on getting brighter tops in wicking fabrics for visibility purposes. Most of mine at this point are pale blue or gray or white.
P.S. I hope you never wear flip-flops while riding your bike. Delma
07-29-09, 01:45 PM
I am far from a small lady but I believe in 1) being confortable and 2) riding smart. It makes no sense in hot weather to wear something that would lead to dehydration or heat stroke.
There are many manufacturers of plus size cycling gear - the best are 1) Terry, 2) Mt. Borah, 3) Moving Comfort etc.
I love my Terry cycling shorts. If you are embarassed - try a mountain bike shell or board short to pull over the shorts but nothing beats a well made, 6 panel, seam hidden, cycling short. For shorts I recommend Terry. Here is the Terry short I love: http://www.terrybicycles.com/product/detail/1271/current/t-short-plus-1 Terry also makes mountain bike style cycling shorts.
I love my Terry, Mt. Borah and Moving Comfort jersys. Just bought 3 from Moving Comfort I love. They aren't particularly tight, are very stylish (I love the shawl collar!!!) and are longer to cover my stomach and butt. Check out the jerseys on the Teamestrogen website http://www.teamestrogen.com/moving-comfort/product/plus-size/c0-atspecialty_03-b100122.html. I purchased the blue, Red and sleeveless blue and love all 3.
Other website to check are teamestrogen and aerotechdesigns. Once you try real cycling clothes you will never go back.
07-29-09, 01:47 PM
Tom Stormcrowe! Does your wife know you posted that first photo??? I would kick you if you posted me taking a snooze! :notamused:
07-29-09, 01:51 PM
. Would this look silly?
You are outside doing something good for you and your body... never worry about looking silly! GOod for you even in jeans and a tshirt!
Seriously though go to the Terry website (terrybicycles.com) and check out the Plus size clothing section - it will give you a feel as to how you can look in good cycling clothes.
07-29-09, 02:00 PM
Disclaimer: I'm not a woman, but I ride w/ a few and noticed the following:
Shirts: golf shirts and t-shirts made out of some kind of poly blend like CoolMax or Techwick. Usually has some kind of odor eliminating thing baked in. Lesser used materials that are even better than synthetics are wool and silk, both because they breathe, insulate well even when wet and they don't stink even after a week/month of daily use (YMMV).
Pants: bike pants under shorts/capris/tennis skirt/culottes or just worn proudly sans covering.
I'm currently making a very vintage-esque set of riding clothes in this wonderful silk-wool blend fabric I found. Very lightweight, very breathable, and moves wonderfully...
This sounds cool. If you start making men's knickers, let us know. I've been eyeing some wool dress pants I don't wear anymore to convert into knickers. Alas, my sewing skills aren't up to the task.
07-29-09, 04:33 PM
I still think one should invest in a good pair of cycling shorts however, places like Target sell wonderful active shirts (cool max wiping material) in sizes up to XXL for a reasonable price (about $25). I'm beginning to love my Target tops almost better than my expensive jerseys. They sell Champion brand products. Here's an example: http://www.championusa.com/Champion/Products/Men-Champion/Men_ShopByCategory-Champion/Men_WhatsNew-Champion/CT7026.aspx
This one is on sell for $8.99: http://www.championusa.com/Champion/Products/Men-Champion/Men_ShopByCategory-Champion/Men_Outlet-Champion/CT2052.aspx
07-29-09, 06:06 PM
Gina my Athena wears Target, Kohl's tops. Usually moisture wicking stuff at very reasonable prices. Plenty of 100+ days over here so she's got a few. Also has a few $40 tops and not much difference other than price!:eek:
She does wear Terry shorts. WELL WORTH the price. 70 -80 mile rides in comfort. Best fitting, well constructed shorts she has found in her 13 years of riding. Nice thick fabric and lots of junk in the trunk so she doesn't want to worry about thin see thru or low cut stuff. Compared to expensive Nike, Pearl Izumi, Hind, and a few others, the Terry are FAR better!:D
Real hot day, Target tank and again with the Terry shorts!:D....She has looked into the 'skort' thingy but with the really round junk in the trunk thang, it aint covered much by the 'skirt' of the 'skort', so why bother!?:p
On a cool day (not COLD) she wil wear a moisture wicking top (Target $10) and a vest or jersey over it. The vest is a Performance illumite vest (lights up at night/reflectorized). It is actually black but looks silver as it illuminited with the flash of the camera!:D
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