Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Sunnyvale, California
Bikes: Bridgestone RB-1, 600, T700, MB-6 w/ Dirt Drops, MB-Zip, Bianchi Limited, Nashbar Hounder
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quite a few factors can cause discomfort when riding.
1. Infrequent riding. Actually, for many folks, this is the number one problem when they first start. I'm much heavier than you. But I commute often 20+ miles a day. My back side is pretty tough and handles just about any saddle I through at it. I swap bikes and ride a different one of 3 main rides during the week. Each has a different saddle. Gel and memory foam are about the same. I ride without padded shorts most of the time for any ride under 2 hrs. Don't need it. I just get boxer briefs with seams on the outside. That minimizes chafing at corners of the crotch area where traditional seams on briefs are.
2. Riding posture - how you sit might be the issue. If you sit very upright, then it puts all the weight on the back sit bones and the day after a long ride, you'll feel the flesh on either side of the anal area is pretty bruised and sore. Leaning too far forward numbs and causes sore/tingling in the frontal pubic area. That's not fun and try to be a man and take a whiz not feeling anything down there after a long ride. Shifting height, forward-aft and tilt of the saddle will help. Getting a saddle with a front "cut-out" will help also if you have frontal numbness. Adjusting handlebar height and stem length (more complicated) can also affect posture.
3. It is the saddle - you need firm padding. Not just sponge. Memory foam or gel and it needs to be glued and held in place by some fibre-reinforced matrix so it doesn't move under compression. But not expensive. Web search "Vuelta saddles" and these are really inexpensive. But I'm perfectly happy with them as are my kids. Nashbar has re-branded saddles where their name on it, but probably made by Vuelta or velo or some other manufacturer. Planet Bike ARS is okay too, but too me a while to get used to.
4. Saddle is too narrow or wide. Again, study the sit bones. Most folks I know actually start with a saddle that is too WIDE. Yeah. A narrow saddle reduces biker spread and for guys, it's easier on the sit bones. Ladies need a wider saddle usually in the back, and short/narrow up front. Try a narrower saddle. Stick to it for a couple weeks. Then decide if you like it or not.
Hope you find comfort!