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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 02-14-13, 09:48 PM   #1
Baytree
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Gear up, or just go?

Wondering how many of you like to get dolled up in special riding gear for your commute vs how many just jump on in street clothes and start pedaling.


I don't have any special riding gear (wear regular clothes, carry things in backpack). Then again, for my work doesn't matter if I show up sweaty or dirty, since I'll be that way within an hour anyways. How do you folks with "nicer" jobs handle the commute?
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Old 02-14-13, 09:51 PM   #2
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I ride in full on cycling gear to work then take a shower and get into my work clothes (jeans, polo shirt, sneakers) once I get there. I take a full set of clean clothes including socks and underwear in advance to the office but once my Dynapack DX gets here I'll just take it with me the day of riding. I'm lucky that we have a shower, I have my own locker and office as well as a full fledged bike rack inside the building for bike storage. I work at a biker friendly office. My commute is 15 miles one way.
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Old 02-14-13, 10:15 PM   #3
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I have a uniform of sort so I toss on normal other clothes to ride into work and just change into the proper attire when I get there. The only bike gear I own would be my biking jacket for those wet, windy days but everything else is normal.
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Old 02-14-13, 10:22 PM   #4
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I started out just riding in street clothes. My commute, when I ride it, is now long enough that I take a shower when I get there. Since I have to change anyway, I sometimes where bikey stuff. I sometimes just wear twill shorts or whatever. I'm not really into lycra anyway.

I've discovered Rozik Every Wear pants; they do just fine in an office environment but are great for riding, too.
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Old 02-14-13, 10:44 PM   #5
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in the winter i layer more technical stuff under street clothes since i need to stay warm, and i have more clothes to change throughout the week that way

in the summer i ride in kit and change once i get there, i like to go fast when its nice out so it makes me sweaty

i wish i had showers and conveniently located lockers at either jobs, one job has a 12" cube locker which barely fits anything
the other has normal sized lockers, but theyre 10 mins walk away from the office, and the showers are 10 mins walk away from the lockers so i dont even bother
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Old 02-14-13, 11:03 PM   #6
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My commute is @ 5.5 miles and I just wear the clothes I work in, although I use clipless shoes and wear a cycling specific wind jacket when necessary.
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Old 02-15-13, 02:04 AM   #7
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my commute is 7 k each way. I have a locker room to change in but am in uniform anyway. I used to ride in street clothes but have found some bicycle specific clothing has really made it more enjoyable.

I live on teh west coast and ride in a lot of rain. A MEC rain jacket and cycling tights made a HUGE improvement in my comfort.
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Old 02-15-13, 03:29 AM   #8
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I ride in street clothes. When it's cold I put on some leg warmers underneath my jeans, and when it's raining I put on a cheap pair of rainproof pants over them. I also have a light rain- and windproof jacket I use. I just keep the speed down so I'm not too sweaty when I arrive.

I used to ride clipless but reverted to platforms recently. The clipless pedals started to feel like they constrained my freedom. I'm sure it's just a sentiment, but sentiments are important when cycling.

My commute is about 10 miles.
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Old 02-15-13, 05:47 AM   #9
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I ride in jeans and a wicking shirt of some sort. If its below about 25F, I add a cotton t-shirt. Then a neoprene omni whatever jacket. I lighten up the jacket to just a lined windbreaker when the temp get much above 30F. When I get to work, I cool down for a couple of minutes, and then change the polyester shirt for a button down, and I'm good to go. 6.4 mile RT.
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Old 02-15-13, 07:05 AM   #10
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I commute to my office 11 miles one way with all cycling specific clothing just because its more comfortable. I always use padded cycling shorts under my windfront nylon tights in winter and under regular shorts in summer. I use wicking layers under a cycling jacket and in summer I just put on cycling jerseys. I have a shower at my office but only use it in the summer. I work for an engineering firm that is very fitness friendly with lots of mountain bikers and gym goers but no road commuters, (Yet).
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Old 02-15-13, 07:05 AM   #11
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In the spring, fall and summer, I wear lycra and other cycling specific clothes and carry my work clothes (shoes will be left at work). (I'm a sweater, no, not the wool kind, so I can't ride in my work clothes.)

In the winter, I switched bikes, wear winter boots, winter pants (with or without a base layer depending on the temp), light shell, base layer (and mid layer if cold enough), and, since my winter pants are sort of a chino-style pant (with a built-in lining for extra warmth), I will wear them as my work pants and carry a shirt. My winter route is shorter and I ride it with less haste so that I won't need to shower.
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Old 02-15-13, 07:14 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baytree View Post
Wondering how many of you like to get dolled up in special riding gear for your commute vs how many just jump on in street clothes and start pedaling.


I don't have any special riding gear (wear regular clothes, carry things in backpack). Then again, for my work doesn't matter if I show up sweaty or dirty, since I'll be that way within an hour anyways. How do you folks with "nicer" jobs handle the commute?
I don't wear work clothes on my commute. I keep at least THREE changes of clothes at work. Swap them out every weekend. So, when I commute, I got on riding gear, and dressed according to the weather.. IMO, riding to work in work clothes, takes something away from both action. The ride is not as comfortable, and then you have to wear the clothes your commute at work. To me, that is a downer on both ends.

Only speaking for myself..
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Old 02-15-13, 07:22 AM   #13
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I don't really have cycling specific clothing. But to me "gear up" isn't cycling specific. So yes I do gear up before getting on the bike. This morning it was 45F, a couple of days ago it was 35, a few weeks ago there some days in the 20s, last week there was a morning in the 50s.

Before I get on the bike I check the weather. Even if it is just to look outside. I don't want to wear clothing for the 20s when it is 45, nor a T-shirt in the 40s either. When I was younger I did that a few times. Brrrrrr.

Like others I keep spare clothes at work. Especially in the summer.
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Old 02-15-13, 07:28 AM   #14
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I ride non-cycling specific clothing (sweatpants, shorts, whatever the weather dictates) and change when I get to work. I have ridden in my work clothes at times, but I find it easier to deal with rain and snow when I don't have to worry about my clothes too.
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Old 02-15-13, 08:12 AM   #15
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Gear up then change at work. it's 15m round trip minimum, I try to ride hard enough every day to get a little bit of a workout. So I just prefer to ride in clothing that works well on the bike and can handle the weather and conditions. Most of the commute wear is not cycling specific but it is active wear that wears well and is appropriate for the weather but I do always wear cycling shoes. I have lots of cycling clothes for my recreational riding.
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Old 02-15-13, 08:14 AM   #16
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I do full bike gear and clothes to change into in a backpack for nearly everything. Have a shower at work, and my friends/in-laws just assume I'll shower at their place when I get there.
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Old 02-15-13, 08:37 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doohickie View Post
I started out just riding in street clothes. My commute, when I ride it, is now long enough that I take a shower when I get there. Since I have to change anyway, I sometimes where bikey stuff. I sometimes just wear twill shorts or whatever. I'm not really into lycra anyway.

I've discovered Rozik Every Wear pants; they do just fine in an office environment but are great for riding, too.
That link takes me to a YouTube vid of some dude with a guitar
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Old 02-15-13, 09:14 AM   #18
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My commute is ~15 miles each way. We've got a shower at work, so I don't mind getting sweaty on the way. I'll take in a week's worth of clothing via car and store in my locker, and then ride in cycling gear.
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Old 02-15-13, 09:17 AM   #19
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I've been finding more and more that cycling gear, or at least tighter or snug-er fitting clothing is simply more comfortable while riding a bike. Things like baggy shorts and pants just get in the way and often produce much more friction in sensitive areas.
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Old 02-15-13, 09:55 AM   #20
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I started out riding in jeans and honestly, it worked fine. I have since switched to a neoprene pant because I find them more comfortable and better year-round (warm in winter, cool in summer. Same pair). They aren't bike specific. Target G9 brand for runners. Upper layers I wear standard clothes other than a technical wind/water shell.

When I get to work, I just change pants and I'm good to go.
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Old 02-15-13, 09:56 AM   #21
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minor adaptation, sweat pants flex , give at the knees, etc. denim won't.

& I'm in the under 10 mile RT league.
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Old 02-15-13, 10:20 AM   #22
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When it's below zero it looks like I'm wearing a space suit as opposed to anything you'd normally see somebody wear on a bike, but they're not exactly street clothes either.

In warmer weather I wear a mix of stuff but always change before starting work.

On the rare occasion that I ride to the train station instead of all the way to work, I'll wear my work/street clothes since it's only a mile to the train and another mile from where I get off to work.
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Old 02-15-13, 10:48 AM   #23
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I rarely ride in the clothes I am going to work in. Something will have had to upset my schedule/plans for that to happen. I wear some cycling specific clothes and some general athletic clothes. I usually have cycling shorts on under tights in the winter with another layer of close fitting running pants over the tights as temps dictate. I only wear the cycling shorts alone in the summer when it is quite hot. I mostly wear some type of cargo shorts over top of them for moderate temperatures. I usually wear cycling sandals/shoes/boots unless it is quite cold, then I have started switching to insulated boots. Various synthetic layers up top, but none of them are usually a cycling jersey.
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Old 02-15-13, 10:48 AM   #24
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Bike clothes for bike riding for me. I've sweated through a dress shirt standing outside in five minutes in late spring. And no matter how long or short the commute (5-12 miles each way), or the weather, I'm sweating when I get there. Sitting around in sweaty clothes is no fun.

Of course, where I live we call "dry" the sort of weather Californians call "high humidity."
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Old 02-15-13, 10:59 AM   #25
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I also ride in regular clothes, but my commute is only 6 miles and I have a casual work environment (so jeans and sneakers are fine). I do "gear up" to some degree in that I have a helmet, reflective cuffs, gloves and a reflective harness/vest.
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