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shorts and t-shirt, or tights?

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View Poll Results: What do you ride in, commuting or otherwise?
Tights
21
27.27%
Shorts and t-shirt
29
37.66%
Depends
21
27.27%
Something else (or nothing)
6
7.79%
Voters: 77. You may not vote on this poll

shorts and t-shirt, or tights?

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Old 12-25-04, 10:33 PM
  #1  
lisitsa
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shorts and t-shirt, or tights?

Why do people where tights, why aren't they comfy enough in just shorts and a t-shirt. People are bagged on this forum for wearing shorts and t-shirt while riding, but just how common is this?
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Old 12-25-04, 11:14 PM
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for me it depends. if its cold out, and my leg warmers just arent enough, i'd wear jeans or a windbreak over everything. if its hot, i'll just wear the tights. or if im going some place that doesnt allow me to change, then i just wear pants or shorts over my tights. either way, i'll always have my tights on, the padding makes it a lot more comfortable. sometimes i just put an outer layer over it. for the shirt, i either wear a rashguard, underarmor or my bike jersey. never just a regular t-shirt because i sweat real easliy and it gets really uncomfortable fast
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Old 12-25-04, 11:16 PM
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Tights, less wind, faster (actually tested over 3 months), people treat me better on the road (cause I look so weird), and it wicks sweat a lot better.

The down sides, having to put up with comments like, "whoa, you're so aerodynamic you can go into the future" from coworkers.
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Old 12-26-04, 04:02 AM
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I have a pair of tights, but I NEVER wear them without something over them!

I look good but I do have some modesty. Please note, I don't mind anyone else wearing lycra w/o another layer, I just feel a tad exposed when I do. I'll probably get used to it one of these days...

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Old 12-26-04, 06:41 AM
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Bluejeans, right leg rolled up to just under my kneecap; and whatever shirt I chose to wear that day.

To me it's about transportation, and not so much about making a fashion statement, so I'm incredibly unpicky on what I wear.
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Old 12-26-04, 07:41 AM
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whatever I'm wearing that day is what I'm riding in...I usually always have an extra shirt in my bag in case I happen to sweat on that particular ride.

Needless to say though, I always sweat

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Old 12-26-04, 09:27 AM
  #7  
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Depends on the weather. Too cold for shorts in December. In a few months you'll only see me in shorts (bibs or baggies) and a jersey -- and shorts and T-shirt at work.
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Old 12-26-04, 11:27 AM
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If you are just talking about the difference between bicycle specific clothes and regular clothing, then you have to try it to believe it to know the difference between the two. On my road bike I wear lycra shorts and on the commuter i wear baggy bicycle shorts. Both have the important padding to protect the rear and both have special material to help wick away sweat. Jerseys do the same wicking thing keeping the shirt from getting heavy and sticking to you keeping you cooler and more comfortable than a t-shirt. Jerseys also come in different styles from the loud colorful road style jerseys to simple plain one color ones. You can even buy shirts made out of the same material in the local sporting goods store for $20. You just won't have the rear pockets or longer cut in the back. But you might be more comfortable with the style of those.
Every sport has its uniform. I don't understand why people are so self conscious about bicycle clothing. If you think you are too heavy to wear tight fitting clothing, then get he baggy stuff. If you don't want to look like a walking advertisment, then get the plain looking stuff. But you will be much happier having the correct equipment.
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Old 12-26-04, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by d2create
If you are just talking about the difference between bicycle specific clothes and regular clothing, then you have to try it to believe it to know the difference between the two. On my road bike I wear lycra shorts and on the commuter i wear baggy bicycle shorts. Both have the important padding to protect the rear and both have special material to help wick away sweat. Jerseys do the same wicking thing keeping the shirt from getting heavy and sticking to you keeping you cooler and more comfortable than a t-shirt. Jerseys also come in different styles from the loud colorful road style jerseys to simple plain one color ones. You can even buy shirts made out of the same material in the local sporting goods store for $20. You just won't have the rear pockets or longer cut in the back. But you might be more comfortable with the style of those.
Every sport has its uniform. I don't understand why people are so self conscious about bicycle clothing. If you think you are too heavy to wear tight fitting clothing, then get he baggy stuff. If you don't want to look like a walking advertisment, then get the plain looking stuff. But you will be much happier having the correct equipment.

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Old 12-26-04, 03:39 PM
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I wear cycling specific clothing while riding. If I don't want it to fit too tightly, I'll get a bigger jersey, but I like having the pockets in the back for carrying "stuff". I also like the front zipper that allows me to unzip the front a bit and catch more air on hot days, letting the sweat wick out of my gorilla-like hair. I was at the Pearl Izumi store today, and their running shirts have pockets on the back just like cycling shirts.
Another factor is the material. After wearing Coolmax socks at work, I'll never go back to anything cotton on my feet. I now associate cotton socks with blisters and sore spots.
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Old 12-26-04, 05:12 PM
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it seems that the argument between wearing cycling specific clothing and casual clothing breaks down to those who view bicycling as a sport and those who see it as transportation/recreation/way of life(couldn't think of a better explanation). all that clothing is expensive and not really needed unless you're going after speed and/or fashion.
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Old 12-26-04, 05:57 PM
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For me it depends on the miles I am riding. If I'm going to the bar or the market anything will do. My old commute was 35-40 round trip and I always wore bike specific clothing. It's just more comfy.
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Old 12-26-04, 06:08 PM
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Yep
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Old 12-26-04, 07:50 PM
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Seems like it also depends on how long your commute is, your climate, and how much of a problem sweat is. I only go 5 mi each way, and I'm not a "sweater", so I generally wear the casual slacks I'll continue to wear at work that day. I do have a standard biking shirt, and keep a selection of business casual shirts in my office. In Maine, it's only really hot in the summer, and then I shower at work. In the winter, I just wear my business clothes under a winter coat, boots, gloves, etc, and don't even have to shower afterwards. Not being a recreational cyclist beyond commuting, I've never owned any "cycling clothes", although it sounds like they might have some benefits and maybe I'll try them at some point.
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Old 12-26-04, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by SecretSatellite
all that clothing is expensive and not really needed...
True...



Originally Posted by SecretSatellite
unless you're going after speed and/or fashion.
You didn't read my post above, did you...
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Old 12-26-04, 08:44 PM
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Those chilly mornings are hell on my knees and tights are the only way to go. Pants just don't cut it for me. If I'm going along at any speed, the whipping of clothing against my skin is very irritating so if I wear something other than cycling clothing, it has to be very snug fitting. If I'm just riding to the corner store, then it doesn't matter what I'm wearing but if I'm commuting or going for a ride then comfort comes first. However, everyone has their own comfort level so wear what works for you and disregard those who disagree with you.
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Old 12-26-04, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by d2create
You didn't read my post above, did you...
its true you can buy cheap active wear, even at target. i guess i was trying to say that cycling specific clothing=yuppie who can afford it.
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Old 12-26-04, 09:02 PM
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Depends on the miles and weather, 3 and under street clothes, longer and its cycling specific clothes. Sometimes I compromise and go with baggy mtb shorts and shirts. If its really hot out Id wear the mtb gear and then switch real quick no matter what the distance because I am a sweaty sweaty man.
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Old 12-26-04, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by SecretSatellite
i guess i was trying to say that cycling specific clothing=yuppie who can afford it.
Yeaa... Considering my salary puts me into the lower-low income class range, I guess I'm a yuppie who can afford cycling clothes too.
Priorities people, priorities. If you don't go too fast or you don't go too far, you have no need for any of this. Otherwise, wear what you wish.
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Old 12-26-04, 09:56 PM
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haha, sorry... not the part i meant.

This part...
Both have the important padding to protect the rear and both have special material to help wick away sweat. Jerseys do the same wicking thing keeping the shirt from getting heavy and sticking to you keeping you cooler and more comfortable than a t-shirt.
See, its not about fashion or having money to blow on it. Especially since you have the option or bicycle clothing that looks like regular street clothes. There is a real purpose.
Not saying everyone needs to spend their money on it, just trying to correctly inform the inexperienced.
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Old 12-28-04, 12:00 AM
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Originally Posted by d2create
haha, sorry... not the part i meant.

This part...


See, its not about fashion or having money to blow on it. Especially since you have the option or bicycle clothing that looks like regular street clothes. There is a real purpose.
Not saying everyone needs to spend their money on it, just trying to correctly inform the inexperienced.
i realize the practicality of cycle specific clothing and yeas, they can look like casual clothing. does the average cyclist need super special chamois shorts? probably not. but they make him/her feel more like an authentic cyclist. when i say "yuppie" i mean those people that feel better cause they have all the "right" acoutrements-be it cycling, climbing or whatever. i am so sick of these yuppie roadies who take the winter off so they can drive thier suvs act like they represent cycling. sorry i'm ranting but the class issues implied get me steamed.
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Old 12-28-04, 12:50 AM
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It's really about comfort, efficiency, and practicality. Anyone who rides much will benefit greatly from the right clothing.

Under about 20 miles you can wear just about anything. But if you ride every day it makes a difference in comfort. If you throw in a couple of long rides on the weekend you may need the right clothing to keep on going.

Much over 20 miles a proper chamois will make a big difference. After 60 miles you really need a chamois.
If you don't ride much a 60 mile ride in jeans could hurt big time. To do a century you need the right stuff.

I do one 100 plus mile ride a week and about 75 more miles every week. You really don't want to ride a 100 mile ride without bike specific clothing. It will take you a few days to recover from your injuries to your skin where you sit. If you can even go that far without them. The tights flex and do not slide and chafe your knees and other parts like non stretch clothing. You even get more power when you don't have to scrape your jeans over you knees every time you pedal. Some tights have a wind and waterproof front and a breathable back. Small things make a big difference if you go on one long ride, or if you ride every day a lot. It can be the difference between even being possible or not.
The shoes keep your feet feeling OK and increase your power. If you have to carry anything in your pockets, you need a Jersey. Front pockets will chafe and stick into you when you bend over. Etc. etc. etc.

A rider with enough experience knows it has nothing to do with looks. I wear the plainest bike clothes I can find, but I need them. I think they look funny, but I don't care any more. All the right gear just allowed me a comfortable 3 hour ride in the snow in 15 degree temps. Very comfortable.

The bright colors are so that the cars can see you, not fashion. I wear a bright yellow windbreaker on the road all the time. I don't like yellow. I'm used to it now.

That being said some riders don't know any better and just copy what they see, or really do try to have a certain look. But they are copying something that works better than they know.

I repeat, under about 20 miles it does not matter very much. On short rides I don't always wear bike clothing. It depends on what you do. There's a lot more to it, but this post is long enough.
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Old 12-28-04, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by SecretSatellite
i am so sick of these yuppie roadies who take the winter off so they can drive thier suvs act like they represent cycling. sorry i'm ranting but the class issues implied get me steamed.
I realize what you're saying but you're really lumping everything into one.. lump. Regardless of whether they ride one 200 mile ride every month or ride 25 miles everyday, that doesn't mean they don't need the proper equipment, sure they don't really need all that but there are a lot of things in life that we don't need but have anyway just to "make ourselves feel better."
If I only go climbing once every two years, I still need my figure 8's, slcd's, rope, harness, shoes, granted I could probably free climb the half dome and die trying.
I don't care if they only do it in the summer, do it twice a year, or once a decade, as long as they're out there and not sticking a pump in my spokes, that's cool. I commute year round as long as the ground isn't iced up, went through two hurricanes that managed to make their way up here, water up to my hubs, near 0 degrees, but I'm not gonna put down the people I ride in the pacelines with in the summer just cause they're not out on their bikes right now freezing their asses off.
If I were to break it down, do I really need anything more than a $5 watch if I'm not doing precise timing and my life doesn't depend on it (no)? Do I really need a computer with a gig of ram (yes, i do a lot of solid modeling)? Do I really need an "optical ungodly precise" mouse if I'm not some kind of professional gamer (no)? Do I really need goretex shoes when getting my socks a little bit wet won't kill me (no)?
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Old 12-28-04, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by 2manybikes
The bright colors are so that the cars can see you, not fashion. I wear a bright yellow windbreaker on the road all the time. I don't like yellow. I'm used to it now.

I repeat, under about 20 miles it does not matter very much. On short rides I don't always wear bike clothing. It depends on what you do. There's a lot more to it, but this post is long enough.
If I'm pushing hard, I'm usually pouring and chafed in the middle of the summer by the end of my 12 mile each way commute, so I wear cycling shorts anyway.

Speaking of bright colors, this morning I had on my black tights, black shorts, black shoes, black socks, black jacket with a bright yellow center, but then a black jersey over that, black face mask, black helmet. I didn't think that was too bright (pun intended). But it's the day and I'm usually in traffic with my bright yellow bag. Thank god at night I have 30 watts up front and 19 LED's out back.
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Old 12-28-04, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by slvoid
If I'm pushing hard, I'm usually pouring and chafed in the middle of the summer by the end of my 12 mile each way commute, so I wear cycling shorts anyway.

Speaking of bright colors, this morning I had on my black tights, black shorts, black shoes, black socks, black jacket with a bright yellow center, but then a black jersey over that, black face mask, black helmet. I didn't think that was too bright (pun intended). But it's the day and I'm usually in traffic with my bright yellow bag. Thank god at night I have 30 watts up front and 19 LED's out back.
I hear you about the 12 mile hard rides. That's a very good point. It brings up the fact that there are other benefits that are even less obvious.

I don't know if a novice would really even understand. Now you got me wishing for summer !!!! argh!

Do we get a picture of the Black Knight, with his trusty (Light) steed, ready to do battle with the evil cagers? Lightspeed...Light steed ? ....sorry.
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