Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

If my rides don't bother me, do I NEED lycra?

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

If my rides don't bother me, do I NEED lycra?

Old 07-16-08, 07:22 PM
  #1  
kmagnuss
Has Been
Thread Starter
 
kmagnuss's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Sarasota, FL
Posts: 124

Bikes: 95' Trek 1000, 08' Motobecane "le champion"

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If my rides don't bother me, do I NEED lycra?

I know, I know...done to death. I understand the benefits of riding shorts and all the lycra, but my normal rides of 30 miles don't bother me at all...so why should I need them? I generally just ride in boxer briefs, basketball shorts, and a t-shirt. I don't race obviously, so I really don't mind the additional wind resistance. I've been considering buying a pair just to see if it really makes my rides THAT much more enjoyable...plus I'd like to step up to 50+ mile rides pretty soon.

Oh...and I ride a 62cm 1995 Trek 1000 and I'm 5'11". WAY too big, but I seem to be comfortable on it, and it was free, so it'll do until I put a few thousand miles on it.

Let the bashing begin.

-Mag
kmagnuss is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 07:26 PM
  #2  
terry b
Erstwhile Trogon
 
terry b's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,032
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If you don't mind me laughing at you, go with what makes you happy.

Next time though, post a video, it must be quite a sight.
terry b is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 07:46 PM
  #3  
Bacciagalupe
Professional Fuss-Budget
 
Bacciagalupe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 6,472
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The big advantage of actual bike shorts (lycra or baggy) is the chamois. Basically it wicks the sweat away, which a) makes you more comfortable and b) keeps you cleaner which c) reduces the chance of things like saddle sores.

You don't have to go lycra, but I would recommend something with chamois.

And don't wear your damned undies under the chamois!
Bacciagalupe is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 07:47 PM
  #4  
Ralleh
Senior Member
 
Ralleh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 390
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It's the padding, not the lycra that helps. I wear bike shorts in place of boxer briefs when I ride and it makes it so much more enjoyable. I may wear a real jersey and no pants over the shorts at some point in the future, but I feel like I need to be much leaner and much faster before I do.
Ralleh is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 07:48 PM
  #5  
kmagnuss
Has Been
Thread Starter
 
kmagnuss's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Sarasota, FL
Posts: 124

Bikes: 95' Trek 1000, 08' Motobecane "le champion"

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by terry b View Post
If you don't mind me laughing at you, go with what makes you happy.

Next time though, post a video, it must be quite a sight.

Laughing at the shorts, or the huge bike? Either way, I don't mind. It's funny because when I play basketball in places where I don't know anyone, I always wear khaki cargo shorts and a dumb t-shirt. Backwards, I know.
kmagnuss is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 07:56 PM
  #6  
envane
Senior Member
 
envane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Chicago
Posts: 828
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Its not the padding, its the lack of seams. The seams rubbing against your flesh will, eventually, give you sores.

But 30 miles ain't ****.
envane is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 08:08 PM
  #7  
halfspeed
Senior Member
 
halfspeed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: SE Minnesota
Posts: 12,275

Bikes: are better than yours.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by kmagnuss View Post
I know, I know...done to death. I understand the benefits of riding shorts and all the lycra, but my normal rides of 30 miles don't bother me at all...so why should I need them? I generally just ride in boxer briefs, basketball shorts, and a t-shirt. I don't race obviously, so I really don't mind the additional wind resistance. I've been considering buying a pair just to see if it really makes my rides THAT much more enjoyable...plus I'd like to step up to 50+ mile rides pretty soon.

Oh...and I ride a 62cm 1995 Trek 1000 and I'm 5'11". WAY too big, but I seem to be comfortable on it, and it was free, so it'll do until I put a few thousand miles on it.

Let the bashing begin.

-Mag
The answer to your question is "no".

You might change your mind if/when you ride more, but if you're comfortable there's no point in spending the money.
halfspeed is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 08:11 PM
  #8  
halfspeed
Senior Member
 
halfspeed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: SE Minnesota
Posts: 12,275

Bikes: are better than yours.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Ralleh View Post
It's the padding, not the lycra that helps.
Incorrect. It's the padding AND the lycra. Lycra provides muscle support, wicks away sweat, doesn't flap in the breeze, doesn't catch on the saddle when mounting the bike, and seals bugs out of your pants leg.
halfspeed is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 08:25 PM
  #9  
kmagnuss
Has Been
Thread Starter
 
kmagnuss's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Sarasota, FL
Posts: 124

Bikes: 95' Trek 1000, 08' Motobecane "le champion"

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
seals bugs out of your pants leg.
Never thought about that. Hmmm. What if...hypothetically speaking...I know this guy who would be actually sealing the bugs into his pants legs? Yum.

-Mag
kmagnuss is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 08:30 PM
  #10  
jay1680
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 11
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Less than 30 miles and not racing - skip the lycra, jersey and the rest of that cyclodork stuff
jay1680 is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 08:53 PM
  #11  
jsmithepa
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,152
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
The answer to your question is "no".
I don't believe he was asking a question.

Anywhoo why the rest of u are trying to talk him into it? If he feels fine, that's all it matters. More lycra for the rest of us!
jsmithepa is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 09:42 PM
  #12  
Nachoman
well hello there
 
Nachoman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Point Loma, CA
Posts: 14,913

Bikes: Bill Holland (Road-Ti), Fuji Roubaix Pro (back-up), Bike Friday (folder), Co-Motion (tandem) & Trek 750 (hybrid)

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 322 Post(s)
Liked 6 Times in 4 Posts
You must wear lycra or we all will think you are a very bad person.
__________________
.
.

Two wheels good. Four wheels bad.
Nachoman is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 09:46 PM
  #13  
the beef
100% USDA certified
 
the beef's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Seattle -> NYC
Posts: 4,022

Bikes: Bianchi XL EV2

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Hey, at least non-cyclists won't giggle at you if you don't wear lycra..
the beef is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 09:54 PM
  #14  
Slackerprince
Redefining Lazy
 
Slackerprince's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Tampa via PDX, Summers on LV-426
Posts: 1,923

Bikes: 2013 Cannondale Synapse 5 105, 2013 Giant Escape 3

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If you don't try it, you won't know what you're missing.

Don't knock it, til' you've tried it.



Slackerprince
Slackerprince is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 10:15 PM
  #15  
terry b
Erstwhile Trogon
 
terry b's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,032
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by kmagnuss View Post
Laughing at the shorts, or the huge bike? .
The whole package just seems like such a sight in my mind's eye.

But it wouldn't be a nasty laugh, I see all kinds of people sporting all kinds of strange stuff and when I laugh, it's pure joy to see someone enjoying themselves.
terry b is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 10:17 PM
  #16  
StephenH
Uber Goober
 
StephenH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Dallas area, Texas
Posts: 11,635
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I understand that drivers may actually give you additional room if you're not wearing lycra.
__________________
"be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."
StephenH is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 10:19 PM
  #17  
alanbikehouston
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 5,250
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
From 1955 to 1985, every American cyclist road with a t-shirt, cut-off jeans or shorts, and tennis shoes, except people who were actually engaged in racing or serious training for a race.

After Lemond won the Tour, some roadies thought it was "cool" to ride with pro cycling gear. And, Lance made it official: if you ride a road bike, you must put your bars down low in a pro position, use pro pedals and shoes, and wear pro style clothing.

But, it is more fun to ride in a t-shirt and cut-off jeans, and passing motorists don't think you are lost and looking the the "Gay Pride Parade".

I am two inches shorter than you. My touring bike is a size 62, and it provides an ideal riding position. No stand over clearance, but bikes are not designed for standing over, they are designed for riding.

Last edited by alanbikehouston; 07-16-08 at 10:22 PM.
alanbikehouston is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 10:35 PM
  #18  
Szczuldo
What is this demonry?!
 
Szczuldo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Central IL
Posts: 1,097

Bikes: KHS Aero Comp.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
I understand that drivers may actually give you additional room if you're not wearing lycra.
they'll give you even more room if you aren't wearing a helmet, the problem is if I'm not wearing a helmet I don't feel like going fast and stick to bike paths. If I am wearing a helmet I feel I need to go faster otherwise I look like some buffoon pretending to be able to ride a bike. Now once I get all suited in bibs and a jersey, there is no way to justify going under 18mph.

I'd say get the shorts and jersey just because you won't understand how much of a difference they make until you actually try them. I was in your position a couple of years ago, then took the plunge and man I wish i'd done it sooner. Feels so much better, now all I need to do is get a different saddle.
Szczuldo is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 10:48 PM
  #19  
TalkingHead
Commie
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 278

Bikes: Trek 7.3 FX, old Haro(92)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
i dont think it really matters what you where. Drivers dont give a rat's ass..and are on their phones most of the time..your just another speed bump lycra or not.

I wear mountain shorts, but id ont race nor go anymore then 20 miles yet..maybe one of these days i will get into the tights.

underwear under short's isnt bad if you wear the proper type of underwear. Look for mid rise boxer briefs that wick sweat away, they fit tight and work fine
TalkingHead is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 11:05 PM
  #20  
uke
it's easy if you let it.
 
uke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: indoors and out.
Posts: 4,124
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Wear what's comfortable. Ignore the snobs--both on and offline.
uke is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 11:16 PM
  #21  
ricebowl
Bourbon junkie
 
ricebowl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: NorCal
Posts: 721
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
1982 was the last year an adult male could wear cut off jeans and not be considered part of the gay pride parade.

Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
But, it is more fun to ride in a t-shirt and cut-off jeans, and passing motorists don't think you are lost and looking the the "Gay Pride Parade".

Last edited by ricebowl; 07-16-08 at 11:28 PM.
ricebowl is offline  
Old 07-16-08, 11:59 PM
  #22  
daver42
Senior Member
 
daver42's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 252
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
...
But, it is more fun to ride in a t-shirt and cut-off jeans, and passing motorists don't think you are lost and looking the the "Gay Pride Parade".
Hah, I thought wearing cut-off jeans these days means you are part of the parade. That or you're a never-nude.
daver42 is offline  
Old 07-17-08, 12:18 AM
  #23  
Booger
Senior Member
 
Booger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 1,021

Bikes: KHS Flite 750

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by daver42 View Post
Hah, I thought wearing cut-off jeans these days means you are part of the parade. That or you're a never-nude.

THERE ARE DOZENS OF US!
Booger is offline  
Old 07-17-08, 12:26 AM
  #24  
daoswald
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Salt Lake City, UT (Formerly Los Angeles, CA)
Posts: 975

Bikes: 2008 Cannondale Synapse -- 2014 Cannondale Quick CX

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 159 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 14 Times in 8 Posts
When I ride with an off-bike destination in mind, I wear cycle shorts that are a little more baggy. They are Novara MTB shorts. They have the lycra under the baggy shell, and a chamois inside. They feel great. I'm glad I discovered them. And they don't look as nutty when I'm walking around in them off the bike.
daoswald is offline  
Old 07-17-08, 01:04 AM
  #25  
mazdaspeed
Senior Member
 
mazdaspeed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: WA state
Posts: 4,824
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
From 1955 to 1985, every American cyclist road with a t-shirt, cut-off jeans or shorts, and tennis shoes, except people who were actually engaged in racing or serious training for a race.

After Lemond won the Tour, some roadies thought it was "cool" to ride with pro cycling gear. And, Lance made it official: if you ride a road bike, you must put your bars down low in a pro position, use pro pedals and shoes, and wear pro style clothing.
Exactly. If you're actually fast you're still going to be fast in gym shorts. If you're slow you won't be faster in lycra.

My bottom hurts though and I'm sweating

HTFU

FWIW I don't get chafing even over long distances wearing gym shorts. If I dropped $$$ on a kit it wouldn't make a difference at all to me. People back in the day got around just fine and so do some people now.
mazdaspeed is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.