The Ins and Outs of an Ordinary Life

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Apparel and Gear

This weekend has brought beautiful crisp autumn days and a couple of wonderful bike rides. Saturday was the club's fall ride and picnic and lots of folks showed up. I went on the D ride which turned out to be a mistake. It was very slow! so about half of us broke away at about the halfway point and cranked it up a bit. Today only 3 of us showed up, so again we picked up the pace a bit. A 55-mile weekend has brought me close to an 800-mile season. I know there are lots of people who have rideen far more miles than that, but I think it's pretty damn good!

Yesterday morning it was in the high 40s when we headed out. I was a little cold when we got started but I warmed up very quickly and quite enjoyed the ride. It made me realize that with the proper clothes and gear, I can ride my bike through November. So last night I tried to figure out what I have and what I need to ride in the cool/cold weather. I have capri length padded tights, which were perfect this weekend, and I ordered another pair. I really want full-length tights, but every pair I have tried are too long. I bought the pair with the longest inseam, thinking that these "capris" will probably fit mini-me like full-length tights. I considered leg warmers, but I think I will be more comfortable in tights. I also used my toe covers yesterday. Someone asked me if they work, and I guess they must because my feet weren't at all cold and hers were.
I must admit that I am a gear head, and I love checking out catalogs and building wishlists.
Here are a few items I simply "must have" if I am going to keep cycling in the colder weather. Gloves of course, pink ones, and an ear warming headband to wear under my helmet. Should I stay with pink?
Having the right gear and apparel can really cost a bundle. I have definitely seen cyclists at both ends of the spectrum. Some invest thousands of dollars in a bicycle, and then spend a small fortune on shoes, jerseys, jackets, sunglasses and finding the right power bar. Then there are riders on 20+ year old bikes wearing old sneakers, older gym shorts, and the oldest T-shirt available. I'd like to think I fall someone in the middle (as I usually do). I plan to purchase a new bike before next season, and I consider padded shorts, wicking clothing and pedals/cleats as essentials. Staying warm is important too, hence the toe covers, gloves, and headband. Beyond that, this is what I do, I work hard at it, its done me good and I want to look good while I'm doing it. Spending money on cycling clothes makes me feel good and keeps me in the game. Now, where did I put that Terry catalog?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My new cold weather cycling gear is waiting it's first use this season but I sure had a great time picking it out!
And it did cost a small fortune!
Good thing about that stuff is it lasts through many seasons.
My tights must be 10 years old and are still totally servicable.