Tuesday, December 15, 2009

fall back...


Winter Installment 10
Fall back,
go back,

way back...
oh wait,
that's from my yoga class

*Caution Lots and lots of lycra talk below
I believe in having the right equipment
and no, you don't need all this if
you are just hopping on your bicycle to work,
but if you want to wear it, I say go for it!

Okay...shall we proceed?

Back in November
I was sailing along on the Trek.
Refer to the picture above and my new found freedom road.
I had mostly geared up,
but in the 11th hour
I was missing a few key pieces.

I have a habit of living in complete denial

of winter.
I really got away with that in California,
but here it does not work so well.

This year it has done me NO good,

and robbed me of finishing the season
4 miles short of 1400 miles

4 miles
all because my feet got cold!

The lesson here?

1. Living in denial never does anyone any good.

2. Giving in to reality doesn't mean you are ignorant of it
3. Being prepared helps you enjoy things instead of missing out

4. If you think you need something and it is bicycle related ~ you do.

Winter is really freakin' expensive,
especially when you move from a moderate climate to a very cold climate,
very cold...

I believe this is now my fourth winter in the woods
and I am still building up my arsenal just to get to work in a car,

let alone admitting to myself I might want to actually ride a bicycle in cold weather.
Baby steps...

I had committed myself this year to riding down to at least 30F,
as long as the roads stayed dry

and until they laid the first evil grains of salt on the roads.

BUT I had not quite committed myself to buying those
booties and warmer gloves I had been pondering seriously for a few months
and in the end it cost me those 4 cherished miles and a last beautiful Thanksgiving weekend of riding.
It was just a tad too cold for what I had for weeks been getting away with,
and I knew it.
It was go time.

Time to order those key missing pieces.

First, what I did order or already had this year:

A Hat

I am going to say right out that you will see a lot of Sugoi here.

I love Sugoi,
not just because it is fun to say,
but because they make really great quality cycling clothes,
and they DO IT RIGHT for the female gender

The hat was the best investment I could have made.
It is fleece lined, covers my ears, blocks the wind, and kept my head at the perfect temperature.
The hat seemed to be a good choice once the temps dipped into the low 40's.

Highly recommended even for just riding around town ~ great under a helmet!

Important Top Layer

I am also a huge fan of Craft.

I got a smokin' deal on this top this fall and do not know how I lived without it.
Works great with my vest in warmer temps
or under my jacket in cooler temps.
I love how Craft designs for women,
their tops fit so well.
I would wear this anywhere anytime.

My jacket is something I got on sale last year,
I like the white color.
The sleeves zip off for the days it is warmer out then you suspected
and makes a great vest (see pic below).

Leg Appropriate Gear

Leg warmers are the best.
I've had these for awhile and love them.
For temps in the mid 40's and up these are great,

not so much bulk on the legs, but still warm.

Sugoi Shorts

I wear a shorter inseam short in the summer,
but to wear with leg warmers, I like the 8" inseam.

The warmers stay tucked in and I get more length with the warmer/short combo.

I bought some Evolution Shorts and the padding is supremo on the Trek saddle.
These will also be used for my indoor riding.

Good to have the long inseam in winter also because who cares about the tan line you won't have, right?...


For cold days I have a pair of Pearl Izumi amFIB tights with wind stop on the front.
These tights are awesome.

Super warm, too warm really if it is above 45.

I do feel less mobile with all my winter gear on, so I hold off on the layers as long as I can,
but once I put these on I am happy as a clam.

Things I added...

I was moving along quite well with just my SmartWool socks and road shoes,
but it was quickly becoming apparent I needed those darn booties.

Worth it for just a few rides? You bet!

The booties came after Thanksgiving weekend,

and so did the cold weather and salt on the roads,

so I have not been able to take these for a test ride yet,
but H says they are better than his.


I was sailing along fine on my REI gloves from about 10 years ago as well,
but deep down I knew it was the end of the road for these.

I guess I would call myself a serious cyclist now and I needed some serious gloves.
With the bootie purchase I dove in and bought some nice quality gloves.

Haven't been able to test ride these yet either, but I know they will be the bomb.
For other purposes I bought SmartWool liner gloves, and I know I can tuck these into my new gloves when the need arises.

So, that's my get up.
That's me.
That's how I roll.

I look forward to trying it all out in the Spring
after the first rains have washed the salt off the roads.

Until then,
the Trek and I will be one

in the box

watching movies,

but not eating popcorn...