Riding Round in Women’s Underwear.
It is December. Already my cycling fitness level has gone into the toilet. This winter, it seems, Seattle is either cursed with rain or unseasonably cold, dry weather. Okay, unseasonably cold in Seattle is nothing compared to southeastern Idaho (where I grew up), or Chicago, or Minnesota, or Buffalo. However, it is cold to me and it is still a challenge to find appropriate cold weather cycling gear. I hate wet weather riding, so if I want to avoid a long winter hibernation where I turn into a marshmallow, I am going to have to brave the cold temperatures.
Bike Commuting on a Budget.
Cycling gear is expensive. Jerseys are expensive. A CYCLEBUTTCRACK jersey is a fashionable and sexy jersey choice which is a lot cheaper than some other options, but I realize it is not cheap. I try hard to keep the price down! Cycling shorts with a chamois are $75 on the low end. This gear, especially the shorts, wear out quickly when exposed to daily use. I save the wear and tear on my jerseys and shorts for my long weekend rides. For my short 13 mile each way commute, I don’t really think cycling specific shorts are necessary. So in the summer I wear gym shorts and an old t-shirt. The winter is another matter.
Layers, Layers, Layers!
Dressing for cold weather is a challenge. Dress too warm, and you will soak all your gear in sweat. Not dressing warm enough and you will freeze your BUTTCHEEKS off. A good rule of thumb is to dress to be a little chilly when you step outside. That way when you are rolling and working, you won’t be turn into a sweaty mess. Like most people, I use layers to regulate my temperature when riding during a cold assed commute. This week, riding into a headwind with temperatures in the low 30’s, up top I wore an old sweatshirt, an old shell and a Charlie’s Coat raincoat. Add a hat and some long finger gloves, you are set for a nice ride. The lower half was another issue. Last week, I wore a pair of shorts, sweats, knee warmers, cycling shoes and covers. It was miserable! The cold cut through like needles. I damn near froze my giblets! I needed another layer.
One evening while running an errand at my local Walgreen’s, I saw a possible solution. Fleece lined tights. What? Women’s underwear? As miserable as my last ride was, I was ready to try anything. Plus, there is the added bonus of wearing women’s underwear. At only $6 it was not a big risk. They did not have any L/XL tights, so I got a pair of M/L. When I got home I was amazed to find that they fit, though putting on tights is a bit of a hassle. So how did they work?
My first two commutes in the lady tights were the coldest of the year, in the 20’s with a wicked headwind. With the tights as a base layer to my normal shorts, leg warmers and sweats, the cold no longer cut like a knife. Overall, I was still cold and it hurt, but my legs were able warm up. The ride was much more tolerable. Now that the weather is a bit warmer, I have reduced the number of layers to adjust to the temperatures. The tights seem to be wearing well. After three commutes and laundry, there is only a small amount of pilling but not obvious signs of wear. These things work great! However, while some guys find wearing women’s underwear thrilling, I have to report wearing lady tights was not at all exciting. Sigh… I think I should get a few more pairs of lady tights. I may even be on the lookout for some with garish prints on them. You know for visibility.
BTW!!! Here is the song that inspired the title for this post! Enjoy and stay warm!