Sunday, December 26, 2010
25th December, 25 Degrees... First Attempts at Winter Road Cycling!
regular winter clothes and potter along at whatever speed I am comfortable with until I reach my destination. But when cycling for sport, it is more difficult to regulate body temperature: Most of my body warms up almost immediately once I pick up speed, so bundling up will cause overheating. At the same time, my hands and face are more vulnerable to the windchill than on a transportation bike because of how they are positioned on a roadbike. To find the perfect balance is tricky and can only be done via experimentation.
After resisting "technical wool" for as long as I could, I finally gave into it, because nothing else was working for me. I hope to write a comparison review of some popular wool brands soon, but basically what I am wearing in these pictures are just a couple of thin layers by Icebreaker and I/O Bio, an old wool hat, and a wind-proof cycling jacket. I am embarrassed to admit that the jacket is Campagnolo, but it is the best athletic jacket I have worn, ever, and I should write a separate review of it as well, as it certainly deserves it.
previous post about my hands freezing when riding with drop bars, I received suggestions from readers for this style of gloves, and the Co-Habitant got them for me as a gift. The concept of "lobster gloves" was new to me, but I was willing to try anything to keep my fingers from going numb when positioned on the brake hoods. These gloves really do make your hands look like enormous, mutant lobster claws, and whether you consider that cute or unacceptably grotesque is a matter of taste.
some versions keep the index finger and middle finger together as well. We went to a local Eastern Mountain Sports store to look for these gloves, and I tried several versions by different manufacturers. I chose the ones by Gore Bike Wear (called "Radiator Gloves"), because they were the only ones that allowed me to freely squeeze the brake levers on the floor model roadbikes they had in the store. Similar-looking gloves by Pearl Izumi and other manufacturers constrained my hands too much and interfered with lever squeezing motions. The sizing of the Gore gloves was unisex, and size 6 fit me perfectly. Normally I wear I size 7 in women's gloves.