Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Click the "Create Account" button now to join.

To disable ads, please log-in.

Shop at TeamEstrogen.com for women's cycling apparel.

Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Vienna, Austria
    Posts
    12

    Lovely commute - sweaty arrival

    To disable ads, please log-in.

    hi everyone,

    I'm using my bike to get around town (or at least I'm planning on doing that again). That means, I'm not just commuting to work and back home, but I'm using my bike to go to Uni, the library, to meet friends and anywhere else that I need to go. Going by bike is super practical because it's not really a very big city and going places means max. 30 min drive.

    The problem is, Vienna is built on hills. You can't go ANYWHERE without it being either down- or uphill and it can get quite steep if you don't want to take the 5k detour (that is probably not even much flatter).
    This also means, that wherever I go - I arrive sweaty. Depending on the route I'll be drenched. I'm not even going fast or anything (especially with all the red lights)...how do you deal with that?
    I mean, nobody in class cares if my hair looks weird and I can change into another t-shirt. But if I have to go places and actually look a bit like a normal person, all the sweatiness is unhelpful.

    Tipps?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    A sweat-friendly haircut can make a huge difference - a wash-and-go style that you can just run your fingers through at your destination and let it dry.

    I sweat pretty heavily too, and it's amazing how much fresher I look and feel just toweling off and changing into dry clothes, even without a shower. I'm not sure I could get away with it at someplace super businesslike, but for less-formal offices and social situations, it's plenty.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    Let yourself cool down/air dry for a few minutes after arrival, before you even attempt to wash up. It seems counter-intuitive, but I find if I rush to wash my face, I keep sweating. I wash my face with a a travel sized bottle of my normal face wash and re-apply moisturizer w/sunscreen and any make up. I either use a small hand towel I carry, with regular soap from a rest room to do a spot wash (underarms, feet, neck), or I have, on some occasions used those bath cloth things you can heat up in the microwave if there's no water alternative. Some people use baby wipes.
    When I had a longer (14 mile) hilly commute, I had very short, spikey hair. I just rewet it and put some gel in. My hair is still short, but is longer and requires more styling now. But, my commute to work is 5 miles, all downhill/flat. It's been fine so far, but I know I will be a bit sweaty in the coming months, as I am a head sweater! I just had it cut a little shorter, so the underneath part isn't as thick. I also have a very small flat iron, that I keep at the office. Just in case.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,981
    You know I have never taken a shower at work after a bike commute. And I've been cycling to different workplaces for over the last 20 yrs. I've cycled daily on some hot humid summer days to work...31 km. round trip when I lived in Toronto ..which gets humid hot summers like New York State @100% humidity.

    For myself, I always give myself lots of time to wash my face, change clothes. I try to give myself almost an hr...which includes clothing change and getting coffee to ease into my work day. I don't dash to my desk and start work. I hate that way of beginning day because it just puts my brain in stress mode which destroys what cycling does for me: it de-stresses me.

    By then, the sweat has dried off. I'm like that but others are different. Certainly I do sweat a lot in the face, --red/pink face, sweat pouring down my face if it's very humid hot....but in Vancouver and Calgary, the summers are not humid like Ontario. (Even though you hear locals complain. They may have not lived in other parts of Canada/the world.)

    Today I cycled 28 km. round trip to my favourite bakery through a river valley park system with some minor hills, but enough to get your heart pumping and get your face at least pink, sweaty. The store clerk chatted up with me. I found out she had only been in Canada last 15 months. Before that it was, 5 years in Taiwan.

    She lives only 8 km. max. from bakery! I said to her she could cycle. She giggled and said she was lazy. Beside she would get sweaty, etc. Really, we have different perceptions of physical exertion and tolerance of sweat, cleanliness/uncleaniless etc. (She was small like me and light in weight. So most likely, she would not sweat horribly /tons..)

    I've been cycling for so many years....that I forget the sweat thing is a huge deal/(psychological) barrier for some women. In some years, my work commute bike routes included at least 1 10% hill upward.
    I think men concern themselves about it but seem to complain/say less.
    Last edited by shootingstar; 04-13-2014 at 03:30 PM.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    Well, sometimes I didn't feel totally "refreshed" with my cleanup when I was commuting 14 miles, with a pretty good hill right before getting to my school. But, I kind of would deal with it. It would have been a lot nicer to just have a shower. Now, my dilemma is whether to try commuting in street clothes. Personally, I don't think I'll do it, even though it's only 5 miles. I'd have to go slower than I already do, so as not to sweat hardly at all, and frankly, the wonderful kind of urban riding dresses and pants I see in magazines like Momentum aren't in my wardrobe. Plus, the way home involves some sweat worthy hills and traffic. I tend to wear either tight capris/jegging type pants or shorter pencil skirts. I have a few dresses that might work, with bike shorts underneath, and one actual cycling dress.You are right Shooting Star. I have a very close friend who is overweight. She states she hates exercise, mostly because she hates sweating. She'll go out and walk, and she gardens, but it's not fun for me to walk with her, it's so slow. I love to sweat, as it means I've worked, but not so much on my way to work!
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,981
    Over the years, Crankin I've a number of women comment to me about the fear of sweat and not being able to shower that would stop them from cycling. I don't try to convince them anything. I just continue with my own thing. I have had some questions here and there about commuting routes, bike panniers, lights, etc.

    I dunno. I just make sure I change out of cycling clothing at worksite, which is why I have no interest in cycling to work in my street clothing.
    And I make sure my polyester-based jerseys get frequently washed, etc. (because really that's what a lot of the jerseys are made from....a synthetic which can be smelly. You will know: make sure you stand with a bunch of 20+ cyclists at the U.S.-Canada border crossing during the summer, on one of the San Juan Islands...in an enclosed room with no open windows.... Smelly polyester.)

    I'm abit beyond worrying tons about social ostracization if there is the odd occasion I'm negligent.

    On my work floor, there were 3 guys exercising right out in the hall way,.... I could smell them at times from 10 ft. away. I think they were teaching each other stretches, jumps, etc. Yea, one of them is a cyclist and he's in good shape.

    I guess I'm not going to fret over too much ..because my employer is constantly...every month laying on 14,000 employees a message/event related to fitness and health.
    Last edited by shootingstar; 04-13-2014 at 05:39 PM.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Vienna, Austria
    Posts
    12
    wow, thanks for all the comments!

    On days where I have just classes/work it's not so bad. I don't mind that. Because I can give myself enough time to arrive and dry or it doesn't really matter to me because sitting in a HUGE room with lots of other students who came by bike...who gives a damn. Also, I can always go and change at least my t-shirt or something.

    What I'm still trying to figure out are days like today. I'll have to be at a friends house at 11, meet at another place with my estate agent at 12, pick up a prescription from my doctor at 2, walk the dog of my mother-in-law and then get some grocery shopping done before heading to my LBS to pick up my brake cables. It's the days of running errands that get to me, because I sit on the bike start sweating, dry off while doing something, get on the bike again, start sweating again...rinse and repeat. By the time I'll be at my doctor's I'll feel completely grubby.

    Just like Crankin said, I love to sweat. Going for a run or ride, I'm pissed off when I don't sweat properly (maybe because of a dry, warm wind), but going round town I just don't like the feeling of it - and I'm not really the person to care what others might think of my sweaty state (seriously, who cares?) but I care about how I feel.

    But maybe it's as you say, shootingstar: If I'm doing it for long enough, I'll forget about it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,981
    Then I wonder how many women who bike for transportation within their own city, do it in Europe? They have the same lifestyle as yours....? and bike in their ordinary clothing/business wear.

    This is why I'm not interested in cycling in dressier clothing (ie. dress, skirt, etc.). It's clothing that's either cycling wear or very casual wear (ie. walking shorts). For latter, then I don't feel I've ruined a great top/pair dress pants so quickly for the washing machine.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Central Missouri
    Posts
    626
    I don't sweat all that much unless it's exceedingly hot (which it often is here in the summer). I find that helps me get away with it a bit. Even when I had a 15 mi round trip that was all hills, I was still not that sweaty. Right now, I only encounter a couple normal sized hills and my RT is 5 miles. So, it's nothing. I could ride in a dress and be fine and I often ride in Zoic jeggings (which I will wear with a tunic or something to teach in) or skinny jeans but as it gets warmer, I will take my liner shorts and put them under mostly skirts and dresses because that's how I dress in the summer.

    I do get a bit sweaty on hot days but I keep deodorant at the office along with a hairbrush and if it's hot, I change clothes or take off my baselayer and put on underoos (I don't wear underwear on the bike basically ever). I will run errands before/after work with lots of stop and go. I will even do a grocery run at the end of the day and be okay. I used to worry more about sweating around people but the BF says he really can't "smell" anything until I ride 25+ miles or its really hot, so if he doesn't mind and is sitting basically right next to me while out to eat or whatever, I figure most people don't notice. I've never had an officemate notice and these are some brutally honest people.
    ***graduate student and avid cyclist***

    Owned by:
    Le Monstre Vert - 2013 Surly Cross-check
    Willis, my chiX

    "Carl" - 2010 Kia Soul (when necessary!)

    Elle on Wheels - my cycling blog!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Interior Alaska
    Posts
    21
    Currently, I have the most fortunate advantage of having a full shower at work. I love it more than any other non-monetary benefit.
    Formerly, I did not have that luxury. I would use (and still do if in a pinch, or going somewhere else that I need to be "presentable") anti- monkey butt towels. I buy them on Amazon. I've heard very good things about Walgreen's skin wipes, but we do not have a local Walgreens. Other skin wipes I buy from the grocery all seem to have a very perfume-y, lingering odor. I bought some from L'Occittane, but cannot afford to use those frequently. I carry a couple in the seat pouch of my road bike, and in full quantity in my commuting panniers. If I ever leave my job, I will definitely only leave if they have washing facilities. There is nothing that can compare to the comfort of sitting all day behind this damned screen squeaky clean.
    commuter: a Giant Sedona '97
    road: Giant OCR c3 '08 | 105/Ultegra
    lusting a Sweet Pea A-line for when DH sweeps me out to sea

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    2,045
    I'm a science teacher and I wash my hair in the sink (it helps having the little hose attachment) and run to the nearest bathroom to dry my hair. It takes me about 10 minutes to clean up. I usually only ride on Fridays when we can wear jeans and school t-shirts.
    2016 Specialized Ruby Comp disc - Ruby Expert ti 155
    2010 Surly Long Haul Trucker - Jett 143

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    I now use the Ban Refresh cloths to freshen up. They are not smelly or sticky. I've only had a couple of days when I was really sweaty from commuting so far; it's more from humidity than heat.
    The part that bothers me is my hair. It doesn't take more than 5 minutes for me to fix it (product and fingers on the top/sides and flat iron on the bangs), but why can't I have the kind of hair that just falls straight and dry when I take my helmet off???? Instead, my head is soaked and my bangs are flipped into a backwards C. It was not so bad in the cooler weather, but I would kill for straight hair, not frizzy, bendy, twisty, ugly hair. I would even kill for naturally curly hair. Anything would be better than what I have and that's the reason it's short!
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    2,045
    Crankin, mine does all that AND I'm suffering from hair loss (hereditary my doc says, but depressing) so it is just embarrassing to take my helmet off in public
    2016 Specialized Ruby Comp disc - Ruby Expert ti 155
    2010 Surly Long Haul Trucker - Jett 143

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    AZ, I have a feeling we are talking about a "cultural" phenomena. Genetics.
    Meh.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Interior Alaska
    Posts
    21
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	invisiblehelmet_630x420_1345688613_460x460.jpg 
Views:	156 
Size:	36.4 KB 
ID:	17327
    There are always alternatives:

    Two women from Sweden have invented a bicycle helmet that remains invisible unless you need it, to solve the issues we all have with helmets - destroying hair or annoying them.

    “It became mandatory for children to wear a helmet in Sweden and many people didn’t use them,” ABC News quoted Haupt as saying.

    “We wanted to see if there was a way to change today’s helmets and wanted people to wear them by free will, not by law.

    “We found out people wanted something that was almost invisible that didn''t destroy their hair or annoy them, something with the possibility to change the looks of the helmet like they can with mobile phone shells and wigs,” she said.

    The Hovding looks like a collar at first, worn around the neck. Inside it is an air bag, similar to the ones in your car.

    According to the company’s website, shaped like a hood, the air bag is triggered when sensors - a combination of accelerometers and gyroscopes, pick up “abnormal movements of a bicyclist in an accident”.

    The air bag can inflate and surround your head in 0.1 seconds. A small gas inflator fills it with helium. It needs to be powered on for which there is a power button and when it’s on, LEDs light up to tell you how much electricity you have to work the inflator.

    There is also a sound to tell you it is powered on in case you cannot see it around your neck. That means you also have to charge the invisible helmet. It uses a microUSB port and the company says a charge lasts about a month during normal use.
    commuter: a Giant Sedona '97
    road: Giant OCR c3 '08 | 105/Ultegra
    lusting a Sweet Pea A-line for when DH sweeps me out to sea

 

 

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •