Monday, October 20, 2014

Winter Cycling Clothing

Readers will be familiar with the praise I have for the European sports equipment store Decathlon.  

Since they are barred from Switzerland since I believe they would pose to great a threat to the Swiss un-competitively priced shops   (IMHO, other opinions are available),  you can be sure that whilst recently visiting England we popped into a local branch.

What is the Strategy?

At the minimum you would have a set of Summer and Winter cycling clothes.  Just enough of each so that you have at least one available set for your Cycling lifestyle whilst the others are washing and drying.

For best effect you could also have a set of Autumn/Spring clothes.  This brings me to the lightly fleece insulated

Decathlon BTwin 500 Long Sleeve Cycling Jersey

What is so great about it again?

+ An absence of logos
Two small logos on the back.  One near left collar. Nothing else.  For the final touch make sure you cut off all the internal tags.  Ah, plain and simple.    

+ Plain / Dark Colours
Without logos you can arrive to a social engagement, like a restaurant without looking like you are desperately seeking a sponsorship deal.

Dark colours mean that when the inevitable oil marks arrive they will be almost invisible.

+ Long Sleeves
It is winter time.  Come on.

+ Fleeced Inside
This version has a moderate internal fleecy lining.  Suitable for Autumn.  For winter I'd recommend a larger size and wearing a thin additional inside layer.

+Two Deep Pockets
Just right to hold all your cycling essentials and stop you carrying a dedicated rucksack.

+Stong elasticated bottom
The bottom contains a tight and reinforced band that will keep this jacket close to your body.

+Short-ish length
For Marcus, essential otherwise the bottom of the Jersey dangles down too much.  Try before you buy.

= Other Alternatives
You can also buy from Decathlon and elsewhere more substantial tops which may also include wind protection.  In my experience they also keep the sweat in!  I'd prefer multiple breathable layers whatever the wind. For super windy conditions simply wear that ultra thin rain jacket (the one you should always carry for rain) over the top.  

- No Windproof Zip
There is no additional material strip behind the zip, so front facing winds you might think would become chilly.  But the zip is tight weave so although I'd prefer a layer it is not really an issue

+Multi Purpose
I actually use this Cycling Top on Autumn running races.   You can put multiple Gels and a Smartphone in the back pockets and keep them from bouncing with a small waist belt.

It's a bargain at 20 GBP.  If price however would be no object then I'd recommend Condor or similar

Overall a brilliant, low cost, multi-purpose, autumn suitable top.


Decathlon Cycling Jersey