Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Bike Shorts for Non-Bikers

Thanks to Achilles Tendonitis, running is out of my routine, for now. My surrogate is biking, so I thought I'd check out bike shorts.

Goals:
- Not too much padding (I'm not riding a Century and am too young/old for a diaper)
- Comfortable fit around waist and thigh
- Fairly short - I don't get why bike shorts are so long when the saddle is so small
- At least four panels, for better mobility

I should have added "Reasonably priced" to my goals because my favorite pair were $65 - about $30 more than my best running shorts. If you have the cash (I decided I didn't), here's the highlights of what I found:

DeSoto Carrera Low Rise Tri Short ($65)


Nice length - 4" inseam
Comfortable, wide waistband
8 panels (Serious!)
Comfortable grip on thighs (see bottom arrow)
Quality materials - not too thin
Barely enough padding
Shape of padding made a weird crease (top arrow) that either won't be noticeable when biking or will lead to some vicious chafing
GRADE: B

2XU Comp Tri Shorts ($75)

Nice length - 4" inseam
Six panels
Mesh panels on the hip for air and comfort (see top arrow)
Nice amount of padding (a little more than the DeSoto)
Inside of hem has a layer of rubber to prevent slippage
Quality materials - not too thin
Uncomfortable, elastic waistband
Extremely unflattering - dug in at the thigh (see bottom arrow) and under the bum in a way that made me look like an unhappy sausage
Expensive!
GRADE: C

I'm still looking. If you have any recos for a biker who hopes to go back to running, leave a comment. Thanks!