's Forum Archives - General

Archive Home >> General(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 )

Commuting to work question...(33 posts)

Commuting to work question...opencl
Sep 24, 2002 8:02 AM
Does anyone bike to work on their regular working clothes?
No...Not Possible for most jobs ...Maartin
Sep 24, 2002 8:08 AM
why's that ?Steve_0
Sep 24, 2002 8:18 AM
What is it about ~most~ jobs which makes it impossible?
All people sweat, but not all workplaces have showers. nmtz
Sep 24, 2002 8:24 AM
According to Jim FixxSteve_0
Sep 24, 2002 8:37 AM
perspiration from exercise DOES NOT SMELL.

Mr. Fixx described in his first book the fact that he used to run at lunchtime, despite lack of showers. He contended that any odor in perspiration was the result of mental stresses or nervousness, NOT from exercise; therefore a well-conditioned athlete will not smell from exercise.

It's interesting to note, however, that he changed his tune in his second book after his colleagues informed him he was either very wrong or very nervous.

:-) nmtz
Sep 24, 2002 10:06 AM
Sep 24, 2002 8:13 AM
My commute is only 5 miles one way, plus I wear shorts and T-shirt all summer long, so it's no big deal. In winter and cold weather, I typically wear jeans, which aren't great riding clothes.
Sep 24, 2002 8:26 AM
When I commuted by bike (24 miles RT), i was in an office environment which necessitated shirt and tie. Not exactly the best for longish-distance commute (though I would have done it for a very short commute)

I commuted daily in jeans and t-shirt; principally because I rarely, if ever, went straight home. Stop at the store, stop at happy hour, stop at the girlfriends, stop at moms.

Felt much more comfortable being in jeans then riding clothes (and stunk less). Habit I still have today; unless Im planning on really pushing it, i just wear streetclothes on a ride.
Sep 24, 2002 10:53 AM
My problem with jeans is that they have seams in all the wrong places, and denim is not a smooth fabric. I still wore them, but some days it got painful.
Used to when I lived closer, but...cory
Sep 24, 2002 8:17 AM
I used to live 2 miles from work, and it was easy--a little flat spin across town, less than 10 minutes. Now I'm 45 minutes away, so I wear shorts or tights and touring shoes. Fortunately we have a shower and locker room, so it's no problem.
re: Commuting to work question...commuterguy
Sep 24, 2002 8:52 AM
I wear bike shorts/tights (depending on the season), etc. on my 24 mile r/t commute. I couldn't wear work clothes, but I do regularly see people in shirts & ties on bikes. However, none of them are going particularly fast.

BTW, if you start out clean (ie shower or bathe prior to the ride), and use baby wipes for a quick sponge bath upon arrival, one can commute (vigorously) on a bike and not have a shower at work. Sweat leads to odors when bacteria metabolize dead skin cells; bathing kills bacteria and removes dead skin, so a quick towel-off upon arrival is sufficient, even in hot summer months.
re: sweat. se above post on Jim FixxSteve_0
Sep 24, 2002 9:01 AM
(not saying youre not correct; just saying Jim thought he was)
re: sweat. se above post on Jim Fixxcommuterguy
Sep 24, 2002 11:51 AM
I didn't know Jim, and I don't know if he was mistaken or not. (Is/was he the runner who died young?) However, I am quite certain that I am no more malodorous than the next guy (or gal). I trust my senses on this, and I have a number of blunt speaking coworkers who would set me straight if I was wrong.

BTW, I don't think the Jim Fixx theory cited above is widely accepted, but I cribbed my theory from an actual scientist.
Sep 24, 2002 8:53 AM
re: Commuting to work question...
re: Commuting to work question...bcm119
Sep 24, 2002 8:57 AM
No, but I wear normal shorts over my biking shorts. And a plain colored jersey. Then I change in the bathroom (we don't have showers) and wash my underarms with a wet paper towel. It works out pretty well, and on the way home I just wear full-on biking gear and throw my clothes in my backpack so I can really ride.
re: Commuting to work question...MJ
Sep 24, 2002 9:00 AM
depends what you define as commuting - I think it's getting from A to B - if commuting and riding mean the same thing probably not I sweat when I ride - but I don't have to ride to commute - I can go slower and avoid the issue of sweat in the first place - if you treat every light as an interval and every day a time trial I'd make sure you have showers available

it's bogus to think you have to be in a lycra bat suit and ridiculous shoes to be on your bike going somewhere - (look at the Dutch) - in my opinino that defeats alot of what is best about cycling - it's cool to be in a suit with dress shoes on a dirty cross bike with Time ATAC's

having said that it's never that hot where I live - and it helps to use fenders in the wet

the real question is can you realistically ride without getting too overheated and filthy?
if we model after the dutch, we'd be stealing each others bikes.Steve_0
Sep 24, 2002 9:05 AM
But your outlook is agreeable with my own.
bring in clothes for the week monday morning,pukka
Sep 24, 2002 9:06 AM
a face cloth and a bar of soap,take it easy monday morning .ride hard as ya like all week bring clothes back friday night,
i use a rack, although it looks naff,it stops the sweaty back problem i got with a messanger bag
I have the answer. . .ripSRV
Sep 24, 2002 9:07 AM
NO. I wear cycling clothes and keep a locker behind a locked door where I can change. We don't have a shower either and I will share with you the secret to freshness before changing into work clothes. Huggies Baby Wipes!!!!

They're perfect for the quick clean-up and disposable. After the evening ride home, chores around the house, kids to bed, do the shower and shave and go to bed. Everybody wins. Besides, would you rather be shower cleaned and shaved for your wife or the boss?
Yes, if I go straight to work.Scot_Gore
Sep 24, 2002 9:15 AM
I only live 1.1 miles from work and it's 80% down hill. If I bike straight in I do it in my work clothes and shoes, pedals are flats on my cheapo mountain bike that I don't bring inside.

Other days I take off and bike 10 miles away from work in full regatta, my office has showers.

Almost DailyRay Sachs
Sep 24, 2002 9:16 AM
My commute is only a couple of miles each way, with no hills to speak of. I ride in street clothes about every day - business casual most times but I wear a coat and tie when work demands it. I ride to night meetings around town in my nicer clothes too. As long as I stay in the town I live in work in, I don't work up enough of a sweat to worry about. Once a week, I have to ride about 15 miles before work (early doc appointment) and I ride in cycling clothes, clean up the stinky parts with baby wipes when I get to work, and change into work clothes there.

I generally don'tvelocity
Sep 24, 2002 9:23 AM
It depends a bit on what you ride and how you ride to work. I like the Dutch model but we don't have dedicated cycle roads here. Since I have a beater bike commuter with racing gearing, it's much more comfortable for me to wear cycle gear and change into my work clothes when I get to work. I don't find sweat to be much of an issue and go into the bathroom and clean up as needed.
I could, but I don't for comfort... clean dry drawers are nicePdxMark
Sep 24, 2002 9:31 AM
A 4 mile commute with some climbing that I ride with some gusto... cycling shorts are more comfy and it's nice to change into clean & dry drawers for the work day
Sep 24, 2002 9:35 AM
Aside from sweat questions there are puddles, chain ring tattoos on your pants, etc. I ride in riding clothes, wipe off with a towel, spray my pits with cologne put on work slacks and a shirt with a collar, and go about my day. Imho riding to work in work clothes would diminish the quality of both the ride and the work day.
Depends on how much you sweatpmf1
Sep 24, 2002 9:55 AM
For me -- not an option. I do know a guy who commutes every day of the week pretty much all year round in boiling heat and winter cold in his work clothes. He weighs about 120 lbs and rides an old cruiser.

It would never work for me, but it does for him. Just rolls up his right pant leg.
re: Commuting to work question...Bike Fool
Sep 24, 2002 10:03 AM
What velocity said. I backpack my work clothes, ride easy in (even in the hot/humid days) and just change out when I get to the office. If I feel remotely grimy, I break out the Old Spice cool contact wipes.
re: Commuting to work question...Fattrax
Sep 24, 2002 11:06 AM
Eagle Creek Travel Gear puts out a great product for folding and packing dress shirts and slacks in a compact package. I fold it all up and toss it in my courier bag or panniers. It's plastic inserts keep everything relatively wrinkle free. To lighten the load, I keep some items at work such as dress shoes and belt. I also keep an extra pair of sock and a tie if I happen to forget something. Those Old Spice Cool Contact are great for a quick towel bath. I haven't head any malodorous complaints from the coworkers over the four years that I've been commuting.
Yes!Humma Hah
Sep 24, 2002 1:24 PM
I find it works OK if I shower right before leaving home. My 5.2 mile commute is not too long or sweaty, generally. The commute home it is OK if I take the long way and get sweaty.

Today, however, I wore long sleeved shirt and long pants, as the fall weather had hit. I had a dental appointment at 10 pm. I showered, dressed, mowed the lawn, rode to the dentist, then rode to work. I presently stink. The shower must immediately preceed the ride to work.
Today, first commute to work..Lone Gunman
Sep 24, 2002 5:08 PM
Car is in the shop and had no ride to work. It was about 40 degrees out this AM, I had knicks and a LS shirt. I barely broke a sweat to get there, 3 hills to climb, wiped off with a sport sponge and got dressed and worked all day. No problem.
I cheat.PseuZQ
Sep 24, 2002 9:22 PM
I joined a gym two blocks from the job. I shower and change there. Riding in work clothes is not practical for me, becuase I've got a pretty decent hill to go over, plus my cooling system is very effective. :-) I also share a small office with my colleague, so I'm very self-conscious of any stank, from me or my bike stuff. (Mmmm...Wet Swobo wool! I leave it at the gym.)

I do see tons and tons of commuters in street clothes. In fact, I'm waiting for the day when I see SPD-compatible Doc Martens.

For tips, see:

Bike Fashion: The Lowdown on High Style for Cyclists
sometimes- I can wear whatever I wantoff roadie
Sep 25, 2002 5:25 AM
I work in a health care environment. Before I was promoted, I was wearing scrubs all day and be required to shower before work, which was actually pretty nice...

What I would wear biking isn't always comfortable in my air-conditioned / heated office, but I don't always change when I get to work, especially if I know I'll be going outside a lot. That only works for me because I can wear whatever I want. It's a casual workplace with a fair bit of manual labor involved, so sometimes biking clothes (w/ baggy shorts) are perfect for the job!
Sep 25, 2002 6:18 AM
It's just not practical for me because, well, I perspire a bit. And I don't work in a gym.

Keep some stuff in the gym by work and I shower, shave, and change there before showing up at the office.
You mean in a skirt and heels?Kristin
Sep 25, 2002 8:35 AM Getting chainring grease out of nylons is a b$tch. (Well, that's what I've heard chain is spotless.) Even if I didn't have to play dress up at the office, I wouldn't commute in street clothes. I still haven't figured out how to ride and not sweat--and I really hate wet clothes that cling. (I know, I know, the guys are so opposed to that.) Thankfully, my office has shower facilities and power outlets. I keep (or will keep) a garment bag at the office with some suits and just get ready here.