My first fall in southern California has been puzzling. The weather hovers above the 80’s either peaking in the mid/high 80’s then dropping to the 70’s. A morning chill is quickly replaced by a blanket of sun, and moving outside can be refreshing or sweat inducing. For most people this means bringing a sweater for the air conditioning inside or the ‘breeze’ outside. Regardless, I am not like most people because I bike up-hill to campus everyday.
If you haven’t guessed yet this is not a hard hitting, thought evoking, piece on the foully of man; but rather a snapshot in the life of a sleep deprived biker graduate student. Here’s what I wore in fall, in southern California, as a biker.
The first thing I do every morning is check my schedule. Today I have an midterm exam, workshop, studying, and a workout session with friends. This means I’m going to be very casual with my dress. I was lucky enough to go to a very casually dressed graduate program. So you don’t have to wear buttons downs, blazers with patches, and oxfords everyday.
Weather outlook. It was raining, chilly, with thunder and lightning all night Sunday. I’m not native to here but I feel like this weather isn’t normal.
Starting outfit. I wore my biking outfit to school and then added a jacket and scarf after I had cooled down. I spent some time outside under a tree, to de-sweat and to review for the test before going in. I like to get to morning meetings and classes one hour to two hours before the start to account for biking.
My next challenge was biking in heels. My previous research did not give me a clear cut answer regarding the safety of biking in heels. So here’s some more anecdotal evidence to further muddy the waters.
You can bike safely in heels if you consider your route, weather, heel width, traction of the sole of the heel, and general confidences in heels. If you wear heels for the majority of the week try a test drive close to home, maybe bring a back up pair of falts. From what I’ve read most injuries seem to occur when you get your heel stuck in the pedal. Or when your pedal shifts from your toes to the arch of your heel.
Now that I’ve given some general considerations to biking in heels let us consider jeans. A quick pro tip, don’t bike in jeans. Anything that doesn’t breath, that is touching your body has to potential to make you sweat! So for the bike to work I wore shorts and then changed once I got there.
The final look. I biked back home in this because I work late, the weather is cooler, and it’s all down hill on my ride home.
- Be prepared! You never want to bike back because you forgot your laptop charger.
- It’s a workout! Even the slightest hill can make you sweat.
- Know your sweet, if you know you sweat when you work out, then you will sweat when you bike.
- Wear workout clothes and check the weather before you head out.
- Heels? Use caution, you can injure yourself so tread lightly