Showing posts from June, 2015

Review: Spoke 'Flex' Chinos

London based Spoke is a brand that has, and deserves, a great following. Despite their name resonating very strongly with the cycling world, it relates in truth to the "bespoke" nature of their products. That said, their beautifully tailored trousers are something that any cyclist will appreciate, and the new "Flex" model in particular, due to the subtle stretch in the fabric and the contoured fit. Cyclists often have "difficult" physiques. We're an odd bunch anyway, but due to the nature of our sport, we can have everything from the bulging legs of a sprinter, to the thin and spindly legs of a climber. In short, it's often difficult to find clothes (particularly trousers) that fit well. Perhaps I'm getting fussier, perhaps having tested a lot of well-fitted cycling kit, I'm just learning that a great fit can exist. Either way, the idea of a smart, reasonably priced pair of trousers, which actually fitted well, sounded like a pipe-dr

Jersey 2015 - The International Island Games - Imminent

It's almost here. This time next week, I'll be desperately trying to recover. Recover from what will undoubtedly be the hardest XC mountain bike race I have done; ahead of what will probably be an even harder road race the following morning. The Jersey 2015 Natwest International Island Games is imminent. It seems everything this year has been geared around this event, for me. From those long winter training miles in wind and rain, right down to taking it a bit easier on greasy corners for fear of jeopardising my fitness and training, in the lead-up to this event. Everything has been focussed on trying to be on top form for this coming week. I've done as much as I can now... The Island Games is best described as a mini-Olympics, exclusive to small islands from around the globe. Athletes come together from as far flung places as Bermuda, Mallorca and The Shetland Isles; all to compete against each other in a wide range of sports. The week promises to be a great fe

Weekend Watch: 'Slow Down - Escape'

I think I might need to plan a bike trip to Nepal...

Nutrition: Fuelling For Post-Work Riding

For many of us, mid-week training is a chance to unwind, get in a few quick hours on the bike, and hopefully make a few fitness gains at the same time. Everyday life means that we're often restricted to short sharp sessions after work, and have to rely on the weekend for longer endurance miles. Short sessions can be very productive though, and training is as much about quality as it is quantity. A fundamental key to getting that quality though, is nutrition. You need to make sure you are properly fuelled to perform at your best; making the most of those brief hours that you can squeeze into a busy mid-week schedule. I've got this kind of nutrition wrong on many an occasion. Much like the feeling of 'bonking', if you haven't fuelled correctly, you are left lifeless and unproductive on the bike. With that in mind, I've now got a clear idea of how to effectively fuel for an after-work training set... Caffeine and Carbohydrates By its nature, evening is

Review: Levi's 511 Slim Fit Commuter Jeans and Tee

Levi's jeans need little introduction. Seriously, if you haven't heard of them, where have you been?! What you might not be aware of, is that as well as being the makers of probably the best-known denim range in the world, they also produce jeans especially for cyclists. The Levi's Commuter range was actually one of the first mainstream denim/chino brand ranges to introduce cycling specific features. The idea behind the range is that subtle adaptations and innovations make their products more comfortable for that commute across town, without compromising the classic looks. Of course, with Levi's keeping to their superb reputation for quality and style as well, these are jeans that promise to stand the test of time, and continue to look great however many times you ride to the pub in them.  The Levi's 511 Slim fit Commuter Jeans look like a regular pair of indigo denims at a glance; a set of well-made and well-fitted ones, at that. The 'Commuter' i

Photo Blog: Après Vélo Summer Tees 2015

Summer might have finally arrived in the UK *fingers crossed*, and with it comes the season of tees and polos. There aren't many better feelings than kicking back after a long ride, with your favourite t-shirt on, and soaking up the summer sun. Hopefully, that tee is something that subtly brands you as a cyclist, too... after all, we're all proud to be bike riders. That said, rocking up to your mate's summer BBQ with the same cycling tee as three other people isn't so cool, and there aren't that many casual cycling brands in the UK. Solution? Look to an Australian brand! Après Vélo have featured on the blog before, when I've profiled some of their great cotton tees. They are constantly coming up with new designs though, and sent me a few of their latest prints. I thought they were definitely worth sharing! Check them out... Après Vélo tees are available worldwide from (Link)

Review: adistar CD.Zero3 Bib Shorts and Jersey

Aero is the 'new black'. White is still the 'new black'. Black is still up there too. White, black and aero; well... The new adidas CD.Zero3 bib shorts and short sleeve jersey have got to be up there on the 'cycling fashion' scale, and they're also up there for design features, quality and fit. Whilst it has only recently been getting warm enough to test these lightweight products in the UK, I feel I've done enough miles in them now, to cast my vote on this latest edition to the adistar range... The adidas CD.Zero3 Bib Shorts Bib shorts are perhaps the most difficult piece of cycling apparel to get right. The material needs to be light and flexible enough to breath and not restrict movement; yet weighty enough to cover your muscles and provide decent durability. The bibs themselves, need to be tough enough they won't stretch over time; yet not so heavy-duty they leave red indents on your shoulders from their tightness. The pad needs to be

GripGrab - Top Cycling Accessories For Summer 2015

For socks, overshoes, gloves, warmers and headwear, there is only one brand for me - GripGrab . For the last two years, I've been very fortunate and grateful to be supported by the Danish brand, and their products are the only accessories I use for training and racing. They're the only products I use, because I'm keen to show my support for the brand; but also, because in all honesty, they out-perform any other products that I've come across. They are without a doubt, a market-leader for their cycling accessories. With summer fast approaching, I thought I would showcase a few of my favourite items from the GripGrab 2015 range. These are products that I use ride-after-ride, and continue to put a smile on my face whenever I do. GripGrab Hi-Vis Summer Socks This year, our Team Wiggle kit went stealth. With the addition of the new logo, we also edited the kit design to reduce the orange usage on the leg bands and sleeves. The result, is a very smart set of kit

Review: DeciBullz Mouldable Headphones

Wearing earbuds when riding is a no-no for me; it blocks out vital warning sounds and can affect your balance. There are some headphones, such as the Aftershokz Bluez 2 (recently reviewed on the blog), which do allow you to safely mix the noise of the outside world with your tunes, through clever bone conduction technology. In the main though, I wouldn't advocate using headphones whilst you ride. That said, there is one significant exception: indoor and static training. When you're riding on the rollers or turbo trainer, it's in your interest to block out the background whirr and ambient noise. A good set of earbuds, which stay in your ear and block out the majority of the noise, can let you get on with your session without any distractions. The DeciBullz brand was established with one objective: producing earbuds and earplugs that stay in your ear, and isolate your ear from outside noise. They do that, through custom mouldable plastic casings, which under high tempe