Showing posts from January, 2017

Review - Cafe du Cycliste Jeanne Waterproof Bib Shorts

Rain resistant cycling shorts are becoming more widely available, due to the development of better fabrics and material coatings. Weatherproof protection, like that provided in the Cafe du Cycliste Jeanne Bib Shorts, helps to make those damp, windy and cold days that bit more manageable.

Not many people really enjoy wet weather cycling, but there are things that can be done to make it more comfortable. Indeed, with the right kit, it's quite possible that you'll learn to embrace the challenge of riding in inclement conditions.

Here's how French brand Café du Cycliste has developed their Jeanne Waterproof Bib Shorts, to help you 'dare the elements'...

Fabric and seat-pad The Jeanne Waterproof Bib Shorts use a water repellent DWR fabric, with a Thermo-Roubaix fleece lining. The combination provides a protective, stretchy, but highly breathable piece of race-wear; which will help aid comfort in challenging riding conditions.

The chamois used in the bib shorts comes fr…

The Ultimate Oatmeal - Banana, Chia and Date #RudelyAlternative with @RudeHealth #TryJanuary

So far for #TryJanuary, I've provided #RudelyAlternative dairy-free recipes for Hot Chocolate, Almond Banana PancakesDairy-free Porridge, and a Turmeric Latté. In this post, I've saved one of the best till last... welcome to the 'Ultimate Oatmeal' - with banana, chia seeds, almonds and dates...

Oatmeal is ancient porridge, and it produces an incredibly smooth and satisfying warming breakfast (or snack). To get the most of your oatmeal, you are best to soak it overnight; it helps to plump up the texture, and provide a more satisfying meal.

In this recipe, I add bananas and chia seeds to the mix; to provide extra richness, and a creamier texture.

Ingredients (Serves 2)100 ml Rude Health Oatmeal150 ml Rude Health Oat Drink150 ml cold water2 tbsp chia seeds1 tbsp of chopped dates1 banana1/2 tsp cinnamonMaple syrup and almond butter for topping

MethodThe night before:Soak your oatmeal in a glass bowl with the water (stir before you leave it, to remove any lumps)In the m…

Gearing Up For The TorTour Cyclocross Stage Race

The first race of the season is approaching fast. Whereas my 2016 season began with the dust and roots of Denmark, at the H12 MTB Race; this year, I am looking at snow and sub-zero temperatures, to kick-start my action-packed calendar…

It is time for TorTour Cyclocross, Switzerland!

The TorTour CX Stage Race Format
The TorTour Cyclocross Race is a three day event, with stages from 23 to 80 kilometres in length.
Prologue: A 23 kilometre lapped circuit race, at the venue in …., Switzerland Stage 1: 80 kilometres, with 700 metres of climbing. Looping out into the scenic Swiss countryside. Stage 2: 74 kilometres, with 1260 metres of climbing. More trails, forest and snowy descents! With competitors signed up from 15 different countries, it is set to be an incredible event.

Kit SelectionHere's what I'm packing as riding kit; to deal with the challenging conditions likely to be found in Glattfelden, Zurich.

Helmet, Headwear and Eyewear
Kask Infinity Helmet (reviewed here)GripGrab Aviator…

Review - Bar Fly 4.0 MTB Universal Computer Mount

Last year, I reviewed the Tate Labs Bar Fly SLi Garmin Mounts; they had an innovative dual-purpose design, which could accommodate both a Garmin and a light or GoPro. Tate Labs have now released the upgraded Bar Fly 4.0 computer mounts though, and I was keen to see the difference…

Greater computer compatibility With previous Bar Fly mounts, you were restricted to buying either a Garmin, CatEye or Polar option. With the new Bar Fly 4 mounts, you are able to accommodate any of the above, as well as the Wahoo ELEMNT, Mio, Powertap Joule, GoPro, or a light - all in one package.

The Bar Fly 4 computer mounts allow greater compatibility, because they have an interchangeable computer head. This means that even if you are upgrading your computer to a different brand, your mount will still be usable.

Dual-purpose mounting - for light/GoPro and computer  Similar to the Bar Fly SLi mounts, selected models in the new Bar Fly 4 range also allow you to mount a GoPro or a light on the underside of …

Review - NiteRider Solas 150 Rear Light

The 150 lumen output of the NiteRider Solas 150 places it up there with the most powerful rear bike lights that I've used to date. The build quality and design, are similarly high-end…

High-level build quality and design From the moment you un-box the NiteRider Solas 150, it is evident that this is not a flimsy rear safety light. The Solas is a range-topping, well-built unit; designed to offer hours of reliable use.

The Solas 150 is ranked IP64 Water Resistant, which is pretty respectable, though not quite as reassuring as those lights that claim complete waterproofing. However, I have bombarded the light with rear wheel spray over two months of testing, and it is still functioning faultlessly. It seems it is 'UK winter-proof' - which is as good as you need, in my book.

It is not just the unit itself that is well-designed and built; the mounting set-up is good too. The Solas 150 uses an easy-on seatpost strap, with a quick release tab. This two part mounting making it eas…

Recipe - Rude Health Turmeric Latte #RudelyAlternative #TryJanuary

So far for #TryJanuary, I've provided #RudelyAlternative dairy-free recipes for Hot Chocolate, Almond Banana Pancakes, and of course Dairy-free Porridge. In this post, I'm introducing the scrumptious and nutritious Rude Health Turmeric Latte - a wonder for the taste buds, and for the body.

Turmeric is a super-spice. Made from ground root, and traditionally found in plenty of curry powders, it has been shown to have benefits ranging from sun protection, to being an anti-depressant.

Whether you manage to feel the numerous benefits or not, the spice also has a great flavour. This warming winter drink is a winner for cold evenings and early starts.

Ingredients (Serves 2)400ml Rude Health Almond Drink2 tsp turmeric powder 1 tsp ginger powder Pinch of cayenne pepper Pinch of black pepper 

MethodMeasure out 400ml of almond milkAdd the spices and pepperHeat gently on the hob, stirring constantlyFroth with a handheld drinks frotherEnjoy!

Review - Stance Camo Fusion Wire Running Socks

Everybody likes good socks. Stance make some great ones; whether it's for running or casual wear.

The Stance Camo Fusion Wire socks are a lightweight pair of running socks; providing minimal cushioning, but maximum comfort.

I'm a big fan of the design pattern, and Stance have added some neat little details like the reflective logo for increased visibility.

The Stance Fusion Wire socks feature a breathable mesh to help your feet to air; but reinforced toes and heels to help keep the socks durable.

These feel supportive, comfortable, and they seem to be lasting well.

Check out the great range from Stance at (Link)

How To Make A Bar-End Tubeless Tyre Repair Plug

If you've read my post 'Top Tips for Tubeless Tyres', you'll know that a tubeless 'plug' is a really useful device, for plugging larger holes in a tubeless tyre that your sealant is struggling to fill.

The idea of a tubeless plug is pretty simple. It is a needle with a strip of rubber threaded through it; to plug the hole, you push the rubber strip into the hole, then pull it back through just enough to leave the rubber strip wedged in the hole. You then cut off the loose ends with some scissors or a knife.

Tubeless plugs, or bungs (as they are also known) are great at filling in flint cuts and other puncture repairs that your tubeless sealant is struggling to solidify in.

The only trouble with them, is that the sharp needle isn't the ideal thing to house in your saddlebag, next to your inner tubes (for obvious reasons). More pressing though, is that in order for a tubeless plug to work, you to get it into the hole pretty quickly; so having it accessible is…

Book Review - Julie Morris's Superfood Soups and Snacks

We've all heard the term 'Superfoods' batted around; often dismissing it as just the latest 'trendy' vegetable or seed to add to your cooking. Superfoods are a genuine phenomenon though: they are individual whole-foods that have an exceptional nutritional profile; be that in the form of vitamins or minerals, or in the form of protein, dietary fibre, or other health-benefiting attributes.

Julie Morris is an American LA based chef, who has long touted the benefits of certain food groups. She has created a whole series of recipe books based around the known 'superfoods'; from soups, to snacks and smoothies.

In this post, I'm looking at Julie's 'Superfood Snacks' and 'Superfood Soups' recipe books, as they seemed particularly relevant for cyclists (especially in winter).

Superfood Snacks Cyclists love snacks. Whether it is on the bike, or 'in recovery'; snacks are the king of satiating an on-going calorie deficit created by your…

Recipe - Dairy-Free Almond Banana Breakfast Pancakes #TryJanuary #RudelyAlternative

These pancakes are dairy-free, gluten-free, whole-food goodness. They are also super easy to make.

Another recipe as part of my Rude Health#TryJanuary campaign, where I'm looking for #RudelyAlternative breakfasts and snacks that don't use dairy.

Top these pancakes off with whatever you fancy...

Ingredients (serves 2)1 cup Rude Health Ultimate Almond Drink2 cups Rude Health Daily Oats2 eggs1 ripe banana1 tsp vanilla extract1 tsp cinnamon1 tsp baking powder1/4 tsp salt

MethodBlend all of the ingredients together in a Nutribullet or blenderCook on a medium heat in a non-stick pan or griddle, using coconut oil to avoid sticking Enjoy
Read more about Rude Health #TryJanuary here (Link)

Review - Tate Labs Bar Fly Rain Fly Front Mudguard

Mudguards are an essential piece of winter kit. In my book, they are as important as the winter jacket or overshoes that you invest in.

However, when riding cyclocross or mountain bike in the winter months, you are left with the problem that full length fenders don't allow enough mud clearance. This is when mudguards like the Bar Fly Rain Fly series comes into play.

Last year I reviewed the Bar Fly Rain Fly Rear Mudguard, and it impressed me greatly. I've had many readers comment on it as well, as it has remained on my Kona Private Jake since the original review.

In this review, I'm looking at the new Bar Fly Rain Fly Front Mudguard. This straps to the downtube of the bike, and provides valuable protection for your feet, shins, and your water bottle.

Easy to fit First of all, the Rain Fly front guard is blissfully easy to fit. You simple zip tie it to the downtube in three places, then bend it to fit the profile of your front wheel. Job done.

Lightweight You don't get…

Review - Thule Atmos X4 iPhone 7 Case

Thule have become one of my favourite brands over the last few years of testing their kit. The Swedish company seems to consistently deliver high quality products, which last years of use and abuse; whether that be their rucksacks, laptop cases, or bike carriers.

In this post, I'm looking at their latest phone case: the Thule Atmos X4 for iPhone 7. This is a drop-proof, screen-protecting case, which provides a slim-line protective shield for your phone.

A few years ago, I reviewed the Thule Atmos X3 for iPhone 5, and it proved to be a great case for the three years that I used it for; protecting my phone from numerous drops and bumps. The Thule Atmos X4 is an upgrade on the X3, because as well as providing protection from drops and hits on the back of the phone, it also provides a protective screen shield on the front.

The Thule Atmos X4 was a doddle to fit. You simply pop the phone into the back section of the case, and then place on the screen protecting front half. Once fitted…

Top Winter Trail Running Kit

Winter means cross-training, and that means trail running. In this post, I've picked out a few of my kit highlights for this season...

CEP Wingtech Compression Tee I admit, the phrase "sensorimotoric stimulation" had me lost. The principle behind the Wingtech tee from CEP Sports is quite simple though: the special cut and 'Smart Wingtech Stripes' send subliminal reminders to your brain, to help you maintain a better posture.

Everybody knows that good posture is important. Did you know that it also promotes muscle development though; further leading to better future posture. Effectively, this shirt promises to improve the way you run, and in doing so reduce the risk of injury, and optimise performance.

Does it work? Well, it certainly feels supportive.  The Wingtech Stripes have a notable effect on pulling your shoulders back, and pulling your core tighter. The result is that running in the CEP Wingtech tee gives you a noticeably more upright posture.

The fabric …