Women's Bike Bibs -- Women's Triathlon Suits -- Where to begin?
I want to try a pair of women's bike bibs. Obviously not because they're so attractive, yuck, but because I think they'll be more comfortable and I'm toying with getting a one piece triathlon suit for a silly little event that someone whose name rhymes with Kim Telley tricked me into signing up for in January.
1. These things are throat-clearingly expensive so I'm asking for some insight and advice into what has worked for other folks.
2. I think I've seen women's bibs in an LBS maybe once and can't remember where I saw them.
3. The triathlon is in June and a bit further south than here. I know it could be very hot.
4. I'm willing to spend more on the bib shorts because I plan on keeping my bikes but burning my running shoes (with glee) as soon as the ordeal is finished.
Thank you for your expertise.
Last edited by acc; 04-15-2012 at 09:11 AM.
Reason: biking up hills is bad, running up them is worse
Hills are your friend. Except when they're not.
And, yes, I do actually have something useful to add. I've found that bibs are like every other article of clothing in that different manufacturers have different theories on how people are shaped. So, try things on and see whose theory fits you best.
My other bit of advice you probably already know (think back to my comment at the end of happy hour) and applies to any bike shorts or rowing trou.
Last edited by OneEighth; 04-15-2012 at 05:06 PM.
Reason: Schotland über Alles!
I don't do triathlons, but aren't the pads on tri suits thinner than those on bike bibs? So tri suits work for both running and cycling, but won't be as comfortable on bikes as pure bike bibs.
They are. The suit itself is more like the material as in a skinsuit used in time trial. You actually keep them on during the swim also obviously, unless you want to give the whole world a show in transition.
Originally Posted by elcee
TYR makes some of the best women's stuff. But tri suits are not bike bibs, there's a lot of difference.
Last edited by CCrew; 04-15-2012 at 07:47 PM.
CCrew I agree completely with you about TYR. They have high-quality, beautifully designed selections that fit more people besides teenage girls.
The chamois is probably not an issue. The short triathlon is not going to bother my sit bones too much. I ride almost every day so going 10-15 miles is not going to bother me even if I choose something without padding.
I'm worried about the heat. Wearing a jersey on a bike is fine, there's always a breeze. But what I've discovered coming off the bike is my "running style" doesn't seem to create any breeze and I cook like a lobster in a pot after the first mile.
As for the bib shorts, men swear by them. Why shouldn't I have the best equipment just like the men?
There appear to be different clasps in front and varying degrees of exposure in the back. I'm just trying to sort all of that out before I put down close to $200.
Thank you for your help. I appreciate it.
Last edited by acc; 04-15-2012 at 09:26 PM.
I guess I'm unclear Ann.. Are you looking for women's bibs, or a tri-suit? Bibs are going to be problematic during the swim. Men certainly wear bibs, I much prefer bibs over shorts but on the bike, but even with a jersey on over top the swim portion water is going to come in the top and really has nowhere to exit. It's all about minimizing drag, and for Tri I can't see where bibs are it. Trisuit yes.
Originally Posted by acc
Bibs and a tri-suit (or tri-shorts) serve two different purposes. I wouldn't recommend using bibs for a triathlon because the chamois is much thicker and will soak up a ton of water and will probably end up chafing on the bike and run. The reason tri-suits/tri-shorts have a thinner chamois is so that they will dry quicker and not get in the way as much during the run. Running in bike shorts (bibs, or otherwise) is like running in a diaper, and it makes your butt look big.
If you feel comfortable riding without padding for 10-15 miles then just go without anything and use whatever running gear you already have. If you do feel compelled to buy something, tri-shorts paired with a lovely BikeArlington bike jersey would make an excellent combo.
Personally, I have a one piece tri-suit that I invested in several years ago and have used for many races, all the way up to the half-ironman distance. (At full IM distance there are changing tents so it makes it easy for quick clothing changes.)
Both Bonzai and TSFKAC (The Shop Formerly Known As Conte's... aka Freshbikes) both have very good Tri and women's clothing choices. Both have experienced sales people that know their stuff. Bonzai in particular has a couple of women triathletes on staff that can talk to you about things. Might be a good place to at least start your investigations. I've found both shops extremely helpful when I've got questions or need something specific. Both are very fast with special orders if they don't have a color/style that you want in stock.
I have the tri-shorts and I like them. Good enough for a shorter bike ride and the pad dries out pretty quickly and doesn't suck up half the lake/pool/ocean, etc.
Also, honestly, for those last minute "gotta go" moments, easier to get them off than bibs.
However, on the longer rides (bike only) I love my bibs. There's no waistband annoyance.
Sorry for the confusion. I have two separate issues.
One: Bib Shorts
The bib shorts were on my mind yesterda because I saw a man flying around Bull Run without his jersey and I was reminded of them.
Two: The Triathlon: "I have a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear." I'll head over to one of the local shops today or tomorrow and see what they have to say.
Thank you again.
Last edited by acc; 04-16-2012 at 10:14 AM.
Reason: It's closer to the truth to say I think of bib shorts frequently