Biking for Transportation

What to Wear?

Getting dressed to go out  into the world is so different without my climate-controlled,  Swedish chariot awaiting my every travel whim. Weather becomes a contact sport. With my new level of exposure to the elements, recent local weather patterns seem  rather moody perhaps even vindictive at times.

A few examples:

The  late March snowstorm in which my daughter and I got completely soaked just walking to the bus stop to go pick up a zip car.

The day in mid April when it was 91 degrees for my  first trip taking my daughter to her swim lesson via our bike trailer at noon!

The mid May unexpectedly frosty 42 degree temperature for my 4:45 am ride to the gym that made me wish I was wearing full fingered gloves.

My interest in weather apps went through the roof once I began to rely on my bicycle as my principal mode of transport. My awareness of temperature, wind speed and direction, hourly changes in the air temperature, humidity and precipitation have skyrocketed. Basically, I use all of this data to decide what to wear.

My other wardrobe consideration?  How can I be seen so that the drivers who are mesmerized by their own favorite apps on their devices might look up at the road for a moment to swerve out of the bike lane and avoid hitting me? This season’s must have fashion item? See the photo below in which I am wearing my bright yellow safety vest with reflective tape. It is not terribly attractive but it has become my safety blanket. My husband wears a matching one, so yeah, we are THAT couple.


I thought we were trend setters, maybe future millionaires after introducing our  new line of brightly colored safety wear. As it turns out, these fashion statements already exist in droves. On the trails and in the bike lanes of Arlington, one can see a wide range of highly technical cycling and fitness wear in colors such as, ” Please Don’t Kill Me Pink”, ” Yes, I am on a Bicycle Yellow” and ” Out of My Way Orange”.  Although, I can’t say I have ever been a big fan of colors that are an assault to the retina, they are much better than ” I have a death wish black or brown” which are both so last season!


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