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Bottoms on tour

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by Cathryn, 10 Aug 2007.

  1. Cathryn

    Cathryn California Correspondant

    Need some 'bottom' advice for a month long tour.

    My newly received wisdom says the husband and I should wear padded cycle shorts and go commando. Sorted. Now we'll take along three or so pairs each and be able to wash them overnight etc but I hear mutterings about Assos cream and antibacterial creams etc and really don't know the Etiquette de la Derriere when on tour. What does Assos cream do?

    So please could I have some frank advice on bottom care on tour? No sniggers allowed. This is a serious thread for serious tourers!

    ;)
     
  2. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    well for what it's worth I have just given up on the idea of padded shorts. I'm much more comfy on my brooks without the padding. I think it has something to do with the better airflow around the bits that matter.

    As far as cream is concerned I have no idea....I'm working on a prevention is better than cure principle....but my guess would be that fresh air for your derrier would be a good thing:biggrin:.....also I heard that johnsons nappy cream can be effective once the damage had occurred. I suspect talcum powder might also help in the anti sweat prevention scheme of things.
     
  3. Paul_Smith SRCC

    Paul_Smith SRCC Über Member

    Location:
    Surrey
    Quality cycling shorts next to the skin is a good idea if you currently use normal clothing. The padded insert is not only as the name suggests, extra padding, but the seams are correct as well plus the material/insert is breathable which helps .

    You can use Sudocrem or even nappy rash cream when on tour if you do get sore, you may not be use sweating each day like you may on a summer tour and that is where a cream can help. Assos has a cooling element as well, although recommed only a small amount be used for the first time as this can take people by suprise.

    Some may swear by vaseline instead of cream, although most swear because of it as it can draw the skin and make you sweaty

    Paul Smith
    www.bikeplus.co.uk

     
  4. Tim Bennet.

    Tim Bennet. Entirely Average Member

    Location:
    S of Kendal
    By 'padded shorts' I guess you are referring to 'Lycra' cycling shorts. If so these are certainly not the only option for touring.

    Although I always wear Assos bib shorts for road rides, Audaxes and even mtb rides, I prefer baggy touring shorts as they have pockets and look more normal walking around towns and tourist sites.

    The ones to look for have removable liners. You can then buy at least a couple of extra inners and rotate the washing of these every day. They dry much more easily than the pads of proper cycling Lycra shorts.

    Having said that, Mrs TB wears Lycra on tour, and wraps a skirt round herself in the supermarket and even whips off the Lycra from underneath if it is really hot.

    Assos cream should only be necessary on very high mileage days. I use it on long Audaxes as a preventative measure and as an antiseptic precaution if I will be sitting in the same pair of shorts for very long periods of time. As it has all natural ingredients it somehow seems more acceptable than sitting in a pool of petrochemical Vaseline or other gunk. However as it contains 'witch hazel' it's best use is keeping one awake at night as the 'warming sensation' when applied liberally to one's nads, staves off tiredness if only for a little, but quite memorable, time.
     
  5. Chuffy

    Chuffy Veteran

    Warning - Contains Graphical Botty Words!

    It's a chafing thing really. A sweaty bum can end up being a chafey bum and that's not good. I use vaseline, far cheaper than Assos but less flash. Slap a dollop in each side of your groin and a further dollop down under. For Mr Cathryn this would correspond to the bit between the base of his knacker sack and his bum crack. I *think* it's called the perineum. I've done a long ride in foul weather with no mudguards or vaseline and ended up with a scabby perineum. Which wasn't nice.
    Other than that, yes, nappy rash cream will help with any soreness that does occur and keep to a strict washing regime, both you and your shorts. Er, I find that a packet of baby wet wipes helps to prevent soreness post bog breaks too.
    You may find that a few saddle tweaks are also called for if you aren't used to spending long days on the bike. As a lady, a tiny adjustment of the saddle can make a lot of difference...

    But it's not that bad and the perils are much exaggerated. Have a good tour! Where to btw?
     
  6. Chuffy

    Chuffy Veteran

    Cor, what a helpful lot we are! This was all fields when I started typing my post!;)
     
  7. Paul_Smith SRCC

    Paul_Smith SRCC Über Member

    Location:
    Surrey
    "By 'padded shorts' I guess you are referring to 'Lycra' cycling shorts." No just padded cycling, like you I often use the baggy leisure styles when riding shorter distances, tomorrow night I am riding to meet friends after work for a meal, far enough to need cycling shorts, but I don't want to sit in a restaurant wearing lycra.

    Like you I only use cream on long rides, although long need not mean high mileage just a long day in the sun, after all many spend longer out and about when on tour than they would normally and the cream can help there, as I imply in my Channel to the Med tour it can make a huge difference.

    On that tour I really did suffer after one very hot long day, purely from sweat, the next few days I would litterally showered just before the ride started to make sure I was as clean as I could be, plus I used the best quality shorts (which basically translates to best quality insert) that I had. On destination arrival each day again I made sure I had a quick rinse to wash away the sweat and of course made sure the shorts were cleaned each day

    Paul Smith
    www.bikeplus.co.uk

     
  8. Tim Bennet.

    Tim Bennet. Entirely Average Member

    Location:
    S of Kendal
    Hi Paul,

    As Chuffy said, when I started my one finger typing reply, it was indeed all green fields round here. So my query about 'padded shorts' was actually in reply to Cathrine's comments. It's all become a little 'crossed over' (if that's a verb!).
     
  9. Cathryn

    Cathryn California Correspondant

    You are indeed an incredibly helpful bunch, thank you all!!!

    I'm already obsessed with next year's tour, which unfortunately still has the proviso that I haven't asked my boss for the time off yet, which is clearly key! The current plan (which may change many times over the next year) would be to start in Toulouse chez une amie, then head over to Aix en Provence, where I used to study. We'd then go up through the Vercors to Grenoble, over to Geneva and then follow the Lakes Route through Switzerland, stopping around the Jungfrau region for a hike. We'd then head through Liechtenstein into Austria before ending in Salzburg, my favourite place in the whole world.

    I'm slightly worried about my current obsession with this tour. It's all planned on a spreadsheet and I think about it all the time (when I'm not at work, trying to prove I've worked hard enough to merit the unpaid leave). How will I last a year?
     
  10. Paul_Smith SRCC

    Paul_Smith SRCC Über Member

    Location:
    Surrey
    ;):biggrin::biggrin::biggrin: No worries Tim, I guess although a delicate subject it is one we are all concerned about and sympathise with

    Paul Smith
    www.bikeplus.co.uk

     
  11. asterix

    asterix Comrade Member

    Location:
    Limoges or York
    Luckily for me I don't suffer from chafe very often, but if at the end of the day things are a bit tender I use Savlon.

    I usually carry 2 or 3 pairs (depends on where I am going) of shorts and wash one pair in the evening. At the moment, I favour Lusso shorts and sit on a Brooks B17.
     
  12. Just so I'm sure I don't get any problems I always use loads of sudocreme. It's medicated and so you don't get any unpleasant problems like saddle sores or chafing. It washes out of your chamois quite easily. The most importnat thing is once you've finished riding to have a shower and get changed. Don't sit around in your shorts - get them washed and they'll be fine for the next day. Your month long tour sounds wonderful. I say obsess all you like!
     
  13. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    There was one clever suggestion a few weeks back about the hygene aspect and washing of shorts etc on tour. The suggestion was to wear a swim suit under the shorts whilst riding, then in the evening at the campsite simply take a shower and wash the swim suit. The swim suit will dry much quicker than shorts (overnight) and the shorts remain clean for longer(reducing the seend to take so many pairs).
     
  14. Cathryn

    Cathryn California Correspondant

    Is that not the same as wearing pants under your shorts?? I'd just got used to the commando thing...
     
  15. asterix

    asterix Comrade Member

    Location:
    Limoges or York
    Yes but had they practised what they preach? It doesn't sound very comfortable!

    After all, they've gone to a lot of effort to design a comfortable insert for saddle-sitting, and then someone puts a cossie on under it that certainly wasn't intended for that purpose.

    An extra pair of shorts isn't exactly heavy and a certain part of your anatonomy will thank you for taking the trouble to pack them.

    Tourists can be a bit over-obsessed by weight but it's surprising how much you can carry with the correct gearing. I speak having done the 10 day Raid Pyrenean in June carrying full camping kit. Note rather inelegantly displayed shorts, drying:blush: