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Do I just run too hot-sweaty or am I wearing wrong clothing

john_smithjohn_smith Posts: 85
I recently bought a new cycle jacket with colder/wetter nights setting in. Meant to be a top end jacket very breathable (altura attack extreme). Looks great, fits nice, good pockets, think its going to be suitably waterproof.
Last night I went for a training ride, about 2 hours at quite a reasonable pace for me (142 avg heart rate). It was dark and relatively cold but did not rain at all. I was wearing bib tights, a thinish dhb base layer and the altura jacket on top. Had the side vents open on jacket and front zipped down a bit to let air in. I never felt too cold or too hot the whole journey, just about perfect really. However by time I got back the base layer was soaked through (must be sweat as didn't rain) and inside of jacket was pretty damp as well.

So back to point. Is it just me and do I just run genetically hotter-sweaty than most and so others would not have had this problem? Is the jacket not as breathable as I believed from the advertising? Is it the base layer just not breathing and so soaking from inside through and transferring to inside jacket as well? Would a really expensive wool base layer or something else be able to stop this?

Opinions much appreciated. I will never know how waterproof this jacket is because from what I can make out in a dry training ride I end up soaked anyway. Maybe I should just pootle around and take riding/effort much slower so I don't sweat.


  • I have the same issue, i've found using a gilet solves the issue as your arms act as radiators.
  • dmch2dmch2 Posts: 731
    I went out round Durham 2 nights ago in shorts and T-shirt. Coat and tights definitely sounds like way too much clothing.
    2010 Trek 1.5 Road - swissstop green, conti GP4000S
    2004 Marin Muirwoods Hybrid
  • warpcowwarpcow Posts: 1,448
    john_smith wrote:
    Is the jacket not as breathable as I believed from the advertising?

    Nope, it's not. Or at least, it's not breathable enough for a high exertion sport like cycling. I'd agree that you were probably overdressed in general, but it is different between people. I was out the other day with a friend in a ss-top under a ls-top under a Gore jacket, with 3/4 tights, big wool socks and a skullcap under his helmet. I was in shorts and a ls-top (I wasn't trying to be macho, it was genuinely 10 degrees and sunny).

    I've never really found a jacket I can get on with in Spring/Autumn. It's only in deepest winter I really start layering up and even then I'll be soaked at the base-layer. I bought a Gore jacket a last year which has spent its entire life, so far, armless. Like ride_whenever, a gilet works best for me in most situations, but can still get moist.
  • it was between 8-9pm so pretty cool by that point, i wouldn't fancy short sleeve personally. what was weird is i didn't feel over cooked at the time.

    just found by time i was back shirt was soaked through and jacket damp throughout inside. i guess reason i like to have jacket with me over say just a long sleeve jersey is in case weather turns and starts heaving down with rain. long sleeve might not have sweated up in same way but when soaking wet and wind chill makes for a bad experience.
    do other people just take mini pocket jackets instead. i.e. squash down tight in back of jersey and if weather turns on them just pull them out and have some basic protection from wind/rain?
  • I'm still wearing shorts and short-sleeved jersey. I also use arm warmers but these are usually pulled down after 15-20 mins.
  • oh yeah sorry on gilet. that sounds interesting idea and guess you get a better air circulation.
    do you guys go for a fancy waterproof one or do waterproof gilets just not work and so best just to stick with a windproof one? any recommendations as from what i see they can vary between £20 and £150?
  • ScrumpleScrumple Posts: 2,665
    just get a windproof one, with a mesh back.

    I rode tonight for 40 miles, and wore only an assos intermediate evo - and was hot!

    It aint that cold yet.... not cold enough for jackets.

    Never ride in anything other than a softshell or gilet anyway - anything "waterproof" is just for HEAVY rain, or plodding about.
    You'd be better off with a gore windstopper.
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    It can be amazing how little clothes you need in the cold. I go cross country skiing in a short sleeved cycling top and a waterproof jacket down to -10C.

    Don't worry too much about the torso. If you wear gloves, overshoes and a decent hat to keep the extremities warm you'll be surprised how little you need once your body has warmed up with exercise.

    That said, be sure to take an extra layer in case of heavy rain or an enforced stop. You'll get cold very quickly when you stop pedalling. - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    Another wee winter tip, when it's really cold out fill your waterbottle with hot water and some lemon barley water. It'll cool down over time but takes the edge off things. Nothing chills you faster than drinking near freezing water. - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • Tom ButcherTom Butcher Posts: 3,830
    For training rides rain jackets are only really suitable to put on if you get caught in a really heavy rain shower. Steady commuting is different but if you are putting effort in they will make you sweat no matter how breathable they claim to be. In the last 7 years of so of cycling doing maybe 6k a year I've worn mine less than a dozen times.

    I'd second the suggestion of a gilet - keep the core warm and keep the wind off it and have a bit less on the arms (I am wearing arm warmers and leg warmers now at night).

    it's a hard life if you don't weaken.
  • thanks for all the advice guys. gilet sounds like way forward and managing temp a bit better. now just to find a decent one at the right price. those gore wind stoppers look very nice but just a little pricy considering how little material I imagine will be in them.
  • liversedgeliversedge Posts: 1,002
    My kit scheme works like this, the Centigrade is a guess, I tend to go outside to prep bike and work it out from there!

    1. 18C+ Hot and sunny - shorts and shirt only, mitts
    2. 15C - Chill but sunny - add summer base, arm warmers, maybe knee warmers, mitts
    3. 10C - Turning cold - 3/4 shorts, shirt, gilet, mitts
    4. 8C - Cold - merino base, shirt, bib longs, gilet, gloves
    5. 4C - Pretty Cold - shirt, bib longs, jacket, gloves, shoe covers
    5. 2C - Very Cold - bib longs + knee warmers, merino base, shirt, jacket, gloves. shoe covers
    6. 0 or lower Freezing - add skull cap and extra long socks

    Hope this helps. My jacket was expensive, an Assos 851. But my goodness it was a smart buy. I only really use the Gilet if my ride is lower intensity for cooler temperatures, so not that useful really. But some folks swear buy them.
    Obsessed is just a word elephants use to describe the dedicated.
  • ScrumpleScrumple Posts: 2,665
    just look at the assos layer system, and their temp ranges - if you know anyone who has one of their leaflets from a box, have a look.

    They have different ranges for temps.

    Ignore the gimp clad men in fugus, as it isn't the arctic here, but the rest is pretty spot on for how you should layer.

    Versitility is key, and as little as possible is best.
  • ut_och_cyklaut_och_cykla Posts: 1,594
    Gilet is a good buy - I use one often. You can take it off & stuff it in pocket easily. I have a tighter one that is more windstopping , and a looser one with pockets that is more waterproof. Really like the pockets in the winter when fumbling through various layers can do my head in!
  • Great advise liversedge on temp and clothing combos, thanks.

    Just ordered a gore windstopper gilet. Hopefully it will be the perfect article. I can guarantee now I won't use a proper waterproof so often that it will rain every ride i go on now probably at the furthest away location from home.
  • mclarentmclarent Posts: 784
    I have a gilet for cooler and windier days, it is the best thing I own after my Gore winter jacket.
    "And the Lord said unto Cain, 'where is Abel thy brother?' And he said, 'I know not: I dropped him on the climb up to the motorway bridge'."
    - eccolafilosofiadelpedale
  • ride_wheneverride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    I'll wear my gilet from now until the end of the year probably. I have a few, none of them particularly thin, most of them are fleece fronted with a waterproof back (from rowing) but with cunning choice of baselayer i don't seem to sweat much.

    Particularly when it gets cold then you really don't want to be sweating because as soon as you stop you'll freeze, and that gets really dangerous out on night rides.
  • dmch2dmch2 Posts: 731
    Clothing manufacturers must love you lot (even if the bank manager doesn't!

    I was out in 11C a few nights ago. Shorts, long sleeved top and fingerless gloves was all I wore. It was a bit hot earlier on until it cooled down and I tired then it was perfect.

    Or do you just cycle a longer distance / at a lower effort than I do / with a lighter bike / on easier routes?
    2010 Trek 1.5 Road - swissstop green, conti GP4000S
    2004 Marin Muirwoods Hybrid
  • haha dmch2, true hard northern monkey. which areas of durham do you ride as I am in area as well?

    i think i must be a soft northerner. i was riding over some of moores in teesdale area on monday night 7-9pm ish and was in baselayer, s/s jersey, shorts and leg warmers. i was about perfect in that but it was really windy.
  • dmch2dmch2 Posts: 731
    I'm actually from the midlands then worked in london for a few years. But 4 years in newcastle made me a sub zero t shirt wearer i think! :)

    Only been in durham a couple of years.

    I mostly go west towards tow law and lanchester. going east it's a bit flatter but a bit boring. Too much traffic if i go further south (688 and 689) but some good stuff to the NW. I haven't really explored to the NE or SE yet. Only been roading for a few months!

    Check out the 'durham beast' for a discussion on some local routes.
    2010 Trek 1.5 Road - swissstop green, conti GP4000S
    2004 Marin Muirwoods Hybrid
  • im always hot and sweaty because im so unfit
    going downhill slowly
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