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Learning to embrace lycra

I’m an elite level racer and spend a lot of hours in the saddle. I’m healthy. I’m strong. And I’m confident on the bike. Yet every time I see a picture of myself in lycra (or spandex as we say in the US), I cringe. Even in a podium shot –hands in the air, a big …

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Anti-doping tests: Even in retirement the early knock on the door doesn’t stop

Peeing in front of strangers and having to account for your whereabouts at all times is a necessary part of the anti-doping testing regime that comes with being a top-level athlete. All you have to do is look at the situation world champion Lizzie Armitstead recently found herself in to know that missing tests can bring serious consequences. So what is …

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Ask Ella: Why are my lady bits hurting after cycling?

Who doesn’t love the banter at the post-ride park-up? Talk of the ride, other adventures, equipment and then there are those tidbits that usually fall under the class of  TMI (too much information). Something I love about the ladies I ride with, is there is never such a thing as TMI. So true to form …

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Ridden and reviewed: The 2017 Diamondback Airén, a women’s endurance bike

The US-based Diamondback Bicycles is an interesting brand. It was founded as a BMX brand in 1970s, but is mostly known for being a more ubiquitous bike brand with large entry-level kids and mountain bike product lines. Diamondback, nowadays owned by Accell North America, adopted the consumer direct sales model early on and has been …

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Ask Ella: What is the best women’s saddle?

Why shouldn’t I wear underwear under my bike shorts? What is the best women’s bike seat? Do I really need a women’s specific bike? How the heck do I manage a middle of nowhere pee break and, even worse, how do I deal with my period when I’ve got an epic ride planned? Cycling can have …

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Endless baguettes, blanketless beds and bedbugs: Tips on surviving the French tours

That part of the season is upon us…the beginning of the French tours. Yep, the Tour de France isn’t the only tour happening in France! There’s La route de France, Trophee d’Or and the infamous Tour of Ardeche which will include Mont Ventoux. And so whilst the Olympians are off frolicking in Rio, the racing …

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The 12 ways to spot a female cyclist

Male cyclists tend to stand out pretty easily in a crowd, even when there is no lycra in sight as hair-free legs and cyclists tan are a dead giveaway. But it’s not always so easy with female cyclists … or is it? Perhaps it’s just a matter of knowing what to look for. With the tendency of most …

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Lycra repair tips

Whether you’ve crashed, got snagged by a branch on the trail or the washing machine ate your favourite bibs, you’ll learn that lycra —despite its many qualities— is not tearproof. You’ve likely spent a good amount of money on your kit, and this is not how you imagined parting ways with your favourite chamois. Good …

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Strava report debunks myth that women aren’t inspired by professional cycling

Strava has released a new comprehensive Women’s Cycling Report, believed to be the biggest of its kind. With it, Strava aims to determine motivations, influences, buying attitudes and views on barriers to entry for more women taking up cycling. The big takeaways are that women, in fact, are interested in professional cycling and are less deterred …

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Summer is here: tips to keep your cool

Summer has officially arrived in the northern hemisphere. As have all the good things that come with it: sunny, warm rides and cold post-ride beers; crisp tanlines; bikepacking trips; BBQs and pool parties. But it’s also the season of sunburns, heat exhaustion and dehydration. I was reminded of this last week while spending a week …

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