Monday, January 18, 2010

Adventures in shopping

Honestly, it was very simple.

All I wanted was a pair of cycling pants that I could wear to work. That was all.

We're not talking formal wear here: my company is fairly casual as long as you're not scruffy. Something stretchy that I could pair with a long sweater would be fine. Something that doesn't look too much like sweatpants or tights. (Not the kind of cycling pants that make you look like you're wearing a huge diaper on your behind.) Stretchy pants, not too tight, that taper down a bit toward the ankles so you don't have to worry about catching your pants in the bike.

You'd think that would be possible. Well, I'd think that should be possible. But it's the old fat-person catch-22. You can't buy active wear in your size; you're too large. You have to become smaller before you can exercise, okay?

It's a lot less embarrassing to look for clothes since the internet was invented. (Yes, I do remember a time before the internet. I'm old. No need to rub it in.) But not all online clothing stores seem to have grasped the concept of a sizing chart. Their attitude seems to be "It's just a 'large', okay? Whaddya mean what does 'large' mean? Everybody knows what it means. Don't ask me to define large."

Even stores that include a sizing chart are sometimes confused. At bikenhike, the sizing chart for their pants gives the waist and chest sizes that these pants would fit, not the hips. I can only conclude that they intend you to wear their pants in a manner vastly different than the way I wear pants.

Thank goodness for Team Estrogen!

Exercise du jour: Cycle to work and back. And an hour's walking at lunch. I've been slacking off on the lunch-time walking, but that's stupid. One of the managers at work has a slogan "work harder, not smarter." I've been unconsciously adopting this motto. No more. I will back away from the desk and walk at lunch. I swear it.
Well, that'll teach me not to do so much swearing, damn it. Hopeless, helpless, and hapless day. Used to be a time when I could work a 13-hour day and leave feeling fresh and optimistic. (Okay, maybe not, but at least I wouldn't feel like a complete @#!$, !$#!, and %$@^.) If I could have least have turned in a decent manual, I'd have felt a bit better. Summary: no exercise, lots of work i.e. I sat at a desk all day. And ate 4, I'm not exaggerating, 4 cups of celery.


RockStarTri said...

Cycling pants @ work must be super casual. I could only imagine some sort of pants to wear over the cycling shorts/tights.

The internet is a wonderful shopping experience but sometimes you need to visit a local store to try stuff on. I can be anywhere between L and XXL in cycling shorts based on which model (it even varies within brand).

But, all that being said, it is a great feeling when you get to a smaller size. Your focus makes well on your way.

C said...

iI hate all clothes shopping. It's the bane of my existence. I feel your pain.

The Merry said...

I wouldn't wear the 'real' cycling pants, the ones that make you look like you're wearing an extra-large diaper on your behind. But there are -- well, I guess maybe you'd call them running pants, but I've only bought them from cycling stores in the past. They're more like regular pants.

The Merry said...

Not that there isn't a time-and-place for cycling-diaper pants. But -- pardon the pun -- it depends. I'm looking more for what they call 'commuter pants' that are in a large size.

Watergirl said...

I have been wearing leggings for a while now, they tend to be in the normal clothes stores rather than sports shops, here in the UK. As long as I wear a top which covers my wobbly bum, bosses are fine with this!

McB said...

I don't know from cycling pants, but what about general workout clothes? Try

sured - past tense of being confident: am sure, are suring, was sured. See/

Roxie said...

It Depends! ha!

Shopping is the bane of everyone's existence I do believe.

The Merry said...

McB, I'll check out the Hanes site, thanks. Most regular workout clothes aren't really work suitable, at least not on me. And they tend to have flare (if not flair), i.e. they get wide around the hem, which is a bad idea for bicycle riding.
Most leggings that I've seen are made from very thin fabric; the pants that I have are a bit thicker.
Dang but I'm fussy!

Shelley said...

I had that same issue - couldn't find exercise clothes big enough to fit (and my LB and Avenue did not carry any, which I think was a dastardly plot to keep us as customers!) - I think I ended up in a pair of Old Navy yoga pants for the longest time. That estrogen website has some great stuff - thanks for pointing it out!

And can I just say how cool you are to BIKE to work?!? 'Cause you are!!!

Cat said...

Ah, shopping... Ick.

When Husband had a motorcycle, I tried to find pants. Let's just say economy size rears do not have a good selection of safety wear.

I haven't needed bicycle pants, (out here in the country, jeans with rubber bands over the cuff are just fine, if a bit childish looking), but I have the sneaking suspicion that I would 'end' up with the same problem...


messymimi said...

You would think clothing manufacturers and retailers would have the message by now and make attractive clothes to fit real people, whether at work or exercise or anything else.

Ah, who am I kidding?

The Merry said...

It sounded good to me, MessyM!

Hi Cat! I can't really work out in jeans. Which is funny, because I used to play in them all the time when I was young. I agree - riding in the country is the way to go!

The Merry said...

Shelley, it is funny (in a non-amusing way) how LB and stores of that ilk don't believe in workout clothes. You'd think they'd at least carry sports bras, but I haven't seen them there. (Though I haven't check lately -- maybe they'll get the idea.)

Charlotte said...

I'm so addicted to Internet shopping! With 4 kids, I pray to never have to set foot in another store again.

So did you find some suitable pants?? I hope so! Sounds like you have a pretty sweet work setup:)

Anonymous said...

I found some great pants at Kohl's. I bought the Fila size large and they fit my 38" waist and 4-something" hips pretty good.

good luck with the shopping.

One day I'm sure we will love it.

Stay strong.

The Merry said...

FGF, I'll go check out Kohl's, thanks!

Charlotte, Team Estrogen did have sorta what I was looking for... except that when I got it, it was too large. That's not a problem I'm used to having :)