A couple of weeks ago, I received a fantastic package in the mail from Rudy Project U.S.A. They are a company that specializes in cycling helmets and eyewear for both racing and casual use.
They sent me a Sterling helmet and a pair of Ability sunglasses. One of the reasons I wanted to try the helmet especially is because this summer I've seen many women out riding with helmets that do not fit--I've even seen a few women wearing their kids' helmets. Now, I'm all for saving a few bucks here and there, but this is your head we are talking about! If you get hurt in the head, that couple of bucks you saved isn't going to do you much good, is it?
Okay, lecture over.
Anyway, I wanted to highlight some great products that are out there.
I took my Sterling helmet and my Ability sunglasses for a few spins, including a long ride and a race. Let's start with the helmet.
Well, first of all, it matches Buttercup and that is the most important thing, right?
Actually, I think it is important that a helmet looks good. You have to wear it to protect your noggin, you might as well think it looks cool too!! I read the reviews on this helmet before I tried it, and several people said they felt it was a bit on the heavy side. My first ride with it was about 2 hours, and I didn't notice it feeling heavy at all. I liked that it has the dial in the back to make sure you have a snug comfortable fit. You might notice in the pic that the buckle part is nice and padded. I have since tightened the strap just bit.
Another cool feature of this helmet is the net underneath that keeps the bugs out of your hair. You can take it out if you want, but I like it. The helmet also has 18 vents to keep you nice and cool. And last but not least, it comes with a cool drawstring bag to store it in when you are not wearing it.
Here is a picture of the back view...looks speedy, doesn't it?
I also gave the Ability sunglasses a spin, most notably at Aflac Iron Girl Syracuse. My go to cycling glasses before these were a Tifosi pair that I quite like.
The first thing I noticed about these sunglasses were that they fit up flush against my forehead. I find this to be both a pro and a con. When I am cycling I am usually in aero, and there always seems to be that little space between my sunglasses and my forehead so that when I look up I'm not actually looking through the glasses anymore. Do you know what I'm talking about?
The Rudy Project Ability glasses did not slip down and stayed flush against my forehead so I never had that problem. The downside was that as I began to sweat, the sweat accumulated a little bit on the lenses, which I did not like. I used these for the ride and run at Iron Girl, and that aspect did not bother me at all. However, on my 3.5 hour ride the other day, it really started to bug me, especially since I can't really clean them off well while I am riding.
(Since I wrote this post, I discovered from Rudy that the nose piece is easily adjustable. It just bends whichever way you want. This helped a lot with the sweat accumulation, but didn't alleviate it completely. I think I will continue to tweak the position of the nose piece until it's just right.)
They are very lightweight and hardly noticeable on my face, and they absolutely do not slip down my nose, which I love. I still haven't decided if these will be my go-to glasses yet...I have another long ride tomorrow which will help me decide.
The bottom line is that these are great products. They are stylish, cool, and provide the safety we are looking for in helmets and glasses. (Some people think sunglasses are just to keep out the sun, but when you are cycling I highly recommend wearing glasses to protect your eyes from flying debris from the road and bugs.) The price tag is a little high, but I am a firm believer in that you get what you pay for. Some things in life are worth spending extra money on, and I think our heads are one of those things!!
If you are looking for a helmet or sunglasses, take a spin over to the Rudy Project USA website. They always have a good deal going on, and there are styles to suit every taste!!
I was provided this gear free of charge from Rudy Project USA, but the opinions in this post are my own.