Losing a bit of weight is a great way to boost your speed and will help your climbing and as a result many riders are paranoid about the weight of their bike. Fitting light weight components is expensive – from light cased tyres and carbon frames, to carbon seat posts and titanium bolts, for some it is an endless search to strip all unnecessary weight from the bike.
A tyre change can reduce weight significantly, as well as ditching the inner tubes! Going to a 1x set up is also useful – stripping front mech, 1 or 2 chain rings, shifter etc. The higher (expensive) end of the component range from the likes of Shimano or SRAM will show a weight reduction, expensive wheel sets etc – the list can go on and on.
But its not just your bike that is weighing you down.
An interesting article over on MBR today demonstrated a kilo of savings by simply changing your clothes! Some lighter threads, less chunky shoes and simple back pack could save you as much weight as upgrading to the carbon version of your bike frame, but for a fraction of the cost.
I like to think about what I am carrying in my hydration pack, and try to pack depending on the ride. I have a bit of a bag fetish and have 4 different back packs! Think about the water you are carrying on your local rides. If you are constantly coming back with 2 litres of water – perhaps you don’t need to take it. A litre of water weighs 1 kg!
So this week I went all out and tried a bum bag, fanny pack, waist pack thingumy from Lowe Alpine.
The LightFlite Hydro has around 4 litres of storage space spread either side of a bottle shaped mid section and comes with a 500ml bottle. This pack is perfect for some trail spares (brake pads, tube, mech hanger), a pump and a multitool. Once cinched in place I hardly noticed I was wearing it.
The idea is to reduce weight and distribute what you have to carry as low as possible, taking it off your shoulders and from around your chest. The added benefit is that it also cuts down on the amount your back sweats!
The subject of a bum bag rather than a backpack divides some but I think its a winner in many situations. Such as when you have a predictable day of weather and you don’t need to be concerned with extra layers or changes of clothing. Trail centre uplift days – you will be back at the bottom of the trail every 20 mins so you don’t need to carry your lunch.
Some like the protection a back pack gives and also like to carry the kitchen sink even on short rides. For me I am prepared to adapt and change depending on the ride – I can also use this on my cyclocross bike – a situation where a back pack is simply not the done thing!
Take a look at this article on Bike Rumor for more pro’s and con’s
I managed the whole article without mentioning the word ENDURO!