On the inside of my jersey, it reads:
"Pedal farther. Leave the main road, find your adventure and make memories that will last a lifetime. Live your passion with precision."
Every time I put on my Cuore jersey, I am reminded of the joy that racing and training gives me. It also just makes me smile, because the kit is uniquely mine. The fact that it also tested the best by far in the wind tunnel (versus sleeveless with a Castelli aero-top), also makes me smile even more. Free speed? Yes Please.
I have been meaning to write this recap for ages but it has eluded me. Now, as we start to roll into the season, the timing seems better than ever. Well, unless you are a pro female competitor of mine, then stop reading here and keep on rocking that sleeveless kit with booty shorts and a Rudy Project Wingspan ;)
Caution: lots of shots of myself coming up, which is a little awkward—but only to show off my awesome kit in action!
Across the first few years I was in triathlon, I was drawn to bright, colorful kits because I felt like they made me stand out on course. Of course, many other ladies with style had the same goal and so the "unique" kit on course ultimately ended up being one of many. While the camaraderie was fun, I missed feeling a little more special and easy to spot by the support crew. I also felt like I had to continue to "buy, buy, buy" to keep up with the latest on-trend kit.
As someone who refuses to commit the cycling faux-pas of wearing a tri kit in training and is exploring more of a minimalist approach to belongings, I felt like I was barely getting any use out of each kit I purchased—and that was when I was racing 4 Ironmans in a year!
So when the wind tunnel suggested that Cuore was by far my fastest option AND Cuore offers custom kit designs, I figured a more sustainable, customized kit was the way to go. Why have 5 kit options that will no longer be "cool" within a few Ironman races, when I can have my very own custom, logo'd kit that I get total and complete design input on?
I ended up with a cycling kit and a race kit, both of which I love. Below you can read what I LOVE about both and anything you should know if you're in the market for a new kit. Please, please, please ask me if you have any questions! I would be more than happy to chat via email or hop on the phone to describe the kit in more detail or answer any specific questions about the fit, material or design process.
Here we go!
Race Kit Highlights:
- SO light-weight! In almost every other kit I have worn, around mile 15 or so of the Ironman marathon, drenched in water, I would always feel suffocated by the material around my stomach and chest, something about the way it gripped my body. The Cuore material is so silky-smooth and lightweight, I don't even notice it.
- Aero! You can read more about my testing experience here.
- Super breathable. I also love the full un-zip for hotter runs and if you want to keep it unzipped under your wetsuit just on the swim. On the bike, best to keep that baby zipped all the way up for the aero benefits!
- Power Seam! Normally post-Ironman I am all sorts of chafed but I have not had any issues with the race suit so far
- Race-specific chamois - barely noticeable while running but doesn't leave you surprisingly sore "down there" after an Ironman bike (unlike some other race shorts I've worn where it's literally just a piece of fleece so after a race you hop in the shower and start crying)
- Surprisingly durable: for a kit that feels like a pair of silk pajamas, it can withstand some seriously damage (i.e. me going over the handlebars into a ditch or trees multiple times at XTERRA, me going over the handlebars at Ironman France, sigh....). Honestly, I have put my kit through the ringer but you would not know it by the shape it is in.
- Fully customizable: graphics, tailoring, stitching and chamois options. You name it, they've got it. We can talk more about it shortly but their design team is also SUPER patient and creative.
- Um, it's gorgeous. And completely unique.
Cycling Kit Highlights:
- Most. Comfortable. Bibs. Ever. I am so spoiled wearing these and forget how much of a difference a quality chamois can make. I try to avoid wearing any of my non-Cuore bibs for any rides longer than 90-minutes.
- Small side zipper pocket. Critical for keys and CC, without taking up any room in the back pockets.
- Generous back pockets but lay flat - so you can still race in this kit, but also works great for those all-day rides where you want an extra bottle in your back pocket.
- Quick drying: I have worn this through rain storms and it dries faster than any other kit I've ever owned. The light-weight performance material, I guess?
- Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, Heath approves and Heath is very particularly when it comes to gear and "looking" the part ;) Case in point, Heath wearing the kit he worked with Cuore to design for his coached athletes:
Note on both of the above: I normally wear a Medium in women's cycling clothing. For both, I sized down to a Women's Small in Cuore. Something to think about as you are ordering.
The cool thing is the ability to fully customize your kit. I keep thinking that I need to gather up a group of triathlete/cyclist friends and instead of waiting for the next women's triathlon clothing company to spin up a new kit and hope that we like it, go in on a design together and create something uniquely us! For not much more than off-the-rack, everyone can have input and work with Cuore designers to create a truly-custom one of a kind kit! Actually.... anyone interested in going in on a new order together?! Hm....
Next up: I will cover what the design process looks like from start to finish. I'll also share some of my favorite designs for other clients but you can also always pop on over to their Instagram to check it out: https://www.instagram.com/cuoreofswiss/.
Full disclosure: I am sponsored by Cuore but everything in this post is my own opinion! I also wear and love their arm and knee warmers for colder days on the bike.