Rest Less Ride Film

  • Posted by alex
  • 4 May 2012

On the night of the Spring Equinox, Rob Penn and friends took off on an overnight cycle ride across Wales.

The Rest Less Ride took the peloton of 16 riders from the west coast, all the way to the east. They cycled unlit back-roads riddled with pot-holes, gravel and barrier-less hairpin bends. They passed through deep dark valleys, through forests and up mountains, in a race against the sunrise.

The Rest Less Ride celebrates the pleasure of cycling and the friendships it forges.

Riding a bike should be easy

  • Posted by alex
  • 3 May 2012

Isn’t that what we are told? You learn when you are small and, like an elephant, you never forget. What an amazing deal. Once mastered, you have a gift that lasts a lifetime, and even if you part ways for a period of time it waits patiently for you to return. Once bought, it is the gift that keeps giving – health, entertainment, and convenience. So why isn’t everyone riding a bike? Shouldn’t the streets in every village, town and city hum with the sound of rubber passing over tarmac? You only have to observe parts of cities like London, Bristol, and Cambridge at rush hour to see the potential. Hybrids, racers, fixies, bmx, mountain bikes, single speeds, choppers, Dutch bikes, and cruisers all spinning to and fro.

While cycling numbers have increased by around 20% across Britain over the last decade, we lag behind other European countries. The number of cyclists killed or injured sits around 27,000 for that period. This figure is unacceptable and concerns over safety are the main reason many bikes sit unloved in garden sheds up and down the country. This is a terrible shame since cycling represents the elixir to many of our problems. Regular riding can significantly improve fitness levels (goodbye beer belly) and increase life expectancy (hello happy retirement). By swapping an eight mile round trip commute from car to bike, you save 0.5 tonnes of carbon per year – that’s the equivalent of a short haul flight.

It stands to reason that if we want a country that is synonymous with cycling you need to ensure that it is safe. As a result of much hard work by sustainable transport charities and cycling campaign groups we have seen significant progress. Most recently, the Cycle Safe campaign from The Times – coupled with February’s Parliamentary cycling debate - has helped raise the profile of cycle safety. There is much that can be done to improve junctions, slow speeds in neighbourhoods, and provide better road user training. However, this all requires investment – even a small percentage of the road budget could make a huge difference across the country.

Ultimately, the goal is to get people – young, old, male, female – on bikes for their everyday journeys to places like school, work, and the shops. However, currently around 66% of journeys (two miles or less) are completed in a car. While the number of accidents involving cyclists are a concern, the perceived danger can sometimes outweigh the actual risks. It is important to emphasise that cycling is still a fun, exhilarating, and egalitarian means of getting around. You hear of schools not letting kid’s cycle and adults looking on in horror as you ride past on the way to work. It is important to remember that it’s cycling, not war. Going forward, we need more people on bikes and (much) improved cycle infrastructure to ensure that the fun isn’t taken out of cycling.

Words: Ben Addy

Made with Modal

  • Posted by alex
  • 17 April 2012

Categories:

This underwear has been made from an amazing fibre called Modal. Modal is a natural material made from the humble Beech tree.

The fibres are ultra smooth, which makes the fabric feel softer than cotton. Unlike cotton it remains soft, wash after wash, as the soap scum has nothing to cling on to. It also doesn’t lose its colour. Oh, and wood also has natural hygienic properties and is resistant to shrinkage.

We used a fine circular knitting process when we made this underwear to make sure that there are no annoying seams.

The Modal fibre is made by an Austrian company called Lenzing. The beech trees are sustainably grown and the wood pulp is turned into fibre in a closed loop process, which uses up to twenty times less water than cotton production. Any waste is used for by-products.

Pretty impressive, huh? It makes other underwear seem like ‘pants’.

Bristol Sample Sale this weekend

  • Posted by ade
  • 16 April 2012

We are heading back to Bristol this weekend to do a howies sample sale at the bottom of Park street. We will be in here, number 30 on the right as you are heading uphill. It's only a 15 minute walk from Temple Meads rail station too.

The space is not as big as usual, so you won't be able to get your bike in.  And if Thursday is it's usual busy self, you may be in the queue for a bit. But we are around for 4 days, and not everything will be out on the first night.

As before there will be some amazing bargains,  last-in-the-box pieces from seasons past, unique samples of items that were never put in to production, prototype samples and maybe things that need a button or a stitch.

The sale will run:

Thursday 19th April: 4pm to 8pm

Friday 20th April: 10.00am to 6pm

Saturday 21st April: 10.00am to 6pm

Sunday 22nd April: 11.00am to 4pm

But remember, as always, stock is limited so if you want the first stuff out the box, be the early bird.

Oh and bring a bag to take your purchases home in.

Doubt Vesuvius

  • Posted by ade
  • 12 April 2012

 

This weekend we run the Endurancelife coastal series at Heddon Valley on Exmoor. Sofia in the 10km, Hazel in the 1/2 marathon (both first time) and Ruben, Chris and unfortunately myself in the Ultra.

My first and last Ultra was in February. The 35 miles took a few weeks preparation 7 hours and all my will power to finish, and they I could not walk for 2 days. Then we had the Restless ride to prepare for so I switched to the bike training three times a day. Then I went away for work and the running has been a few quick 5 milers here and there. And I meant to downgrade to the marathon, but missed the deadline.

On a scale if 1 to 5, the course is rated 5 (Extreme) and thus the last 14 days and the next 39 hours will be trying to keep a lid on the self doubt.

I have all my mental race props prepared. Innov-8 shoes, smartwool socks, howies shorts boxers baselayers and Brenin jacket, my Salomon s-lab pack, Nuun rehydration tablets, Camelbak bottle, Clif bars, shots and luna bars, iPhone with 1000 running tracks, swiss army knife, chewing gum, foil blanket, first aid kit, ankle brace, £20 note and a merino beanie.  They have got me through hell and high water.

But when the gun goes, it all going to be down to keeping a lid on the pain and the doubt. And the hardest bit will be the last 6 miles of the marathon to the finish line, where they send you out again on the 10km course to do the Ultra.

That doubting bit of my mind will be nagging me stop. "Why go further? You're tired, you've already run the next bit, the car's just there and you could get changed and be home to see the family sooner. You won't be able to walk tomorrow. You just did a marathon, that's good enough. Will you even make the next bit? Just say your ankle is playing up."

If I am in genuine hell, I will just stop there. I will need to be able to depress the clutch to get home.

But I hope that the legs hold, that the music has me singing along, and the last 10km pass to a joyous finish.

Watch our twitterfeed @howies and instagram @howiesclothing for the latest.

Getting out the door

  • Posted by howies
  • 12 April 2012

Exercise makes me happy. If I run a couple of times a week I think clearer, I sleep sounder, I eat better, I work more productively. I am happier. And yet, I can go for months without going for a single run. What's with that?

It took a chance meeting with Olympic athlete Steve Cram to tell me what the problem is. It's the front door. It's there, and its shut. He told me, "it doesn't matter if you're a professional athlete or training for your first fun run, the hardest part is motivating yourself to get going. If you can pull your trainers on and get out the door, everything else is easy."

The good news is he also told me how to open the door. Its a 2 step process:

1. Set yourself a goal.
Enter a run / bike ride / triathlon / adventure race / bog snorkel.
Nothing too hard, just something you couldn't do today.

2. Tell EVERYONE.
Parents, children, postman, neighbours, doctor, God, Twitter followers,
ticket collectors etc. There's no turning back now.

It works. For example, I haven't been swimming for 5 years. Then yesterday I entered a 1.5 mile swim to the Isle of Wight. I now have exactly 94 days until I walk down the shingle beach and into the waters of the Solent. So today I found my old trunks at the back of my drawer and tomorrow morning I'll be in the local swimming pool.

David came to howies to show us a website he built with a couple of friends to help people with the difficult Step 1.

You can guess what it does. It gets you out the door.

Words: David Wearn

www.findarace.com

Challenge yourself to something new and when you've found a race, let us know where you're racing on facebook, or tweet us with the hashtag #foundarace. You might even find a friend or two to get out the door with you.

Every time...

  • Posted by aron
  • 10 April 2012

Starring the Bunny from BÖIKZMÖIND, this little short tells the woeful story of what happens when a beloved bicycle is stolen...

Made by our friend Gavin Strange.

More info here > boikzmoind.com

Suggestions

  • Posted by alex
  • 5 April 2012

With 100% more weekend on offer as of now, we've been thinking of a few ways to spend the extra days while we're not at our desks.

After a quick poll in the office, these were the top suggestions. We'd like to hear yours.

Have a great weekend. Whatever you do, we hope you enjoy it.

1. Run in the woods

2. Fix up your bike

3. Get lost somewhere new

4. Read a book

5. Eat outside

6. Skinny dip

7. Go sledging (do not leave the country)

8. Make wild garlic soup

9. Take to the water

10. Make a paper hat for a fly*
(*sadly, this fly was dead when we found it...)

Hometown Easter Sample Sale.

Categories:


We love our little hometown of Cardigan and it's a great feeling when we see local people out and about in town wearing our clothes, it makes us real proud.

So, this Easter weekend we've decided to give a little something back and we're going to hold one of our almost-famous sample sales right here in our Cardigan shop. It's going to mean emptying all the present stock and fittings and replacing them with rails and rails of samples and then swapping it all over again afterwards. So there's lots to do, but it will be worth it.

There will be some amazing bargains, including last-in-the-box pieces from seasons past, unique samples of items that were never put in to production and, if you are very lucky, one or two prototype samples from upcoming seasons. But remember, as always, stock is limited so early birds stand the best chance of finding the best bargains.

We hope we can encourage a few of you from far and wide to head over and experience a little bit of the beauty of this place we call home, and who knows, if there is time maybe we can get out for a run or a ride in the sunshvine.

The sale will run:

Friday 6th April: 10.00 - 17.00

Saturday 7th: 10.00 - 1700

Sunday 8th: 10.00 - 16.00

Monday 9th: 10.00 - 17.00

And as it's Easter weekend we might even have some chocolates to go with the kettle which is always on. So even if you don't find something you like in the sale, you'll be able to pick up a brew - while stocks last.

This is where the shop is in Cardigan

And this is where Cardigan is in Wales

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