You’re racing everywhere on your bike and it’s properly brilliant. You’re avoiding traffic and getting exercise. But as soon as your attempt a longer ride, saddle sores strike, and it feels like you’re riding a razor blade.
Saddle sores are grim. An acne-looking rash around your rear thighs that burns like crazy, their cause is disputed, but it’s most probably a consequence of constant chaffing and infected hair follicles. Some parts of your body are better conditioned to resist pressure and chaffing, and generally, your inner thighs are not, so if you’re going to spend hours generating friction, with sweat and bacteria on board, the results are likely to be ugly.
An especially bad combination of hot weather, a hard seat and poor clothing can crack your skin. First-time distance cyclists have been known to find huge amounts of blood in the area.
Like most things, the best methods for avoidance are hygiene and decent equipment. Shower, use clean cycling shorts that fit, and wash your shorts after use. Get a decent saddle, and ensure it’s the right height. If you get sores, use gentle antibiotics and periodically ice the affected area. Experiment with padded cycling shorts if you’re still having problems.
A healthy diet can also help, so grab some protein. You might need to take some time off the bike to let the problem clear up. If not, see a doctor.
Here are some products to ease your saddle pain
Designed for nappy rash, but works on adult arses as well
Muc-Off Luxury Chamois Cream
Smooth this on your knackers
Mesh panels, padded crotch and flat lock seams will help