Girl on the Go, Go, Go

I took up skate-skiing this winter. As I prepared for my first day out, I found myself digging through an old gear bag in search of something warm to wear. An avid downhiller back in my college days, the best I could muster was a decade-old pair of North Face snow pants. And so, my most vivid memory of that first day on the Nordic trails, is that the embarrassingly baggy swish of my pants was louder than the swoosh of my skis. While my old TNF’s functioned fine, they were from an obsolete time period known as “pre women’s specific.” (No, a man’s size small does not a woman’s tush accentuate.) The positive? The pant’s elongated crotch  permitted me to pull the waistband up to my bra line for added torso warmth. It’s hard to believe the days of “man-size-fits-all” are part of the very recent past. It’s even harder to believe how many remnants from that unsightly era remain in my closet. And with the season for cycling and running in full swing, I’ve decided it’s time for change. Read on for the best girly gear for core pursuits. Pink is tougher than you think.

Santa Cruz Juliana
There just isn’t a mountain bike out there built better for female geometry. The Juliana features Santa Cruz’s lightweight aluminum frame, effective single pivot suspension design and confident handling. If that’s not enough, the fit options and standover clearance is truly engineered for her pleasure. Girlpower: The bike’s namesake is the one and only Juli Furtado. $2,300;

Vosges Haut-Chocolat Goji Exotic Chocolate Bar

Promoting peace, love and chocolate, Vosges takes sweets to a new level by infusing rare spices and flowers. My favorite, the Goji Exotic Bar, uses deep milk chocolate, antioxidant-rich goji berries and pink Himalayan salt. Girlpower: Owner/Chocolatier, Katrina Markoff, personally chooses every spice, flower and chocolate that is flown into Vosges’ Chicago kitchen. $7;

Manduka eKO Mat
Designed by an architect-turned-yogi, the Manduka is known as the high performance yoga mat. Denser and thicker, Manduka offers more support for your wrists in arm balances and proper cushioning for your knees in camel pose. The new eKo version leaves behind no footprint in landfills. Made of natural rubber and created using a toxic-free softening process, it’s devoid of foaming agents and plasticizers found in other mats. Girlpower: Available in an extra-long 85 inches so you can convince your boyfriend to practice with you. $70;

Pearl Izumi SyncroSeek III WRX
Pearl Izumi’s latest innovation is a water-resistant trail runner designed for all-weather protection—a new high abrasion outsole provides traction on even the slushiest day. Girlpower: The black/purple wine color combo looks hot covered in mud. $120;

SkirtSports CityGirl Running Skirt
With an extra wide waistband, built-in GirlShorties and flippy, flirty flair, the CityGirl will turn heads. Pockets under the skirt stash your iPod and energy gels. A Sonic Music Port allows you to listen to your favorite playlist without lifting your hemline. Girlpower: Designer and pro triathlete Nicole DeBoom wore a prototype of this skirt when she won Ironman Wisconsin in 2004. $58;

Sidi Genius 5 Pro Carbon
Nothing feels quite like a pair of supple Italian-made Sidis on your feet. Lightweight, with a carbon sole, the shoe plays to your “catch me if you can” mentality. Some say Sidi went overboard with its 2009 blue flowers and pearly white incandescence. We say bring it! (Anyone can wear black.) Girlpower: Sidi’s narrow profile seems made for women’s feet  (a welcome take on the Cinderella story). $300;

Pangea Organic’s Japanese Matcha Tea with Açai and Goji Berry Mask
High elevation winter sports can really abuse your skin. Step into spring with Pangea Organic’s revitalizing mask and say hello to beautifully radiant skin. This antioxidant-rich mixture stimulates collagen and regenerates skin cells. Girlpower: Share the love; this product works for all skin-types, including men’s. $40;

SheBeest Technowool Velocity Cycling Jacket
Technowool, part of SheBeest’s new green line of fabrics, is made from a recycled wool/polyester hybrid fabric that wicks moisture from the skin while maintaining insulating properties. In addition to giving the Velocity eco-cred, Technowool means you can work up a serious sweat without getting cold and clammy. Girlpower: SheBeest devotes all its energy exclusively to creating women’s cycling wear. $120;

Haiku Messenger Bag
A Title Nine exclusive, the Haiku Messenger Bag sometimes sells out faster than this small woman-owned business can produce them. Keeping you hands-free on your morning bike commute, this handmade bag comes in faux brown suede with sky blue (Pool) or lime green (Quince) accents. Girlpower: Haiku founder Sharon Eisenhauer was inspired to start her company when she adopted a baby from Japan. $70;

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