Sarah and Ruby take on The West!

Ruby and Sarah are happy to report they have made it to their 4th state, Colorado! The West has treated us well and we continue to meet inspiring women everywhere we go. Salt Lake City greeted us with open arms, and lucky us, we rolled into the Bicycle Collective on Women’s Night! The Bicycle Collective also hosted an all-women’s alleycat race leading up to our event!  It was great meeting more strong and bike-friendly women, and being hosted by our lady bike pal Alex from NYC. We got to take a few days off, see the city, and soak in Alex’s antique bathtub! We had an inspiring workshop with our new friend Giuliana Serena of Moon Time Rising ( who started us off with a presentation on the history of menstruation and the feminine hygiene industry, and it was great to meet another menstruation enthusiast! We will be seeing her again at the SMCR Conference in June, and are super excited for her workshop on ceremonialism! SLC was also our biggest workshop yet, GO SLC!!!



We continued to be inspired as we headed east, especially when we stayed with 91 year old Jane in Ioka, UT. Jane has previously founded two special education schools in schools in her county, and is currently in the midst of creating a transitional program for women released from prison. We briefly skirted around the subject of our bike tour before Jane made it clear that she loved talking menstruation. “It happens around the dinner table whether we talk about it or not,” she said! She was impressed with our project, and even requested a few cups to pass on to the young women she counsels. She also introduced us to her friend Karen, a Mormon midwife who knows loads about women’s health and is passionate about caring for the women in her community even though many of her neighbors disapprove of her having a career that takes her away from her family. She told us about the Mormon Feminist Housewives, a group of women intent on improving conditions for women from within the Mormon faith. We were so honored and humbled to meet these incredible women who continue to fight the good fight despite adversity!



Our most beautiful biking day yet took us through Yampa River Valley in Northwestern Colorado, and we found ourselves in Steamboat Springs staying with an an avid female mountain-biker, skier, and fire fighter! We have enjoyed meeting strong western women and talking PERIOD!


Over the next few days we will be traversing the Rocky Mountains. We are excited to be hosting our 4th and 5th workshops at the following locations:

April 3rd: BOULDER, CO from 6:30-8:30pm at Community Cycles, hosted by our awesome sponsor Green Guru Gear!

April 4th: DENVER, CO from 4-6pm at the Mutiny Info Cafe

We hope to see you there!

Cycling Along the Loneliest Road in America

Ruby and Sarah here! Proud to say that we have officially made it to our third state- Utah! This is the first bike tour either of us have ever done, and we are finally starting to adjust (both bodily and mentally) to this new physical lifestyle.

Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe

After leaving the sunny state of California and beautiful, mystical Lake Tahoe, we began our journey across route 50 in Nevada, known as ” The Loneliest Road in America.” Nevada was beautiful in its own way, and very difficult to traverse by bicycle. There are often 60-70 miles between towns, with no services or even places to refill water from one town to the next. Also, the mountain ranges run north to south, so between towns we also had to cross 2-4 mountain ranges a day. The ascents were brutal, steep climbs for 5-15 miles, followed by thrilling and terrifying descents at up to 30 mph, flying down into the basin only to climb up the next range.

The Loneliest Road in America

The Loneliest Road in America

In addition to the fact that we were both still green to the physical challenges of bike touring, we both got visited by “Aunt Flo” in Nevada (to use my favorite period euphemism). We mused a lot about the impact of our menstruation on our physical performance, whether it was a hindrance or not, and what the spiritual significance might be of emptying a menstrual cup on the side of the road in a barren desert. I will say that we felt incredibly grateful for menstrual cups, because having to change tampons or pads in this type of environment would have been pretty inconvenient and gross (where would we dispose of them?) not to mention quite uncomfortable for biking such long distances.

At the border of Nevada and Utah

At the border of Nevada and Utah

While the populations in Nevada were sparse and we had very few interactions with other women, we did have a few impromptu discussions along the way about alternative menstrual products. We visited with a friend in Fallon, NV who is in the US Navy, and we talked about how menstrual cups could be a total game changer for women in the service who are deployed on ships or in other conditions where it is not convenient to carry a load of period supplies or dispose of used ones. We also stumbled upon a big St. Patrick’s Day party in Border, NV where we country-danced with a bunch of real-life cowboys and had some quiet little girl-talk side conversations with some of the women there (most of whom were young mothers) about the harmful chemicals in pads and tampons, and how much money they could save by switching to reusables. We were delighted that they were very curious and open to it!

The awesome flyer for our SLC event in collaboration with Moontime Rising!

The awesome flyer for our SLC event in collaboration with Moontime Rising!

We finally made it to Salt Lake City yesterday, where we will be taking a few rest days before our BIG EVENT on Saturday! We are thrilled to be collaborating with Giuliana Serena of Moontime Rising, a local menstruation expert and guru, who will be opening the workshop with a talk on the history of menstruation! The SLC Bicycle Collective has also organized an all-women alleycat race during the day to lead in to the event! Tell your Utah friends, this event is going to be our biggest yet!

Southern Tier Update. Yes, Boston, Massachusetts. No, we don’t have a man with us.

Hey All,

All good news on the Southern Tier. So far so awesome. Olive and I have been facing some headwinds, uphills, epic descents, and mostly sunny days.

We have succeeded in balancing our bikes together. This is no small feat, as many of you may know from personal experience. This is especially helpful when we get sick of touching our bicycles. Since we have been riding through mostly desert in Arizona, we spend about 9 hours in contact with the steel beasts. We ride 50-70 miles a day, and our biggest climb yet was over 5,000 ft in between Arizona and New Mexico.


Biking over the San Diego coastal range, we met Rachel Throop, pro-mountain biker and part-time waitress. She adopted us for the night after we met her at a local brewery. Thanks to her, we’ve gotten a little more famous on Instagram, which is AWESOME. On our way out in the morning, she hooked us both up with Oakley sunglasses for the rest of our tour. Thanks, Rachel Throop!


The bike life is full of adventurers. We met John and Su while staying with a very giving woman in the CA desert. They are two very normal and level-headed people who quit their jobs and have spent the past year and a half trekking and cycling the world. It’s nice to see more women on the road. Girl power!


For those of you that think Olive and I are amazing and/or crazy for biking across the country, check out this family. Mom, Dad, and two kids. We met them in Carlsbad after they had already spent months biking Europe and South America. The youngest was in diapers when they started and quickly learned that sitting in poopy in a bike seat is no fun. Mama was interested in our menstrual cup wares; we are excited to see how it works out for her.


Crossing into Arizona meant starting dry desert days. We were met by many warmshowers hosts who are more than accommodating. We also met Lauren and Karren, two snowbirds from Wisconsin who winter at the Desert Gold RV park in Brenda, AZ. We were standing in front of the only grocery in “town”, met Karren, and within 30 seconds had been offered to sleep on their RV plot. After dinner and discussion, we of course were upgraded to the living room floor and breakfast in the morning. We had a lot to talk about, as a young woman in Karren’s family almost died from TSS a couple of years ago. Another cup giftee, and we are looking forward to exploring the new option for this now tampon-free person.

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After our breakfast, Lauren accompanied us on his bike as we rolled out of town. If we can encourage anyone to get on their saddle a little bit more, the trip has been worthwhile. A few miles down the road, we were flagged down by a very fun group of young cyclists. 2 couples who met on the road plus us made 6 happy peas in a pod. We biked to the next town together, camped with a communal dinner, and made fast friends. We look forward to seeing them again as we roll through Austin and NYC.


Olive and I were solo again as we rolled into Superior, AZ. We had a big climb ahead of us, the wind was picking up, and it was getting to be dusk. We decided to go find a backyard to camp in. Lucky for us, we met life-long resident Dennis as he was hanging out with his grandkids near his home. Camping in his back yard turned into showers and then breakfast in the morning. We are still in touch.


Eastward into Arizona, we stopped at a gas station in Thatcher for a water refill and started talking to Jared, an organic gardener, composter, vegetable juicer, and super awesome granola bar-baker. I know, you wouldn’t believe it by the photo, but I swear it’s true. We were his first cyclists to take in because he wanted to “show his kids that there are still good people in the world”. We shared dinner together, had a great time with his kids, and again slept on the living room floor. Olive got the couch cause she’s spoiled. Not to mention showers and laundry. AND amazing granola bars for the road. They kept us going over the next mountain summits. Thank you, Rios Family!


We look so happy to be in New Mexico because we just biked over 5,000 ft to get here. The bike trailer next to us belongs to Josh, a Oregon man who’s toting Shoeless Joe Jackson, a beautiful dog who runs upwards of 40 miles alongside his pedaling dad.


Now we are in Silver City. We have found a treasure here. The Bike Haus. After rolling into town after 6 pm with no plans, we were directed to this bicycle safe-haven and immediately taken in. It’s a home with friends. How awesome is that? We had a nice rest day, and we are ready to summit Emory Pass tomorrow. 2,500 ft just over 8,000 in elevation.

Along the way, we’ve had a couple of very worried mothers. “Just the two of you? Aren’t you scared? What do you do about danger?” Well, “Yes. No. We don’t get into it in the first place”. You don’t need a man to go on a bike tour. I encourage anyone with the inkling to do it and be smart about it. If you want some more inspiration, check out this awesome collection of solo female bike tourists traveling the world. WOW–Women On Wheels.


Directions. Can never have too many of ‘em.


Upcoming events:

Ruby and Sarah are almost through their first state!

Ruby and Sarah are rocking through Cali! We started by picking up our bikes at the Oakland Amtrak and staying with some fantastic hosts at an Oakland co-op. They had a beautiful garden and fed us well, and took some information about sustainable menstrual products.


Our hosts in San Francisco had a chicken coop and made us homemade eggs. The hills were killer, but we were able to make some good connections and purchase last minute gear at our Sports Basement event.

The next day we took the Vallejo ferry and headed to Lake Solano outside of Davis for the most beautiful biking we have ever done. We rode through rolling green pastures and wine country, and got up to 27mph on some of the downhills! We camped at a park overnight and woke up to dozens of peacocks! In Davis we had a successful event at the US Bicycle Hall of Fame. We met five amazing women, and we were able to check out the “history of the bicycle” exhibit! We saw a 6 person tandem, and a few seriously old “penny farthing” big wheels.

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The next day we passed through Sacramento on the American River Bike Trail, which was amazingly beautiful and scenic! We then made our way to Folsom, and YES there is a Johnny Cash memorial there. Our host had cycled 11,000 milast year and helped us plan our next few days through Carson Pass and into Nevada. He even offered to drive us up the steepest mountains of the Sierras, which he said were some “real superhero climbs even without a fully loaded bike.” He dropped us off at the top of Echo Summit, and we rode four miles downhill into Tahoe.

So far we are blown away by hospitality, and willingness to discuss reusable menstrual options.

Tomorrow we will decend into Carson City and stay with a host with a young daughter who loves when women cyclists visit. Us too!

Southern Route. Good Start!

Greetings! Rachel and Olive are in Long Beach after a beautiful and easy ride from Los Angeles. We had a great Sustainable Cycles Workshop at The Long Beach Depot for Creative Reuse.


Who’s ready to bike  cross country? We are! We had a lovely event at The Bikerowave in Los Angeles on Friday. Goodbye hugs, potluck food, and lots of free menstrual cups.


It was a grey start to the day, but not much rain. We are water-proof and ready for puddles. Thank you, @DeFeet for the warm gloves!


The Long Beach Depot for Creative Reuse is a trash-to-treasure business. Lisa and Yoshino are an amazing mother and daughter team that run the store. Stop in for any type of art supply that every existed. 320 Elm Ave!


Thank you for a great workshop, ladies! See the woman in the overalls? That’s Frau Fiber. She’s awesome. A super OG feminist activist seamstress craftswoman maker. Long Beach, you got it goin’ on!

WE DID IT! 2015 Will be our largest bicycle tour yet!

IMG_1410Major thanks to all of the 200+ wonderful people who donated to our Indiegogo campaign! We surpassed our goal of $10,000, and our seven riders will be embarking on their journeys in the next few weeks! We are so grateful for your love and support, and are so excited to start this adventure!

Thanks to our sponsors, DIVA CUP, LUNETTE, THE KEEPER, MY OWN CUP, RUBY CUP, PARTY IN MY PANTS, COZY FOLK, THINX, JUJU, AND GLAD RAGS, for donating the samples that are making these workshops across the nation possible!

We would also like to thank Vaya Bags, Green Guru, DeFeet, Bicycle Habitat NYC, and WEBike NYC for providing our riders with some snazzy gear that we can’t wait to use!

Rachel H and Olive will be starting in Los Angeles on March 2 and biking across the southern tier, joining up with Rosie in Austin, TX. Ruby and Sarah will begin their tour in the Bay Area on February 26, and will bike across the Midwest. Rachel S and Heather will be biking up the east coast from Key West, Florida. All seven riders will converge in Richmond, VA on May 14, and bike in a group up to Boston for the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research conference on June 4th.

We are gearing up, and we are thrilled to know that we have the love and support of all of you! Follow our progress on Twitter @bikeperiod and Instagram @sustainablecycles !

Upcoming events:

San Francisco, CA : Saturday 2/28 2-4pm at Sports Basement, 1590 Bryant Street

Davis, CA: Monday 3/2 6-8pm at US Bicycle Hall of Fame, 303 3rd Street

Long Beach, CA: Monday 3/2  4-6pm  at The Long Beach Depot for Creative Reuse, 320 Elm Ave.

Las Cruces, NM: 3/20 7-8:45 pm at Mountain View Market Co-Op, 1300 El Paseo Road

2015 Indiegogo Campaign is up – Help us Spread the Word!

Our March- June 2015 Tour is right around the corner and our Indiegogo campaign to raise $10,000 is in full swing!

  1. Read this post about the tour.
  2. Visit the Indiegogo page and make a donation
  3. Check out our Facebook event for the fundraiser and invite your friends.
  4. “Like” Sustainable Cycles on Facebook.
  5. Get in touch if you want to be involved!

Sustainable Cycles is a collective of “spokeswomen” who travel across the country by bicycle to lead workshops about eco-friendly menstrual products.The project was started in 2011 by Sarah Konner and Toni Craige, who biked down the West Coast meeting with groups of women to discuss the cultural taboos of menstruation and pass around a show-and-tell kit of alternatives to single-use pads and tampons. The project gained momentum and a year later, Rachel Horn led a second bicycle tour, talking about periods and the environmental impact of the products we use everywhere she went.

Now, SIX WOMEN from diverse backgrounds want to take the project to the next level! Rachel and Olive from Los Angeles, Ruby and Sarah from New York City, Rosie from Australia, and Kim from South Africa are going to bike from the West Coast to Boston. Our six riders will follow two separate routes (one southern and one midwestern) from California to converge in Richmond, VA. Then we will ride in one big group up the east coast  to end at the Society of Menstrual Cycle Research’s National Conference in Boston, Massachusetts. We will present our project at the June 2015 event and network with others doing work in this field.


During our three months on the road, we will host events in different cities along our routes and start person-to-person conversations with hundreds of women about menstrual health and alternative products. We will encourage them to switch to methods that are safer and more environmentally friendly, and spread the word to their friends and communities. Let’s break the cycle of shame and embarrassment around “cycling”!

We want your support!

We want to raise $10,000 to help cover the cost of food, bicycle maintenance, emergency repairs, and transportation to and from our start and end locations. While we are doing our best to be frugal and source used and donated gear, there are still many items we don’t yet have that will be necessities on the road, especially since we will be riding through a variety of climates and terrain. We will definitely need to replace things like tires, tubes, and brake pads as they wear out over the trip. We will also need to keep ourselves fed and watered. Remember, the money we raise will be distributed between six riders!

If you aren’t able to contribute financially at this time, please check out our list below of other donations we will gladly accept!

Why donate?

By donating to this campaign, you are supporting a cultural shift towards more environmental and health-conscious practices, as well as more open discourse surrounding women’s bodies and menstruation. We have done bike tours like this before, and we have been successful in spreading knowledge about alternative products and getting hundreds of women across the country to make the switch to reusables. We are already supported by many of the companies who manufacture these sustainable products, but we need YOUR SUPPORT to make our largest cross-country tour ever a reality!

There are many ways to contribute!

In addition to monetary contributions, we will gladly accept donations of the following (things in used condition or temporary loans are A-ok!):

-lightweight camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, camping stoves, water purifiers, camel backs)

-Up-to-date bicycle maps of the following states: California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia

-bicycle gear (clipless shoes, lots of bike lights and batteries, warm lightweight layers, racks, panniers, safety flags and triangles, water bottles and bottle cages, toe covers, bar mitts for cold weather)

Help us make connections!

Besides the physical “stuff”, connections to potential hosts and communities who would be interested in workshops along our routes are invaluable! Know a women’s health center, bicycle coalition, social/environmental/student group, health food store, or other potentially interested party in any of the following cities or surrounding areas? Please reach out to us and let us know!

Ruby, Sarah, and Kim:

CA- San Francisco, Sacramento

NV- Carson City

UT- Salt Lake City

CO- Boulder, Denver

KS- Topeka

MS- Kansas City, St. Louis

IN- Bloomington

OH- Cincinnati

VA- Roanoke, Richmond

Rachel, Olive, and Rosie:

CA- San Diego

AZ- Phoenix

NM- Las Cruces

TX- Austin

LA- New Orleans

MS- Jackson

AL- Montgomery

GA- Atlanta

NC- Asheville


DC- Washington

PA- Philadelphia

NYC and Boston- we have many connections here already, but we’d be happy to make more! :)
Please share our campaign with your friends and pass the word along about our project! 

Even if you can’t contribute at this time, supporting our work by talking about it with others will help us greatly!

Invitation to Join: Sustainable Cycles Tour 2015


We are planning our grandest adventure yet! Starting in Spring 2015, there will be two or three (or hopefully more!) Sustainable Cycles trips on different routes happening at the same time across the country, all converging at the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research Conference in Boston in June.


We are about to embark on a big fundraising campaign for this. We have already gotten 1,000 (!!!!!) cups donated to the tour, and we are working to getting cloth pads and sea sponges donated.  We aim to raise $10,000 with an IndieGoGo campaign to cover the cost of the riders. As we set out planning, we want to extend this invitation out to you or anyone you know who might want to join us!



Bike touring is a rigorous and exhilarating adventure. We expect that all cyclers will agree to live cheaply while riding and take a serious part in our fundraising campaign. You and a partner will design your own route and create your itinerary for where to visit and when. You will be responsible for planning events along your route and publicizing them.  We encourage you to offer your own ideas for fundraising schemes and any ridiculous stunts to catch people’s interest. We will do the job of getting the cups and heading up the fundraising campaign. We will give you all of our educational materials and support you with conversations and mentorship. We will expect you to want to educate yourself about the subject matter through books, research, and conversation aver the coming months.



If you might be interested in joining this wondrous adventure, send and email to with a little about yourself.

Please respond briefly to the questions below by September 1st to indicate serious interest in joining.


1.  What is your background/ passion for sustainability and menstruation?


2. Bike touring can be beautiful and carefree, but also strenuous, unpredictable, and we will be living simply– really simply. Assuming that sentence is exciting and not terrifying, tell us about your experience (or desire for experience) adventuring.


3. What is your experience, if any in public education and/ or grassroots organizing?


4. What makes this the right time in your life to go on this trip?


We believe in this work. It is happening and it is exciting to be slowly, but surely moving the ‘norm’ away from disposable menstrual products and opening public dialogue about menstruation. If you want to take part, we want you to!


Tampon Safety Act in Congress– Needs Our Support!

I’m writing this post to you all from a blazing hot New York City Summer. Sadly, I’m not currently on a grand travelling adventure, but Sustainable Cycles has some exciting news to share from the Menstruation Activism world in general: Congress may pass a bill requiring federal study of the health risks of menstrual products!   Please read this post and take action by writing to your representatives and signing the petition. 

News from the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research:

This past May,Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney introduced into Congress a piece of legislation that would be huge advancement to the menstrual health and safety of girls and women in the US.  It’s called HR 4746, or the Robin Danielson Act, named after a woman who died from the effects of the contents of commercial tampons. The bill would require appropriate Federal agencies to conduct research and make available to the public information about the content of menstrual products, particularly tampons and pads.

qDilXyvmykAAyWT-556x313-noPad If all of this is new to you, here’s the background information in a nutshell. All the scientific research about the safety of tampons and pads that is currently available, has been funded by the pad and tampon corporations. Yes. You heard that right, and your jaw should have dropped. Not only that, but because of the way pads and tampons are categorized by the FDA, the manufacturers are not required to reveal to the public what their products are made of. And they don’t. Worse, they may share some ingredients, but not all. There are numerous chemists and microbiologists doing brilliant research on the actual effects of these conventional products (challenging, as even they can’t get access to an accurate account of what they are made of). But as I learned from NYU microbiologist Dr. Phillip Tierno (published work on Toxic Shock Syndrome), and from researchers in several fields at the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research Conference, it is close to impossible to get this research published. It’s shocking, but that is the reality of corporate pressure on science.

If the act has any chance of passing it will require the collective effort of all of us. David Linton, with the support of the SMCR leadership, drafted a sample letter to members of Congress in support of the Act. The letter is copied below for your convenience. Feel free to modify the letter to suit your own views of how best to argue the case.
As it stands, the act was referred to the H.R. Subcommittee on Health on May 30th, 2014, so it will probably be most effective to contact the specific representatives on the committee (information below). They will review it, and put it up for a vote whenever they see fit.  There is no set timeline, but it’s likey that public pressure on the members of the committee will speed things along.
Let’s get behind this effort. Please contact your representative.

I just did it online. It took less than 5 minutes. Also, share this email/ post with others you know who are also involved in issues of women’s health and safety.

Dear Congressman (or Congresswoman). . . . . . .:

I am writing to to urge your support and co-sponsorship of HR 4746, The Robin Danielson Act, that was recently introduced by your colleague, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney.  The bill is aimed at providing better safety and health care for girls and women through more effective testing and public information about the quality of widely used menstrual health products. It is important to note that this bill does not involve controversial areas of women’s health such as abortion or contraception.  Rather, it provides a means for members of Congress to address an important safety and health concern that affects virtually all girls and women between the ages of 13 and 50.  Simply, the act would require the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to research whether menstrual hygiene products that contain dioxin, synthetic fibers, and other chemical additives like chlorine and fragrances, post health risks. The bill has already been endorsed by a wide variety of women’s, consumer, and environmental organizations, including the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research of which I am a member. Should you desire more details about the intentions of the legislation or the positive ways to will help advance the safety and health needs of girls and women, I would be happy to provide more information.  Meanwhile, I look forward to hearing your views on the bill and hope that you will give it your full support. Thank you for considering this request.



Members of the Subcommittee on Health:
Republicans: Dan Benishek (MI), David Roe (TN), Jeff Denham (CA), Jim Huelskamp (KS), Jackie Walorski (IN), Brad Wenstrup (OH), and David Jolly (FL).
Democrats: Julia Brownley (CA), Corrine Brown (FL), Raul Ruiz (CA), Gloria Negrete-McLeod (CA), Ann Kuster (NH)

If you’d like to also contact your member of Congress: Use the following link to the House of Representative web site.  There’s a zip code search function in the upper right corner of the main site – As the bill is referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, it would be helpful to have members of that committee  as cosponsors but any new cosponsors would help advance the bill.

The other easy way you can make your voice heard is to sign this petition started by Ingrid Johnston-Robledo and Angela Barney of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research. “Congress: Robin Danielson Act–Research regarding risks posed by dioxin, synthetic fibers, and other additives in feminine hygiene products” It will take 30 seconds to sign it right now. Here’s the link: