Four things that reveal what type of cyclist you are
Cyclists can be perceived as a rather odd bunch. We willingly ride for hours in unfathomable weather conditions just so we can get home and tell our families we travelled a certain distance. And we spend hours agonising over where we can shave a few grams off our precious bike build to compensate for our over-indulgent coffee stops.
Bike riders love a label: ‘the roadie’, ‘gravel grinder’ and now ‘virtual cyclist’. There’s a wide variety of cyclists out there, all with different personalities and characteristics, but which one resonates most with you? Here are four things that will help reveal what type of cyclist you are.
- You’ve got more knowledge than Sheldon Brown and Phil Liggett
- You have a penchant for buying kit and equipment
- You spend a great deal of time on the turbo trainer
- Your bike rides usually end under a bivvy
- Riding a bike is pretty damn fun
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You’ve got more knowledge than Sheldon Brown and Phil Liggett
A rare breed, and generally an experienced cyclist, these riders are to be worshipped for their fountain of knowledge passed on from generation to generation. Generally found identifying bikes and components from a mile away and picking up the slack roadside when one of the group has a mechanical failure, they’re the ones you trust to identify what bottom bracket you need, how to interpret power data, whether that SRAM chain really will work with your Shimano drivetrain, etc.
Their knowledge may well extend to racing, able to recall the top fifteen finishers of the 1986 Grand Prix d’Automne as if they’d watched it yesterday. If you’re the historian and encyclopaedia of your group, chances are you’re a cycling expert.
You have a penchant for buying kit and equipment
There’s no such thing as enough cycling equipment. I mean, think of N+1 – it’s science. Of course, your family may disagree when they find themselves fighting for space with a new climbing bike that you bought because “I need something specifically for hill climbs, I can’t just ride my carbon race bike’. You may also find that your bike collection now out-costs your car or even the deposit on your first house and you’re on first name terms with the local DPD driver due to the constant influx of kit deliveries.
You’re a trendsetter and love to have the latest gadgets, even if that means your partner gets underpants or something equally as inexpensive for their birthday. If you find yourself nodding along, you’re most likely a collector.
You spend a great deal of time on the turbo trainer
Riding indoors is rather enticing, or even necessary if the weather is bad. But when the sun is shining and the wind has stopped blowing a gale, it’s time to hit the road again…or is it?
Some of us have become so accustomed to the ease of indoor training that we don’t want to risk riding our bikes outside, full stop. You might not be confident that you’ll be able to ride the required intervals, or maybe you prefer to avoid the risk from drivers and poorly maintained roads, but it’s also true that some of us are just having too much fun in the virtual realm.
So, if you keep your Zwift subscription through the summer months, and you’re not entirely sure if you’ll remember how to use your brakes properly once you’re back on the road, chances are you’re a virtual cyclist.
Your bike rides usually end under a bivvy
Structured training isn’t for everyone. Some of us prefer to ride at our own speed, taking in nature whether that be on or off-road. You might not be particularly fussed about the bike you’re riding, whether it has the latest 12-speed groupset or disc brakes powerful enough to give you whiplash, and Strava has no meaningful use to you, as you use Komoot if you want to plot a route.
You’re not riding for KOMs or QOMs and the only power you care about is the voltage of your headtorch – you ride for the experience, the thrill of the journey, and often these extend to meticulously planned multi-day trips and nights spent under the stars (or under a bivvy).
You have plenty of stories to tell your friends about your adventures the previous week, and your bike has seen more miles in a year than most see in a lifetime. If this sounds like you, you might be a free spirit.
Riding a bike is pretty damn fun
Of course, all cyclists are different. We all have different personalities, strengths and weaknesses, both on and off the bike. Some of us ride for pleasure, some as a means of transport, and some because we want to race and find the limit of our abilities. But we can all agree on one thing: riding a bike is pretty damn fun.
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