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The Inspirational Thread About Cycling.


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Because I am a cyclist I have dirty hands. I can’t be bothered to pull on latex gloves before I commence to wrenching, and it seems no matter how much degreaser I work through my oily digits, I still end up with every crack and crevice of my winter-blanched skin outlined in black. I do the best I can to hide this at business meetings, but in the end, who cares? I am a cyclist.


Because I am a cyclist I don’t smell that great. To shower as prodigiously as I ride would leave me in a more or less permanent state of prunishness, which, on balance, would be slightly less attractive than my persistent odor.


Because I am a cyclist, I know things about materials science and nutrition and psychology.

Because I am a cyclist I perceive the distances between things differently than other people. I think more about effort than parking. When someone refers to a hill as steep, I know exactly how steep it is. I am fully topographic.


Because I am a cyclist I am keenly attuned to the weather. I know which way the wind blows. I understand the dew point and its implications for perspiration, hydration and recovery. I know when the snow will fly and how deep I can let it get before escape (from work) becomes impracticable. I understand how wet “really wet” is, and know that I can clean the road grime from my calves in the sink, as long as I get to work before most everyone else.


Because I am a cyclist I watch sporting events on crappy internet feeds from foreign lands, in languages I can’t speak. I look forward to races that most of my friends haven’t heard of, in cities approximately 0.1% of people could find on a map.


Because I am a cyclist I know that when I am suffering I am learning things about nutrition, psychology, weather and most importantly, about myself, that I could not learn without smelling bad, having dirty hands, being dry, in a car, on the couch, in front of a baseball game.


That’s just how it is. When you are a cyclist.

Edited by ' Dale
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Nice read man! Sounds a lot like me except for the road grime seeing that I do not commute to work.

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thats a good read , thanks .


nice to see that we can still find stuff like this on the hub.

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Is that Boonen? The only time he got his hands dirty was when ge was caught scharfing with his almost underage girlfriend?

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  • 1 month later...

So, have you been bitten - check for the 'symptoms' below!




From cyclinginfo.co.uk:



Features of the Cycling Bug


You frequently check weather forecasts for your next cycle ride, but you still end up going out – even if there is rain.

Your day is planned around, when will I go cycling?

As soon as one ride is finished, you’re thinking about the next one.

An injury or short illness leaves you worrying about your mileage count for the year.

When you start any ride you have that great feeling of being back on the bike.

When you’re not cycling you are flipping through catalogues finding best cycling accessories.

You spend hours pouring over maps to find best routes.

When you see cyclists riding past, you get a pang that you aren’t out on the road with them.

All your holidays are planned around cycling, though you may have to pretend your motivation for going to Majorca in February is because you think you’re partner would benefit from a ‘winter break in the sun’.

You contemplate taking a turbo to a friends wedding so you can do a little level two during the church service.

When you drive you think about how you would be taking the corner if you were on the bike.

You don’t mind cycling to work in all your cycling lycra, even if others think a little funny.

Your main topic of conversation is cycling and bicycles.

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It is racing season already and many riders still have cobwebs to shake off.

Here is an inspirational piece of writing from redkiteprayer.com:


Oh, the feel of spring, as my legs come back to life. Finally, the grip of winter has gone and my legs wake from latency. The tightness in my tendons eases as that the cold north wind turns to a warm southerly flow, and old man winter is but a fading memory. And the anticipation of spring’s warmth is enough to elevate one’s will, and I welcome the change in season.

Everything in my universe rotates around cycling and the lengthening days of spring now offer more opportunities for riding, more regularity daily and none of the hesitation of dealing with the perils of winter. Spring is Utopia for the cyclist, you may say. There is however one caveat in spring: The acrimony that comes from realizing spring doesn’t come free of charge.

Each spring riders must swallow a bitter pill of atonement. Even PROs have to regard this helpless estate. Less daily mileage during winter, Thanksgiving’s pumpkin pie and a daily morning Cappuccino all translate into at least some weight gain during winter. Not to mention the legs suffer without having the long daily rides, or the regular grind we take for granted in summer and fall. Lucky for me (or not), it affects many of my fellow riders similarly, and it is during spring that the rider must pay back for all those extras that have been lavishly enjoyed.

Just as the priest goes before the tabernacle and offers sacrificial atonement for the sins of many, so too must the rider pay penitence now in spring for winter’s excesses.

For some, they may never acknowledge winter’s decline, nor ever ride in their best form come spring and summer. For those riders who are honest though, there is a payback required in spring. Padraig wrote of a similar concept, of being ‘at terms’ during a race, when a few individuals come to the reality that they control a destiny, an outcome, and they are at terms with themselves and with the race. It’s a harsh thing, honesty with oneself, yet a fruitful outcome is possible if one recognizes it. There can be no excuses, no denials, and no transference of accountability at this time.

Atonement for the rider in spring is useful. When the rider comes to this awareness of form or lack thereof, in an honest self-assessment; spring’s work will be obvious. In such an assessment, we move toward being at one with ourselves. It is an utterly essential process, that the rider be ‘at onement’ in order to move up and move on. That is literally what atonement means, to be at one. I have also heard it explained that ‘the end depends upon its beginning’ and in fact spring marks the beginning for each rider each year. It’s a very orderly concept. The rider can focus on those weaknesses that can be mastered, and realize what lies ahead. The sting of self-affliction, the torment of correction, the lactate thrashing, and the effectual gasping for air are all required at the hand of spring.

And now we can accept this because we, in fact, realize we are indebted only to ourselves. Acceptance of this allows the rider to taper the body down, to chisel and to prepare for the season ahead. The dividends of such work will also be paid as we anticipate pulling the group with respect, hanging with riders better than ourselves and dropping our buddies in friendly local ‘world championship’ rides on summer evenings.

The catharsis of atonement in spring enables the rider to master all physical and mental aspects of riding. In the end, atonement liberates us from winter, seeking pardon and purification of those lavish excesses we enjoy. Atonement can allow us to prepare for and anticipate moving us into summertime form with success.

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