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Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?(20 posts)

Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?StevieP
Dec 20, 2002 12:26 AM
Like you, I love to ride my bike. I dont race (never have) but I love to keep fit and ride whenever possible. I have 4 bikes and never had a driving licence/car at the age of 31.

Keeping fit often means that I commute to work 'the long way'. By the long way I mean turning a 2 mile ride into a 15 mile hilly training route at 6.30 am!

I like to get my rides 'out of the way' leaving my evenings free (I am less motivated after a days of work but highly motivated in the morning having eaten too much the night before!)

At this time of year it means wearing full longs and loud Lotto team winter.

I turn up to work at 7.45am in my biking kit & I often get some funny looks (unsurprisingly I agree!).

Now, my friends & colleagues think I am mad for 3 reasons;

A) To wear such silly looking clothing (silly to a non-cyclist I should add!).

B) To get up at an ungodly hours of 5.30am (not that bad to me seeing as I go to bed at 10pm).

C) To ride 15 miles before work in all weathers up steep hills just for fun and then come to work afterwards (and still be one of the first people on my team to be sat at mt desk!)

Now, who is mad - me or them?! I don't think I am. A little strange maybe! It just suits me and what I want to do.

Anyone else have similar experiences?

Steve (Uk)
You're barking mate! (nm)GileyD
Dec 20, 2002 1:03 AM
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?roadcyclist
Dec 20, 2002 1:40 AM
Of course they do. I get wolf whistles when they see the lycra shorts, and "You rode HOW far? WHY?". If you want to really convince them that you're crazy - tell them how much your gear costs - "You spent HOW much? I could buy 10 bikes for that". They will NEVER understand!
Same as me, more or lessEager Beagle
Dec 20, 2002 3:03 AM
save that I like to ride later, rather than first thing.

Some seem to understand on the basis that it saves getting on the train/bus/traffic queues, but very few actually see the enjoyment in it.

That's without even getting into the reaction of people when you come back from a 6 mile XC run at lunchtime...
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?Juanmoretime
Dec 20, 2002 3:17 AM
I have to get up at 3:00AM for my first workout of the day and go to sleep about 9:00PM. 5 mornings a week I run the other two I'm out on the bike with lights. When I get back I shower and start my 86 mile, one way, commute into my office. After returning home and dinner with the family I get in my seccond workout which will either be weight training or I on the bike. Very full day.

My co-workers in my office are always watching for me to walk thru the door to see if I'm limping to hear the details of my latest injury, since I also mountain bike and my morning run takes me thru a dark section of woods. I've taken a few spills including being tripped by my running partner, Benny. Benny is a Chocolate Labrador. Needless to say, everyone in my office thinks I'm nuts. Probably most everyone on this site may think what I do is normal, with the exception of getting up when I do.
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?MJ
Dec 20, 2002 3:37 AM
my work colleagues refer to my cycling togs as my "gimp suit" - HEHEHEHE - I have to stroll through our lobby to get to (and out of) secure bike storage in the basement - after a wet/muddy morning on the trail to work it doesn't fit in with the sea of pin stripe suits in the City

do they understand? no

am I interested in explaining? if they actually wanna know I'll make an effort - but usually it's not worth the bother so a few comedy replies usually moves things along
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?GileyD
Dec 20, 2002 4:44 AM
I actually like most people's incomprehension of what we do. Standing in a long queue in a shop or bank wearing brightly coloured tight fitting cycle clothing always amuses me - a lot of people just can't cope with it and give you a wide berth whilst looking at you with deep concern. Obviously a nutter, no other explanation for it!

Then again you have to be a peverse b*gger (no quips!) to be a cyclist anyway. If it was as socially acceptable as wearing a lurid footie top over your beer gut it would loose a litle bit of its appeal, to me anyway!!!
you are nuts....C-40
Dec 20, 2002 5:07 AM
I ride several thousand miles a year, but I do it to enjoy pleasant, sunny weather and keep fit. I won't ride in the dark with lights, or in the rain or severe cold. Too dangerous and too much trouble to commute where I live.
re:Mitigating factors here.dzrider
Dec 20, 2002 5:25 AM
It's gone on long enough to get little reaction.

The lycra looked worse 20 pounds heavier.

Going to lunch in town and arriving before the people in cars seems to change their perspective.

Jogging home through the snow rather than riding made the cycling appear less extreme.

An occasional environmental rant stifles people in a politically sensitive work place.
Juanmoretime - you're not nuts. You're hardcore man!StevieP
Dec 20, 2002 5:37 AM
What you do puts me in the shade. Maybe you are thenext level up from my insanity!
my wife has threatened to divorce me if I don't stop racingwheelsucker
Dec 20, 2002 5:53 AM
my wife said she would divorce me if I didn't stop racing, she says this about once a week and she first started saying this last year..lol. She must realize she can have everything as long as she doesn't take my bikes.
are you gonna miss her?(nm)merckx56
Dec 20, 2002 6:06 AM
Oh yes...biknben
Dec 20, 2002 5:58 AM
I started a new job last winter. I gave it a couple months and then started commuting to work. Everyone knew I was a serious rider. When I strolled through the office in lycra, they were introduced to my alter ego.

They razed me a bit. I'm used to that. The funny thing was, every time they thought they'd seen it all I went another step. Ride to work..."That's interesting". Get caught in rain..."just unfortunate timing". Leave for ride while it's raining..."this guy doesn't give up". They notice shaved legs..."Huh???" Commute in the dark when time changes..."You're kidding right?" Show up in snow with screws sticking out of my tires..."You are MAD!!!"

I remember a turning point. I leave my riding clothes hanging in the bathroom during the day. One day someone noticed a quote on my dogtags, "Pain is weakness leaving the body" When that got around the office they knew they were dealing with a different breed.
Oh yes...wasabekid
Dec 20, 2002 11:50 AM
Amusing...

and right on...!!!
You seem normal to me.......PEDDLEFOOT
Dec 20, 2002 6:33 AM
.....then again I get up at 3:00 AM to ride for 2 hours on a pitch black trail before work.My wife is resigned to the fact that "normal" is not going to work for me.I commend you on your attitude and commitment.Remember that deep down inside the people that think you're crazy wish they had the guts to do what you do.
Add in the shaved legsPaulCL
Dec 20, 2002 6:43 AM
Had a guy just yesterday ask me if I shaved my legs. This question came out of the blue, in a group of people all wearing suits/ties/guts....great timing. I stammered for a second. He jumped ahead of me and mentioned that he had just read an article on Lance out of which the biggest thing he picked up is his shaved legs. 4 TDFs, Cancer, father, husband, and all he remembers is shaved legs?

I answered yes. Then lots of laughs until I explained why (roadrash,etc...I left out the part about being part of a "fraternity" of cyclists). Amazingly, they all took it in stride.

They do think I'm a bit "out there" when I talk about riding a 100 miles in a day...
Tolerant, Bemused WifeJon Billheimer
Dec 20, 2002 7:47 AM
My wife thinks I'm totally deranged after 38 years of marriage! She's probably right too. However, she's finally given up trying to "normalize" me.

BTW, Juanmoretime, you're the man!!!! Unbelievable.
shaved legs...Fredrico
Dec 20, 2002 3:20 PM
These guys all eat too much, and are starting to suffer with their sex lives. That's why they focus on shaved legs. They can't believe any guy who shaves his legs could possibly be masculine, while they're getting less and less masculine, and over-compensating by sniggering remarks about shaved legs.

I've been in your situation with guys like this. Hearing about your hundred mile bike rides, they'll try to one-up you by eagerly relating what supberb men they were on the high school football team or in the military, or how clever they are as businessmen. The truth is, they're really jealous of your athletic ability compared to their lack of it, and by implication, their lack of masculinity.
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mademptyhanded
Dec 20, 2002 10:24 AM
Hmm, let's see.

I wear lycra,
share the road with SUVs,
seek out hilly routes,
ride 100 miles for fun,
have ridiculous tanlines,
shave my legs,
and think the Kelme kit is subtle and understated in design.

perfectly normal.

wait a second, you get up how early????!
re: Do your non-cycling friend & colleagues think you're mad?crna
Dec 22, 2002 6:27 PM
always dark when i leave for work and i used to think the flashlight wattage light i used was adequate. that is until the shadow i hit turned into a racoon and left me sprawled in the roadway. Coworkers still mention that incident whenever someone new to the group asks if i bike.