I was straightening up the garage yesterday and I placed my bikes against the wall so I could do a little sweep up near where they usually rest. Seeing my older bike right next to my newer bike it became oddly clear to me that you don’t have to be fancy, you don’t have to have the full matching kit which in turn matches your bike which matches your socks which matches your brake pads…on and on ad nausea. When I started riding I would ride on the sidewalk, wearing tennis shoes, on a 10 year old mountain bike, with monster bar ends, wearing cotton shorts, cotton t-shirt and a baseball hat turned backwards. I will tell you the Gods honest truth, it worked. I lost the majority of my weight riding late at night or early in the morning in that exact outfit with that bike that I affectionately called “El Chupacabra”. No fancy shoes, no breathable fabrics, no wicking socks, no lycra, no helmet it was just me a fat guy, a bike and a whole lot of sweat and cursing. I hear you now “Gene, will you ever so kindly get to the point please Judge Judy is about to start and I am bored with your ramblings.” Dear readers, if you think you need a fancy bike, carbon soled shoes, lycra head to toe, and the biggest ticket bike you cant really afford but purchase anyway, well you are sorely mistaken. Sure you can have all of the nice components, the carbon fiber water (yup I just said carbon fiber water) the sleekest machine to roll off the line this month, it might even help you eek out a few seconds on your club ride…but in reality who really cares. I started riding not with the foolish ambition of being a racer I rode to simply lose weight and I found through experience that pretty much anyone can do it regardless of what brand name graces your down tube. Get a bike, any bike that works, AND GO RIDE!
4 thoughts on “Carbon Fiber Water?”
Yep, very true. In fact, I think I probably lost MORE weight because I was riding a piece-of-crap mountain bike with only 12 speeds and big knobby tires at high rates of speed. Definitely burned more calories than my road bike.
As for attire, well, I don’t know about you, but no one REALLY wants to see what someone who has lost 230 pounds looks like in bike shorts and breathable bike jersey. It’s not pretty. I ride now with bike shorts UNDER my regular gym shorts, and I still wear a cotton t-shirt. I get lots of funny looks, especially when I zoom by someone who is “properly” attired.
I agree 100%, Gene. Just ride, your body will thank you.
There’s a Nike commercial somewhere in there … just do it!
Brilliant blog, came here from Bike Commuters and have just had to read every post from day 1.
I am a blue light rider from the UK, my commute is a minimum 40 miles daily. I don’t blog about it, and even if I did it would be orders of magnitude less interesting than yours. Good job, thanks.
As Lance Armstrong would say, “Its not about the Bike.” Iam sick of those rich wannabes with yellow jersey, $400 dollar oakley glasses, $4000 bikes. These guys would get smoked by you, and would be hilarious to hear their excuses!