Has your love of bicycles and all things cycling inadvertently turned you into the type of person others fear to talk to about bikes? Are you the type of snob who looks down their nose at the neighborhood kids on their Huffys and Schwinns? Read to find out if you are and what to do about it.
1) You know what everything is made from
It’s good to have an understanding of how different materials perform, but as your friend reels off a list of bike gear he’s just bought are you mentally logging all the materials and wondering why he didn't spring for carbon or titanium? If so, maybe it’s time to ease off a little.
2) Money is no object
Do you read all the online reviews to find out which is the best gear and then buy it, even if you just upgraded to what was the best last season? You have to have the ultimate gear or bike even if that means selling the dog/kids/house. Compromising on expense isn’t a sign of weakness.
3) How much does it weigh?
Your best friend has just bought a new bike and he’s pretty excited about the prospect of joining you for his first bike ride. If your first question is "how much does it weigh?" you’re probably not going to have a cycling buddy for very long. And when he asks for your advice about upgrading the pedals, remember that he’s still overweight, so shaving 4oz off his gear by spending an extra $300 is probably not going to be the best recommendation.
4) You’re favorite jersey rips so you have to get an all new outfit
It’s nice to have matching gear, but it doesn’t have to be a religion. Plus, while you may find that the bib shorts from one company super-comfortable, the jersey may not be cut to your physique. It’s worth considering different options and trying a few on in a shop rather than just stocking your closet with multiple matching outfits.
5) You have a cycling cap and outfit to match every bike
How many cycling caps does one guy/girl need? Most of the time it’s under a helmet, so it’s not exactly on-show. Plus, while buying the helmet, cap, jersey, socks, shoes, and shorts to match your bike may seem like a good idea when you’re in the shop, you're going to look like silly on the road to the grocery store. Every day is not the Tour de France.
6) You have a preferred brand of razor for your legs
There is scientific proof that shaving your legs can cut your time over long races and many people think that smooth, muscled legs look better than hairy ones in bike shorts. On top of that, if you have a pre- or post-ride massage you may find it more comfortable if your legs are hair-free. So you won’t find us dissing a man just for shaving his legs, but please, spare us the evangelical razor recommendations.
7) Roads are for road bikes
Not everyone can afford more than one bike, and even if they could afford more than one, not everyone wants to own and store more than one bike. So if you see someone wheeling a hybrid, or mountain bike down the street, resist the temptation to look down on them. Some people ride on the road for pleasure, some for exercise, and some just for transportation, what does it matter to you what sort of bike they ride?
8) Comfort breaks are for the weak
Cycling is a fun way to let-off steam and relax, and it’s a perfect way to burn calories as well as get fit. If your pursuit of fitness sees you refusing to take breaks to use the bathroom, leaving your weaker-bladdered buddies behind, then you’re probably taking it a bit too seriously. Unless you actually are Chris Froome and you’re mid-stage of course. If you are, please keep pedaling.
9) You have a winter and a summer bike
The majority of people in the world don't own more than one bicycle, but not you. Your good summer bike is far too costly to ride in the wet messy winter season, and you certainly aren't going to stop riding just because the weather isn't nice. That's why many hard core cyclists own specific bikes just for winter use. A normal person may add fenders and knobbie tires to make a bike more suitable for riding in the rain and snow of winter, but a bike snob wouldn't be caught dead with those accessories on their bike on a clear day, so they need a second bike to ride when the weather turns nice.