9 things cyclists should never (ever) reveal about themselves

Posted on: October 10th, 2018

You may not be the best rider in the world, but you can embellish your minor achievements, conceal your shortcomings and get away with murder generally by following this sage advice.


That you’re training a lot

No matter who asks you if you’re training much, the answer should always be: “I haven’t been out since the last time I saw you”.

You start telling people that you’ve upped the miles or intensity and they start expecting things from you.

On the other hand, if you tell them you’re doing nothing and then hit some good form or pull off some good race results you’ll be a God in their eyes; getting by on talent and talent alone. A class act, and so on.

Don’t do anything stupid and decide to be honest. Just remember though, make sure you don’t get spotted out on those training rides you were never on.

Take roads that your club mates are least likely to be using when you’re doing those sneaky spins.


How much you weigh

As above, honesty is never the best policy with this one.

You should always try to suggest you’re heavier than you are, but without ever stating your actual weight.

If you’re riding against guys roughly the same height and ability as you and they think you’re a good bit heavier than them, it will crack them mentally when they can’t shake you on the climbs.

They’ll also regard you as somebody with huge amounts of natural talent who could really motor if you just shed a few pounds.

Creating the perception you’re heavier than you are inflates all of your achievements and offers an excuse for your bad riding should it occur; the perfect combination.


What you paid for your bike

You’ll need to state some kind of price when asked, but always lower it.

You can get the deal of the century on a bike or kit but somebody in your training group will always tell you you could have gotten it cheaper elsewhere.

So always understate the price you pay for bikes and kit, down to a level you know nobody else will have secured.

Leaving fellow riders – especially close friends – with the impression they are not as good as you when it comes to getting a good deal is somehow an attack on them as a person while inflating your own standing as a streetwise and shrewd operator.

This will resonate with the “it’s not enough that I succeed, others must fail” part of your psyche and leave you with an enormous sense of well-being.


What you paid for your bike (when talking to civilians)

For the reasons stated above, you should always understate what you paid for kit when talking to fellow cyclists.

But when it comes to civilians, you need to jack up the claimed price hugely.

Civilians know nothing. And in their eyes, the more you pay for a bike the better you are as a cyclist.

“Paid €20,000 for a bike; must be good. He’s a professional he is” – and so on.


What you paid for your bike (when talking to your spouse)

This can be tricky. A non-cycling spouse is obviously not a cyclist, but neither are they a civilian so you need to be careful here.

They will know a little bit more than a civilian simply because they’ve spent a lot of time with you and you’re anal and never stop talking about cycling.

Never, ever, ever be honest about the cost of kit. Once you are honest once, your spouse has a constant (forever more) frame of reference about the cost of cycling kit.

If you let that genie out of the bottle, it’s never going back in.

And every time you buy kit you are open to commentary on where the money could have been better spent, especially if you’re buying something expensive.

If your nearest and dearest knows how much kit costs, repeat purchases in a short period are harder to pull off hassle-free.

You need to start as you mean to continue; dishonestly grossly underestimating the value of everything you buy. It’s the only way and you know it.


That you’re under pressure

Never give them the satisfaction of knowing they were the hammer and you were the nail in a sportive or while racing or training.

It simply gives them one over on you and you should never do that.

Mid ride – especially in a race – if you admit you’re under pressure by asking somebody to ease up or wondering aloud how much further the road climbs, you’re vulnerable to being distanced.

Think ego first, then practicality.


That you’ve prepared specifically

Poor riding – at any event – needs to be put down to a late night, with lashings of alcohol, the night before rather than the simple truth that they are in better shape than you.

Never indicate to somebody that you want to do a good ride at your next event.

It will only ensure that they start preparing properly for the event to show you that they’re a better rider even on a day you’ve specifically prepared for.

If you take our advice, you’ll always get your lies in early.

For example, if you’re riding a difficult event that you’ve been aiming for for a long time; in the days before it, let it slip you have a party or family occasion to go to the night before the event.

And when you turn up on the morning, persist with that story and suggest not only a lack of sleep the night before, but that you’re also a bit hungover.

It means if you do a bad ride you have a cast iron, embarrassment-free, alibi.

And if you perform well, people will marvel at a rider still able to go out on the town and just turn up the next morning and put a ride in.


That you were responsible for a crash

Even if it’s blatantly obvious you were to blame for a crash in which others fell, never accept responsibility.

If there is anyone in front of you when the crash occurs, as far as anyone else is concerned that rider made an erratic movement, braked hard for no reason or somehow caused you to do what you did.

Whatever the problem, it always starts with somebody else’s riding and never your own.


That you’re lost

You may, for the briefest of moments, not know exactly where you are but you are never, ever lost.

If you are actually lost, just keep riding with purpose until you come to a road or landmark you recognise.

And once there, get back onto the road you know and pretend it was your intended route the whole time.