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by Loren Rowney
October 31, 2016
Photography by Loren Rowney
WOMEN'S CYCLING BROUGHT TO YOU BY ORBEA
As always, my blogs tend be quite honest, and written from my own personal experiences. This blog, however, is collective, from all the other female cyclists I hang out with and talk to. This may not apply to every woman, I’m sure there are some women who do froth over Strava KOMs and being half wheeled. And sure, some guys will read this and think to themselves “What is this girl on about?! I didn’t have her at hello, I had her at I’m number one on the leader board on Strava on Rocacorba!”. So to be fair, I’ve included at the bottom of the blog, some tips from my boyfriend on his experience on dating a female cyclist. So here they are, a few little tips on how to approach dating a female cyclist.
It’s great that you ride, and awesome that you have competitive nature. But for the most part, as cycling is our life, we don’t want to hear about KOMs, what segments you crushed today, or how Richard got the KOM but technically you did because you rode it at the same pace but he was like 5mm in front. On another note, just because you might come close to some of the pro guys’ Strava segment board, does not mean that you should be Team Sky’s next big signing. Keep the bragging to your mates, because we will remind you of your KOMs the next time we drop you.
I really savour reco days, more so now than I did before. And I’ve actually gotten to the point where I can only ride with a few people, otherwise I end up an angry bitch by the end, sulking, because I had to push more watts than I wanted. I now get it, Evie, it took me years, but I’ve finally really learnt the importance of a real “reco day”! So if we have a “reco” day, please respect this. These days are our version of a day off work. We just want to enjoy the scenery and drink copious amounts of caffeine at the cafe, not get half wheeled.
We love having you along for the ride. It shows support and enthusiasm for what we do. However, if you choose to come on days when we have set efforts from our coaches, feel free to sit on, but for the love of god, don’t attack us or ride up next to us and ask if we are currently in the middle of an effort … It’s kinda like you saying, “is that all you’ve got?”.
There are going to be those days where we will put you in the box. Don’t take offence, this is what we do for a living, and we are pretty damn good at it. If it makes you feel better, challenge us to an arm wrestle after …have you seen roadies’ arms ? (well for the most part…some of my teammates are impressively strong in their upper bodies).
I’m sorry, but sex needs to factor into the daily schedule like a core training or yoga session. When we are in a really heavy training block, just a friendly tip, “it’s me, not you…or maybe it is you”. Sleep, food and general recovery (a.k.a feet up watching Vikings) are the main three priorities (unfortunately). Cramping quads and tight hip flexors are never fun. So the early morning “quickie”or the before bedtime a.k.a sleep time sesh, is sometimes really not appreciated after a five-hour day with f**k off hard efforts. Do you have any idea how tight our hip flexors get?
If you are in it for the money then you’ve picked the wrong sport. Try tennis or golf. Female pro cyclists don’t earn heaps of (or any!) money. But this is a very positive thing because they live for their sport, and are really passionate about it and that’s the stuff that you must like because it’s so beautiful to see how they deal with it. So this first tip leads me to the next tip:
Never stand between her and cycling because you will lose this battle. They work hard for it and they know more than anyone what an unique opportunity it is to live for and of cycling.
Female pro cyclists have a lot of scars because they fall a lot (but they wont admit it). Love them for it because it’s a part of their body that describes their lifestyle and career. NEVER say that the scars are ugly because they will get self conscious about it if you repeatedly comment them on their scars.
If you are going on a date with a female pro cyclist, try to chat about something other than cycling. It’s okay to talk a little bit about it, at the beginning of the date, to show some interest but after a while she’ll want to talk about something different. Talk about your favourite pro event, team or racer all night and you won’t be getting much beyond that first date.
When you finally succeed in “getting the girl” after some dates (which will cost you a lot, because they eat A LOT) make sure you are in shape. They’ve done their workouts already, now it’s your turn.