13 things cyclists should do… but don’t

Cyclists are full of advice. Our blog is full of it. But just how many of us actually practice what we preach?

Here are a dozen examples of sage cycling advice. You may well do most of them but I bet there’s more than a couple that you’re guilty of ignoring.

1. Stretch

Whether the advice is to stretch before a ride or after a ride is irrelevant, we don’t do either. Do we complain about muscular aches and pains anyway? Of course we do.

2. Check chain wear

Every experienced cyclist knows that you can get three or four chains out of a rear cassette before you need to replace the cassette. This saves loads of money. Do any of us actually use a chain checker? Nope.

3. Tighten bolts correctly

Apparently not every bolt on a bike should be tightened up to 10,000 lbs of torque.

4. Pace yourself

Loads of miles ahead of you today? Probably best to avoid riding at 100% from the get-go. But the urge to stomp on the pedals and froth at the mouth if you feel capable of doing so is far too strong.

5. Get things ready the night before

A bike ride’s not a bike ride if it doesn’t involve a stressful dash around the whole house beforehand – ideally involving cleated/dirty shoes being traipsed into rooms where they’re not allowed.

6. Upgrade yourself instead of the bike

Get fitter. It’s free. But it’s not as easy as splashing the cash (or bending the plastic) on a piece of something made out of carbon fibre.

7. Taper before an event

Your training has gone really well. You’re feeling in the best shape you have possibly ever felt. Best not head out on a massive ride at breakneck speed the day before a race. Oops.

8. Avoid the jetwash

Powerwashers destroy bearings. They flush out the grease and replace it with dampness. Creaking is the best outcome. Permanently damaged parts is the more likely result. But when your bike’s coated in filth and you’re shivering in soaked clothing the temptation for a quick blast is all consuming.

9. Lube after cleaning

After we’ve not jetwashed our bikes (ahem) we all know it’s a good idea to spin the droplets of our drivetrain and get some lubricant on there. What was that? There’s a cup of tea ready in the kitchen? I’m on my way!

10. Let injuries heal properly

You’re not a proper cyclist unless you have a dicky something or other. Ensure you give yourself a dicky body part by injuring it and then not staying off the bike for as long as advised. Simple – in every sense of the word.

11. Service your suspension regularly

Almost all suspension forks are easy to clean out and re-lube. It’s a fifteen minute job that will prevent you having an expensive repair bill – or a whole new fork – further down the line. But because you can’t see the mess inside your fork, you ignore it.

12. Quit Strava

Cycling crack. Can’t be quit. You’d enjoy life more without it. But you can’t stop.

13. RTFM

Have you read the instructions for the component that you’re currently swearing at? Of course you haven’t. You only read the manual once you’ve broken a bit of the component.

Have we missed anything?

Please leave a comment below with your suggestions for stuff cyclists should do… but don’t.

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One Comment
  1. DRINK WATER. Proper hydration is the EASIEST thing to get right, yet it also seems to be the easiest one to forget and get completely wrong. Even if you do everything else right, being dehydrated can have a huge impact.

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