These are real questions that I have been asked by beginner mountain bike riders.
The guys at the shop told me not to wear undies under my knicks. Is this true?
At first you may think that they are making fun of your beginner mountain bike status, but they are telling you the truth. When you wear undies under your knicks and you get so much chafing that you can’t sit down for a week (apparently akin to doing a 24 hour solo), you’ll realise the truth in their words.
I once wore my running shorts with the built in undies in a spin class. They rubbed and chaffed so much that I had to go commando for three days.
I’m not really fit or fast. Do you think I should race?
My word! Of course you should race. Mountain bike racing is the most inclusive sport I have encountered and I think everyone should race. Racing gives you confidence to tackle obstacles that you would not normally do. It makes you ride faster than you would normally ride and you meet some fantastic people.
You don’t have to go fast. You don’t have to win. You just have to get out there are race. The more experienced competitors are really supportive of new riders. Most can remember their first race and encourage you as they pass.
There are so many great club races around and I think that’s a great place to start.
My local bike store where I have my bike serviced would like me to wear their kit for help with servicing and stuff. Is that a normal thing to do?
Yes, it does happen, but remember that, when wearing their kit, you are representing their business. Here are a few points to remember:
- Choose one brand and be loyal. If you like their service, their ethics and you’re happy with supporting them, then yes, be their brand ambassador.
- Be diplomatic when using/posing with/talking about other products. Don’t bad-mouth.
- Avoid being convinced to endorse products you wouldn’t pay hard-earned money yourself to use.
- Make sure that you get as much benefit from the relationship as they will.