Thursday, November 10, 2011

Bicycling...and Ultrarunning

Out of curiosity I happened to pick up a copy of Bicycling magazine, Oct 2011, at the gym, where they have an informal magazine exchange.  There were several items that jumped right out at me a illustrating a distinctively different world view on the part of serious bikers, as opposed to the Ultrarunning community that I am familiar with.
  • Page 6, ad for Nair Men Shower Power "If removing body hair was a competition, razors would finish 2nd."  Body hair for Ultrarunners is a feature, not a bug.
  • Page 52, article on how to crash properly.  In fairness, if you're gonna crash, this article gives you tips on how to minimize the damage.  But I can't ever recall seeing any how-to equivalent on how to face plant while trail running so as to minimize damage.
  • Page 89, ad for a Cycling Accident Attorney.  Why don't we have a corresponding ad in UltraRunner magazine?  After all, backcountry trail running lawsuits are extraordinarily common, aren't they?

But my favorite comes from the Editor's Letter (page 10), where Peter Flax is talking about buying a used Ibis Hakkaluggi bike (doesn't mean anything to me, but I'm not a biker, and it sounds suspiciously like a fake name anyway) from a famous bike racing pro named Bobby Julich. 

The editor makes the point that he was "...buying a bike from a guy who podiumed at the Tour" [de France, presumably]. 


An interesting verb-making trick from the word podium, if you ask me.  Seems right in line with my stereotype of serious bike aficionados being largely Type A personalities, where inventing a verb out of a noun is simply a breezy construct to communicate even faster, and then rush off to do, well, other important stuff.

I will post more soon about Type A and Type B individuals in various human-powered sports...and it'll be a goodie!



  1. I used to race bikes.
    I stopped because I found the people involved in the sport to be precisely as you describe - Not people with whom I would sit down for a slice of pizza and a beer.

    It's one of the reasons I love the sport of ultrarunning so much. The people are almost universally good folk from the last finisher to the first.

  2. It's probably dumb to use stereotypes, and hopefully any readers of Mister Tristan (the blog, not the human being) who are bikers will forgive me.

    That said, stereotypes exist for a reason because--foul or fair--some association has been made in our minds such that we find the stereotype to be a helpful construct.

    Blog owner