Girls, like myself, are OBSESSED with lotions, oils, and creams all to keep our skin youthful and soft. I pride myself on having soft hands. I manicure my nails sometimes twice a week! I check my yahoo mail for a Bath and Body coupons every week. Alas, as I am learning, the more time on the bike, the more calluses on your hands and yet another damn insecurity to keep track of. Obviously, the things below were just not enough to worry about…
1. Spandex: REALLY?!!! Do I even need to offer up an explanation? Spandex is the natural and possibly the ORIGINAL muffin top creator. There is the upper muffin where your stomach hangs over your shorts and there are the mini muffins where the shorts cut into your thighs creating “thigh puffs”. Guys normally develop very defined quads. Girls can develop them but then it throws our proportion out of shape and finding jeans to fit is a nightmare. Either way, you have to work up the courage to put on spandex or continuously work out to avoid “muffin popping.”
2. Helmet Hair: Ugh. Paul Mitchell needs to design products that will undo helmet hair or we need to add a hair brush to our multi-tools. By the time I stretch on a head band or buff, ride 40 miles, and return to my car, my hair looks like Gene Simmons running towards you. It’s not pretty and does not get any better with car windows down or continuous hand smoothing. Sometimes my pony tail holder will fall out which creates a Bell Helmet mullet….also NOT ATTRACTIVE. I carry hair rubber bands on my wrist when I ride for such emergencies.
3. Jerseys: To augment the continuous embarrassment of the spandex shorts, there is also the jersey designed to fit tight, hug every curve, dent, or bend of your body. God forbid if you enjoyed yourself during the holidays and ate some of grandma’s best butter laden recipes. If the results will show up anywhere….it is IN YOUR JERSEY. A quick note, suck it in when you see a camera. Even if it is NOT pointed in your direction or you are not the subject being photographed…SUCK IT IN. Make it a Pavlov response. You will thank yourself later when you are Facebook stalking and catch yourself in the background of other pictures.
4. The Wrong “whatever”: There are a HOST of things that other riders will make fun of you for….ill fitted clothing, ill fitted bike, stupid socks, gel seats, the wrong energy drink, the wrong food, the wrong direction….WHATEVER. It is best just to be prepared.
5. Chain Ring marks: I rarely have these anymore…they are a greasy blackened tattoo s, easily identifying newer rider miles out. Sometimes they cannot be avoided and as you grow more comfortable on the bike, you stop acquiring these hard to rinse off markers.
6. Calluses: NOW I have to worry that my hands will become stone…the curse of Medusa minus all the lover drama and snake-hair, of course. Even with proper hydration, calluses are unavoidable. I have researched alternate greeting styles to possibly avoid any further embarrassment by clients but elbow rubbing and cheek kissing has never really caught on here in the states and I do not consider myself a trend setter.