NoBMoB Xmas Social Ride - 10 Lessons Learnt
Four years ago, Nobmob (and other) social rides were a common routine. But when I saw this ride posted after a year of training and racing (among a few other things such a "bit" of study/work), I realized I haven't done any social rides the whole year. As much as nobmobbers tell me I have a lot to teach them about what happens near the front of a race, the reality is, you're the ones teaching me.
Below is a list of what you guys taught me (that maybe I knew once upon a time, but forgot) today:
1. You can wear baggy shorts on a bike ride. I put mine on, along with a T-shirt this morning.
2. When the meeting point is 25km away, you don't have to ride to it, including adding some off-road extension that you just can't miss as it just has the best descent and climb. Putting the bike on the rack and driving is actually an option.
3. An "early ride" doesn't have to start at the crack of dawn.
4. When in large group, people spin along together don't try to overtake or drop each other at every opportunity.
5. People say more to each other on the trail than "Rider!" and "I think it's your turn at the front."
6. If someone gets left behind or takes a wrong turn, the others wait for them without muttering about how slow they are.
7. When I see a steep hill ahead, I can actually drop into my lowest gear and go up at an easy speed without having the unrestrained urge to collect the Strava KOM.
8. People actually stop for a 10 minute rest and a photo on the ride without worrying that will damage their training session by not being 4 hours at 90% heart rate.
9. You can have a great full morning on the bike without having to knock over 100+km.
10. Mountain bikers are great people. I love how easy it is to talk to people when you both have bike, and always being able to share great stories and connect instantly. (actually I should have known this for many years - it just reinforced.)
Thanks to Rob for organizing, 'twas a great to catch up with old faces, see some new ones and finally meet some of those in person whose numerous blogs and posts I've commented on! The weather definitely wasn't as bad as I thought, but glad I wasn't out any longer!
Hopefully I'll get on another casual ride soon and you guys can teach me more about how to do it soon!