I started cycling in 2018 when living as an expat in Malawi. My employer was an avid cyclist, meaning he had a collection of bikes enough to spare a few for employees who fancied life on a bike. The Cycling Tan is actually his brainchild. I fell in love with the convenience and freedom that came with biking. I used the bike for errands, leisure rides, exercise and commuting.
When I came back home, I got an acquisition in a couple of months. I love mountain bikes for their versatility and durability (I am not the kind to clean up the chain after every ride.) As much as I appreciated biking, there was always people trying to get me off my bike and of course a few fears here and there. The people did it out of love but nothing except a flat tire has kept me off the saddle.
Here are the top three lies about cycling that I have encountered.
1. Nairobi is Extremely Dangerous for Cyclists.
This advice comes from people who wish us well. The last thing they want to see is us ran over by motorists. The sentiment comes mainly from family, relatives and true friends. It is true that riding in Nairobi is quite risky. It is paramount that any cyclist wishing to ride on Nairobi routes to dress appropriately- a good helmet, safety gloves and a reflector jacket. Cyclists should endeavour to remain visible by using flashing lights and being aware of other road users. Coupling basic precautions with increased awareness created by intentional actions by cyclists like the Critical Mass Ride will make cycling in the city a comforting experience.
2. Cycling will affect your Reproductive Parts.
This is a major concern for many cyclists. The close contact between your parts and the saddle for long hours may have brought about the misconception. The fears include; increased chances of prostate cancer, erectile dysfunction and impotence for men and physical damages to the exterior female reproductive parts. However, investing in a proper saddle, bib shorts and adjusting the height of the seat appropriately will give you a comfortable and pain free riding experience. Well, the ass does get sore most of the times but who cares, its only job is to sit.
3. Cycling will save you a lot of money.
Carbon forks. Upgrade. A roadie. Service. BB. Maintaining a bike is as expensive as maintaining a small car. Also remember that you will start eating like a baby hippo when you begin serious cycling. What money is left to save!
Which other lies have you come across?