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Springfield Bicycle Club (SBC) is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to promote bicycling and to provide a meeting ground for Springfield Illinois area bicyclists.

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March 2021 President's Message

Troy Gilmore  | Published on 3/8/2021

In our house, movies frequent the evening playlist. Recently, while watching National Treasure there was a scene that resounded that can be transferred to cycling. Ben Gates (main character of the story) is seeking someone to help break into the National Archives and steal the Declaration of Independence. He says, “We don’t need someone crazy. But one step short of crazy, what do you get?” Riley (his partner in crime in all of this) says, “Obsessed.” Ben replies, “Passionate.”

Passion. The dictionary defines it as, “A strong and barely controllable emotion. A thing arousing enthusiasm.” Is cycling a pastime or a passion for you? Some people just cannot understand the passion for cycling, thinking it is more of a pastime. Often, you are viewed the crazy one who lives your life in the bicycle lane, and your non-cyclist friends can’t see the appeal. Have you ever heard any of your non-cyclist friends ask any of the following questions?

Don’t you get bored of riding for hours?

Riding bikes can be a form of meditation and a chance to pedal away from the everyday stresses of life. We look forward to adventure, nature, and riding with friends.

Why would you want to ride up that?

Admittedly climbing is not every cyclist’s favorite thing to do, but it is a challenge. Once over the top you feel you can conquer anything! Climbing make us stronger and faster cyclists. And, we love clims because of what follows, the descents.

Why would you ride in this weather?

Cyclists seem to be suckers for punishment and while cycling in the rain, hail and gale winds, is not much fun at the time, you get a much more satisfying feel at the end have great stories to tell.

Lycra? Are you serious?

Perhaps one of the most commented on things about cycling from non-cyclists must be Lycra. It can take some time to get used to, but wearing Lycra is a part of the cycling lifestyle to embrace. It is surprisingly comfortable, and it comes in a variety of styles and thicknesses so that you do not feel as naked as you may look.

Additionally, what is up with the pockets in the back of your shirt?

Forget cargo shorts, cyclists have perfected the cargo shirt. The cyclists upgrade is a high-performance cargo shirt, i.e., the cycling jersey. Here you can keep all those riding essentials like snacks, tools, tubes, and extra layers. Not to mention a phone, keys, cash, and anything else you cannot live without.

Helmets make you look stupid, are they necessary?

It is “safety first.” Helmets save lives.

Does cycling hurt your ____?

The seats are small for a reason. Sure, it can get uncomfortable after a long while, but the key to a happy bottom is a pair of quality padded shorts, a suitable saddle, and lots of chamois cream. Bike fits help, too.

If you cycle to work, don’t you get sweaty and gross?

Not all commuters are Tour de France racers. Cycling to work can be a casual way get in your miles and feel better about your carbon footprint.

So, you must follow The Tour de France?

Just because we ride bikes, does not mean we are all avid followers of the Tour de France. The TDF is an intense three-week road race, but there are lots of other professional cycling races, including cyclocross for women and men that take place throughout the year.

Do you have hollow legs?

Cycling does burn a lot of calories, and after a ride, we refuel our bodies with essential protein and carbohydrates. A post-ride meal can look like a mountain of food, but we are just replenishing the tanks. Remember moderation for optimal performance, though.

Wanna see my bike?

Contrary to popular belief, owning a bike does not make you a cyclist. You must ride it as well.

When talking to a non-cyclist about their bike, you may quickly learn their “old faithful” has been slowly decaying in the garden shed for the past 15 years.

That cost how much?

Cycling is not cheap and revealing the cost of your new bike, wheelset, or kit will often leave your friend’s jaw on the floor.

Why do you have so many bikes, don’t they all do the same thing?

Lol, no.

You let your bike live in the house?

Cyclists would likely sleep with their bikes if they could. When you work hard to play hard, you do not want to risk anything happening to your bike(s). If you have ever had a bike stolen, or known someone who has, you know losing a bike is like losing a piece of who you are.

Why is your house full of cycling things?

If it has a bicycle on it, we probably have it in our home. When we cannot get outside, we like to bring the cycling indoors and surround yourself with little pieces of inspirations. This often means up-cycled bike parts, wall art and anything in bicycle print.

Don’t you get hurt?

A cyclist’s first words after a spill (even if writhing in pain): “How’s my bike?!?!” When you are passionate about riding, you are going to challenge yourself and spills are just part of the sport. The difference between cyclists and everyone else, however, is that a cyclist’s first concern seems to always his bike, not his broken bones or bloody road rash.

Cycling is amazing!

100% of the time a non-cyclist will not understand just how awesome cycling is. Why not take them out, and convert them? Those who do not cycle have so much to learn about this amazing sport, and with all the funny questions and cringe-worthy assumptions, we know there willl be more to come as we pedal by.

Some of these questions non-cyclists ask were taken from an article from

Wave to me if we meet on the road or trail.