Bikey No-Likey

My recent foray into being a big fat non-runner led to many of you offering practical advice. This advice mainly fell into one of three categories:

  1. Just knuckle down and stick with it.
  2. Just knuckle down and stick with it, you annoying, self-absorbed, whiny idiot.
  3. Try the cycling.

The first two options appealed to me, as what I lack in speed, stamina and human-sized legs, I more than make up for in obstinate bloody-mindedness. The third suggestion, however, sent shivers down my spine.

I’m not a fan of the cycling.

I’d love to be a cycler (real word), dearly I would. But as much as I envy their lycra-drenched bonhomie, I know I can never be one of them. Like a penguin who’s been kicked out of the Hell’s Angels, I’m destined to waddle along on two legs rather than glide on two wheels.

What’s that? You want some bullet points? You demand some bullet points? Well, okay then…

Reasons I can’t ever do the cycling, by Jay Watts, aged 411/4

1.Lycra is an unforgiving creature. I’m not shaped like a cyclist. I’m not actually shaped like a runner either1, but at least we get to wear slightly baggier stuff. If I wore cycling kit, I‘d look like a rubber sack stuffed full of wet bread.

2. I’d be a self-conscious, pitifully apologetic road cyclist. There’s no way on earth that I’d pedal along a country road with cars behind me waiting to get past, no matter how patient they were. Cycling on a road requires either a thick skin or cheery obliviousness, and I have neither. I’d forever be pulling over and dragging my bike up onto the grass verge, waving the traffic past with a weak grin until it was safe to carry on my journey.

3. Maintenance. I know a lot of cyclists, and they all seem to know their bikes inside out. They’re never happier than when they’re spending a Sunday afternoon stripping down gears, lubricating stuff and fiddling with sprockets (is it just me, or does cycling suddenly sound a bit sexy?)

I, on the other hand, am terrified of this stuff. When it comes to all things mechanical, I’ve got roughly the same level of competence as a clumsy Labrador. If I ever took up cycling, I’d just stick the bike back in the garage and then forget about it until either it was time to ride it again or buy a new one.

4. As I may have already mentioned once or twice in the last five minutes, my legs are very little and I’d keep falling over every time I came to a stop.


So, for those reasons, cycling will just have to condemned to the shoebox of my mind labelled “never gonna happen”, along with my dreams of owning a real life ewok or playing for the Harlem Globetrotters.


1 There are some who have suggested I’m not people-shaped either. Folks can be cruel. Cruel and perceptive.



Hello nice blog-reading person. That’s an ace jumper you’re wearing. Really brings out the colour of your ears. Anyway, cards on the table, there are actually only two people who read this blog: You, and Stefan Sproutson, a respected freelance Kingon-Dothraki interpreter. It’d be great if you could spread the word and share some links to your favourite posts on the Facebookses or the twitters. Or maybe you could scrawl “born to plod = ace” on a bedsheet and tie it to a busy roundabout. The Internet has promised me a basket of kittens for every million hits I get, and I’m hoping to get enough to start a farm. Ta.


2 thoughts on “Bikey No-Likey

  1. I actually did just snort loudly at the photo caption and scared the cat.


    The cycling thing does get better the more you do it, but I’m still more adept at falling off the darned thing than whizzing effortlessly up hills. The secret to bike maintenance? Marry a keen amateur bike mechanic. My husband appeared the other day and proudly announced he’d put my winter tyres on my road bike. I didn’t even know I *had* winter tyres , but it kept him happy in the garage for an hour or so, so who am I to complain .

    Suggestion number 4 of helpful advice – do the off road running stuff. You get to play in the mud, everyone walks up the hills and you amass millions of hardcore points just for turning up.

  2. Loving both the article (ooh sounds posh) and the reply, I too scared the cat with an impromptu chuckle or two!

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