Friday, March 19, 2010

Cycling Stinks: A Response

Fatty of the blog Fat Cyclist recently posted an old blog post of his about the stink that is an inseparable part of the sport of cycling. I had thought about the topic before, but definitely not in as great a detail as he visited in that post. I encourage you all to check it out: it’s good!

Of course, as a semi-serious rider, I have noticed the different sorts of stenches associated with mountain biking. What I realized after reading Fatty’s post, is that I have come to enjoy the stink. I’ll (or at least, I used to before I got married) go for several weeks without washing my cycling clothes. Being a dirt poor college student, I always wear the same ones. It brings me satisfaction to pull on my clothes and smell the mustiness of sweat mixed with mud.

Fatty mentioned that cyclists build up a olfactory immunity to this smell. I bet that I have built up something of a resistance as well. This is a really bad thing for the people around me. Yes, it would be bad for anyone. But as has been proven to me time and time again by my now-wife, my noise is generally dysfunctional. Yes, I have a handicapped nose. Chronic allergies impair my ability to smell, and while I definitely do have a sense of smell, it is not nearly as acute as the average person’s. Add on to that a resistance to the normal odors associated with riding, and that’s not a good situation.

I feel sorry for the people around me when I reek like that. Funny thing is, most of them are polite enough to not even mention it.

Fatty and I aren't the only ones are we?  You smell too, right?


FBTrek321,  March 24, 2010 at 3:35 PM  

You're not the only one, i have my lucky shirt and shorts that i almost always wear, i really dont care how i smell when i ride and the only reason i wash them is my mother or my GF complaining of the smell...

although i cant have dirty socks...things would die when i came around if i had the same socks on every ride...

Greg Heil March 24, 2010 at 3:46 PM  

Good to know I'm not alone!

And I feel you on the socks issue dude. My car currently reeks because of my wet socks and shoes, haha!

I actually one have one pair of cycling socks right now. I need to buy some more...

Clayton June 20, 2011 at 3:07 PM  

Yup, Your not alone.. I also do a lot of kayaking, my truck smells horrible right now from getting in and out of it with wet shorts

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Greg Heil is the Editor in Chief for He's been writing and publishing online since before blogging existed.

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