|Not a single hair here....|
I'm still torn about the whole idea though. Oddly enough, it's not that the idea of shaving is foreign to me... I used to do it when I swam competitively. But that was back in high school. There's a lot you can get away with when you're 16 and on a team with other id-driven swimmers.
Since this is apparently an issue that my friends want me to address, I've given it a little thought:
- Professional cyclists do it. Therefore it is PRO. However, I am not a professional cyclist. And I am certainly not PRO. In fact, the only time I can see the letters P-R-O being used in reference to my cycling abilities would be in combination with the letters S-E-U to form "POSEUR".
- Shaving makes you more aerodynamic. Just like in swimming, you want to minimize any drag that might slow you down. Let me assure you, dear readers, that hair will not be what makes my climb up Alpe d'Huez tortuously slow. There are two other reasons why I'll be slow... namely "right leg" and "left leg".
- Having hair makes it more difficult to treat road rash when you fall. This actually is a very good reason and if I were racing regularly, I would actually consider shaving just for this reason. It also makes the post-ride massages easier... except I've never had a post-race massage so I wouldn't really know.
- It's a tradition. Cyclists at all levels do it because it shows commitment to the sport. As a recent Bicycling article stated, "showing up hairy to a serious group ride is akin to wearing shorts to church." Tradition is important. Especially at the Etape, one of the reasons this event is so special is because the climbs are steeped in tradition. History has been written on the climbs of the Galibier and Alpe d'Huez.
- Women who are cyclists find it sexy. Women who are not cyclists do not.