Rolling Press. January 29th, 2013.
“It sounded good at the time,” says the self-proclaimed “weight weenie”, who refused to give his name. After months of buying ever-lighter components in an attempt to build the lightest bike possible, he started removing components that seemed superfluous. “The water bottle cages were the first to go, followed by the handle-bar tape. My friends only stopped riding with me after I removed my brakes, but they just didn’t understand.”
Cyclists are naturally obsessive, and the industry feeds off of this. “We want people to achieve their desired performance levels,” says Trek representative Josh Burlee. “And if that means we need to shave a few more grams from those wheels, or find new materials, or break the laws of physics (or you know, just convince them that we do), we’ll do it.”
When asked about why he tried to get rid of the bike entirely, the cyclist said “Well, it just seemed logical. I mean, a bike is a very efficient machine, in some cases converting as much as 99% of our power output to forward motion. But that got me thinking: what if I just… moved forward?”
We caught up with him several months and a half-marathon later. When asked how he was enjoying his ultra-light, bikeless bike, he said “I don’t enjoy biking anymore; it doesn’t even feel like biking should. It’s hard! I’m slow, and my joints hurt, and I found I can’t smile anymore. It’s horrible. I went to a doc last week, and he told me I had a condition called running. I think it’s terminal.”