It’s funny how quickly you get used to the good life. Actually, no. It’s not. It’s not funny at all. There’s nothing fun about washing your bike. You can’t laugh at a laundry bin full of dirty kit. And there’s nothing amusing about standing on the side of the road with your arm raised, signalling a puncture to a non-existent mechanic. Even ordering in a restaurant can be a pain in the derrière, once you’ve become accustomed to having all those world-class chefs you met over in Europe just set out a menu for you.
No, getting used to the good life is a tricky business, because unless you’re very lucky, sooner or later you’ll have to come back to reality. With that in mind, we’ve been brainstorming here at inGamba HQ to come up with inventive ways in which you can cope with everyday life while still living and riding like a rock star.
It’s the little things we miss most when we’re riding solo – especially those delicious treats that our soigneurs prepare fresh every morning. The good news is that with a little effort here, you’ve got options. The internet abounds with recipes for ride food, and with a little time in the kitchen you can prepare the kind of nutritious, flavourful snack that’s a lot healthier and more satisfying than any basic gel is going to be. Just prepare in bulk, portion it up and freeze what you don’t need. Or you could be really lazy and just rewrap your favourite Clif Bar with tin-foil – remembering to write your name on it – so you look pro at the coffee stop. Coincidentally, that aforementioned purveyour of tasty ride food has some great tips on nutrition from their sponsored athletes, right here.
Put those kids to work! Stop handing over that pocket money for nothing and let them earn their keep for once. Sure, they’ll have to study hours of YouTube instructional videos to understand the complicated nuances of your groupset and the tender way in which you expect your carbon frame to be caressed, but who cares? Fresh air is good for them or something like that. And think of the shine …
Don’t have a kid? Don’t panic – just borrow one. We know a few parents who’d be happy to sell their little blessings into hard labour for an hour or two at the weekend.
You know that personalised laundry bag that you’ve become used to just tossing outside your bedroom door right before the post-ride nap? Well, it ain’t gonna wash itself. So, unless you have a very accommodating partner or a live-in maid, it’s time to read the instructions on your machine before those bibs start stinking. Or you could Google it, like we did.
Unfortunately, Google can’t conjure up a World Tour soigneur to massage those tired legs – at least not yet. But what can you do when you get withdrawal symptoms and have a hankering for some of Raul’s magic? There are foam rollers, or more high-tech solutions – such as this one, reviewed by our friends over at Element.ly. And for the full experience, we recommend putting on some Portuguese podcasts in the background. It doesn’t matter what they’re saying, it’ll take you right back to the inGamba treatment table.
For the hungry cyclist, having someone else look after all of your meals has to be one of the great pleasures in life. From coffee and eggs in the morning to steak and fine wine at night, it’s a delight to know that someone is thinking of your tummy, even before that first, foreboding rumble. There’s no way around this – keeping up the inGamba standard won’t be cheap. Either you eat out every meal, or you marry a chef. These are your options. If you choose the latter, we’re free most evenings for dinner.
Because you’re worth it, Buddy. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Probably our favourite way to reminisce about our European adventures is to indulge in a little luxury that we’ve brought back. That might be a glass or two of Castello di Ama, or it might be the simple delight of pulling on a pair of handmade shoes from our friend Alessandro Stella. Whatever floats your boat – just remember that inGamba is about more than just bike riding. And even when you’re at home, there’s no excuse needed to look after numero uno.