When you don't eat enough. Your fuel and energy levels are so depleted you feel like you're pedalling through wet tar. It’s a shit feeling and also quite dangerous. Avoid by keeping your food and water levels topped up


Cycling shorts that act like overalls. You can get cycling shorts with just an elastic waist band, which are easier to go the toilet in, but can be less comfortable than bibs and often cause more chaffing


The speed at which you are pedalling, often measured in RPM (revolutions (per minute)


A fine layer of cushioning in your cycling shorts (made more comfortable chamois cream)


Something which is attached into the sole of a cyclist's shoe. It is a sprung mechanism that allows the cyclist to clip their feet in and out of their pedals


A decent sized hill

Criterium (crit)

A short cycling race that usually lasts less than an hour. Usually on a closed circuit or in a town centre, you repeat one small circuit several times over

Cyclocross (CX)

Somewhere between road and mountain, Cyclocross is an off-road style of racing that is completed on an obstacle course. Requires riding, running and a lot of bike handling skills.


Riding behind someone else (less than 3 bike lengths back) and go faster for less energy output


An oil / cream used to warm you up


A bike which only has one speed and can’t freewheel


Another word for helmet

Half wheeling

When you are riding two by two but one person rides slightly ahead of you (as to make you feel your chasing on). Can also cause crashes when the wheels knock


Achievements within a cycling career


A group of cyclists riding nicely together, in formation for efficiency and safety


Queen of the Mountain. Awarded to the female who has the fastest time up any given hill

Saddle sores

The unfortunate and often painful result of chaffing for hours whilst in the saddle. You can help reduce this by using chamois cream

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Kitty Pemberton-Platt