Skip to Content

The Worst Training Advice Ever Given to Cyclists, As Told by Gifs

Ever been told to train with penny-filled water bottles? 🙄

By Jordan Smith
Cycling, Helmet, Bicycle, Vehicle, Outdoor recreation, Recreation, Cycle sport, Personal protective equipment, Bicycles--Equipment and supplies, Sports equipment,
Natalie R. Starr

We’ve all gotten some bad advice at some point in our cycling lives. Whether you’re a competitive racer, a recreational rider, or a commuter, there’s someone out there who couldn't wait to offer unsolicited advice about how you should ride.

We put out the call for the worst training advice cyclists ever got, and the answers you gave on our social media feeds delivered. This advice ranges from head-scratching to old-school to downright offensive. Though you’ve likely heard (and rolled your eyes at) some of these comments—especially ones your non-cyclist friends love to make—multiple times, other examples of what someone considered “helpful advice” might be a surprise. Here are the most ridiculous tips, summed up by gifs.

[Find 52 weeks of tips and motivation, with space to fill in your mileage and favorite routes, with the Bicycling Training Journal.]

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Training Advice That’s No Help

Land vehicle, Bicycle, Vehicle, Freestyle bmx, Cycling, Cycle sport, Flatland bmx, Mode of transport, Endurance sports, Bicycle accessory,

“You should train with a weight vest on.”—smile_y_riley

“You don’t need strength training year-round.”— shifthumanperformance

“If the ride is under 30 miles, don’t waste your time.”—illinijones

“You’re wasting time using a trainer.”—cyclistsofarkansas

“Hold your breath on the trainer to mimic anaerobic effects.”—Tory Cane

“Fill a bottle or two with pennies.”—creakybottombracket

“Ride every day.”—kevinhayesbirchler

“Little gear for training, big gear for racing.”—thecyclingkid

“You gotta have $2k wheelset!”—glenn_sr

[The 10 Best Cheap Bikes For Every Kind of Ride]

Hydration Myths

Joint compound,

“Don’t drink water. It will give you a cramp.”—Robert Steven Dobbs

“Don’t drink cold water, you will have to warm up all over again.”— DouglasVlad1

“Only bring one bottle for long rides and no bottle for short ones.”—sully_bikes

“Always carry gum for when you run out of water.”—lipheralps19

“Don’t drink while you ride, you will cramp. Take a swig of water, rinse your mouth, and spit it out.”—PghDragonman

[Believe Any of These 5 Hydration Myths and Your Health Could Suffer]

Advice From Your Friends Who Never Ride

Hair, Blond, Mouth, Lip, Muscle, Long hair, Thigh, Model, Throat,

“You can’t ride a bike if you are not skinny!”—blmckibbin

Cigarettes and bikes are okay.”—mattbrunett

“Someone once told me before a race to not eat, drink a bit of water, and meditate.”—Edward Dennis

“You should ride on the sidewalk, it’s safer,”—Dan_Rogue

“Sleep??? You don’t need sleep!”— fauxpraux

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Training Too Hard Will Make You Better

Cartoon, Illustration, Painting, Animation, Art, Animated cartoon, Landscape, Acrylic paint, Fictional character,

“Push yourself really hard in the first few laps of a crit.”katie_fogel

“Go outside and ride in -30 degree-celsius temps. It gives you some character.”—ejnevalaine

“First 600 miles of the year on a fixed gear, then 1,000 miles of small ring, then the big ring.”—beeankey

“Big gear, big hill grind.”—eddycrowonkdkaradio

“Push through pain.”—michymoo2u

“Push till you barf...”—Michael Johnson

“Go for a long, hard ride till you bonk. After that, your fitness has no way to go but up.”— adriangoh66

“Every day, 100K ride.”—Paolo Bennati

“Ride 7 days a week. Who needs recovery?”—Steve Callahan

Nutrition No-Nos

Animated cartoon, Cartoon, Illustration, Animation, Art,

Eat on the bike as little as you eat on your run.”—johnblocker

“Phospho-soda before a race. It’s a race ya’ll, to the toilet.”—rustybicyclechain

“No food on a road ride less than 50 miles.”—grasshopperking0

“You don’t need carbs.”—smile_y_riley

“EATING is CHEATING!!”—vhudacek

“One of the super old-style pieces of advice I’ve gotten is ‘eat a steak for breakfast.’”—spiceroads

“You don’t need to replenish any calories unless the ride is longer than three hours.”—shifthumanperformance

Headshot of Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Digital Editor
Jordan Smith is a writer and editor with over 5 years of experience reporting on health and fitness news and trends. She is a published author, studying for her personal trainer certification, and over the past year became an unintentional Coronavirus expert. She has previously worked at Health, Inc., and 605 Magazine and was the editor-in-chief of her collegiate newspaper. Her love of all things outdoors came from growing up in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
Watch Next
preview for HDM All Sections Playlist - Bicycling


partner exercises to make your workout more fun

Try This Partner Workout With Your Gym Buddy

ashton lambie riding an indoor trainer, bike trainer workouts

5 Bike Trainer Workouts From the Pros

tara seplavy riding the black heart allroad bicycle in shorts

What Is the Average Cycling Speed?

bodyweight workout, hathiramani practices reverse lunge to askip exercise

A Bodyweight Workout to Harness Your Endurance

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
twitter icon
youtube icon
facebook icon
instagram icon
pinterest icon
Hearst Men's and Enthusiast Media Group - A Part of Hearst Digital Media

A Part of Hearst Digital Media

Gear-obsessed editors choose every product we review. We may earn commission if you buy from a link.

©Hearst Magazine Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved.