It's perfectly natural to develop Tour Addict symptoms this time of year - plenty have it. If you know someone who might be dealing with this syndrome, we've identified some of the more obvious signs and symptoms.
1/ ‘Tour Brain’
‘Sorry, I can’t remember you telling me to do that. I think I might have Tour brain’. Forgot to file that document? Forgot to pick up the dry-cleaning? Forgot to wake up in time for work?
Yep – they've got Tour Brain.
They're either completely starved of sleep, or they're completely starved of free brain space because it’s currently dealing with a massive volume of wonderful new data, interesting historical notes and random records they need to retain in order to impress the bunch on the weekend.
2/ They look like hell (not that you would tell them this)
That’s because they're not getting enough sleep. That’s because the most exciting race in the world is currently on and they're on the other side of the world, in an unforgiving and completely inappropriate time zone. How can they live normal Australian hours when the Tour starts in the evening and finishes in the wee hours of the morning? It’s too much to ask.
3/ They drive uphill and you just know they're pretending they’re cycling
They’re in their car going uphill and suddenly they start to think of the peloton, and how they’d be faring alongside the car. Then they start thinking of themselves being part of the peloton. Then they start thinking about the mountain stages. Then they start thinking how they’d go in the mountain stages. Then their partner starts yelling at them for not concentrating enough. Sorry, they say. Refer to sign #1.
4/ They don’t watch the Tour from their couch. They watch it from their windtrainer.
This is so obvious it’s almost pointless mentioning it. They and their windtrainer are almost inseparable this time of year. Their absolute favourite thing to do at present is speed sessions to the highlights, and interval training to the full replay. This is living.
5/ They’ve downloaded several new apps and liked dozens more social media sites. Their Facebook wall needs a PA to keep up with the news.
Sure, they’ve always followed Gerro, Nibali, Jensie and they’re secretly still watching what Lance has to say. But they’ve flooded their Facebook with a whole new bunch of page likes and their wall is in meltdown with information overload. See sign #6. But the behind-scenes pics are awesome and they’re pretty sure they’re the first one in the bunch to always like them.
6/ They may-have-possibly-perhaps acted in contravene to their work’s social media policy. Purportedly.
But they define this as an emergency. They MUST keep up to speed with the Tour. Besides – they’re only checking in towards the end of the day. When Europe starts waking up. For defence – refer to sign #2.
7/ They’re slipping into something comfortable as soon as they get home
And it ain’t tracksuit pants. They’d be saturated after 5 minutes on the windtrainer.
8/ It’s time to upgrade. Again.
How does this manage to happen every year? They swear they love their bike; that it’s running perfectly fine. Besides it’s barely a year old and only just had its last freebie service at the bike shop – where it got a big all-a-ok. But then they see some of the new specs released just ahead of the Tour and they know. They. Must. Have. It. They place a call to the store (they're pretty much VIP there this time of year). They want it as soon as it arrives on Australian shores.
9/ Skoda make good cars, don’t they?
They’re starting to quite like Skodas they see on the road. They look hot with bike racks.
10/ They speak French
Or at the very least, they now start speaking with what seems like a pretty convincing French accent. Any chance to talk about domestiques, soigneurs, bidons, flamme rouges; they’re there.
11/ They’re in France. At the Tour.
Well – as the French say – chapeau to them.
Do you know anyone dealing with these symptoms?