Are you a stravasshole when you train?

samwood Roar Rookie

By samwood, samwood is a Roar Rookie

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    For a lot of us, cycling and running used to be fairly independent things. We’d train, enjoy the pedalling or running, and if we were serious maybe keep time.

    But Strava is making our individual efforts very public.

    Strava is essentially a social media extension. It provides a platform for runners and cyclist to compete online. With a Garmin or smartphone you can upload all your GPS information to Strava and instantly it compares your ride to everyone else who has ridden the same route.

    It seems that nowadays, with society’s obsession with social networking, it is impossible to mention cycling or running without KOMs, QOMs (King or Queen of the Mountain) and PR (personal record) being mentioned.

    This can be quite uplifting when you ride a ‘segment’ which has only been ridden by old grannies, but it can also be fairly demoralizing after feeling like you were really pushing to come home, obsessively rush to the computer and upload your data to find you placed 193 out of 197!

    Every ride segment has a KOM and QOM for the person that has done it fastest. So it seems Strava can bring the best and worst out of riders.

    The term ‘Stravasshole’ was coined, as you can imagine, in the US and I am yet to come across it in Australia – please let me know if you’ve met any or even better if you have been called one!

    Here are some ways you are a Stravasshole:

    • Driving your car along segments with your bike GPS turned on and uploading these super-fast speeds ‘accidently’ (This causes much anger on Strava!)
    • Riding a Strava segment because you know there is a very strong tailwind to drive you along.
    • Create your own segment which you ‘know’ you will KOM of – most likely your reign will be brief, as another Strava user will ‘spot’ the easy KOM ‘kill’!
    • Stravaing in a pace line – Strava is most definitely not a team sport!
    • Descending yelling “Strava” to get people out of your way. This is the original action which supposedly created the term – the reaction must be awful, I don’t know if you would get away with that here in Australia!

    You never know, if you are riding segments in Texas sometime soon you may come across Lance Armstrong on Strava. He is obviously keen on continuing to compete and it could be the only place left for him to ‘win’.

    We all know what sort of a Strava user he would be!

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    The Crowd Says (13)

    • January 22nd 2013 @ 7:53am
      Al-Bo said | January 22nd 2013 @ 7:53am | ! Report

      Living in the nearest hills to the UK’s national cycling centre means that Strava king of the mountain times are always way out of my range.

      I could sometimes consider myself an unofficial queen of the mountain, but I must say I don’t covet that term…

    • Roar Rookie

      January 22nd 2013 @ 9:43am
      Dylan Reynolds said | January 22nd 2013 @ 9:43am | ! Report

      Good article Sam! The whole Strava thing really has become a phenomenon in it’s own right and it is amusing how much people now tap into it – myself included. Had an amusing chat with a couple of guys last week who told me that they regularly contact Strava if the there is an infeasible KOM on the rankings. I might do the same for the 758 times that were better then my own on the Bobbin Head hill on Sunday. Cheats the lot of them!

    • Columnist

      January 22nd 2013 @ 9:57am
      Tim Renowden said | January 22nd 2013 @ 9:57am | ! Report

      It is pretty weird when you’re on a ride, and suddenly a couple of guys will absolutely launch themselves off the front at some invisible marker.

      “Strava?”

      “Must be…”

    • Columnist

      January 22nd 2013 @ 11:00am
      Lee Rodgers said | January 22nd 2013 @ 11:00am | ! Report

      ‘Stravasshole,’ perfect! I have to say though that it’s made logging my rides a whole lot easier, though there are times when i’m on a hill, struggling, and I know the local riders will be chuckling later… Do not like the King of Descent segments though, just silly, and way too dangerous. Remember the guy last year who died trying to nail a descent, and his family tried to sue Strava!

    • Roar Rookie

      January 22nd 2013 @ 12:00pm
      samwood said | January 22nd 2013 @ 12:00pm | ! Report

      I use it too and find it very useful and good fun too even on commute to work. The Californian bloke who died was a bad one…supposedly he had lost the KOM that morning. There was also a guy using Strava who hit a pedestrian doing well above the driving speed limit… he got done for manslaughter.

    • Roar Rookie

      January 22nd 2013 @ 12:02pm
      josh said | January 22nd 2013 @ 12:02pm | ! Report

      I use strava for my runs. II have thoughts of being a stravasshole. i.e. picking easy legs and run them at high speed. e.g. where someone has made a 400m leg of a long run. Just do the 400m leg at 400m pace not 5km pace.

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