HAVE YOU CONSIDERED COUNSELLING?
Do you have a mate you can trust to sit in and listen to your grievances? It has to be someone neutral, who respects your bike as much as they respect you. A Dr Phil kind of mate would be perfect.
HAVE YOU BEEN HONEST WITH EACH OTHER?
Is it the bike or is it you that can’t make the triple?
Is it you or is it the bike that’s overweight?
Is it the bike that can’t sit in a rut or is it you?
Could you climb that hill if you had a different bike…really?
IS THIS A SUPERFICIAL JUDGEMENT THAT REVOLVES AROUND LOOKS?
Could it be you aren’t happy with how the bike looks nowadays?
Where once it was a sharp and clean-cut beast of great magnificence, but now all you see is a rundown, raggedy machine that’s let itself go and smells of eight month-old burnt oil.
But did you ever give it the attention it needed? An oil change here and a filter clean there topped-off with a refresh of the graphics…maybe you are just as responsible for your bike losing its hotness.
SET BOUNDARIES WITH ONE ANOTHER
Did you have a big night before hitting the track on Saturday? Did you come home late, stinking of booze and now you’re expecting to cut laps? This is disrespectful. Agree to lay off the drink if lap times mean anything to you.
Your bike wants to spend quality time with you and here you are wasting precious track time as a bleary-eyed, close to vomiting, hungover, jump-rolling, section skipping disgrace with at best a good five minutes to offer.
DO YOU HAVE BIKE ENVY?
Does someone else have a bike that you covet? That you lust over and can’t stop thinking about?
It’s in the bible that ‘Thou shalt not covet another man’s bike,’ but hey, it’s a natural feeling when see something as sexy as a new year’s model roll out the back of a van and get all the attention. But remember, the hottest ones are often the most trouble.
IS YOUR BIKE TOO OLD FOR YOU NOW?
They say age isn’t a factor when it comes to matters of the heart. You may describe your bike as old, but instead try saying it has experience, which is ultimately priceless and not quite as insulting.
We all know that comfort of the familiar seat, bars and footpegs combo is only found through time in the saddle. Why swap that for the awkward ‘getting to know you’ phase again?
DO YOU NEED A BREAK FROM EACH OTHER?
It’s not unusual for couples to see too much of each other.
Maybe some time off the bike will help; a week or two away from each other to foster some enthusiasm again.
This isn’t a time to go ride other bikes; that’s a breach of trust and it will complicate the situation. It’s a period where you allow yourself to remember why you loved your bike in the first place and build an eagerness to get together once again.
DO YOU TAKE IT OUT ENOUGH?
A bike likes to get out and be seen on the tracks and trails. It feels you’re embarrassed by it if you don’t ride enough. Make the effort and take the time to show your bike it’s special by actually taking it out and giving it a solid few laps as often as possible.
ARE YOU FORGETTING THE TIMES YOUR BIKE WAS THERE FOR YOU?
Remember that time you lost the front but then it somehow grabbed before everything went to hell? That was your bike, not you. Remember the time the back-end tried to overtake the front but eventually caught traction and straightened up? That was your bike looking after you once again. Or the time you looped out on a hill and the bike cartwheeled down 120 feet but still started and was ready to attack the mountain once again? That was the bike forgiving you and then immediately showing its eagerness to please. How many friends have been there for you like this?
REMEMBER THE GOOD TIMES
You have a history with your bike and the two of you have been through so much together. Like that time the two of you nailed the outside pass, or when you cruised past stuck bikes on a crazy hill without breaking a sweat and when you gunned-it off the rock ledge you didn’t see coming but landed it smooth and safe.
Remember when you first met? Dirt can be washed off. Oils can be changed and stickers replaced. Time can’t be wound back but relationships are built on respect and shared experiences. Maybe it’s time you two remembered what it is you want from a relationship…and go for a ride.