This article is produced in association with Zwift
If you’re reading this it’s likely because you get quite the kick out of Zwift.
You might have initially been reluctant to jump headfirst into an online performance game with a funky-looking avatar impersonating you, but now Zwift is as much a part of your life as the weekend club run is.
Some of us will be more obsessed than others - so let’s find out what Zwifter you are.
The Social Zwifter
You know the one, the one who logs on not to improve their FTP but because it’s an excuse to chat with as many people as possible. Some of them even log on early to maximise the amount of socialising they can do before the ride gets underway.
They almost always only do group rides and that’s because it allows them to have conversations while they’re not out of breath. Heck, they may even have a special gaming keyboard such is their enthusiasm for chatting away; the bike is merely secondary to their main pursuit of chatting and laughing.
Rumour has it that a few Social Zwifters have even cancelled real-life social events in order to speak with more online users.
We’re not here to mock The Social Zwifters, though - life, after all, is better when shared.
The Solo Zwifter
The opposite of our social butterfly, The Solo Zwifter is never seen in a group ride. He or she uses Zwift frequently but they only ever do personal rides or workouts.
It’s not that they don’t want other people to know about their training - their rides can easily be viewed on Strava - but they prefer to do all their riding in the company of just themselves and whatever sounds emit from their Pain Cave.
Don’t bother asking if they’ve got the Companion App. They don’t.
The Only Zwifter
Fancy a ride outside? Pff, fat chance of getting The Only Zwifter to agree to that, for he or she only ever rides their bike on Zwift inside. Climbing mountains, you see, is much better from the comfort of your own Pain Cave as opposed to facing the wind and temperature elements of the real thing.
Besides, who needs to go outside when all the joy can be enjoyed inside. There’s a reason all the pros use Zwift, our Only Zwifter reasons, and that’s because they know it’s better.
Many of our Only Zwifters have no idea where their helmet even lives now such has been the length of time since their tyres met asphalt, while others have never even ridden outside. They began cycling via Zwift and have no intention of transferring to the traffic-laden road.
The Bad Weather Zwifter
Many of us initially thought that this would be our category, but then overtime we’ve developed into a different type of Zwifter, hooked in by the levels, the races, the rides, the maps, etc., etc., etc.
But some have stayed true to the proud title of The Bad Weather Zwifter. The bike comes inside and slots into the turbo trainer only when the wind is blowing, the rain is falling and the sky is so dark it’s impossible to actually enjoy a ride.
The Bad Weather Zwifter might take on a few specific workouts, and may even join in a race or a social ride, but their primary use of Zwift is to keep their fitness given that Mother Nature doesn’t want them to be outside. They use Zwift as an alternative, not a replacement, to riding outside.
The Bad Weather Zwifter can also overlap with The Winter Zwifter. They’re twins who see much less of each other in the warm, sunny months of the year.
The Wizard Zwifter
Ooo, flashing lights. Ooo, a big new TV. Every time you see a picture of The Wizard Zwifter’s Pain Cave, they’ll have some new fancy gadget or technology on show. In fact, it won’t even be a picture, they’ll be inviting you around to show off their latest toy.
It doesn’t matter how useful the gadget or accessory is, The Wizard Zwifter is obsessed with new electronics and other products that can best be referred to as ‘stuff’, ‘tat’ or ‘junk’. But it doesn’t matter, they’ve got it!
Their Pain Cave often resembles a small light production show, while their bike will be fitted with so many accessories and gadgets that its weight is double what it was when bought.
Important rule for all: keep The Wizard Zwifter close as you know within a few months they’ll replace the last bought item, so you can soon score yourself a decent bargain.
The Racing Zwifter
Remember the days when you could only race on the road for six or seven months of the year? Hahaha, laughs The Racing Zwifter, that was such an archaic way of living.
Today, thanks to Zwift, we can race every day of every month of every year, meaning that, yes, October to March is also the racing season. And, another yes, it is completely normal to race both in the morning and in the evening.
Our Racing Zwifters don’t care too much for specific workouts or social group rides - Zwift is a platform to satisfy competitiveness. It doesn’t matter if it’s a bunch race with 100 people or a time trial or hill climb, whatever type of race it is you’ll find Our Racing Zwifter on the startline, and populating a position in just about every league you can find.
The Challenge Zwifter
Not so dissimilar to our race-obsessed friend, The Challenge Zwifter’s motivation is fuelled by whatever carrot is thrown at them by Zwift because who doesn’t want/need a virtual jersey, hut or sunglasses that they can unlock!? No, seriously, who?
They’ll fling themselves into whatever they need to accomplish the challenges, so you may see them present in multiple group rides one week and then strictly riding structured workouts for the next month.
The Challenge Zwifter usually ticks off Climb Mount Everest and Ride California within a few weeks, but is then so emboldened by the prospect of the complete bar reading 100% that they go in daily search of more challenges to fill their craving.
The Denying Zwifter
And, finally, we meet our friend who uses Zwift in secret - and often more than the rest of us.
The Denying Zwifter likes to tell us of his or her dislike of the platform. “Cycling’s for outside only,” they’ll cry to converted listeners, but then a few hours later will be sweating in their own Pain Cave, feeling the rush of endorphins after getting through a hard, intense training session.
You see, The Denying Zwifter is actually obsessed with Zwift, but they are too proud to admit it. One day they will, though. One level at a time. They can’t be in denial forever.