An interesting thing happened to me recently, I met a neighbour through Strava. This all began after some lighthearted dueling over the segment on my street.

This was “my” segment. I created it, pursued it, and temporarily lost it to my partner, only to get it back the following day. It had been my QOM for as long as I could remember… until it was claimed by a friend. This all came about after a cheeky challenge to my friend to try and claim my prized crown when she came to visit me. I was fairly confident that although she would challenge it, surely it would remain with me. After all, I was more familiar with the terrain as I ride this segment multiple times a day.

Screen Shot 2016-07-22 at 11.30.26 AM

The day came when she arrived with a smile from ear to ear, puffing and panting. She quickly uploaded her data via bluetooth to reveal her victory. To add insult to injury, she did it while carrying a backpack with what appeared to be 10kg worth of items. As you can imagine, dinner was awkward that evening, all I could think about was reclaiming my segment. Obsessive, yes indeed, and proud of it.

This began a household challenge to get it back. My partner and I, each trying to get the segment back, with consecutive fails over a few months. We tried the lead out train, sought out days where the wind was in our favour… But the new time set on my segment now seemed far from my reach. I had too many seconds to find on an already difficult and pinchy segment. I genuinely thought that I’d never get the segment back.

On a day when my legs were feeling particularly good, I went for it. After 36s of leg burning pain, I finally got the segment back. That feeling of delight when uploading my data to Strava and seeing the little crown pop up. As this segment is something of a running joke between my friend and I, of course I was quick to let her know of my achievement! Strava bragging rights instated!

She took the news well, but the threat to lose it again is real. Luckily for me, she lives overseas and isn’t in a position to do a sneaky attempt on her way home from work.

It was during the twitter banter with my friend that my neighbour chimed in. I had never met my neighbour before, but after watching the time get quicker and quicker on Strava, she had to jump in. She admitted to also trying in vain to nab the crown for the segment herself. With the same crown in mind, we became friends, united by our need to be the fastest, the Queen of our Neighbourhood. This has created an ongoing discussion and engagement, which is pretty cool and an unexpected benefit of Strava.

There is an air of friendly rivalry that goes with a segment, especially with a segment that is close to home, and even more if it is one that you have created. Whether it’s 25 women on the leaderboard of more, segments can be fun… that is, until your crown gets stolen.

Which segments do you care about the most?

Which ones do you train for and actively chase, or defend with pride? I encourage you to go out there and claim (or create) your own segment. Try Live Segments >>