Is is necessary to wear legit cycling apparel?

I am going to start cycling, and by summer i will be in a three hundred mile bike ride. my dad already cycles, and he's getting really excited for me to start, so he's buying me everything i "need". The shorts i can understand because they are padded, but the shirts i think are kind of pointless.... show more I am going to start cycling, and by summer i will be in a three hundred mile bike ride. my dad already cycles, and he's getting really excited for me to start, so he's buying me everything i "need". The shorts i can understand because they are padded, but the shirts i think are kind of pointless. couldn't i just wear any type of workout top? Im going to sweat anyways, and i dont like the looks of the cycling shirts, and i don't want to get a funky tan line, so would i like die of heat or something if i wear a different kind of top. and there are going to be alot of legit cyclers there, so would i look lame if i didn't wear the exact propper attire?

plus i need ideas on what color to paint my bike :)
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