Tough Girl Cycling Team Inspiring Women Cyclist with Peak Cycle Bicycle Shop

May 21, 2015
Tough Girl Cycling Team - Sponsored by BikeParts.com and Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop

Tough Girl Cycling Team – Sponsored by BikeParts.com and Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop

At Peak Cycles Bicycling Shop, we all love bikes and we share our passion for the sport by supporting eight cycling teams in the Colorado Front Range area.

Members of our teams race in all levels and in multiple disciplines and plan to race a full arsenal of events throughout the 2015 cycling season.  That’s why we are proud to support the cyclists who are a part of the Peak Cycles – BikeParts.com Race teams – especially the Tough Girl Cycling Team.

In case you are unfamiliar, the Tough Girl Cycling Team is a non profit cycling group for women started in 2005 and “promotes active outdoor lifestyles through bicycle racing both regionally and nationally.” Their goal is to “have fun, stay fit, be competitive, and look great doing it!”  You will notice from their pictures, they do look great!  But their team members  are also great cycling advocates sharing cycling knowledge around nutrition; bike skills and drills; identifying the best bike parts for women riders; and also, tips on keeping mentally tough during training and racing.
When they aren’t inspiring others to ride, they are often found on the podium!  There are countless achievements to share but following are a few highlights.  Champion Titles include:
  • Kay Levesque is 2008 24-Hour Duo Mountain Bike National Champion and 2010 24-Hour Women’s Masters Mountain Bike National Champion
  • Lisa Strong is 2006 W’s Team 24-Hour National Champion, 2009 CO State Cyclocross Champion, 2008, 2010 Runner Up CO State Cyclocross Champion, and 1999 Runner Up Collegiate Cyclocross National Champion
  • Lynn Bush – 2009 Super-D National Champion – Open Women and  2006 W’s Team 24-Hour National Champion
  • Margell Abel – 2004 Cyclocross National Champion, Master Women 35-40, 2000 Cyclocross National Champion, Master Women 30-34, and 1st ever Collegiate Cyclocross National Champion – 1997, University of Colorado
  • Rebecca Gross – 2012 Masters Cyclocross World Champion 30-34, 2012 Collegiate Short Track D2 National Champion, 2011 Collegiate Short Track D2 National Champion
Members of the Tough Girls team have had multiple triumphs with podium finishes at various local Colorado and regional races such as 18 hours of Fruita in Fruita, CO and Turkey Cross in Lakewood, CO.
Be sure to spot these inspiring ladies on the trail! Look for them at upcoming events and keep current with Tough Girl activities and successes on their website, their Facebook page, on Twitter @ToughGirlTeam and on Instagram.

A Winning Combination: Colorado School of Mines Cycling Team and Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop

May 14, 2015
BikeParts.com - Proud supporters of CSM Cycling Team

BikeParts.com – Proud supporters of CSM Cycling Team

At Peak Cycles Bicycle shop, we recognize the importance of encouraging young people to ride bikes.  Sure, cycling is a fun, youthful activity; but it can also be a lifestyle choice that serves a greater purpose throughout the course of a person’s life.

Cycling, whether it is riding, training for competitive events, or a combination of both can be inspiring and empowering.   That’s why we support our many cycling teams and encourage them with a focus on principles and values; good sportsmanship, attitude and teamwork.  For us at Peak Cycles, it’s a great opportunity to reach the cycling community in Golden, Colorado.  

Last week, we introduced you to the  BikeParts.com – Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop 2015 Roster of Sponsored Cycling Teams.  This week we’d like to take a closer look and share the background and accomplishments of one of those teams – Colorado School of Mines Cycling Team.

First, a brief history of the team.  “There is a long history of cycling at the Colorado School of Mines. The school fielded strong club teams in the 1970’s and 1980’s and hosted the Collegiate Cyclocross National Championships in the area where Mines Park now stands in the 1980’s. The club was somewhat stagnant in the early 2000‘s until 2005 when a new group of motivated riders came to CSM and began rebuilding the cycling tradition at Mines. Since then, the team has become a perennial force in collegiate cycling, with many individual national champions and the 2007 Mountain Bike Team Omnium National Title. The team has not finished off of the podium at the Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships since first attending in 2006.”

Just this past weekend at the 2015 Road Cycling Nationals, the team secured many accomplishments:

  • The team placed 2nd in men’s DII Team Time Trial
  • Team member Chad Young finished 3rd in DII Individual Time Trial
  • Team member Andrew Hemesath placed 3rd in Collegiate Nationals Criterium
  • Team member Andrew Hemesath placed 6th in Men’s DII Road Race

As impressive as those results are, success isn’t new to the team.  “The CSM Cycling Team has grown into a perennial powerhouse in collegiate cycling since its rebirth in 2005. Highlights have included the 2007 Mountain Bike Team Omnium National title, 7 individual national titles, 8 team podium appearances at national championships, and 28 individual podium appearances at national championships.”

But it isn’t just about accomplishments that make this team special.  Like us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, they support the local community. Annually, Mines holds the annual Oredigger classi  in March which includes a hill climb, street sprints, and criterium.

As supporters of this team, we proudly offer the best selection of bike parts and components for road cycling and bike parts for their mountain bike racing.  Join us in cheering them on this season!  Follow them on Facebook and on Twitter @minescycling.



Inspire New Cyclist! Share the Cycling Love this Bike Month

April 30, 2015

Happy National Bike Month from BikeParts.com and League of American Bicyclist!

As cyclist, we know the more we ride, the more we want to ride!  So, how can you make cycling get even better?  Make a whole month celebration of it!  Whether you bike to work or school; ride to save money or time; pump those pedals to preserve your health or the environment; or simply to explore your community, May is National Bike Month and is an opportunity to celebrate the unique power of the bicycle and the many reasons we ride.

As cyclist, we experience the benefits that cycling has to offer but to those new to the sport, embarking in unfamiliar territory may seem a tad intimidating.  National Bike Month is an opportunity to inspire others to our sport.  Fortunately, bike commuting is on the rise!  In fact, among the 51 largest U.S. cities, 43 hosted Bike to Work Day events in 2010. The City of Denver reported the highest rate of participation with one out of every 28 adults participating in its 2010 Bike to Work event. That effort makes a difference: Many people who participate in their Bike to Work Day promotion as first-time commuters become regular bike commuters. But Bike Month is more than one day — or week! It’s an entire month!

There are countless ways to inspire others to bike commute, ride, or race this month.  See which activities inspire you to help others enjoy our fabulous sport!

Inspire with a bike-friendly shopping program.  Everyone likes to shop, right?  Inspire new cyclist with bike parts bling!  Many aspiring bike riding enthusiast appreciate a shop that offers quality bike components along with solid advice on bike parts and cycling apparel. Convenience helps too.  Look for a shop that offers online and store front shopping to aid in your cyclist needs.  Fortunately, Peak Cycles offers both!

Inspire with bike education programs.  Having the right bike setup, cycling accessories and gear makes all the difference.  Consider offering a bike safety class for new riders or participate in a bike maintenance class.   All tools aren’t created equal – some are good for mountain bike parts while others are designed for road bike parts.  Knowing which tools to use on the appropriate bike components can make all the difference in making bike maintenance easy.  Our post, Bike Inspections: A Guide for Injury Free, Enjoyable Spring Cycling, offers bike inspection tips and bike accessories you need to maintain your bike.

Inspire with a list of rides and events.  Colorado has some of the greatest road bike rides in the country. Some are shorter, convenient rides whereas others offer steeper, longer climbs and extended distances. Locals and vacationers alike welcome the challenge of pushing the limits while taking in breathtaking views that only Colorado has to offer. Inspire new riders by checking out a few of 20 Colorado Front Range Bucket List Rides or invite them to spectate at one of the MTB races in Colorado.

Inspire with bike events!  Check out one of the events held in your area.  The League of American Bicyclist has countless events scheduled. Keep in mind, in 2015, Bike to Work Week will be May 11-15, with Bike to Work Day on May 15.  To  keep the momentum going, join our shop ride on Wednesday evenings and like our Peak Cycles Race Team Facebook page to keep informed of other rides and events.

Have fun, be active! Enjoy and inspire others to enjoy the outdoors and experience the joy of cycling this National Bike Month!


Mental Skill Drills to Bring Your A Game to the Spring Cycling Season

April 23, 2015
John Luif of BikeParts.com racing in Winter Park

John Luif racing in Winter Park

When we catch ourselves visualizing or fantasying about racing, winning or accomplishing something big in our race dreams, rarely do we visualize ourselves falling apart.  On the contrary, we view the victory as coming rather easily.  Even if the scene involves us digging to the depths of our inner being to pull something out of nothing, that agonizing pull from our inner selves is viewed in fantasy world as masterfully manifested.  In real life, we all know it doesn’t actually work like that.  Many of us can suffer but there are breaking points and limitations to the line we cross.  The mechanism that enables us to reach deeper within ourselves is mental toughness.

As described in the post, Developing Mental Toughness: Are you Tough Enough?, “mental toughness is your ability to persevere in the face of challenges, to keep going even when things get hard, and to have an unrelenting commitment to your goals. When you develop your mental toughness, obstacles are only temporary and one bad performance doesn’t shake your belief in your ability.”

The Spring Racing Season in Colorado is here! With upcoming events like the Karen Hornbostel Memorial Time Trial Series, Rocky Mountain Endurance Series, and Fruita Fat Tire Festival, road and mountain bike racers are ready to ride.  But, don’t think that just showing up on the line is enough.  Preparing mentally, physically, and being bike ready will ensure a successful start to the season.  Following are 4 mental skill drills to bring your a game to the spring cycling season.

Set Goals – For some, early season races are just about getting harder efforts in and saddle time.  However, having defined goals can help reduce pre race anxiety and also help you better evaluate your performance post race.  Identify what you want to accomplish with this event whether it be a targeted heart rate or power zone, a solid nutrition plan, or attacking certain areas on the race course.  Bio feedback is important in early season races.  Why?  Think about it.  We’ve all had those moments when we swear we’re cranking it out on the bike, giving it all we’ve got, leaving it all on the table –  and then – we finish the ride and think, I’ve got more in the tank! I didn’t leave it all out there!  So, how can you tell that you’re working hard enough?   Use cycling accessories that are available to you – as in power meters and /or heart rate monitors.  Our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, dives into the benefits of training with power. You may also want to check out our post, Heart Rate Training – What You Need to Know for our staff picks at Peak Cycles Bike Shop.

Set Your Nutrition – As you approach your first race of the season, you may want to read the post, A Guide to Race Day Nutrition.  Many cyclist have different preferences as to how they prefer to get their fuel – whether that nutrition is in bars, gels, and liquids. However, oftentimes, the course may dictate other options.  As in, for mountain bike riders, a technical course may present obstacles in taking solid food while riding versus taking fluids.  Furthermore, as the post suggest, “having all of these different (nutrition) options can tend to create confusion and challenges for athletes as to which is ideal and which is best for them. In addition, selecting the right type of fuel depends on many factors such as duration, intensity and what type of activities such as cycling, running or multi sport.” The end result: experimentation during training and early season races will aid in dialing in proper race day nutrition for your “A” races and events.

Get Race Ready – The post, 5 Steps to Being Race Ready, reinforces the need for mental and physical preparation, as well as nutrition and bike parts checks, but part of racing is using your energy effectively – on and off the bike.  Balancing work, family responsibilities, training and racing is a key component to being mentally and physically ready to tackle the demands of early season races.  As you transition from winter training to spring racing, your mental and physical demands will change.  You need to have a transition plan in place to find balance in your life as the cycling season demands more and more of your time.

Get Your Bike Race Ready – It’s obvious, but often overlooked with the excitement of a race – but that is getting your bike ready to race. Notice any bike parts that need to be replaced.  Saddle injuries are the result of poor seat position, height, angle or design.  While your saddle  may look and feel fine, looks can be deceiving.  Materials and composition deteriorate beyond what is visible.  Also, neck, shoulder, and bike pain can result of an improper fitting bike.  Handlebarsstems, and bike position all contribute to a rider’s stability, endurance, and safety. Make sure all is well before embarking on longer rides and races which could lead to lasting discomfort.

How important are brakes?  Obviously, a lot!  When you don’t have them, or they aren’t working properly, then you know the importance of well maintained brakes for your road or mountain bike.  Sure, brakes help stop your bike but they also aid in redirecting the bike, navigating technical terrain, cornering, and overall balance.  As the cycling season starts up, bike maintenance is essential.  We’re happy to help you at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop so bring your bike in for a spring tune up, or you can do bike maintenance at home.  Demonstrated by our staff, at Peak Cycles Bike Shop, using the Avid Professional Bleed Kit are step by step instructions on how to bleed your mountain bike brakes for strong and reliable stopping power: Our Tips on Bleeding Brakes.

Another important component to spring riding is checking out your wheels.  Unquestionably, wheels matter!  They impact ride quality, ease of pedaling, reliability, and functionality.  Spring is a great time to upgrade bicycle components.  The question is, once you’ve decided it’s time for a wheel upgrade, how do you know how to select the best ones? Check our our video, Wheelset Buyer Guide: What You Need to Know.

As for mountain bike riders, you may be thinking about going tubeless. For anyone who wants higher performance and less flats but doesn’t mind a little extra installation time and maintenance, going tubeless is the best choice.  The trick is having the right set up and knowing which bike parts or products to use.  Again, stop by the shop to ask any questions or watch our video for help. GoingTubeless? How to use Stans NoTubes by BikeParts.com

With a little preparation and planning, bringing your A Game to you early season racing can pave the way for a long, healthy, and enjoyable 2015 cycling season.  Stop by Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop to pick up the bike parts you need to launch your best cycling season ever!


How Smart Cyclists Spend Their Tax Refund Money Wisely

April 16, 2015

Tax Refund Money for Bike PartsYou’ve worked hard the past year and expect a healthy tax refund from the government. With anticipation, you’re thinking of how to spend that money wisely.  Maybe you’re thinking you should save that money, put it in the bank, or invest in those long over due house projects.  Yet, the other side of you is taunting you with images of bike parts and bike purchases.  You might even feel these ideas are a guilty pleasure.  However, spending your tax refund money on a new mountain bike or a road bike, or even cycling accessories, does more for your health and longevity than you know.

Investing in your cycling regime is an investment in you.  Physical activity  can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Physical activity and exercise can have immediate and long-term health benefits. Most importantly, regular activity can improve your quality of life.  With that being said, investing in your bike and cycling program is a great way to spend your tax refund wisely. Enjoy our top 5 ways to do just that!

1. Get a Fat Bike!
Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop is passionate about fat bikes in the winter months but they can actually be ridden year round! They are fun and versatile bikes that can be used in almost any terrain.  We have found the Specialized Fatboy to be a highly rated, mid-range fat bike that is usable for a wide range of ages and skill-levels.  The fun isn’t exclusive to adults either!  Specialized has also created a 20” and 24” Fatboy for kids at half the price of a full sized Fat Boy.  If you’re not sure a fat bike is for you, demo one!  Book a fat bike demo today and up the giggle factor to your normal riding program. Who can’t smile while riding a fat bike?

2. Get New Bike Parts!
So many bike parts – the question is what to purchase?  Consider getting a high quality wheel set.  A good wheel set impacts ride quality, ease of pedaling, reliability, and functionality.  Maybe purchase some new, lighter tires for your wheels. Another option is to reconsider the current crank set and pedals setup.  Who can’t justify spending tax refunds on losing lighter handlebars, a lighter saddle, and seat post?

3. Get a Power Meter!
The main idea behind using cycling training tools is to dial in your training to optimize your performance as it relates to your goals and objectives. Our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, dives into the benefits of training with power. As for our favorite power meter options, our most popular are Stages Power Meters beginning at $1000. Stages Power meter is the lightest, smallest, most technologically advanced unit available today.  Another option is the Pioneer Power Meter offered at $2000 and is a bit more sophisticated.  A third favorite is a company that’s been around for a while now – PowerTap Power Meter.

4. Get Cycling Accessories!
Maybe your refund check wasn’t as large as you wanted it to be?  This doesn’t exempt you from spending money on quality bike parts – it just means you might spend less.  Items for purchase in this category include a variety of cycling apparel: jerseys, shorts, tights, jacket, cycling shoes.

5. Get a Bike Fit!
A bike fit isn’t just for professional riders – they are for anyone who rides whether they are a beginner or advanced rider. A bike fit helps ensure riding comfort but it also impacts technique which is crucial to preventing overuse injuries and how an athlete rides. We can help you use your refund dollars wisely.  Not only can we help you with the fit, but we carry all the bike parts required to get your bike in the very best setup for your riding needs. Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to schedule your bike fit.

Considering how regular physical activity can produce long term health benefits, investing your tax refund dollars in your cycling program couldn’t be a wiser choice!


How to Use Spring Training Tools – The Importance of Not Going Out Too Hard Too Fast

April 9, 2015

Bike Fits at Peak Cycles Bicycle ShopAs the temperature gets warmer, the days grow longer, and the weather improves, cyclists everywhere are beckoned to ride their bikes.  While some may have trained through the winter months, many have not.  And the alluring call of gorgeous spring days lures many unprepared cyclist to ride too hard, too fast which can lead to injuries or a set back in the 2015 cycling season.

Whether you are planning to ride a century, multi-day rides, race or aspire to longer or more frequent rides in 2015, monitoring your early season training sets the stage for a successful year ahead.

Key points to keep in mind include training intensity, duration, and frequency.  There are coaches and coaching plans to assist with specific and customized training.  Or, you can create your own training program.

Regardless of your approach, for precise bio feedback to align your training plan, you’ll need to use cycling accessories available to you – as in power meters and /or heart rate monitors.  Early season training lends itself to “false” feedback.  Meaning, because you may be fresh, your perceived effort on the bike may be low causing you to push too hard, too soon, and then training suffers later due to increased recovery time or even injury.  By monitoring your efforts with specific data, you objectively know when you are pushing beyond your targeted indictors, as well as, when you aren’t pushing hard enough.  This allows your body to adjust to increased training load over time and in a manner that meets your 2015 cycling season goals.

Our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, dives into the benefits of training with power. You may also want to check out our post, Heart Rate Training – What You Need to Know for our staff picks at Peak Cycles Bike Shop.  You can also learn steps in discovering your “threshold” heart rate range, setting up heart rate training zones, and identifying the daily variables that affect heart rate.

An often overlooked, yet incredibly powerful tool for improved cycling is a bike fit.   If you haven’t ridden much through the winter, now is the best time for a bike fit.  Why?  Because your body is unaccustomed to the riding position.  You have an opportunity to optimize your position and make needed upgrades to your road bike or mountain bike.  Think of it this way – leg strength, endurance, and fitness are at the heart of cycling speed, but without a proper bike fit, you are sabotaging your training efforts.  In a sport based on such a highly repetitive action, like pedaling, the first line of defense against injury is a proper bike fit.  And, a bike fit goes beyond just setting saddle height and bar reach. To get the most enjoyment and reward from your training programs it’s critical to dial in the fit and confirm you have the right bike parts for optimal performance.

There are countless more ways training tools can aid in your spring cycling training.  We’ve mentioned power training and heart rate training, but also consider the importance of nutrition and recovery.  The main goal of them all is to assist you in dialing in your training to optimize your performance as it relates to your goals and objectives.

Do you need help figuring out which one is best for you?  Visit us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, Colorado or ask us on Twitter.


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