Managing Early Season Race Day Jitters

May 18, 2017

BikeParts.Com Team Rider Racing in Colorado

Course strategies, break aways, riding in a small group or a large peloton – these are the thoughts and questions of cyclists wondering how to perform their best during in the first races of the 2017 cycling season.

The cycling season is just starting in Colorado and many are filling up their calendars with the big events.  While not a comprehensive list, following are some of the favorite Colorado May road and mountain bike races: 

Sounds good, right? Absolutely! So many different road and mountain bike events to choose from.  The main question is how to prepare? How do you know if you are race ready? Do you have a comprehensive checklist for Spring racing?  Early season races can bring on the nerves like nothing else!  After all, it’s been a while since you raced.  For the most part, experiencing those sensations is normal. Yet, oftentimes, early season jitters can exasperate the problem.

At Peak Cycles Bicycle shop, we’ve found that a little preparation can aid in reducing race day jitters. The post, 5 Simple Strategies for Overcoming Race Day Nerves, guides us through easy ways to shift the perspective of nervousness to be an enabler of positive sports performance. And there are other ideas for managing pre race nerves too.  

As you approach your first race of the season, you may want to read the post, A Guide to Race Day Nutrition to dial in your preferences as to get your fuel – whether that nutrition is in bars, gels, and liquids.  Also, while it may seem obvious, give your race bike a once over.   Notice any bike parts that need to be replaced. Consider replacing worn bike parts and purchasing new cycling accessories you plan to use for your A races later in the season.  This gives you a chance to dial in your needs early season and optimize performance in later events. 

Whether you’re entering your first event or you’re a seasoned racer, you’re always likely to suffer from some race day nerves. However, with a little planning you can gain confidence. The best part about early season races is the opportunity to assess your fitness level.  Enjoy the May cycling races in Colorado and use them to catapult you into a great 2017 cycling season. 


5 Awesome Cycling Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day 

May 11, 2017

Mother’s Day Cycling Gifts at BikeParts.com

You love your Mom and your Mom loves to ride. So what do you do for Mother’s Day? Celebrate it with cycling gifts. We’ve pulled together our best Mother’s Day gift ideas, with recommendations you won’t find anywhere else!

Get a New Bike! Surprise your Mom with a new road bike or mountain bike.  If you aren’t sure which one to get her, read up on our post, Here’s How to Buy a New Bike. It will guide you through the process of dialing in the type of bike your Mom wants for the type of riding she will be doing.  

Get New Bike Parts!  If a new bike isn’t an option, then opt for upgraded bike parts.  Help your Mom spin faster with a high quality wheel set.  A good wheel set impacts ride quality, ease of pedaling, reliability, and functionality.  Or, consider purchasing some new, lighter tires for your Mom’s wheels. A third option is to reconsider the current crank set and pedals setup.  Wheels aren’t the only bike parts to upgrade.  Look for worn parts to be replaced with newer, lighter cycling components.  

Get Cycling Apparel! Every woman wants to ride in style. With that in mind, you can never go wrong in getting your Mom cycling apparel!  She can’t have too many jerseys, shorts, tights, jacket, sunglasses, or cycling shoes!  Having a variety of cycling apparel to wear keeps cycling fresh and makes it fun to get out and ride!  

Get a Bike Fit!  If your Mom has a bike but doesn’t ride as often as she would like, ask her if her bike is comfortable.  Maybe a bike fit would help.  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. Give your Mom the gift of riding comfortably.  Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to schedule your bike fit.

Get Gift Certificates!  If all else fails, get your Mom a gift certificate.  It can be used for purchasing bike parts and cycling accessories and allows your Mom to select the precise gift that will make her the happiest.  

With Mother’s Day right around the corner, you couldn’t pick a better time to shop for a new bike, cycling accessories, or bike parts. There are so many attractive choices today. Visit us at Peak Cycles in Golden or online at bikeparts.com and we can help with your decision making and offer advice you need to make this Mother’s Day the best ever! 


Slow Down Now to Go Fast Later This Cycling Season

May 4, 2017

No matter how fast you go, you want to ride your bike faster.  Don’t you?  While recreational cyclists are often happy just to get out and enjoy the fresh air, exercise and scenery, almost every cycling enthusiast is always trying to go faster on their bike

Now that the temperature is getting warmer, the days are growing longer, and the weather is improving, Colorado cyclists 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 2017 cycling season.

It may seem counter intuitive to a cyclist, but it is okay to go slow.  

According to the post, Why It’s Cool To Be Slow in the Spring, unless you have a very early season event you were hoping to be in peak condition for, then basically, it’s okay to be a little slower right now.  

At Peak Cycles, we suggest taking the subjective aspect out of your cycling performance evaluation.  How you feel may vary differently from your actual performance. With that in mind, we have cycling accessories to help you get precise bio feedback to remove the guess work out of your training – specifically 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.  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.  Theses bike parts and cycling accessories put the power of data in your hands so you don’t have to feel slow and can actually track your progress as your fitness improves. 

But, when is it okay to be a little slow on the bike and when is it time to worry about turning that slow into go? Again, the post Why It’s Cool To Be Slow in the Spring tells us, “The short answer—so long as you have a normal base level of fitness—is about eight weeks before you want to be fast.”

So, take your time. Ease into spring. Enjoy quality training now that paves the way for a long, healthy, and enjoyable cycling season.


Bike Safety Comes First

April 27, 2017

Helmets at BikeParts.com keep riders safe!

Vehicle and motorcycle drivers understand that there are certain rules that make things safer for everyone on the roads.

However, they may not know that there are specific guidelines for dealing with cyclists. Likewise, riders must obey certain traffic laws to keep things safe for themselves and motorists. However, you don’t need a license to ride a bike. That’s why it’s even more important to educate both drivers and cyclists about safety on the road.    

At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we provide cycling accessories and cycling apparel to keep cyclist safe.  While having a bike bell, lights, a safety vest, and a helmet are all helpful, we also encourage riders to know the rules of the road.  

Because bike accidents involving vehicles is not as uncommon as you might think, we encourage riders to be mindful of having a well maintained bike with properly working bike parts to maintain safe riding conditions.  We also support mindful bike riding.  As in, not riding on the sidewalk, not riding to close to the curb, maintaining eye contact with pedestrians and motorist, and always wearing a proper fitting helmet. 

The post, An Essential Cyclist Safety Guide for Riders and Motorists, shares more details on bike safety.  Additionally, the post How to Not Get Hit by Cars shares important lessons in bike safety.  Be an informed and safe rider – know the rules of the road and ride safe. 


Pedal Power for Earth Day 

April 20, 2017

Happy Earth Day from BikeParts.com

What’s the best way to celebrate Earth Day?  Ride a bike!  Bike commuting instead of driving alone is one way you can help support the planet while also taking in the joys only a two -wheeled friend can provide!  

Along the Front Range, and in particular, our home town of Golden, Colorado, it’s easy to commute by bike.  Not only do we have a vast network of well maintained bike paths, but at bikeparts.com, we also have all the road parts and mtb parts, commuter bikes, and cycling accessories to make any bike commute or bike ride easy and fun!

Because April 22nd is Earth Day, you might be wondering why is all this important?  As a supporter of our local community and race teams, we know bike commuting is a win-win for our local community. For both businesses and individuals looking to save money, embrace eco awareness, and promote healthy, livable cities, cycling is important. Here’s why:

  • Cycling as alternative transportation helps the environment by reducing carbon emissions.
  • Bicycles emit virtually no pollution when in use; they require far less materials, energy and waste in their production than even the ‘greenest’ car.
  • Cycling offers a certain connection to the open air and the surrounding trees.  It’s amazing how usual surroundings look different when on a bike.
  • Cycling can be done by toddlers, teenagers, youngsters and adults as well.  It can be used as personal time to reflect upon your day or a means to unite friends for regular rides. 
  • Regular participation in a cycling routine naturally shifts your focus to include thoughts of the weather, areas in your community to ride, road safety, and traffic.  Thereby increasing your awareness of the link between the environment and your community.
  • The freedom your bike gives you offers routes and locations that your car can’t.
  • Cycling is a good exercise for overall fitness of the body.  It improves health and reduces stress and tension. 
  • Cycling contributes to a positive work/ life balance. 
  • Bicycles can be produced and maintained locally by local bike shops, like Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop.  This supports local job opportunities and promotes a sustainable economy.
  • Overall, increased cycling commuting reduces air pollution generated from motorized vehicles.

This Earth Day, we encourage you to put your pedal power to good! Get committed and inspire your family, colleagues and others to get on a bike!  Pump up your tires, lube your chain, and put your pedal power to good use!  


Get Your Kids Bike Commuting – Here’s How! 

April 13, 2017

Toddler and Youth Bikes at BikeParts.com

Bike commuting with your children is a fantastic way to introduce them to cycling at a young age. For kids who grow up riding to and from school and sports and friends’ houses, cycling comes to be seen as just a normal, natural way of moving through the world. It’s wonderful to see kids have fun, explore their world, and embrace the wonders only a two -wheeled friend can provide!

As the riding season is upon us, the crew at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop want to encourage all younger riders to get out there and bike with their friends and families. Following are our tips to do just that.

Know the Rules of the Road
Educate your kids on the the rules of the road. Know what the bicycle laws are in your area, and follow them. In most areas, they are going to be very similar to vehicular traffic. Make sure you stop at stop lights and stop signs, signal before turning, and ride on the street. It’s important to model good behavior and teach your children the rules on the road.

Be Safe
Safety means being mindful of the route you are riding. It also includes less obvious items. As in, make sure your child’s bike is in good working condition. Have water, nutritional items and food available. Remember to have sunscreen in case you are out on your ride longer than expected. A good rule of thumb is to carry basic bike tool kit with you too. All of these items contribute to a positive bike commuting experience.

Have the Right Bike
Help your kids feel more excited about trying out something new, and give them the tools they need to keep succeeding as a young cyclist. This means having a bike that fits. If purchasing a new toddler or youth bike, make sure you avoid the common mistake of buying a bike that they’ll “grow into.” Doing so can set your child back a couple of years. When shopping, be aware that children’s bikes are measured by their wheel size (not frame size). The right size is one where your child can comfortably get on the bike and stand with his or her feet on the ground. If you have questions on the right size bike for your child, visit our staff at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop. We’re more than happy to help you select the right size bike for your child.

Dress for Success
Kids love clothes, gear, and bike parts too! Dress your kids for cycling success. Investing in a well fitting helmet, along with a jersey, cycling shorts, and a good pair of gloves inspires your kids and affects enjoyment levels and performance. If your child is comfortable, they are going to want to ride. We have bike parts and cycling accessories that includes windbreakers, gloves, shorts, jersey’s, chamois, pedals, hats, backpacks, and bikes that kids love. Most importantly, we have reflective materials to put on your child’s bike to make sure they are visible.

There are countless benefits of bike commuting with kids. Sure, it does take a little effort to bike commute with children, but most good things in life do. Bike commuting as a family provides quality time together, as well as, exercise in the natural environment. Ultimately, bike commuting with your children allows you to play and experience life together. Enjoy! 


5 Tips to Transition Toward Spring Cycling Races

April 6, 2017

Spring riding and racing is just around the corner and athletes everywhere are starting to think about their “A” races as well as secondary races to use for training and motivation.  A given rule of thumb is that all races and events provide experience, training benefits, and act as a stage to assess your form.  

However, 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 2017 cycling season. To avoid injury or setback, follow these tips to help transition into a healthy and rewarding Spring cycling season.  

Tip #1
Whether you plan to ride a century, multi-day rides, race or aspire to longer or more frequent rides in 2017, monitoring your early season training and racing sets the stage for a successful year ahead.  Key points to keep in mind include training intensity, duration, and frequency.  Our tip to do this? Use power meters and heart rate monitors to guide you. Given that 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.  Check out our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, to dial in which training aid is best for you. 

Tip #2
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.

Tip #3
Get your bike race ready – It’s obvious, but often overlooked with the excitement of the season – but that is getting your bike ready to race. Our post, Spring Cleaning! 4 Essential Bike Maintenance Tips to Get Your Bike on the Road, walks you through all the bike maintenance and safety checks needed before embarking on epic training rides.  Fortunately, all the bikesbike parts cycling accessories, and cycling apparel you’ll need can be found on our website – bikeparts.com.  And, if you aren’t into doing bike maintenance yourself, Call or stop in to Peak Cycles in Golden, CO to schedule your bike for a full tune-up. 

Tip #4
Be prepared.  April kicks off the season in Colorado with the Boulder-RoubaixFront Range ClassicFruita Fat Tire Festival, and Koppenberg Road Race.  Not only are you testing your fitness in these early season races, but you’re also testing your memory!  Don’t forget necessary event and race itms. We’ve prepared a handy, comprehensive checklist for Spring racing.   

Tip #5
Early season cycling tempts cyclists  to jump into race training with all the intensity, determination, and vigor they can muster. While these are positive mentalities to have, its important that competitive bicyclists not let their excitement for spring training cause them to overwork themselves.  Recovery is critical.  Our post, Don’t Compromise Your Spring Training Recovery Rides! Here’s How… offers resources for you to learn about recovery best-practices and get the fuel and equipment you need for adequate recovery.

Finally, have fun! Enjoy the launch of the cycling season!