Get Ready! Saturday is Take a Kid Mountain Biking at Valmont Bike Park

June 14, 2018

Team Bike Parts. com

If celebrating Father’s Day this weekend wasn’t a special enough occasion, adding take a kid mountain biking at Valmont Park makes it extra special. Cycling Mom and Dad’s have a chance to share their love of the sport with their kids in the 6th annual bike festival that will feature family-friendly activities.  Anyone up for short track races? A rock climbing wall? Face painting? And, other bike related activities? Sounds like a great way to kick start a super charged fun weekend to celebrate Father’s Day. 

To make the most of the weekend, we have some tips to help you to encourage your kids to ride bikes. 

This is a no brainer, but often overlooked – have the right bike! 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 happy to help answer all the questions you may have.

We can also help you to have peace of mind with your child riding by sharing info and tips to keep them safe.  Bike maintenance is the first thing that comes to mind. We can service your child’s bike to make sure it is in good working condition. Or, if you want to do the bike maintenance yourself, we have the bicycling tools to help you do that. Safety also means preparing ahead for the weekend – it is going to be hot!  Have waternutritional items and food available. Remember to have sunscreen in case you are out longer than expected. 

Now for the good stuff – dress for the part! 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. Did you know that Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, CO has a wide variety of kids cycling apparel?  We have bike parts and cycling accessories that includes windbreakers, gloves, shorts, jersey’s, chamois, pedals, hats, backpacks, and bikes that kids love.  

Stop by the shop or visit us online at www.BikeParts.com to pick up some bike parts or cycling accessories for a fun weekend at Valmont.  And, while you’re at it, you might as well pick up a few Father’s Day gifts too! 

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Tips to Conquering Colorado’s Climbs 

June 7, 2018
BikeParts.com Team Rider Getting Ready to Climb

BikeParts.com Team Rider Getting Ready to Climb

Colorado has some of the best road bike and mountain bike hill climbs. Additionally, there are countless rides and events like Ride the Rockies, Leadville100, and the Colorado Summit Cycling Series that challenge riders to either push on or blow up.  No doubt the suffering imposed by climbing may cause us cyclist to fret, but the the post, Why You Should Love Climbing, suggests otherwise.  

“Hills also make you happier. Longer, sustained efforts trigger the release of mood-lifting chemicals like endorphins and cannabinoids, which, as the name suggests, are in the same family of chemicals that give pot smokers their high, kick in. Research also shows that regular efforts in the lactate threshold range, which incidentally is where you climb, may help ward off mood disorders like depression. Additionally, research also shows all that the fresh air, sunshine, solitude, and sweeping vistas that you soak in as you make your way up and over hills and mountains provide their own unique benefits.” 

With that motivation, how can we learn to love climbing?  

Ride Hill Repeats
Hill repeats are a foundation of any good training plan.  Basically, the plan is to riding up the hill as hard as you can, recovering on the way back down and then doing it again. A good heart rate monitor and power meter can aid in bio feedback and motivation and help you to judge your effort better.  However – remember that whilst power numbers respond immediately to increased effort, heart rate takes time to accumulate – so expect it to take a few minutes for your heart rate to reach your target zone.

Decide to Sit or Stand
To sit or stand while climbing – that is the question.  Actually, it depends on rider preference; however, we’ve found lighter riders prefer to stand while heavier riders prefer to sit.  Regardless, you may want to train doing both. Opt to sit on one climb or hill repeat, then stand on the next. Testing the limits of your ability to climb in both positions will make you a stronger all-around climber.

Focus on Your Breath
Obviously while climbing, you are excepting more effort. That requires more oxygen.  So, a simple way to to maximizing your oxygen uptake is learning to take deep breaths.  Avoid shallow ones and breathe to your belly. This may require you to straighten up to allow your belly and ribs to actually expand.  Given your bike fit, you may or may not need to adjust bike parts so be mindful of your body position when climbing so that you can inhale for optimum oxygen intake.

Gear Adjustment
Gears can be a complicated thing. In fact, many people buy a road bike or mountain bike and never modify their gears.  Yet, depending on the climbs you are doing and your aspirations, you may consider swapping the cassette or chainset.  If you’re struggling to turn the pedals on the climbs, changing your gear set up – going for a smaller chainset and wider ratio cassette – will help as you’ll be able to spin more quickly.

Relax
A deathtrap on the handlebars, swinging your body around, and tense muscles make climbing much more difficult.  Also, it’s a waste of precious energy!  Just relax! Find your rhythm and get into a groove that you can sustain.

Pick one or all of these tips and try them out.  Give yourself some time to evaluate your progress.  At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, our bet is after a few weeks of one or all of using these tips, you’re climbing performance will increase.  Whether or not you actually fall in love with climbing is another matter – but at least you will be better at it! 


5 Step Plan to Make the Most of Your 2018 Cycling Season 

May 31, 2018

June is here! Welcome blue skies, sunny days, and longer days!  All the perfect ingredients becoming us to ride, race, and enjoy being on our two wheeled friends.
Whether you are a recreational cyclist or a competitive one, no doubt you have some cycling goals in mind for the season.  

As we’re just launching into this year’s cycling season, it’s important to make the most of it by planning now. When you plan, goals get met.  You don’t want to look back over the season at the end of the year with regrets. So, whether you’re entering your first event or you’re a seasoned racer, planning your early season events can lay a foundation for confidence and physical fitness in which to build upon for the cycling season.  And at year end, you can look back with satisfaction with your achievements.  Here’s how to do it.  

#1 Think strategy first.  High level. What are your goals for the season? Are there races or events you have always wanted to do? Register – mark it on your calendar – and plan! We’ve written extensively on strategic planning.  Check out these posts for good ideas: Cycling Success: A Guide to Launch Your 2018 Spring Cycling Season and Keys to a Successful Cycling Race: Think Smart, Eat Smart.

#2 Next, prepare.  Preparation means alot of things.  Research your ride route. Identify the bike you will be riding. Replace old bike parts. Dial in your nutrition needs. Decide on your training plan.  Preparation paves the way for success.  And not to be overlooked, is dialing in your cycling accessories.  Get a checklist ready to have on hand for all your events.  We have a handy one here: Ready to Race? A Comprehensive Checklist for Spring Racing.

#3 As most living in Colorado know, weather conditions can change rapidly.  This means you have to be agile with your bike maintenance and cycling apparel.  You might want to read our popular posts Dry Pavement, Sloppy Slush and A Muddy Trail: Which Chain Lube Works Best? and Effective Training Techniques for Cycling in the Heat. Both offer useful information for making the best of your ride.  As for those afternoon rain storms, we suggest reading the post: Wet Weather? No Problem! 5 Essentials for Riding in the Rain.

#4 After a long or hard ride, recover.   it’s important to note that during the summer months it is easy to get swept away in the joys of riding. The temps are great – the trails are great- riding a new mountain bike or road bike is great!  But, with all the bike riding accompanies fatigue and over doing it. Be mindful to build in recovery to your training plan.  Some post worth reading include: Recovery: Ride Hard – Recovery Harder: Ways to Speed Up Recovery and Avoid Early Season Training Injuries with Rest and Recovery.

#5 Finally, take care of your bike!  Bike maintenance keeps you riding. You can either do bike maintenance yourself or bring your bike to us and we can do it for you.  Either way, some basic maintenance is necessary and to make sure you’re covered, you’ll want to read: 4 Essential Bike Maintenance Tips to Get Your Bike on the Road.

When you’re working toward a goal that’s important to you, the last thing you want is to face an obstacle or unexpected challenge.  There you have it – a 5 step plan to kick off your 2018 cycling season! Set up your 2018 right by planning ahead, getting your road bike or mountain bike in order, and getting the gear and resources you need.  With the right mental attitude and the best bike parts, your successful training and race prep is well underway.


Make the Most of Your Ride Time This Memorial Day Weekend 

May 24, 2018

Happy Memorial Day Weekend Riding from BikeParts.com

Wondering what to do with your day off this upcoming Memorial Day weekend? Ride, of course! Get ready for a fun weekend of riding by swinging by Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop to stock up on all things cycling related! 

You can ride in style this Memorial Day weekend by getting a new road or mountain bike.  One option is to shop our latest mountain bike and road bike close out items and our discounted collections of bike parts online.  Or better yet, have one of our expert crew help you select the best bike for you.  Stop by the shop and we can help you identify what to look for in buying a new bike and get you scheduled for a bike fit in the process.  

Making the most of the holiday weekend, you’ll want to stock up on essential items to carry with you. Make a note to stock up on: Food, gels, and on the bike nutrition; Tubes, lube, a pump or C02; chain and multi toolRain jacketSunscreenHydration pack and extra bottles for fluids. 

And don’t forget bike maintenance! With a little extra time off from work, many cyclist enjoy performing much needed bike maintenance over the holiday weekend.  Replacing worn bike parts and cycling accessories without the stress of added work and family pressures makes bike maintenance a pleasure and not a chore.  If the kids are around, engage them in the process and teach them a thing or two about bicycles.  Who knows? You might inspire them to ride too! 

And, as a little teaser to whet your appetite for Colorado’s finest, enjoy the cycling videos, pics, and trail reviews. 

Happy Memorial Day to All! We look forward to seeing you at the shop or visit us at bikeparts.com to get all of your cycling apparel, accessories, and bike parts.  


Celebrating National Bike Month at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop 

May 17, 2018

Happy National Bike Month Image courtesy of League of American Bicyclist

In case you weren’t aware, the League of American Bicyclist recognizes May as National Bike Month.  As luck would have it, this week is also national Bike to Work Week.  Here in Colorado, bike to work day isn’t until June 27th, but what’s the harm in celebrating cycling and bike commuting more than once? As active advocates of cycling in the Golden, Colorado community, all of us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop look for every opportunity to celebrate our two wheeled friends!  

Fortunately for us, Peak Cycles resides in a city that embraces cycling too.  The City of Golden is recognized by the League of American Bicyclists as one of the more bicycle-friendly communities in the country. With Golden’s Silver Bicycle Friendly Community Award, it puts Golden in an elite group of just 326 other cities in the country who are transforming their communities. Building on the community aspect of cycling, Peak Cycles has supported countless race teams over the years including  Peak Cycles XC, Gravity and BMX teams, Colorado School of MinesThe Golden High School mountain bike teamTough Girl CyclingTwin Peaks Racing, and The Colorado Collective

Individual and businesses can celebrate National Bike Month and Bike to Work Week too.  Obviously, a great way to celebrate is to ride your bike! If you aren’t already, begin bike commuting.  A great resource to get you started is our post, Summer Bike Commuting – Making it Work For You. It describes route planning and bike part essentials to have on hand. Keep in mind, bike commuting isn’t just for adults! Young children can enjoy it too. Our post, Get Your Kids Bike Commuting shows you how.

For businesses looking to celebrate National Bike Month, there area resources for you as well.  You can create a bike-friendly shopping program to encourage employees to bike commute this month and through the year.  Many aspiring bike riding enthusiast appreciate a shop that offers quality bike parts and 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!  Additionally, offer a bike education program to employees and their families.  Consider offering a bike safety class or participate in a bike maintenance class.  

There are so many ways to celebrate National Bike Month. The point is to celebrate it! Have fun!  Share your favorite rides and pictures of the fun you are having on Twitter and Facebook and be sure to tag #NationalBikeMonth to inspire others to ride their bikes! 


Celebrate Mother’s Day with A Family Bike Ride

May 10, 2018

Family Bike Rides Enjoyed by all at Peak Cycles/ BikeParts.comMoms do so much for their families on a daily basis. From cooking meals to scheduling events and chauffeuring kids. Mother’s Day is a special day to say thank you for all Mom does.  It’s also a day to create special memories.  

This Mother’s Day, why not get the whole family together for a bike ride? Bike riding as a family is a fantastic way to share the love of biking together while also having fun and exploring the wonders only a two -wheeled friend can provide!  The to making the day memorable is making it easy for Mom so she can pedal in pleasure!  Here’s how to do it.  

Before heading out, plan a short destination ride or round trip ride that all in the family can do with ease.  You don’t want to over reach on distance. Also, be mindful of the time of day. Too hot or too cold of temperatures can adversely affect the comfort of the ride.  Put a little planning into your route with stopping points, points of interest, a restaurant or coffee shop and you may find it keeps enthusiasm high and the overall ride more enjoyable. 

Mom’s are safety minded and you want her mind at ease on the ride. 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 family the rules on the road. 

Safety also means making sure all the bikes are in good working condition. Have waternutritional 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 riding experience.

You can help your kids feel more excited by making sure everyone in your family has gear that fits. This means both a bike and a helmet.  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. Same goes for Mom! 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 – especially on Mother’s Day! 

Making a Mother’s Day celebration memorable and unique doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive – just some thoughtfulness!  Remember to take pictures of the fun you have on the ride.  Encourage family members to make the day easy for Mom so she can enjoy it to the fullest. Ultimately, a Mother’Day family bike ride allows you to play and create memorable moments together. Enjoy! 


What to Look For When Buying a New Bike 

May 3, 2018
Bikes at BikeParts.comIt’s getting warmer outside, there’s a change in the air, and chances are you’re feeling the itch to ride your bike. As the new road bike and mountain bike models make their way into the shop, it’s tempting to purchase a new bike.  And why not?
The pleasure of buying a new bike includes a process of joy, smiling, and endless thoughts that stimulates your pleasure receptors that leaves you tingling with anticipation of the adventure ahead.  Making sure you up your giggle factor, here’s our guide to help you make the best of your new bike purchase.
First off, build your bike profile.  Decide what type of riding you will be doing, how often, and the types of terrain you plan to ride. Because there are so many bike parts to build a new mountain bike or road bike, it’s important to get clear on what you are looking to do.  Here are some questions you need to get you started:
  • What type of bicycle do I want?  Will I be mountain biking, road cycling, or is comfort my biggest factor in a bike?
  • Am I interested in casual riding? Entry level competitive cycling? Full on racing?
  • How many miles might I log per week, or year?
  • What type of tires should my bike have?
  • What size bike do I need?
  • Do I want a bike with gears? If so, How many?
  • What kind of seat do I want?
  • Cycling accessories – what matters to me most: high-tech gadgets or are simpler designs?
  • What kind of handlebars do I want? Straight or curved?
  • Am I interested in the highest quality bike parts?  Or, can I get by with industry standard bicycle accessories?
  • Most importantly, how much am I willing to spend on a bike? This will determine alot of the questions asked above.

Next, consider the bike fit and how the bike feels when you ride it.  Following are the 5 important bike fit tips to help you dial in your ride.

  1. Get the correct bike for your needs.  Getting a bike whose frame matches your body is the most important part of bike fit . If the frame size is wrong, you probably won’t be able to adjust the seat and handlebars enough to compensate. Some adjustments can be made easily with the bike’s existing components (seat height, angle, etc.) and some may require swapping out a component (as in, a new stem can change the location of the handlebars for a more comfortable riding position).
  2. Seat height. When you’re pedaling and your leg is all the way down, your knee should be slightly bent. If your leg is straight (knee locked), your seat is too high. If your knee is very bent,  your seat is too low. Either problem can hurt your knees, and a seat height that’s too short robs you of power and makes it harder to ride.  To get the proper seat height, you want the saddle to be high enough that your heel barely touches the pedal at the bottom of the pedal rotation, but not so high that your heel comes above your toes at the bottom of the pedal stroke.
  3. Seat position. Saddle setback another important measurement to get right. The front of your kneecap should be directly over your pedal spindle when you’re mid-pedal stroke. Most bike fitters dangle a piece of string with a small weight at the bottom (a plumb line) from the side of the rider’s kneecap to see if it lines up directly with the spindle—you may need to enlist a friend to help get this exactly right.  Or better yet, schedule a bike fit at our shop and we’ll help you do it!
  4. Reach to your handlebars.  Handlebar reach is simply the distance you reach from your saddle to your handlebars. Aim for a riding position that gives you a modest amount of shock-absorbing bend in your arms without forcing you to reach too far to apply the brakes.
  5. Handlebar height. Your handlebars should be at least as high as your seat.

Fortunately, now is the best time to shop for a new bike. There are so many options available today. Visit us at Peak Cycles in Golden or online at bikeparts.com.  We can help with your decision making and offer advice you need to get you rolling on your new bike just in time for summer riding.