Fall Isn’t End of Season – It’s the Beginning of Next Season. Here’s Why 

September 29, 2016

While we welcome cooler temps and colorful foliage that fall cycling offers, the shorter days and fatigue of the cycling season can beckon cyclist to cut their rides short – or skip them all together.  

Perhaps missing a day or two of riding doesn’t seem like much but it does.  According to the post, What Happens to Your Body When You Quit Riding, within a relatively short period of time, undesirable consequences result.  As in, your metabolism stagnates. Your blood pressure rises. Your blood sugar surges. Fitness declines.  And, inevitable wait gain surfaces.  Not fun!

Fall is actually the best time to transition from peak cycling form to a relaxed one.  Doing so doesn’t include missing rides.  It means shifting your mindset to embrace fall cycling while actually boosting your cycling performance for next year.  The article, Fix Your Flaws in Fall, reinforces this. “If you’re looking to take a big step forward in your racing performance for next season, you can’t wait until next season to start the process.”  With that being said, what are the best ways to boost your fall training regimen?  Here’s our take on how to make the best of the transitional season. 

Keep in mind that just as much as the Spring cycling season inspires us to get in shape, tackle new challenges, and reach new cycling heights, the Fall season can inspire us too. Discovering new ways to nurture our bodies, maintain the gains we’ve made during the season, and re-energize for the season ahead.

In fact, the  Fall season is a great time for experimentation.  Ride new routes (hint: read the above post 10 Best Fall Front Range MTB trails)! Enjoy the opportunity to get purchase and test out new bike parts.  During the racing and cycling season, the focus is on riding; whereas during the Fall, there’s more time for mental wanderings and fun! New cycling accessories don’t have to be costly.  Check out our daily closeouts and overstock items to spark renewed interest in your cycling program.  Finally, use the Fall Season to refine your cycling aspirations and goals for next year.  


12 Reasons Why You Want to Race Cross This Season

September 22, 2016

Cyclocross at BikeParts.comCross season begins in the early fall and runs through the end of December. You know, the time of year that those of us who live in places that get real, bona fide winters want to hang up our bikes and hibernate under down blankets. But In Colorado, we don’t do that because it’s cross season and cross is worth going out in the cold for.  Fortunately, the cooler temps and bad weather has escaped us so far; however soon on the horizon, cyclocross racers will be greeted with mud, cold, and nastier racing conditions.  Makes for more fun, right?  Absolutely! 

Cyclocross is a wonderful way for road cyclists and mountain bikers to extend their competitive seasons and get a head-start on training for next season. The intensity of cyclocross racing provides a training stimulus that’s very difficult to replicate with standard interval training during the fall and winter, especially as the temperatures fall and athletes turn primarily to indoor cycling.  

  1. Cyclocross promotes silky smooth pedaling 
  2. Cyclocross develops your strength and power 
  3. Cyclocross improves your bike handling skills 
  4. Cyclocross teaches you race techniques
  5. Cyclocross reduces off-season weight gain 
  6. Cyclocross toughens you up to fair better in inclement riding conditions
  7. Cyclocross improves seasonal motivation 
  8. Cyclocross offers a full body workout
  9. Cyclocross maintains current fitness and can improve fitness 
  10. Cyclocross offers a mental break from your current cycling regimen and training focus
  11. Cyclocross provides high intensity training 
  12. Cyclocross means getting to purchase a new cyclocross bike, cyclocross tires, and an assortment of new bike parts

A final reason to race cyclocross is because it is exhilarating FUN! Whether you are a veteran of cyclocross or a newbie, check out our cyclocross bikes online at bikeparts.com.  Dial in the best bike parts and cycling accessories.  Get help with your bike fit and setup and be sure to have all the right cycling apparel you need for a successful cyclocross season.  


Race Prep: What to Bring to a Cyclocross Race

September 15, 2016
Cycling Accessories for Your Cyclocross Gear Bag

Cycling Accessories for Your Cyclocross Gear Bag

Cyclist in general are obsessed with weight. As in, how much their bike parts weigh? How heavy is the bike? How much is the the scale lying to you?

And, the list goes on.  Ironically, cyclocross is the only cycling discipline that counters the weight obsession.  That is at least, in the preparation department.  Everything else applies. Cyclocross races are short, ranging from 30 minutes to an hour depending on category, yet they require the most equipment prep of any bike racing discipline. Part of that relates to the time of year and the variability of the weather. Racers need to be ready to deal with wind, rain, snow, hail, ice, mud, fog, etc.  The gear preparation and the cycling apparel adds up.  There is gear for warming up, gear for racing, gear for cooling down, gear for the bikes and gear for creating a fun and enjoyable atmosphere. In addition, it is often not enough to have a single piece of equipment or clothing; several may be needed for the day. 

Which ultimately begs the question- What do you bring to a cyclocross race?  It will take time to nail down the packing system that works best for you; there are lots of individual preferences.  However, we’ve compiled a checklist for you. For starters, plan to use a gear bag that opens up wide and allows you to see everything within quickly. Fill it up with these items: 

Clothing

  • Rain jacket, rain pants, waterproof boots.
  • One set of jersey/shorts and one skinsuit. One to warm up in, one to race in.  Having extras is good too.
  • Long sleeve jersey for warmups.
  • Extra base layers.
  • Vest, arm warmers, leg warmers, knee warmers. These are for warm-ups. 
  • Two pairs of shoes. Race pair and a backup just in case one breaks or the first pair is wet and muddy from pre-riding the course.
  • Two helmets. Again, in case of a mechanical.
  • Two pairs of gloves. Depending on the weather, you may opt for four or five pairs. Short and long-fingered race gloves, a light, medium, and heavy pair of warm-up or standing around gloves.
  • Tights or warm up pants.
  • Two to three pairs of socks, preferably wool.
  • Large garbage bags or ziplock bags to store wet and muddy clothes and gear.
  • Winter jacket. 
  • Cycling cap and or a beanie. 
  • Sunglasses with multiple lenses.

Gear and Equipment

  • Bike. Make sure it’s clean, tuned-up, and ready to ride. If you need bike maintenance, bring it into the shop!  Also, remember to take off the water bottle cages, your saddle bag, and anything else you’ve attached to the bike. 
  • Pump, tools, chain lube, and other maintenance items.
  • Safety pins to pin your number to your jersey.
  • Towels: large and small.  Use the smaller ones for clean up and the larger one for changing clothes. You might opt for extra towels to wipe down the bike. 
  • Baby wipes – great for cleaning everywhere after the race
  • Heat packs to stay warm prior to and post race.
  • Water bottles for before and after the race.
  • Energy drink mix, gels, bars, and nutritional items. 
  • Cash for coffee, food, and extras at the venue site. 
  • Folding chairs
  • iPod or music player – good for warming up.
  • Water – bring at least one gallon of water, not only for drinking, but for cleaning. 
  • Stationary trainer for warming up and cooling down. FYI, bring an extra rear wheel.  Warm up on the trainer with a regular tire. 
  • Spare wheels –Bring wheels with tires that have different treads for different conditions. 

Now that you have your gear bag ready, it’s time to race cross.  If you are new to cyclocross, check out our cyclocross bikes online at bikeparts.com.  Dial in the best bike parts and and tire choice.  Finally, register for an upcoming cross race!  Click here for a list of races along the Front Range for September.  Bring on the cowbell friends! 


The 10 Best Fall Front Range Mountain Bike Trails 

September 8, 2016

BikeParts.com Team Rider Shredding the Front Range MTB Trails Autumn is upon us. And while the weather is still looking similar to our old friend summer, it is bound to drop in temperature very soon. Many cyclist grieve the loss of summer; yet, fall bike riding offers the chance to enjoy cooler temperatures, view the changing colors of the leaves, and enjoy the fitness gains achieved over the summer months.  

Officially, fall begins September 22 and while we’re only two weeks away from the official fall season, you can see the season transitioning.  Days are shorter. The temperatures are cooler.  Kids are back in school. And, sadly, vacationing is nearing an end. Now is the time to mark your calendar to get in your favorite rides before winter heads our way.  

With that in mind, which Front Range trails should you have on your bucket list?  Following are some of our favorites.

  1. Buffalo Creek
  2. Centennial Cone
  3. White Ranch
  4. Mount Falcon
  5. Lair O’ the Bear
  6. Green Mountain
  7. Apex + trails
  8. Golden Gate Canyon 
  9. Hall Ranch 
  10. Lake Pueblo 

An essential element to successful fall cycling is knowing what to wear. As the seasons transition from summer to fall, the temperatures change, the days are shorter, and the easy “go to clothing” options for riding are replaced with additional items to keep us warm, dry, and safe.  Always aiming on the safe side, at Peak Cycles Bicycle shop, we recommend getting a tune-up, having a set of reliable lights and wearing the right bike clothing. Regarding clothing options, following is our list for smoothing transitioning through the season.  

Wind Vest – The wind vest is one of the most used pieces of cool weather gear. It keeps your core body protected from frontal winds, but vents in the rear to keep you from overheating. The wind vest is also very versatile and can be added to different clothing combinations, using it with regular jerseys, winter jerseys, and arm warmers. It’s also easily stowed in a pack or shirt pocket.

Wind / Rain Jacket – It’s always a good idea to keep a water resistant jacket handy when rain is in the forecast.

Arm Warmers – Arm warmers are a must during the Fall season.  While they don’t take up much room, they are great for temperature control.

Full Finger / Windproof Gloves – When riding in cooler temps, one of the first things to freeze is the fingers. Protect your hands with full fingerers and / or windproof gloves.

Knickers, Knee Warmers, and Pants – As the temperatures drop, it’s a good idea to cover your knees. Many cyclist prefer tights whereas others prefer leg warmers.  There are also knickers which allow more airflow over the legs, and they are good for those in-between days. Consider trying out each option and experiment to dial in your preference.

Lights – Within a month, the days will be much shorter! Plan ahead and get your lights ready. Get a red blinker for the rear that mounts to the bike or your pack, and a decent headlight for the front.

Tool kit – The bicycle tools needed to have on hand in inclement weather matter.  Discover what the best bike parts for fall commuting and build a tool kit that meets your needs.

Why is all this important?  Because having access to resources, tips, and a supportive environment makes it easier to enjoy all the benefits cycling has to offer.  It gets you outside – on the bike and riding!  As you can see, it’s easy to embrace the transition from summer to fall when you have great rides to look forward to riding.  Being mindful of the best clothing options, cycling apparel, bike parts, and nutritional needs during the changing season helps too!  Happy Trails to you! 


Cyclocross In Colorado Kicking Off the Fall Season

September 1, 2016
SOMA DOUBLE CROSS DISC / BIKEPARTS.COM

SOMA DOUBLE CROSS DISC / BIKEPARTS.COM

While the cross country mountain bike  and road bike race seasons may be winding down, the cyclocross race season is just starting.  After finishing a full cycling season, you might wonder – why continue racing?

Cyclocross is a wonderful way for road cyclists and mountain bikers to extend their competitive seasons and get a head-start on training for next season. The intensity of cyclocross racing provides a training stimulus that’s very difficult to replicate with standard interval training during the fall and winter, especially as the temperatures fall and athletes turn primarily to indoor cycling.  When you think of it, the fall season is a great time for experimentation.  It can be a great opportunity to get test out new bike parts or even a new cyclocross bike.  

If you are new to cyclocross, check out our cyclocross bikes online at bikeparts.com.  Equipment choices matter! Dial in the best bike parts and and tire choice.  While bike setup and having the right cyclocross bicycle parts matters, one of the most important parts of all is tire selection and their pressure.  

So, as the cyclocross season approaches, what do you need to know?  A lot! Whether you’re a seasoned cyclocross racer or a newbie, now is the time to dial in your bike parts and begin planning your season  using goals, monthly progressions, and setting a weekly schedule. For those athletes who want to focus their efforts and manage their time, a good plan is to structure your races and cyclocross training week

Join in the cyclocross fun!  Following are races along the Front Range for September: 

Cyclocross is a sport meant to be fun, otherwise, there wouldn’t be beer handoffs, money pits, crowds heckling the pros, or pros heckling the crowd. Unless you’re aiming for World Cup titles, there’s no reason to take this sport too seriously. Train, race hard, but above all, remember that it’s supposed to be fun…and don’t forget your cowbell! 


2016 Bike Sale Galore! 

August 25, 2016

Sale at Peak Cycles / BikeParts.comIf you are a cyclist, you don’t just own a bike. At a minimum, you have a helmetbike pump, and water bottle; you might also own bike shoesbike gloves, various sets of tiresbike toolsbike lights…the list goes on! The fact is that keeping yourself and your bike in tip-top riding condition throughout the year requires the use of various bike partscycling accessories, and cycling apparel. And that can get expensive. Fortunately, it is that time of year again when we have fantastic deals on all the bikes and cycling gear you love! Yay for bike sales, right?!

Everything 2016 is marked way down.  Consider these killer deals:

  • Up to 35% off new 2016 Stumpjumpers!  
  • ’16 S-Works Stumpjumper 650b Medium $5590 (from $8600)
  • ’16 Stumpjumper Expert 650b Medium & Small $4000 (from $5900)
  • ’16 Stumpjumper Comp Carbon 650b Med & L $2540 (from $3800)
  • ’16 Stumpjumper Comp Carbon 29 Large & XL $3040 (from $3800)
  • ’16 S-Works and Expert Stumpjumper FSR bikes $5590 (from $8600) 

Additionally we can special order any remaining 2016 bikes at crazy discounts.  

Not looking for a new bike?  No worries – we’ve got you covered on cycling accessory closeouts – everything from gloves, jerseys, bike parts, hydration packs, bicycle tools – you name it!  Think about it.  There aren’t many better upgrades for your road bike than a new set of wheels. Now is the time to get them.  Do you wear a helmet every time that you ride? Probably. Well, now’s the time to replace that helmet. Replace worn out pedals, chain rings, and saddles without spending a ton of money.  

If these bikes tantalize your bike senses, stop into Peak Cycles in Golden, Colorado to see what you might find at our sale. We’re confident you’ll like what you see!  

Note on bike sale: Bikes must be picked up at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, Colorado.  Bike cannot and will not be shipped. No exceptions. This applies to all Specialized, S-Works, Praxis Works and MSW products.  


Keep Your Motivation High with Fall Racing in Colorado 

August 18, 2016

BikeParts.com Team Rider taking 4th at Soggy Bottom 100At the beginning of the race season, enthusiasm and energy is high!  About the mid-season point, accumulated season fatigue catches up with most racers. Recovery rate from workouts and from races slows down and finally, by the end of the season, some find their motivation waning.  As the racing season seems to be getting longer and longer, what are the ways to maintain motivation and also – capture added gains towards next year’s goals?  Keep riding, of course! 

Previously, we blogged about how to finish the season strong and suggested bucket list rides through August of 2016.  Now that the road and mountain bike cycling season is nearing its end, it’s time to rally! Dig deep! Celebrate the end of the season with a final push.  Then, make the transition to the fall season having no regrets.  

The key to late season racing and bike events is really to have fun! Earlier in the season, the focus is on improving fitness or achieving goals.  Now is the time to enjoy the gains of your hard work.  With fitness levels high, late season bike events offer a chance to experiment with race strategies and new cycling accessories.  If experimentation isn’t your thing, then at least replace worn out bike parts or catch deals on bike close outsbike parts and components.  Having a fun, relaxed attitude combined with a celebratory bike event is a great way to finish your season.  Here are the bike races and events on tap through October, 2016. 

Road Bike Races and Events in Colorado 

Mountain Bike Races and Events in Colorado 

Late season races should be fun. If you love what you are doing and are having fun with it, then you are setting yourself up for more good stuff to come in the following season…or cyclocross!  Stay tuned for our cyclocross post by following us on Twitter and connecting on Facebook