Make Sure You Have These Three Most Important Elements to Optimize Your Spring Training 

March 5, 2020

The winter months aren’t very conducive to maintaining a solid level of fitness and keeping in shape.  Yet spring is right around the corner and with the warming temperatures and the start of daylight savings time it’s fair to say spring is near.  This can be both hugely exciting, and also slightly nerve-racking for cyclists who have spent the winter months working towards spring or summer goals.

So, what are the best ways to optimize your cycling to prepare best for the upcoming season? Rest assured, we’ve got you covered. It’s a matter of having three important elements. Read on.  

Importance of having the right training tools
If you’ve been looking to get faster on the bike, then most likely you have explored cycling training tools, as in power meters, heart rate monitors and the like. No doubt, today’s technology provides instant biofeedback and structure to workouts.  And over time, this aggregated training data offers visibility to your training program and progress. The ultimate goal of using training tools is to get faster, stronger, fitter, and optimize athletic performance. If you haven’t already, now is the time to invest in the tools that will help you the most. Our suggestions? Consider investing in one or all of the following: a power meter, a bike fit, and even a new cycling computer. The right training tools will keep you motivated through the spring season as you transition your fitness and form from the winter coach potato to the cycling warrior that you are! 

Importance of having the right bike parts
Most cyclists can’t get enough bike parts. We are gear junkies at heart. But new cycling accessories aren’t just a passion!  Having the proper bike parts makes a difference in injury prevention.  In a sport based on such a highly repetitive action, like pedaling, the first line of defense against injury is having a proper saddle with aligned seat position, height, and angle – not to mention a few other important factors like handlebarsstems, and the correct bike position.  All of these factor into a comfortable riding position as well as a rider’s stability, endurance, and safety.  As you transition to longer and more intense training rides during the spring months, consider upgrading bike parts and also getting a bike fit. Nothing beats a comfortable and well-engineered bike! 

Importance of having the right supplements
At the end of each ride, most cyclists understand the importance of cooling down appropriately. Yet, it’s easy to forget the importance of fueling appropriately post-ride.  Immediately following your ride, Carrie McCusker, an endurance coach, recommends to “restore fluid and electrolyte balance, to replenish muscle and liver glycogen stores, and to stimulate protein synthesis. You can accomplish this by consuming carbohydrates, protein, and fluids within thirty to sixty minutes of finishing your workout. Based on research data, athletes are encouraged to utilize this “glycogen window” to restore the muscles. It is particularly important for glycogen-depleting workouts, those that are longer than two hours or those with high-intensity efforts, or if the day involves two or three workouts.”

At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, a favorite nutritional product available for recovery post-ride is PhysioPhyx.  Here’s what we like about this product.  PhysioPhyx LPR takes recovery nutrition to a new level of support and performance by delivering a powerful, evidence-based blend of Carbohydrates + Protein + Leucine. This potent combination of nutrients has been precisely formulated to help ensure you rapidly and effectively restore muscle energy (glycogen), minimize muscle soreness, stimulate muscle repair and speed training adaptations after moderate, intense and exhaustive exercise or competition. In fact, recent studies have shown the nutrient trio of Carbs + Protein + Leucine taken after exercise creates an absolutely ideal environment for your body to quickly go into recovery overdrive.  

Spring training is transitional. The weather fascinates from good riding conditions to riding indoors and back again causing well-intended cyclists’ motivation to wane. By having these important elements, you can keep your motivation and training in check. And when the weather finally improves, you’ll be able to look back with gratitude that you had the right bike parts and training tools to assist you in meeting your goals. 


8 Great Valentine’s Day Gifts for Cyclists

February 13, 2020

Tired of the same old same old for Valentine’s Day? Do you want to swap out the card and candy for a more useful and thoughtful gift? Are you unsure what to get the cyclist in your life this Valentine’s day? Stress no more! We’ve got you covered with the perfect Valentine’s Day gifts for your favorite cyclists.  Check out our top 8 picks.

  1. New Bike: For those going all our for their favorite cyclist, nothing beats a new bike! You might think, they already have one – maybe two- or even three bikes…how could they need another? Truth is, you can’t ever have enough bikes. Consider a new road bicycle or mountain bike.  Even better, opt for a fat bike! Fortunately, we have a huge selection of Specialized road bikes and mountain bikes on sale now making splurging on Valentine’s Day a little easier to show your love and take it easy on your wallet.
  2. Bike Fit: Does your cyclist complain of hands falling asleep while riding? Or shoulder or neck pain after a long ride? Give yourself a break from giving those massages and also ease your cyclist discomfort with 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 and it is useful in preventing overuse injuries. Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to get all the details on gifting a bike fit including information on the bike parts that may be needed as a follow up to the fit.
  3. Tubes: This is one gift you absolutely positively will get used and it’s not expensive. Maybe combine some tubes with other goodies to make a Valentine’s day gift bag. Speaking of which, these are the other cycling accessories to include in your gift bag.
  4. Bottles or hydration packs: Every cyclist has a ton of bottles, but that’s not the same as having good bottles. Buy a good bottle and stuff it with other treats – like nutritional products or even socks!
  5. Socks: Cycling socks are always a coveted item. The more decorative, the better! Again, check out our sale for a variety of sizes and colors.
  6. Tires: Treat your favorite cyclist to some new rubber! We have a ton of tires for road and mountain bikes and quite a few on sale too!
  7. Bike Parts: So many bike parts – the question is what to purchase?  Consider getting your Valentine a Specialized saddle, helmet or shoes.  All worthy gift items that wear out, get stinky and regularly need replacing.
  8. Cycling Accessories: So what do you get a cyclist that has seems to have everything?  Cycling apparel!  Cycling apparel is much better than just getting candy and a card! Our Specialized Sale items include jerseys, shorts, tights, jackets,  and winter riding gear!

Here at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we feel that the true spirit of Valentine’s day is celebrating what you love and we love bikes! So, whether your favorite cyclist is interested in racing, commuting, or recreational bike riding, at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we’ve got your Valentine’s Day gift ideas covered. Happy Valentine’s Day friends! 


The Benefits Of Cycling For Seniors Living with Arthritis

September 5, 2019

Nearly 50% of people over the age of 65 have been diagnosed with arthritis. Exercise can help alleviate arthritis pain and improve joint flexibility, however, arthritis can also make certain forms of exercise more challenging. Fortunately, cycling is a low-impact exercise option for seniors with arthritis pain, helping them to stay active and improve symptoms of their condition. As we’ve written previously, having the right bike parts can play a role in injury prevention and ease or riding for cyclist of all ages.  Yet, specific to older cyclists, partnership with the government is key to promoting better public health, as government sponsorship of cycling programs for older adults in the community can dramatically improve the quality of life for the 10.9 percent of Colorado residents who are over 65.

Cardiovascular Exercise is Crucial if You Have Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes the body to attack its own tissues, resulting in inflammation. This inflammation is not just limited to the joints but affects all systems of the body, including the heart. As a result, people who have rheumatoid arthritis are 50% more likely to develop heart disease. Cycling is a great way to increase your heart rate and manage weight, reducing your risk of heart attack and stroke. The CDC currently awards 71.4 million dollars at the state and local level to raise awareness, deliver medical care and develop lifestyle programs to prevent and treat heart disease. Needless to say, using these funds towards a cycling program would help seniors with rheumatoid arthritis take charge of their cardiovascular health.

Cycling Improves Joint Health Without Causing Pain
Regular activity has a number of proven benefits for improving the health of people with arthritis. Running or jogging, however, may not be the best choice for seniors with certain types of arthritis. Osteoarthritis wears down the cartilage and tissue between the joints, which means that running while you have this condition results in bone rubbing against bone. Cycling, on the other hand, does not involve bearing any weight on your joints and flushes oxygen-rich blood through the joints to keep them healthy and lubricated. While it may be difficult to motivate yourself to exercise, especially if you’re struggling with pain or discomfort, joining a group at a local senior recreation center can making working out more fun.

It’s Easy to Modify Cycling to Meet Your Needs
Seniors with arthritis can take steps to modify their cycling equipment and bike parts to best ensure their comfort and safety, and the efficacy of their workout. Fortunately, at Peak Cycles, we are your bike fit resource offering improved comfort, efficiency, and performance regardless of the cyclist’s age.  And, since arthritis is the primary diagnosis in nearly 5% of seniors living in nursing homes, government programs can help provide funding for exercise equipment that makes cycling possible for seniors in assisted living facilities. A recumbent bicycle supports the back and allows you to exercise without placing any pressure on your knees. It may also be easier to get on and off a recumbent bicycle. A gel-padded saddle can also help you maintain proper posture and keep your lower back from aching. It’s important to make sure your road, mountain, or hybrid bike is properly adjusted to your height, to avoid having to bend over the handlebars uncomfortably. Again, this is where a bit fit makes a world of difference in comfort. 

Incorporating cycling into your exercise plan is a great way to alleviate arthritis and maintain healthy joints as you age. Finding safe and effective forms of exercise for seniors ensures better overall health and a better quality of life. If you’re over 65 and living with arthritis, start pedaling your way towards living pain-free.

 


Inspired by the Colorado Classic? Top Ways You Can Support The Women Cyclists in Your Life and Community  

August 22, 2019

Today kicks off Stage 1 of the Colorado Classic in Steamboat Springs, Colorado and in just a few days, these phenomenal racers will grace the streets of Golden, Colorado. At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we couldn’t be more excited to see the race unfold! More so, we embrace this opportunity to support the movement to inspire women, challenge and redefine female professional cycling, and empower women of all ages to cycle, train, race and enjoy all that the world of cycling offers.  We invite you to do the same! 

As the race develops, witnessing the athleticism, strength, endurance, and race strategies these athletes embody is inspiring. Capture that inspiration and take action on it! Get young girls, teenagers, and women interested in cycling and further support their existing training and racing programs with bike parts, cycling apparel, and cycling related products that the women racing in the Colorado Classic have available to them.  

Support doesn’t have to cost a lot but it could make a huge difference. Think of it this way, your support and inspiration could be the confidence-building or the inspiration needed to take action on dreams, goals, and achievements that would never be realized.  Just like the Colorado Classic. This is the only stand-alone women’s pro race in the Western Hemisphere – with the same prize money as the men. The Colorado Classic is making big strides in the world of women’s cycling and so can you.  There are countless ways to support women’s cycling. Following are just a few:

Ride together!  Whether you are riding the road or hitting some great single track, stick together and ride together. Maybe do intervals or practice skills on the mountain bike.  Riding together rather than dropping your female cyclist can ease the mental toll that creates from the constant pressure to keep up with you or the group. You don’t have to ride together every ride, but certainly, on no-drop rides – ensure they really are no-drop rides.  This invites beginners and riders with less confidence to find their way into the group, gain some skill level, and improve fitness.  Consider it “paying it forward”.  

The pro riders in the Colorado Classic are riding, training, and racing on quality road bikes. Support your female cyclist in having a good bike – and a well-fitting bike!   Surprisingly, great road bicycles don’t have to come at a hefty price tag.  Right now, in our Golden, Colorado shop we have a huge end of summer sale.  Now is the time to take advantage of the 40% off on select Specialized bikes and gear.  We also have a wide selection of women’s cycling apparel so it’s worth taking the time to stop in, try some things on, check out the road and mountain bikes, and cash in on the end of summer sale.

Pay attention to the nutritional differences of female athletes.  Specific to training and racing, many cyclists have different preferences as to how they prefer to get their fuel while riding – whether that is in nutrition bars, gels, and liquids. We have several options including nutritional products just for women. Specifically, Osmo nutrition.  This product is specific to women offering three options: active hydration, acute recovery, and preload hydration. These options are definitely worth looking into considering that oftentimes, female nutritional requirements differ from men’s requirements. 

Take training to another level with heart rate monitors and power meters. Pro riders train with power and heart rate and even recreational riders do too.  Some mistakingly think that technology takes away the “riding experience” or that it is too costly for their level of riding.  However, times have changed and power meters are much more affordable.  Specific to cycling performance, they offer objective biofeedback to help improve fitness related to goals. Many cyclists goes by “feel” as to whether or not they are getting stronger, faster, or “better” but power meters take the guessing out of the equation and offer precise feedback that gives true confidence that there is an improvement.  

Last but not least, get a bike fit! Pro riders get bike fits – and so can you! An often overlooked component of successful racing and training is a bike fit. Leg strength, endurance, and fitness are at the heart of cycling speed, but without a proper bike fit, you are sabotaging your training efforts.  Bike fits aren’t just for the pros, they are for everyone that rides. So go ahead and make the best of your training efforts and schedule a bike fit in our professional bike fit studio.

There are countless suggestions that we can offer for training and racing tips to support women’s cycling.  Stop by the Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop on Saturday during Stage 3 of the Colorado Classic and ask our staff for ideas and suggestions.  Also, keep current by following our Facebook page and Twitter feed for updates.


10 Best Father’s Day Gifts for Cyclists

June 13, 2019

Father’s Day Gifts at BikeParts.com/ Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop

For Father’s day, your dad doesn’t need a tie. He doesn’t need a gift with ribbons, fluff, or something that is going to sit on his desk.  What he needs are no fluff gifts that make your dad’s cycling experience better!

As in – bike parts, cycling accessories, and cycling apparel! These are the gifts that keep on giving! If you’re stuck wondering what to get your cycling Dad for Father’s day, then look no further!  At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we have all the cycling apparel and cycling accessories, your Dad wants. 

  1. New Bike: For those going all our for their cycling Dad, nothing beats a new bike! You might think, he already has one – maybe two- or even three bikes…how could he need another? Truth is, you can’t ever have enough bikes. Consider a new road bicycle or mountain bike for your Dad.  Even better, opt for a fat bike!  
  2. Bike Fit: Does your Dad complain of hands falling asleep while riding? Or shoulder or neck pain after a long ride? Ease your Dad’s discomfort with 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. Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to schedule your Dad’s bike fit. Not only can we help him with the fit, but we carry all the bike parts required to get the bike in the very best setup for his riding needs.
  3. Tubes: This is one gift you absolutely positively will get used. Make sure you get the right size of tube. If you aren’t sure, stop in the Peaks Cycling Store and ask one of our friendly staff to help you. 
  4. Bottles or hydration packs: Every cyclist has a ton of bottles, but that’s not the same as having good bottles. Buy a good bottle and stuff it with other goodies.
  5. Socks: Did you know Dad likes to wear their cycling socks even when he isn’t riding?  Why? Because they are so comfortable.  Pick out a pair of socks you like for your Dad and maybe even get a pair for yourself!
  6. Tires: Treat yourself to Dad to some new rubber! We have a ton of tires for road and mountain bikes. 
  7. Bike Parts: So many bike parts – the question is what to purchase?  Consider getting your Dad a high-quality wheelset.  A good wheelset impacts ride quality, ease of pedaling, reliability, and functionality.  Maybe purchase some new, lighter tires for your Dad’s wheels. Another option is to reconsider the current crankset and pedals setup.
  8. Power Meter: Is your Dad a data junkie?  Then, this is the ideal gift for him!  The main idea behind using cycling training tools is to dial in training to optimize performance as it relates to specific goals and objectives. Our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, dives into the benefits of training with power. Stop in the shop for help to dial in the best power meter to purchase for your dad. 
  9. Cycling Accessories: So what do you get a Dad that has everything?  Cycling apparel!  You can’t have too many jerseys, shorts, tights, jacket, sunglasses, and cycling shoes!  Cycling apparel is much better than just getting another tie!
  10. Gift Certificates: Renew your Dad’s cycling enthusiasm by trying out new bike parts. Whether it’s a new saddleshiftersbrakes, seat post, forkpedalshubs or wheels, your Dad probably wants it.  The usual problem is how to know exactly what to get. Our answer, get a gift certificate.  Gift certificates can be used for purchasing all kinds of bike parts and cycling accessories. 

See how easy it is to get your cycling Dad a great gift for Father’s Day? If by chance you are still in need of ideas for creative Father’s Day gifts, stop by the shop in Golden, Colorado or give us a call at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop (303) 216-1616 and we’ll gladly help you out!  Happy Father’s Day!


Best Cycling Training Tools  to Improve Performance

March 28, 2019

If you’ve been looking to get faster on the bike, then most likely you have explored cycling training tools, as in power meters, heart rate monitors and the like. No doubt, today’s technology provides instant biofeedback and structure to workouts.  And over time, this aggregated training data offers visibility to your training program and progress. The ultimate goal of using training tools is to get faster, stronger, fitter, and optimize athletic performance.  Given that, which training tools are best for you? Read on to find out. 

Heart rate Training – Heart rate training has been viewed in many ways over the years, from very precise to not so precise. Now, a growing number of coaches and exercise physiologists support the use of heart rates as an important part of biological feedback, as heart rates are a direct reflection of what is happening internally.  The post, The Variables and Trends of Heart Rate Training,  walks you through the steps of learning your “threshold” heart rate range, setting up heart rate training zones, and identifying the daily variables that affect heart rate. If you do not have a trainer or coach to keep you disciplined during your workout, a heart rate monitor can be a great substitute. It can tell you when your exercise is falling below your ideal intensity so you can instantly improve your performance.  It can be a great biofeedback tool and also help you to monitor your fitness, prevent overtraining, and take your performance to the next level.

Power meters – Training with a power meter is one of the most effective ways to get results. The more power you can produce, the faster your bike will go. Unlike a heart rate monitor that is subjective, watts or power output is not. Watts are watts. Training with a power meter helps establish a baseline fitness and eliminates the guesswork out of measuring fitness gains.  The data provided also helps to get a better handle on overreaching and overtraining during training blocks.  There are different power meters available based on your fitness goals and budget. So be sure to stop by the shop to dial in which power meter is best for you. 

Bike Fit – While a bike fit isn’t necessarily a training tool, it is your first defense in injury prevention.  It’s also one of the quickest ways to get faster on the bike. Leg strength, endurance, and fitness are at the heart of cycling speed, but without a proper bike fit, you are sabotaging your training efforts.  As you know, bikes come in all sizes and shapes, and there are endless bike parts and cycling accessories that can be added or swapped to make a bike become a better fit for you. At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we believe that there is much more to fitting a cyclist to his/her bicycle than just the physical dimensions of a bike. Each cyclist has a different history, experience, comfort level, and goal on the bike; each of these variables is important to the bike-fit process.  Take advantage of our bike fit studio and schedule a bike fit to align your bike with your body posture and improve your cycling

Use power meters and heart rate monitors to guide you through you.  By monitoring your training efforts with specific data, you objectively know when you are pushing beyond your targeted indicators, 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 2019 cycling season goals.


Lacking Cycling Inspiration and Motivation? Try This! 

February 28, 2019

In between the New Year and the spring cycling season, there seems to be something like a Bermuda triangle affect taking place in terms of motivation, training, and sticking with goals.  They all seem to disappear. Even the best of intentions seem to dissolve into thin air.  

Granted, the weather doesn’t help. Cold days followed by warmer days and then again, snow or wet days.  Training outdoors proves to be inconsistent. Training indoors consistently, can be maddening. Add the frustrations up and it’s easy to see why those New Year goals may have fallen by the wayside.  

Yet, on the bright side, spring is right around the corner. And while there are some wet and sometimes snowy days ahead of us, now is the time to dig a deep and set those training goals in motion.  So when you are experiencing a lack of motivation to train, try some of these tips to get you going. 

One of the reasons training year round is to maintain a base level of fitness.  Also, training year round helps to reduce injuries.  In a sport based on such a highly repetitive action, like pedaling, the first line of defense against injury is a proper bike fit. The benefits of a professional bike fit will not only help improve your riding position, but it will also help motivate you to ride your bike and perfect the mechanics of your pedal position and body posture.  The results of a professional bike fit will leave you feeling more confident in your bike parts, bike set up, and inspire you to reach your potential – which translates into riding more.  And that is the objective! To ride more regularly and frequently during the pre-season. 

Another option is to trade saddle time for gym time to gain core strength.  The primary focus when it comes to strength exercises for cyclists is to train in a similar motion to cycling with the lower and upper body while increasing overall core strength and muscular endurance. Check out The Best Strength Exercises for Cyclists or 7 Hip and Core Exercises for Endurance Athletes to get you started and also – to keep you motivated through the winter months.  

If those two options don’t get your motor running, then sit down and revisit your 2019 cycling goals.  What is it that you wanted to accomplish in 2019? Get back on track.  Check out our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling.  The post dives into the benefits of training with power meters.  Maybe to spark some motivation you need to invest in new cycling accessories like a power meter or heart rate monitor.  

Quite frankly, we’ve found one of the best motivators for riding is purchasing a new bike! Whether you choose a road bike, mountain bike, hybrid/ commuter bike, or even a fat bike, getting a new bike turbo charges motivation and inspires a sense of adventure. There is just nothing quite like the feeling of purchasing and riding a new bike! 

When all else fails, remember something is better than nothing. Meaning, some training is better than no training at all.  Give yourself a break for those days missed and shift your focus towards being consistent in your training.  Spring will be here sooner than you think!