8 Expert Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Bike Parts, Bicycles, and Bike Components

August 7, 2014

Expert answersWhen most walk into our Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, Colorado, they are confronted by a dazzling display of road bikes, mountain bikes, cycling accessories, and cycling apparel.  It’s enough to make your head spin!

On the flip side, it’s the many questions that are asked of our staff and mechanic’s that make our heads spin!  And, we’re happy about that!  Obviously, we love answering questions and talking about the latest and greatest.  But, general questions usually center around road bike or mountain bike?  Tubeless or not? Full suspension or hard tail?  26”, 27 1/2” or 29” wheel?  You get the picture.  Those are great shop questions that we help answer for our customers.

Yet, there are more sophisticated questions asked.  Ones that take a little more time to explain. Answering those questions, we find the following posts to help explain in further detail.

1.  Technical FAQ: Tire widths, pressures, and more
2.  What Happens When the Six Million Dollar Man (bike) Crashes?
3.  Bike Inspections: A Guide for Injury Free, Enjoyable Spring Cycling  
4.  GoingTubeless? How to use Stans NoTubes 
5.  Bike weight and the myth of ‘fast’ bikes
6.  Ask a Mechanic: Which spare parts should I have on hand?
7.  The Quickest Way To Get Faster? Get a Bike Fit! 
8;  Wheelset Buyer Guide: What You Need to Know 

Asking good questions about your bike and bike parts leads to having the right bike and gear that not only gets you on the bike, but keeps you riding.  Ride on!


Consistency: The Secret Sauce to Your Best 100 Mile Mountain Bike Race?

June 26, 2014

Peak Cycles Race Team What makes for a successful first 100 mile mountain bike race?  Is it riding a ton of trails? Picking the best race?

Or maybe, it’s knowing the difference between riding and training.  Sure, many think if they ride a lot it will get them to the finish line.  And it will.  But training and preparing strategically for your 100 miler will not only get you to the finish line feeling your best, but it can actually prepare you for better performances in the future.  Here’s why.

According to the post, Nine Golden Rules for Training, consistency is key. That means consistently training but also, consistently racing builds fitness too.  Consistency in racing builds all kinds of fitness: mental, physical, and psychological fitness.  To ensure a successful 100 mile mountain bike race, you need to train all the systems.

You can start by looking at the type of race or races you like to race.  What types of terrain, geographical areas, and elevations profiles suit your strengths.  What about your weaknesses?  There are numerous 100 mille mountain bike races to choose from including the National Ultra Endurance Series, the 100 Mile Mountain Bike and Running Off Road Race Series and the the Leadville 100 Race Series.  Racing longer distances consistently builds an endurance baseline to build upon year after year.

Consistency in race preparation makes a difference too.  If your race day strategies are scattered, unorganized, and left to chance, all your training leading up to the race can only take you so far.  The post,  Top 10 Tips For Your Best 100 Mile Mountain Bike Race  states the importance of race day preparations.

Other resources reinforce dialing in your race day nutritional needs and bike inspections to avoid mechanicals, flats, and other bike related issues due to not having your bike parts in order for racing.  Imagine doing all the prep work for a major race and having to DNF due to not replacing a chain, derailleur, or tire.

Consistency in training helps you physical body prepare for the physical stresses of racing a 100 mile mountain bike race.  But minimizing or eliminating other stressors like those mentioned above helps you free up your mental and psychological energies so that you can successful focus on the task at hand: racing your best 100 miler ever.


How to Improve Joint Health While Cycling Safely 

June 12, 2014

healthWhen you feel great, you probably take your fitness and health for granted. But as many cyclist know, it doesn’t take but a quick spill on the bike to go from a physically fit state to an injured one with limitations on riding and training time. Surface injuries are the easiest to heal but as we’ve seen in the recent crash that injured BMC Racing’s Taylor Phinney at the Volkswagen USA Cycling National Road Championship, broken bones and muscle injuries can make a good season turn bad.

With June being National Safety Month, how can you avoid injuries, improve joint health, and capture the gains of an active lifestyle? Answers can be found in the post, Bike Inspections: A Guide for Injury Free, Enjoyable Spring Cycling, which shares the importance of having the right bike setup, cycling accessories and gear. More importantly, for safe riding, regular bike inspections are in order.  If you’re not sure what to look for, you want to notice any bike parts that need to be replaced.  For instance, saddle injuries are the result of poor seat position, height, angle or design. Replacing older items like saddles, cables, tires and brakes provide safety and peace of mind while riding.

Also, consider if the right bike parts can make 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 a proper bike fit. Whether you’re just starting to ride or you’ve been cycling for a long time, there are numerous benefits to getting a professional bike fit in which you can dial in the appropriate riding position for you as well as the exact bike parts needed to accommodate that fit precisely.

Cycling is safe and effective, fun way to improve fitness as well as joint health. It strengthens muscles which puts less pressure on joints and it is a low-impact exercise limits wear on cartilage around joints .  When you take a few preventative measures, as in bike inspections, bike maintenance and commit to a regular cycling schedule, not only do you improve joint health and fitness, but you also improve your overall peace of mind.  Enjoy a National Safety Month from the view of your two wheeled friend!