3 New Years Resolutions Worth Keeping

December 31, 2015
Happy New Year from BikeParts.com

Happy New Year from BikeParts.com

New Year’s has always been a time for reflecting on the past year, and more importantly, looking forward to the coming year. It’s a time to reflect on the changes we want to make and resolve to follow through on those changes.  However, for all too many resolutions, failure is virtually assured at the offset because the resolutions are not made with serious intent and deliberation. Basically, they are just wishful thinking.

The first trick to making a resolution stick is to choose the right resolution in the first place!  Make it SMART!  When you make your resolutions SMART  (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound), not only do you boost your chance of  attaining your goals, but you also  become a better cyclist in the process.  Aside from the traditional resolutions to ride more, to loose weight, and to explore new rides, consider taking on some different resolutions.

Resolve to set bigger goals! Set your sights high! Reach for bigger goals in 2016!  Many cyclist resolve to ride more frequently or adventure on longer rides in the coming year; yet without actually quantifying the specific actions required to support these goals, no gains are actually made. The post, Make Proper Goal Setting a Priority for Your Next Cycling Season highlights this fact offering 10 questions to evaluate the past season’s cycling performance and arms you with insights to making better training choices that lead to better performance in 2016.  In addition to goal setting, using cycling accessories – as in power meters and /or heart rate monitors can aid in bio feedback, data, and analysis towards obtaining your goals.  Armed with SMART goals and biofeedback, the only thing you have to do is actually ride!

Resolve to try something new! If you are a roadie, try riding a mountain bike.  If you only ride trails, opt for a gravel grinder event.  Gravel grinder events are great for roadies and mountain bike riders and they are popping up all over the country.  Generally, they are unsanctioned, unsupported endurance bicycle races on primarily gravel and dirt roads, with little or no outside support, course markings, fees or prizes.  That translates to a day of adventure on the bike!  If the endurance route isn’t your thing, consider riding a fat bike.  Fat bikes offer a whole new level of fun and adventure to riding.  Why not try something new? You have nothing to lose and only fun, adventure, and new cycling thrills to gain! 

Resolve to treat your body right!  Sure, as a cyclist you probably think about proper hydration and eating well but there’s more to taking care of your body than that.  Have you thought about yoga? Some of the most elite cyclists use yoga as part of a successful training program, including 2012 Tour De France winner Bradley Wiggins. From power to endurance, athletes at all levels are incorporating yoga to gain an edge over the competition, and prevent injury.  Another way to prevent injury and take care of your body is to get a proper 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 and possibly even your 2016 cycling resolutions.  In a sport based on such a highly repetitive action, like pedaling, the first line of defense against injury is a proper bike fit.  A bike fit doesn’t simply consist of setting saddle height and bar reach. It’s more than that and it is even more critical to dial in the fit and confirm you have the right bike parts for optimal performance.  

The New Year is all about out with the old and in with the new.  Maybe last year’s cycling resolutions were to get in shape, build fitness, or get stronger on the bike.  This year, branch out! Create resolutions worth keeping and watch your cycling soar to new heights in the coming year! At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we’re wishing you a year that is filled with all the joys, personal rewards, and the grand adventure that cycling brings.  Happy 2016!

4 Ways to Make the Most of Late Summer Riding 

August 27, 2015
Late Summer Riding at BikeParts.com

Late Summer Riding at BikeParts.com

At the beginning of the cycling season, enthusiasm and energy is high!  About the mid-season point, accumulated season fatigue catches up with most cyclist. Recovery rate from workouts and from races slows down and finally, by the end of the season, some find their motivation waning.  As the cycling 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? With spring and summer riding in the legs, it’s important to put your late-season form and fitness to good use.   Fortunately, there are no shortage of ways to enjoy life on two wheels through September.  

Dress for success!
As we transition from summer to fall, the Colorado mountain colors explode into a vibrant mix of autumn hues. Yet to make the transition from summer to fall to winter riding safely, it’s wise to make sure that your bike is working and that you have the proper cycling apparel to keep you warm and also motivated to ride in the cooler temps. We have the best cycling apparel for late summer / early fall heat.  Consider factors to consider in cycling apparel for this time of year include: ventilation, storage, water access, and rain/wind gear.  As we transition to night time riding, high visibility gear for night time riding is important too! If you haven’t stopped by the shop recently, you may want to check out our hot store items such as Endure pro race cape and Liv shorts and jersey. 

Try Cyclocross!
Cyclocross season is nearly upon us!  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.  If you are veteran of cyclocross, consider focusing on skill development to keep things fresh.  Favorites to practice leading into the season include practicing starts, dismounts, remounts, shouldering, cornering, and riding through different conditions, as in, mud and sand. All play an important factor is racing efficiently.  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 is important, one of the most important parts of all is tire selection and their pressure.  

Ride a Fat Bike!
If cyclocross isn’t your thing, maybe a fat bike is! While some consider fat bikes a trend, they are actually steadily growing in popularity.  Because fat bikes behave much like a mountain bike, they can be ridden in a variety of conditions and are extremely versatile.  Check out our post,  Top Fat Bike FAQ’s for answers to your fat bike questions.  Or, stop by Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop and take a test ride to see which one is best for you!  

Embark on a Gravel Grinder Adventure!
Gravel grinder events are growing in popularity and because of the informal nature of them, you can somewhat create your own event! Perfect for late summer riding to explore new terrain while maintaining fitness.  Specifically, gravel road races and rides combine riding on surfaces such as asphalt, gravel, dirt, some singletrack trails and maintenance or B roads. The courses vary from hard-packed dirt to softball-sized rocks. The distance usually ranges between 50 and 150 miles, but can be even longer.  What makes this riding great is that you can ride your cyclocross bike, mountain bike, or even your fat bike! A fun way to explore! 

All in all, the fall season can be an opportunity to rest and recharge while still maintaining fitness on the bike. By keeping it fresh, trying something new, and also, targeting some fitness goals, it can inspire you to lay down some of your best training in your season.  Enjoy!