Unmotivated? Stressed? How to Maintain Cycling Fitness During COVID 19 

May 28, 2020

The weather is warm and inviting. The days are longer. It’s almost June – the beginning of another season of cycling along the Front Range.

Yet, do you find yourself lacking the motivation to ride? Could it be you miss your riding buddies? Or that the trails are packed with people making it hard to ride and ride with social distancing in place?  

No doubt these unprecedented times have taken their toll on motivation to get out and ride. Without races and events and group rides to inspire training, it makes it a little harder to reach that upper range in high-intensity workouts. Even if you are getting out for rides, maybe you’re cutting them short or worse, beating yourself up for losing fitness.  

The aim during these challenging times is to find a healthy balance between riding and managing other factors like stress and anxieties of the day. So, how do you find that balance?  A good first step is to give up beating yourself up for missed rides.  The post, Missing training – Adjusting the plan, suggest a few options for recalibrating your weekly training schedule.  The big take away is the mindset. “Often remind yourself of the big picture. It’s easy to beat yourself up over missed training, but if you have been steady with training, give yourself a break. Gaining fitness doesn’t happen in one or two days and losing fitness doesn’t happen in one or two days. It takes months of steady training to gain good fitness. A few days missed or logging a few less hours than planned for a week is a small blip on the radar.”  

Another piece of encouragement comes from the post, Will I Lose Fitness During Quarantine? which emphasizes that doing something is infinitely better than doing nothing and that while many athletes have been facing limitations on their training, your fitness might not be as dire as you think.  That’s encouraging, right?

A way to spark that hope and re-ignite your motivation for riding might be to Experiment With Different Bike Parts to Keep Training Motivation HighMix up your routine and ride different bikes on different days. Mondays might be your mountain bike. Tuesdays your cross bike. Wednesdays you ride your road bike and so on.  Experiment with new bike parts. Swap out your saddle or add some new grips. If experimentation isn’t your thing, then at least replace worn out bike parts or catch deals on bike close-outsbike parts and components. Or, maybe training just isn’t in the cards for you right now.  That’s okay. You can still ride! Swap your car ride for an easy bike commute. Any of these activities help to extend the fitness gains you’ve made and will also help reduce the anxieties and stress accompanied by the pandemic.  

Given all that is occurring in our world right now, it’s natural to feel frustrated, anxious, confused, and even well. What’s not needed is more self-imposed judgment for not riding or not riding as frequently as you would like. Let that go. Instead, use this time to reconnect with your bikes and the love of cycling that you have. Let that fuel your motivation for training and hopefully soon we’ll all be able to ride together and cherish more profoundly our cycling events and races and group rides.  


Why Now Is The Best Time to Buy a New Bike 

April 30, 2020
Buying a new bike right now might seem counter-intuitive. But it’s not. Now IS the right time to purchase a new bike and here’s why. 
 
Granted there are a few givens with this reasoning – the weather is warm, the sunshine is out, and many of us have more time on our hands. But the reasoning to purchase a new bike right now goes beyond that. 
 
It starts with the human spirit.  Our current circumstances can feel overwhelming, restricting, limiting and well, depressing.  All of those emotions are normal and expected during this time; however, if those emotions linger for too long or become chronic, the physical body’s immune system becomes hampered. Aside from the natural benefits of stress and tension relief garnered by riding a bike, regular exercise prompts a healthy immune system.  
 
Having a new road bike or mountain bike to ride lifts your spirit.  Owning a new bike invites a forward-thinking approach and gives you something to look forward to doing. Sure, that takes your mind off of things but it also invites fresh ideas to counter the realities we are all facing.  Whether you opt to challenge yourself with new fitness goals or plan new routes to ride, you are focusing your thoughts and planning on an activity that supports your physical, emotional, and mental aspects of yourself. Because of the uncertainty we are facing, there are many things that are simply beyond our control; yet, exercise and having new fitness goals, or exploring new routes and inviting your family along for a family bike ride is within your ability.  All of this offers a much-needed sense of achievement and accomplishment. 
 
If those reasons aren’t enough to inspire your new bike purchase, consider driving less going forward as our stores and economy resume business operations. Because of the stay at home orders across the country, there is less pollution. Continue to support this by driving less.  Commit to bike commuting more and supporting the environment. Bike commuting as alternative transportation helps the environment by reducing carbon emissions. And while you may feel like purchasing a new bike contributes to the manufacturing emissions of a bicycle, consider that bicycles emit virtually no pollution when in use and they require far fewer materials, energy, and waste in their production than even the ‘greenest’ car.  An added bonus to purchasing a new bike is that you are supporting a local business.  And all of us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop appreciate that! 
 
If you are wondering what to look for in purchasing a new bike, let us know at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop.  We’re here to help you and yes, we are open!  In addition to buying a new bike, you can visit us at our Peak Cycles bike shop in Golden, Colorado for bike repairs, bike parts, and cycling accessories. Due to COVID-19, we are not allowing any customers into the shop at this time. However, we have a table and bike stands in front of the shop so we can bring products and/or bikes to you outside for purchase. If you prefer to shop from home, you can visit us online at BikeParts.com and you can pick up your new bike and bike parts with curbside pickup or come to the front door and we will grab your order for you.
 
Take advantage of our sales right now and treat your body and spirit to a breath of fresh air by riding your new bicycle! 

Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday – A 3 Day Shopping Stage Race for Cyclists

November 21, 2019

Many recreational and competitive cyclists have made the progression from participating in one-day races to multi-day events.  The transition from racing a single day to several consecutive days can be easy enough when there is a plan in place.  

Generally, that involves planning the overall strategy and tactics for particular stages.  And much like a stage race, planning is important for making the most of the three most important upcoming holiday shopping days. Namely, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. Here’s how to make the most of your holiday purchases. 

Day 1 – Leading out the shopping season is Black Friday.  Here’s your chance to cash in on bike componentsapparel, bicycle parts including trainers and all sorts of bike goodies.  Be on the lookout for discounts on the BikeParts.com. Remember, this is day one. So, don’t go out too fast! 

Day 2 – Sandwiched in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday.  This day, November 30th is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses. As we wrote about previously, your support enables us to host community events like the Bike Safety Talk with the Cycling Lawyer, offer Bicycle Demo Days, and contribute to the national races that come through Golden like the Colorado Classic.  

Additionally, your purchases encourage us to give back to the community as in co-hosting the Staunton Blizzard Fat Bike Race each year and supporting local cycling teams. Use Small Business Saturday as a purchase that extends the gift of giving. You may be purchasing bike parts, a new road bike or mountain bike, but you’re also supporting a local bike shop that invests in the cycling community. This is the day to take advantage of big deals and savings. Be strategic in your shopping and plan to stop by Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop on Small Business Saturday to take advantage of the in-store sales, discounts, and offers available. 

Day 3 – Last but not least, we’ve got Cyber Monday.  This is day three and on Monday, December 2, 2019, Bikeparts.com  could be your best option for cyber shopping.  In addition to the storefront, our online website offers over 45,000 bike parts and accessories. Bikeparts.com not only carries road bicycle parts and mountain bike parts but also complete bikes, nutritional supplements and much more.

Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are the most highly anticipated shopping days of the year.  Be strategic with your holiday shopping. Make the most of the three days by shopping at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden Colorado and online at BikeParts.com.


Plan Ahead! Small Business Day is Coming – Why it Matters to You and to Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop 

November 14, 2019

The holidays are coming! And much like a stage race, there are three days of holiday shopping worth noting. An important one might be missed. And that is Small Business Saturday. Nestled in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday is one day every year set aside to support small businesses across the entire United States. The event was started by American Express in 2010 and is celebrated on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. 

There may be some obvious reasons why Small Business Saturday is important, as in personalized customer service, product diversity, and overall just supporting a local business.  But the reasons to support small, local businesses goes beyond that. Specific to Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, your purchases go a long way from just keeping the mechanics busy and the shop bringing in bike parts, and cycling gear.  Your support enables us to host community events like the Bike Safety Talk with the Cycling Lawyer, offer Bicycle Demo Days, and contribute to the national races that come through Golden like the Colorado Classic.  Your purchases encourage us to give back to the community as in co-hosting the Staunton Blizzard Fat Bike Race each year. More so, your purchasing dollars extend to our youth through Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop’s support of a variety of race teams. Over the years we have been proud sponsors of The School of Mines cycling team, Golden High School cycling team, Twin Peaks Racing, The Colorado Collective, and Tough Girl Cycling Team. Not to mention the BikeParts.com Racing team too! 

With all that said, our customers benefit too. Sure you have access to new road bikes, mountain bikes, fat bikes, and cyclocross bikes.  And yes, you can even take bikes out for demos and we’re happy to share where the best road and mountain bike trails are for dialing in trialing the demo bikes.  But most importantly, by investing in our local shop, you are investing in a cycling community.  A community in which you ride, live and play in. One that supports healthy, active living for people of all ages.  

The holidays are about expressing our appreciation of others and the meaning they bring to our lives.  We’re grateful for our wonderful customers. And, we invite you to join us to Shop Small on November 30th for Small Business Saturday. Your purchases make a huge difference to us and our community.  


Spice Up Your Cycling Life with Cyclocross Racing

September 26, 2019

As a cyclist, do you want to get fitter? Faster? Stronger? And do you want to have a ton of fun while doing that? Well, if you haven’t already, you might want to introduce cyclocross into your cycling regime. Cyclocross racing is super fun and it can dramatically improve your bike handling skills, while also maintaining fitness intensity over transitional months and through the winter period. Sounds good, right? It is! 

Cyclocross is a wonderful way for road cyclists and mountain bike athletes 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.  As the season is just now getting underway, what do you need to know? 

How To Get Started 
If you are new to the sport, a formal clinic can be a great way to get acclimated to the sport while making some racing friends. Attending a clinic can help improve your technical skills and help you confidently navigate your first cross race.  You can get a better idea during the clinic as to whether you want to try racing on your mountain bike.  Chances are that after doing a race or two, you will want to purchase a cyclocross bike. It is THAT addicting!  And, lucky for you, we have cyclocross bikes online at bikeparts.com.

How to Train
Another thing to consider when starting out is how to train for a cyclocross race.  A good plan is to structure your cyclocross training week.   For specific training targets, the post, Preparing for Cyclocross Season, shares more on what you need to include in your training plan. Yet overall, a structured cyclocross training plan includes these elements: transitioning from the previous race season; running; race intensity workouts including some drills to gain confidence in your bike handling skills and cornering. A bonus is to include practicing starts, dismounts, remounts, shouldering, cornering, and riding through different conditions, as in, mud and sand. All play an important factor in racing efficiently.  

What To Bring To A Cyclocross Race
As for race day, your needs for a cyclocross race will be different from what you would pack for a road race or mountain bike event. We have a compressive packing list to make it super easy for you to remember because there is a LOT to bring to a race, as in a variety of cycling apparel, cycling accessories, extra bike parts, and wheel sets  You will want the checklist so get it here: What To Bring To A Cyclocross Race? One item that is not on that list that is a treasured piece of equipment is the Feedback Sports Omnium Portable Trainer. It’s the perfect bicycle tool to have for warming up before a race and cooling down after the race. The trainer is lightweight, portable, and quiet so it functions well at home as an everyday trainer during the winter months too.  Fortunately, it’s on sale now! 

So, now that you are motivated, skilled, and have your gear bag ready, it’s time to race cross.  Here’s a recap: If you are new to cyclocross, check out our cyclocross bikes online at bikeparts.com.  Dial-in the best bike parts and tire choice for the type of racing you plan to do.  Finally, don’t forget to register for an upcoming cross race! Bring on the cowbell! 


Get Ready For The Golden Giddyup

September 12, 2019

Only 2 days until the Golden Giddyup! Wait, what? Haven’t you heard of the Golden Giddyup?  Well, it’s a mountain bike community-sponsored bike event and trail stewardship program held in Golden, Colorado and it’s THIS weekend! All of us at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop are excited about the event. You’re invited to learn all about the GoldenGiddyup and encouraged to take part!

The History: The Golden Giddyup is a 501c3 nonprofit originally created to support Jefferson County Open Space with competent volunteer trail builders who help maintain some of the most loved and heavily used Open Space Parks. Each year in September, the partners at Jeffco Open Space close Apex, Windy Saddle and North Table Mountain Parks to host the annual Golden Giddyup race and there is a party, the Giddyup Get-Down, in downtown Golden. All of the proceeds from the event go back to supporting the Giddyup Trail Team and the stewardship efforts on the trail and off.

What is it? The Golden Giddyup is an all-day mountain bike event.  Part of the day is racing and all of the day is pure fun! As for the racing part, the Golden Giddyup features an enduro-style format, with three timed descents and three timed climbs.  As for course and race descriptions, there’s the Classic, the Chimpex, and the Lite. Each course option offers stiff climbs and bomb worthy descents.  As for the fun part, well, that’s an all-day thing.  The Giddyup Expo is from 10 AM – 5 PM in Lions Park. There is a free concert from noon until 5 PM. And the best part? Family fun and bike activities throughout the day!  There is a skills course for strider riders on up, a climbing wall, face painting and a variety of family fun activities.

Get involved!  If you’re a Golden Giddyup first-timer, then show up and enjoy the festivities! If you’re registered to race, then plan ahead and purchase any bike parts or cycling accessories to be prepared. Get your bike maintenance tools and prep your mountain bike for a great day in the saddle. 

The Golden Giddyup is a wonderful event and more so, an opportunity to really thank all those that make our mountain bike trails great. We’ll see you at the Golden Giddyup! 


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.