5 Uncommon Bike Buying Questions

October 4, 2018
So you want to buy a bike?  Who wouldn’t want to get a new bike?! Actually, now is the best time of year to purchase a new road bike or mountain bike because this year’s bikes are on sale and we’re clearing the way for next year’s models.  With so many bike choices available, there are quite a few questions to dial in when considering purchasing a new bike.  In fact, we’ve written about many of those questions in the following blog posts and you can check them out here:  
But, what about the uncommon questions?  You know, the ones you might be a bit shy to ask the salesperson.  No need to hesitate with your questions, we’ve got you covered.  
 
Question #1 Let’s get the first question out of the way.  Do you need to buy your bike at a bike shop?  You can buy anything on the internet these days including bike parts, cycling accessories, and complete bicycles from us at BikeParts.com.  However, we do encourage you to purchase your bicycle at a bike shop.  Here’s why. Bicycle Magazine sums it up best, “When you buy a bike from an authorized retailer, you know that the bike was assembled by a professional mechanic, and you begin to build a rapport with that shop—a great way to find out about new routes or group rides or maintenance clinics and events. You also ensure you’re not getting a counterfeit product, which is a continuing problem in the bike industry.” 
Question # 2 How do you know if a bike fits you? Test ride it!  Bring your cycling apparel with you, including your cycling shoes and helmet, when test riding a bike.  Before heading out on your test ride, take time to visit with your salesperson about shifting, brakes, and any particular feature of the bike you are testing out.  A bike that feels good and is comfortable to ride is one you will ride often.  So, go with feel. And then, after your purchase, schedule a bike fit with us to dial in the specific bike parts you may need to achieve optimum comfort, power, cadence, and fit for you.  
Question #3. Do I have to dress like a cyclist like the riders you see on the Tour de France?  Well, you can if you want to!  At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we have a wide variety of cycling apparel to match your style.  Some prefer jerseys and lycra shorts and other prefer a more casual ride style.  Again, go with what is comfortable to you. We have cycling apparel on sale and new items coming in for the winter months. Stop by and see what works best for you. 
Question #4 Should I use clipless or flat pedals? Note, clipless pedals are the ones you clip into with cycling shoes with cleats on the bottom.  Flat pedals are simply pedals, like you would have on a BMX or kids bike. They are not popular with many racers or road riders because clipless pedals help improve your performance in racing, especially for road disciplines. But don’t rush to use clipless or exclude flat pedals from your practice completely. Start with what you are most comfortable and make changes as you see fit. 
Question #5 How do I maintain my bike?  Bike maintenance may seem overwhelming to the new rider and even to veteran riders too.  Some cyclist really enjoy doing their own bike maintenance and others prefer for our shop mechanics to do it for them.  Again, do what is best in your comfort zone.  As a general rule of thumb, you’ll want to follow some of these guidelines that we’ve written about in our post, 4 Essential Bike Maintenance Tips to Get Your Bike on the Road.
 
What other questions might you have that we missed? Don’t be shy! Stop by Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop to test ride a bike, check out our winter cycling apparel, and get all of your questions answered.  
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Registration and Prep Tips for the STAUNTON BLIZZARD Fat Bike Race

February 22, 2018

STAUNTON BLIZZARD FAT BIKE RACE

If you’re a winter cyclist, you are tough. You’re love of cycle overcomes any inhibitions to stay inside during cold, windy, and snowy winter weather. And while it’s not always easy to be outside in winter, you love the chill on your face and the wind whipping through your helmet holes. And that is why you want to race a fat bike this weekend at the first ever STAUNTON BLIZZARD!

The Staunton Blizzard is the first ever Front Range fat bike race! Be a part of history and join us Sunday, February 25th at Staunton State Park in Pine, Colorado to ride along a beautiful 12.1 mile loop that includes the following trails: Staunton Ranch – Borderline – Mason Creek. The views and the course will take your breath away! Fatties roll out at 8,100 feet for a route that includes 2,000 feet of breathtaking elevation gain.

If you are new to fat bikes, you might be wondering how to prepare for fat bike riding. In our post, Fat Bike Essentials for First Time Fat Bike Riders, we give you the lay of land and basically, this is what you need to know.

PEDALS & SHOES
Many new fat bike riders wonder if they should use clipless or flat pedals on a fat bike? Guess what? It’s your choice! The biggest problems people have making this decision is deciding how to best keep their feet warm. Having flat pedals will allow you to wear thick winter boots, which are more conducive to keeping your feet warm. However you can buy clipless boots that are designed to handle colder temperatures. Using a clipless pedal could prove annoying in snowy terrain if you have to dismount and remount frequently during your ride.

SMART CLOTHING CHOICES AND POGIES & GLOVES
Obviously, if you are going to be riding out in the cold, you’ll want to dress warm and dress appropriately. But what does that mean exactly? You have to think a little bit harder before and during your fat bike rides in the cold. Generally the most important tip for keeping warm is to layer, and to carry a pack to put your extra layers away. Some people prefer to wear ski goggles and a ski helmet, and lots of people wear winter boots. Poagies, insulated hand covers that slip over your handle bars, are also very useful for keeping your hands warm. Keeping your feet warm is key. Wearing boots, preferably water proof, with thick socks on flat pedals or clipless boots with multiple pairs of socks works.

FACE AND EYE PROTECTION
Obviously, cover your head! You can wear a buff or a cap and headgear. Buffs are really good for neck protection as well. Another option are balaclavas – especially so if you want to keep almost your entire face warm. Remember to wear appropriate eye protection too! The glare from the snow can be blinding. While not as stylish as some of the cycling eyewear we carry on BikeParts.com, you could consider wearing goggles to help protect our eyes and face in snowy conditions.

TIRES AND TIRE PRESSURE
Hmmmm, decisions here – What kind of tires should I use? How wide? What pressure do I run? Tube vs. Tubeless? Here’s what we suggest. You have to match tire pressure with conditions. Softer snow conditions: 6psi. Harder conditions: 8-10psi. (much lower than the normal bike). Fat-bike tires are typically marked as 26 x 4.0 though most are really more like 26 x 3.7 or 3.8. The actual size of the mounted tire will vary depending on the rim width used for the wheel. Many riders prefer tubeless because they reduce over a point of rotation weight and they provide better traction.

A FAT BIKE
You have to have a fat bike to ride one! Finding the fat bike that works for you will depend on the type of riding that you do and, more importantly, your budget. At Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we are all big fans of fat bike riding. Stop by to buy a fat bike or demo one. And if you want even more fat bike ideas, or need for cycling apparel, bike parts, and cycling accessories, stop in the shop for that too! We’ve got all the gear and cycling accessories for you riding needs!

So what is stopping you? Get in on the fat bike action! Register today for the STAUNTON BLIZZARD and we’ll see you this Sunday!


You Want to Get Fat this Thanksgiving. Here’s Why!

November 24, 2016
Fat Bikes at BikeParts.com

Fat Bikes at BikeParts.com

Thanksgiving is prefect for celebrating and sharing gratitude for the blessings in our lives.  Yet, it isn’t exactly an ideal day for healthy eating and staying fit. Fortunately, you can make it through Thanksgiving with your figure and fitness intact. How to do it? It’s no mystery! Get a fat bike!  

This may sound like a trick, but it’s not.  Simply enjoy all the food you want during Thanksgiving while also splurging a bit by riding a fat bike.  Riding a fat bike is so much crazy fun!  

Imagine floating over snow and sand. Gliding over familiar trails discovering how your fat bike handles twists, turns, bumps, and jumps. You can practically ride a fat bike anywhere. And, riding a fat bike brings out your inner kid making you feel like an 8 year-old again, bouncing  gleefully all over the trails.  Maybe the idea of riding a fat bike is new to you. Following are common asked questions and answers about fat bikes.

How are fat bikes different than other mountain bikes?  Many fat bike models today are similar to “normal” mountain bikes, which have slacker head tube angles, lower stand-over heights, thru axles, and tapered head tubes.  The main difference is the tires. The wider ties have more traction in both dirt and snow. They climb better than almost any mountain bike and the fit tires provide greater cushion that feels like extra suspension.  But what makes them special is they entice you to ride outside when it’s cold! According to the post, Fat Biking 101: 10 Things You Need to Know Before Biking in the Snow, most people do not ride when it is cold because, well, it’s cold. Fat bikes offer a unique experience and allow you to explore familiar trails in a new light. Fat biking lifts the winter doldrums by giving you a new freedom to ride off-road.

In what kind of conditions can I ride my fat bike? Fat bikes can ride pretty much anywhere. They do really well on dirt but they are also very capable in the snow. Packed snow will feel very much like riding on dirt. Pushing through heaps of freshly fallen snow will provide more of a challenge and there will be some days when riding is simply impossible. Remember, while sliding around on ice may be fun, ice is ice. The bike will still go down if you are not careful riding on slippery substances.

How do I stay warm on my fat bike in the winter?  You have to think a little bit harder before and during your fat bike rides in the cold. Generally the most important tip for keeping warm is to layer, and to carry a pack to put your extra layers away. Some people prefer to wear ski goggles and a ski helmet, and lots of people wear winter boots.  Poagies, insulated hand covers that slip over your handle bars, are also very useful for keeping your hands warm.   Keeping your feet warm is key. Wearing arm boots, preferably water proof, with thick socks on flat pedals or clipless boots with multiple pairs of socks will help to keep your feet comfortable.

How do I keep my water from freezing?  Even though you might not feel the urge to drink as much when riding your fat bike in the cold, it is still important to drink fluids. There are a couple of tricks your water from freezing. During shorter rides, carry an insulated water bottle and start with really warm water. You can also add electrolytes or other ingredients to change the freezing point of the fluid, but may find limited success. When using a CamelBak or something similar, stick the bite valve in your jacket and blow out all the water in your hose. You can also buy neoprene insulators for the hydration hose to help keep water as a liquid substance.

Should I use clipless or flat pedals on a fat bike?  It’s your choice! The biggest problems people have making this decision is deciding how to best keep their feet warm. Having flat pedals will allow you to wear thick winter boots, which are more conducive to keeping your feet warm. However you can buy clipless boots that are designed to handle colder temperatures. Using a clipless pedal could prove annoying in snowy terrain if you have to dismount and remount frequently during your ride.

What kind of tires should I use? How wide? What pressure do I run? Tube vs. Tubeless?  You have to match tire pressure with conditions. Softer snow conditions: 6psi. Harder conditions: 8-10psi. (much lower than the normal bike). Fat-bike tires are typically marked as 26 x 4.0 though most are really more like 26 x 3.7 or 3.8. The actual size of the mounted tire will vary depending on the rim width used for the wheel.  Many riders prefer tubeless because they reduce over a point of rotation weight and they provide better traction.

What kind of fat bikes are on the market?  The fat bike market has exploded in recent years. Brands include Specialized, Mongoose, Polaris, Kona, Gravity, Kawasaki, Borealis and more! Manufacturers are creating frames out of tons of different materials including aluminum, carbon, titanium, bamboo, real steel, and Wal-Mart steel. Most fat-bikes that you will come across have a fully rigid frame. However fat bikes with front fork suspension and full-body suspension have started to emerge.  Finding the fat bike that works for you will depend on the type of riding that you do and, more importantly, your budget.  However, at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we are all big fans of the Specialized Fatboy Bike. We have found the Specialized Fatboy to be a highly rated, mid-range fat bike that is usable for a wide range of ages and skill-levels.   

Where can I ride my fat bike? Fat biking is abuzz in Colorado. Colorado is already a favorite state for cyclists due to the mountainous terrain, rugged trails, scenic views, and outdoorsy population. But now, Colorado is a hot destination for the fat bike phenomenon.  There are also a ton of really fun fatbike events across the nation.

Whew! Lots of questions but one final one.  Are you feeling the urge to splurge this Thanksgiving?  Enjoy mass quantities of food and take on this fun fat bike phenomenon! Demo a fat bike at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, Colorado.  Check out our fat bike bike selections, cycling apparel, hydration strategies, fat bike bike parts, and accessories.  Plus, get even more of your questions answered in person! Happy Thanksgiving!  


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.  


Spin Worthy Father’s Day Gifts for Cyclists

June 16, 2016
Get Your Dad A New Bike from BikeParts.com for Father's Day!

Get Your Dad A New Bike from BikeParts.com for Father’s Day!

Father’s Day is almost here, and it’s the perfect opportunity to show dad how much you care. Nothing says “I care about you” more than showing interest in someone’s life – especially their passions.  

So, 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’ve put together a list of spin worthy Father’s day gift suggestions.  

Super Plush Gifts:
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!  

Maybe a new bike is a bit of a stretch, but you really want to treat your Dad to something he might not purchase for himself.  Give him power – a power meter that is!  If your Dad is 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. As for which power meter to purchase, consider our most popular one, Stages Power Meters, beginning at $1000. Stages Power meter is the lightest, smallest, most technologically advanced unit available today.  Another option is the Pioneer Power Meter offered at $2000 and is a bit more sophisticated.  A third option is a company that’s been around for a while now – PowerTap Power Meter. 

Plush Gifts that Don’t Break the Bank:
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.

If you aren’t in the market for purchasing a new bike for your Dad, then gift him with a bike demo. One of our most popular demos is a fat bike! Riding a fat bike is a great new adventure. Renew your Dad’s cycling enthusiasm by trying out a new bike.  Or, try out some new bike parts! What cyclist doesn’t love bike parts? Whether it’s a new saddle, shifters, brakes, seatpost, fork, pedals, hubs or wheels, your Dad probably wants it.  The usual problem is how to know exactly what to get. Our answer, get a gift certificate.  

Plush Gifts on a Budget:
If Dad taught you to be thrifty, you may be looking for Father’s Day deals so you can get gifts for Dad that don’t break the bank

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. Or, visit us online at bikeparts.com

A good bottle: 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.

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!

Tires: Treat yourself to Dad to some new rubber! We have a ton of tires for road and mountain bikes. 

Lube: Every Dad goes through it and we’ve got tons of it.

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!


8 Awesome Father’s Day Gifts for Cycling Dads

June 18, 2015
Happy Father's Day from BikeParts.com

Happy Father’s Day from BikeParts.com

What do you get a Dad who has everything?  Father’s Day can be a tough one. Everyone knows Dad’s are impossible to shop for.  Sure, you could just pick him up another tie or another box of golf balls.  But why not get him something unique this year?  Why not tap into his true passion and gift him with items he will appreciate year round!

To help you in the ideas department, at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop, we’ve put together this list of suggestions that we’re sure will help turn his Father’s Day into more than just another game night or round of golf.

1. Get a Fat Bike! Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop is passionate about fat bikes in the winter months but they can actually be ridden year round! They are fun and versatile bikes that can be used in almost any terrain.  We have found the Specialized Fatboy to be a highly rated, mid-range fat bike that is usable for a wide range of ages and skill-levels.  Splurge and get him a fat bike or get him a bike demo so he can try it out himself!

2. Get New Bike Parts! So many bike parts – the question is what to purchase?  Consider getting your Dad a high quality wheel set.  A good wheel set 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 crank set and pedals setup.

3. Get a 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. As for which power meter to get for your Dad, consider our most popular one, Stages Power Meters, beginning at $1000. Stages Power meter is the lightest, smallest, most technologically advanced unit available today.  Another option is the Pioneer Power Meter offered at $2000 and is a bit more sophisticated.  A third option is a company that’s been around for a while now – PowerTap Power Meter.

4. Get 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!

5. Get 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 your Dad the gift of riding comfortably.  Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to schedule your bike fit.

6. Get Gift Certificates!  Gift certificates can be used for purchasing bike parts and cycling accessories.  Also consider a variety of gift certificates, as in, those to Starbucks for after ride coffee.  Or, even a trial member ship for yoga.  If your cycling Dad complains of tight muscles, yoga helps ease the tightness, creating core strength, and aligning the spine.

7. Get a Cycling Vacation! The lifestyle here in Colorado celebrates the great outdoors. Even better, Colorado has some of the greatest road bike and mountain bike rides in the country.  Some rides are shorter and convenient whereas others offer steeper, longer climbs and extended distances. There are several Destination Hotspots for Colorado Summer Cycling Trips that the whole family can enjoy.  

8.  Get Riding!  Riding together with your Dad on Father’s day could be one of his most favorite and memorable shared activities to do.  Consider selecting one of the 20 Colorado Front Range Bucket List Rides or keep it local and ride some of the best mountain bike trails Golden, Colorado has to offer.

Make your Father’s Day memorable!  Gift him with bike parts and cycling accessories that tap into his cycling passion.  Happy Father’s Day!


How Smart Cyclists Spend Their Tax Refund Money Wisely

April 16, 2015

Tax Refund Money for Bike PartsYou’ve worked hard the past year and expect a healthy tax refund from the government. With anticipation, you’re thinking of how to spend that money wisely.  Maybe you’re thinking you should save that money, put it in the bank, or invest in those long over due house projects.  Yet, the other side of you is taunting you with images of bike parts and bike purchases.  You might even feel these ideas are a guilty pleasure.  However, spending your tax refund money on a new mountain bike or a road bike, or even cycling accessories, does more for your health and longevity than you know.

Investing in your cycling regime is an investment in you.  Physical activity  can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Physical activity and exercise can have immediate and long-term health benefits. Most importantly, regular activity can improve your quality of life.  With that being said, investing in your bike and cycling program is a great way to spend your tax refund wisely. Enjoy our top 5 ways to do just that!

1. Get a Fat Bike!
Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop is passionate about fat bikes in the winter months but they can actually be ridden year round! They are fun and versatile bikes that can be used in almost any terrain.  We have found the Specialized Fatboy to be a highly rated, mid-range fat bike that is usable for a wide range of ages and skill-levels.  The fun isn’t exclusive to adults either!  Specialized has also created a 20” and 24” Fatboy for kids at half the price of a full sized Fat Boy.  If you’re not sure a fat bike is for you, demo one!  Book a fat bike demo today and up the giggle factor to your normal riding program. Who can’t smile while riding a fat bike?

2. Get New Bike Parts!
So many bike parts – the question is what to purchase?  Consider getting a high quality wheel set.  A good wheel set impacts ride quality, ease of pedaling, reliability, and functionality.  Maybe purchase some new, lighter tires for your wheels. Another option is to reconsider the current crank set and pedals setup.  Who can’t justify spending tax refunds on losing lighter handlebars, a lighter saddle, and seat post?

3. Get a Power Meter!
The main idea behind using cycling training tools is to dial in your training to optimize your performance as it relates to your goals and objectives. Our post, The Best Training Aids to Launch into Spring Cycling, dives into the benefits of training with power. As for our favorite power meter options, our most popular are Stages Power Meters beginning at $1000. Stages Power meter is the lightest, smallest, most technologically advanced unit available today.  Another option is the Pioneer Power Meter offered at $2000 and is a bit more sophisticated.  A third favorite is a company that’s been around for a while now – PowerTap Power Meter.

4. Get Cycling Accessories!
Maybe your refund check wasn’t as large as you wanted it to be?  This doesn’t exempt you from spending money on quality bike parts – it just means you might spend less.  Items for purchase in this category include a variety of cycling apparel: jerseys, shorts, tights, jacket, cycling shoes.

5. Get 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. We can help you use your refund dollars wisely.  Not only can we help you with the fit, but we carry all the bike parts required to get your bike in the very best setup for your riding needs. Give us a call (303) 216-1616 or stop by the shop in Golden to schedule your bike fit.

Considering how regular physical activity can produce long term health benefits, investing your tax refund dollars in your cycling program couldn’t be a wiser choice!