Wahoo Kickr

Want something that will make you sweat more than you ever have before? The wahoo kikr is the place to start. Easy to use straight out of the box! Plug it in, connect to zwift and get pedaling. The first few minutes are easily deceiving, you find your groove when your average wattage needs to double or even triple. Time for the pain train baby! As you mash down the gears and pick up your cadence you’ll notice a strange substance pouring from all over your body. Your first thought may be, is it raining or did I just get in the shower? No that’s your body’s reaction to hard work, so keep going! Wait that guy just passed me on the road, better pedal harder! Highly recommend this product to cyclists from any skill level as you adapt it to your needs with workouts based on your FTP level. Visit Ride on Bikes for a demo and test drive of the in store demo model and you’ll be going home with one today! -Ambassador Caleb Kemble

 Kickr has allowed me actually train when time and weather has tried to block it. I have a very busy work schedule so it is tough for me to make group rides or get out in the afternoons. Having the Kickr gives me the opportunity to get an hour or so of realistic riding in before work or after the kids go to bed. Match the kickr with Zwift and you have a full bore realistic computer game that is controlled by your body and your bike. You get training and fun. I even participated in a virtual group ride with people from around the world this morning before work. I think the key for the Kickr is the realism that it adds to the trainer. It actually feels like you are on a real bike trail.   -Ambassador Dale Sides

If you guys are on the fence about getting an indoor direct drive trainer, this article may help you make the decision! (I bet you can't guess which one won!!) I upgraded my smart trainer this past november to a wahoo kickr. What a great piece of kit. I was lucky enough to walk in to ride on bikes just after they got a shipment in of the new version 2017 Kickr. Carried it home, had it up and running, calibrated etc within an hour. Coming from a wheel on smart trainer to a direct drive trainer took only a little bit of getting used to. Both serve their purpose, the big plus for the wheel on, they're much more inexpensive. The direct drive is more expensive but has a bit more variability and also feels slightly more realistic, you don't have wheel slip which can be encountered with a wheel on trainer. FYI, I completed the tron bike challenge on zwift with the Kickr. I highly recommend one if it's in your budget. FYI, Ride On has one setup and logged on to zwift at all times, drop in and give it a try! And if you prefer a wheel on smart trainer Wahoo also makes the Kickr Snap! -Ambassador Chris Smith

Ride On Bikes Service

It is rare that you can find a mechanic that is as passionate about building and fixing bikes as Byron is.  He lives and breathes bikes, and his ability to diagnose and fix a problem is exceptional.  This past September (2017), our team went to Hell Hole Gravel Grind Stage Race over near Charleston, South Carolina, and Byron went as our mechanic.  For some crazy reason, he loves working on bikes and keeping or team’s bike running in some adverse conditions.  He wants to make sure Ride On Bikes Team has no mechanical issues if we are representing Ride On Bikes.  This race is ridiculously hard on bikes; 156 miles over two 75 mile stages and also a 6 mile dirt road time trial.  It is mostly all dirt roads, through a swamp with pot holes that sneak up on you and can jar your teeth, sticky and deep gritty peanut butter mud that turns into cement  on a drivetrain and challenges any setup, especially towards the end of a 4 hour stage.  It is hard to “Hell Hole proof” your bike, but Byron had our equipment on point at the start of both races.  On the first stage in particular, my chain somehow got stuck momentarily between my top cog and spokes.  I was able to get it out and not dismount, but not before I sheered chunks of my drive-side spokes and tore the seal off my cassette body, exposing the innards of my hub to the nasty conditions.  I made it through the stage, and got 2nd, luckily, as this happened late in the stage when I was in a break with another rider.  My teammate John was off the front snatching up a solo win.  Tall grass had gotten stuck in my cassette, which made the chain ride up and across the cog when I shifted.  That night, Byron totally overhauled my hub, after diagnosing the problem, and even went to an auto parts store and bought an O-ring to replace the seal.  The next day, my bike functioned flawlessly, and I won the stage, and rode into 2nd place in the overall, with John getting first.  We could not have had those results and represent Ride On Bikes with a 1-2 overall result without Byron’s knowledge, ability to diagnose and fix issues quickly, and have our bike spotless and mechanically perfect on race day.

 

James A. “Jake” Andrews, III, PE

Andrews, Hammock & Powell, Inc.

Consulting Engineers

Macon, GA 31032

Office: 478.405.8301

Cell: 478.318.4070

Muc-Off

Muc-Off Chain Cleaner Review

            If you’re like me, you’ve got a midterm exam, a 5 page paper, and/or a group project (with the obligatory Powerpoint presentation) due seemingly every week and have to wake up at 4am to squeeze in a precious hour or two on the bike before getting on with the grind.

Chances are, you aren’t like me, but you probably are just as strapped for time, and we all have to admit that when schedules get tight, bike maintenance tends to be one of the first things we neglect. Routine bike maintenance, however, really is essential for ensuring quality performance on the road and for extending components’ lifespan, especially for the drivetrain. Keeping your chain and cassette clean and oiled is probably one of the most important of tasks every cyclist should perform regularly. Fortunately, Muc-Off has a product designed specifically for those of us squeezing in rides before sunrise or during your kid’s soccer practice.

Muc-Off’s aerosol Chain Cleaner is one of the simplest and must effect on the market. It can be applied to the chain, cassette, and chainrings with the bike leaning up against a wall and takes only seconds to dry. Wipe away any residue, apply some fresh lube, and in less than 5 minutes, your bike’s drivetrain will be in top condition for the next time you’re ready to take it out.

The only bad thing about Muc-Off’s chain cleaner is that after purchasing it, you no longer have an excuse if you ever roll up to the group ride with a dirty chain and (heaven forbid) a nasty black chain tat.

Camber Review

Specialized Camber 29 Review

I recently had the opportunity to put a Specialized Camber 29 through the ringer for an entire week of Western North Carolina trails. The weather treated us with everything from 60 degrees and sunny, light and fluffy snow, peanut-butter mud, to frozen tundra. The dismal weather gave us the opportunity push the Camber into all conditions and on all trail types. In our week of testing, we rode everything from speed-demon berms on Ridgeline, relentless root and rock drops on Bennett’s gap, steep packed flow trail on Black Mountain, to seemingly endless gravel road climbs to reach the goods. Pisgah and DuPont gave us the perfect testing grounds to evaluate the bike, and what we found was an exceedingly capable short travel trail bike that hit several levels above it’s class

Tested Specs:

Frame: Specialized Camber 29 Pro 11M carbon with SWAT Door Integration

Fork: Fox 34 Performance 29

Shock: Fox Float Factory Series with Autosag

Wheelset: Industry Nine Trail 245 24h: 12x142 rear 15mm front

Crankset: RaceFace Aeffect, 6000-series alloy, 24mm spindle 28t

Shift Lever: SRAM GX 11 Speed

Rear Derailleur: SRAM X1 11 Speed

Brakes: Shimano SLX M7000 180F/160R Rotor

Handlebars: Specialized Trail, 25mm rise, 750mm width

Stem: Specialized Trail 6 degree rise, 60mm

Seatpost: Specialized Command Post IRcc 125mm with 12 microadjust positions

 

Climbing Performance

My first impression on this bike was the seemingly endless gravel road climb to reach Middle Black Mountain, and I thought “Man, this bike climbs better than my road bike!” Even with the Factory shock ran wide open (which is where I spent 90% of my time), the FACT 11M Carbon Frame would scoot up anything it was pointed at with minimal pedal bob. Flip the switch to the right, and I wouldn’t be hesitant enter a gravel race on this bike. The Camber ate the gravel road climb for breakfast, and still left me plenty of gas for the descent. Technical climbing was no challenge for the Camber either. When pointed upwards on Daniel Ridge in Pisgah, the 29in wheels rolled through root gardens and rock jumbles with ease, and on steep terrain the 75° seat-tube angle kept the front end planted and easy to control. Under the right pilot, this bike will clean any technical climb it is pointed at with the combo of the large wheels, super stiff frame, and active, but efficient suspension.

 

Descending Performance

After pedaling your way to the top, its time to drop the saddle and reap the benefits., and the Camber truly came alive on the descents. It is equally at home on the rocky, rooty washouts of Middle Black Mountain as it is on the speedy berms of Ridgeline. The combination of the 120mm travel, slack 68.5° headtube angle, and 29in wheels pick up the slack when things get steep, and inspires the confidence of a much larger bike. The Camber is in its element on fast and tight trails, where carrying speed is the goal. On Pisgah’s Lower Black Mountain, the Camber carried its speed through the rollers, doubles, and berms. Only when the drops get larger and the terrain get steeper is when you truly see the limits of this bike. On the steep washouts of Buckhorn Gap, the Camber had just enough travel to slice and dice it’s way through, but it is not a point and shoot machine by any stretch. It favors an active rider, who is willing to pick through techy lines on steep terrain.

Overall Impressions

The Camber 29 represents the bike that most of us should be riding. Unless you live in the heart of Mountain Bike Mecca, it’s perfect for your everyday trails, but it has enough travel to take on all your adventures. It’s got the responsiveness that is normally found on cross-country whippets, with the chops to handle much steeper downhill terrain. It’s a speed demon, pumping and railing every little bit of speed out of each corner and roller. Most of all, its fun; the Camber makes everyday rides a blast and powers through any terrain you point it at.

 

Component Highlights

·      Fox Performance 34 with GRIP Damper- This stiff little fork is the backbone of the Camber. Silky smooth on the top of the stroke with a steady ramp-up provided the perfect combo for trail riding. The new GRIP damper is a huge upgrade over the previous CTD system, bringing it much closer to the FIT4 found on it’s Kashima Coated siblings (without the scary price tag!).

·      Fox Float Factory Series Shock with Autosag- This shock kept its composure throughout rough and rowdy drops, root gardens, and technical climbs. It’s progressive curve keeps the bike riding high in it’s travel and keeps the ride stiff and efficient. The AutoSag feature set the shock up too stiff for me, but it is a good feature to get a novice rider in the ballpark of correct suspension setup.

·      Shimano SLX M7000 brakes- Despite lacking the adjustability of it’s XT counterparts, these brakes are every bit as powerful. Power, modulation, and reliability were on par with XT’s and Guides with a much more reasonable price. Plus, the new blacked out treatment looks great.

·      Specialized Command Post- Dropper posts are an absolute must on any modern Trail Bike, and the Command Post is a great addition to any bike. Reliability is key with dropper posts, and the Command Post’s mechanical locking system and air spring kept the post rock solid for the entirety of my test (even through sub 20 degree temps, snow, and ice). The front derailleur style remote is top notch, and easy to reach even when things get rowdy.

What’s Missing?

Throughout my time on the Camber, I only noticed a few things I would change.

·      Press-Fit Bottom Bracket

o   With the new Enduro turning back to the quieter, more reliable threaded BB, why is the Camber still stocked with a Press Fit? I didn’t have any issues throughout my test, but a threaded BB offers peace of mind

·      Fork Spec on Lower-End Models

o   While I had the privilege of testing a high-end model with a 34mm fork, the majority of Specialized more reasonably priced models ship with a 32mm fork. This bike deserves the stiffness of a 34 or greater, and the first model to receive that treatment is the $5000 Expert Model

·      Chain Noise

o   When pushed hard on rough descents, the chain-slap noise on my Camber became excessive. Better chainstay protection is needed for a bike that begs to be pushed this hard

Final Words

The Camber is the perfect bike for most riders. It’s a trail bike that begs to be ridden hard and fast, and can handle anything you throw at it without making easy trails boring or climbs a struggle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ambush Review

Specialized Ambush Comp Review

 The Specialized Ambush Comp is a great option for customers looking for all-mountain styling and increased coverage at an affordable price.

Features

·      Adjustable, goggle-friendly Visor

·      Boa-Style adjustment system with height adjustments

·      Extended coverage for added protection and durability

·      Lay-Flat Straps

 

Pros

·      Fits head snugly and sits low on the forehead for added protection

·      Boa dial system is simple to adjust on the fly, even with gloved hands

·      Lay-flat strap system is set-and-forget, with no irritation issues

·      Modern “Enduro” styling with plenty of color option

·      Price

Cons

·      Doesn’t vent as well as its pricier competition

·      BOA system tightens front and back, leaving large helmet gaps for those with smaller heads

·      No MIPS

·      No integrated light mount

Overall Impression

For the price, the Specialized Ambush Comp is hard to beat. With its modern styling, level of adjustment, and increased protection it should be on your short list when searching for an affordable All-Mountain lid.

 

Power

Power Saddle Review

 

            As much as we all love to flock towards the newest model of carbon wheels, power meters, groupsets, etc., one of the most critical pieces of equipment (for both the pros in the peloton and us mere mortals) is often overlooked: the humble saddle. Ideally, the saddle places a rider’s weight firmly on the sit bones while allowing the hips to rotate slightly forward and the thighs to move up and down freely without chafing. Essentially, a properly fit saddle should be almost unnoticeable whilst riding (though a poorly fit saddle will be VERY noticeable).

            When I got my new bike, I just couldn’t get the stock saddle to feel quite right, so I borrowed a Specialized Power Saddle from a friend. I never gave it back. (Sorry, JV!) Though by no means a plush saddle, it has just enough give towards the back to keep my buttocks from getting sore, and it has a hole along the centerline, minimizing contact with sensitive areas and reducing weight (I presume). Furthermore, the front swoops in fairly quickly, allowing plenty of room for me to pedal without rubbing my thighs raw and keeping the saddle relatively short in comparison to some others. This last feature may be a concern for some individuals, but it would seem to me that having a short saddle would prevent a rider from moving around too much and keep him/her closer to his ideal riding position (though I have no professional training in bike fitting). While letting people ride my bike though and selling them at Ride On, I have only every known one person who didn’t think the Power Saddle the most comfortable he/she had ever ridden.

Though I have ridden only ever four or five saddles for extended periods of time, I firmly believe that I have found the last saddle I’ll ever ride, even if I moved onto a bike that didn’t sport the Specialized logo.

Tifosi

Tifosi Podium XC Sunglasses Review

 

            Sunglasses. What began as a pure and simple piece of equipment to protect one’s eyes from the sun’s harsh rays has evolved dramatically over the years, finding a niche in nearly every social sphere, cycling included. Tifosi Optics has risen to the task of creating sunglasses that meet the performance needs of everyone from recreational to professional riders without asking buyers to choose between their product and that shiny new accessory you saw in the bike shop last week.

            Since I started riding, I have worn sunglasses nearly every time I hop on my bike, whether it’s warm and sunny or freezing and overcast. They protect my eyes from whatever the ride may throw at them—bright sunlight, rain, high winds, dirt from the wheel in front of you, etc.—which I especially appreciate since I wear contacts. Moreover, they just make me feel one step closer to those demi-gods of the peloton, and science has proven that confidence improves performance (i.e. the placebo effect).

I used to wear a generic pair that I bought from a department store, but after purchasing Tifosi’s Podium XC, I won’t ever a cheap pair on a ride again. The Podium model comprises of four pieces—the nosepiece, the lens, and the two side pieces. This modular design allows one to switch between lenses (black, clear, and colored lenses were provided) with ease, and one can even purchase individual replacement pieces in the event that any one breaks. Furthermore, the nose- and side-pieces can be bent so you can find that perfect fit. Perhaps most appealing is that these glasses come at the relatively affordable price of $69.99. I’ll admit that I’ve never worn some of those higher-end brands for more than a minute or two, but I highly doubt they can offer anything to justify a $200 price tag. Furthermore, I have never been a fan of sunglasses so…bold. For me, the Tifosi Podium XC sunglasses offer one of (if not the best) values on the market—no compromises in performance or comfort at a price even a college student can afford.

Few accessories can simultaneously protect one’s own eyes while drawing those of others, the right pair of glasses do just that and more: they can also make a subtle, yet proud statement of one’s very identity. The Tifosi XC sunglasses express a tasteful practicality—an unwillingness to compromise neither performance nor price—and a commitment to the sport of cycling.

Tarmac Review - Michael Sweet

Tarmac Review

I recently had the great privilege of purchasing an unused 2016 Tarmac from my local bike shop (Ride On Bikes, Columbus, GA) and though I have ridden just a few hundred miles on it, my first impressions are stellar.

Let me begin by clarifying a few things about myself. I am a student who began racing on my college’s club team (Auburn University Flyers) just last spring and have very limited experience with different bike manufacturers and models. My first true road bike and the one I owned immediately prior to now was a used 2010 Series 5 Trek Madone. Anyone in the field can tell you that trying to compare a 2010 carbon bike to one from 2016 would be like trying to compare a 1st generation IPhone to the newest model. (Or more like the newest Samsung Galaxy, but I digress.) Furthermore, I had to have the Madone patched after a nasty crash that punched a hole the size of a quarter near the bottom bracket. Nevertheless, I had no qualms with the bike performance-wise and had to part with it for fit reasons. I say all this to emphasize that I cannot fairly and properly compare the Tarmac to any other current models or manufacturers; however, I promise to give the purest representation of what I do know and feel.

The first thing I noticed was unsurprisingly how the bike looked. With its matte grey finish with green and red decals, it strikes a delicate balance between simplicity and personality: enough color to catch the eye, but not enough to come off as ostentatious in any way. Furthermore, the internally routed cables keep the eyes on the bike and make post-ride cleaning a cinch. Next thing I noticed was the weight, or rather the lack thereof. I can’t cite any exact numbers, but adding two water bottles and my large saddlebag (containing a spare tube, two CO2 cartridges, a CO2 valve head, a multi-tool, and a chain-breaker tool) makes the bike feel almost twice as heavy in my puny biker arms. (Big biceps aren’t aero, right?) After throwing a leg over and hitting the road, I could feel how well the Tarmac responds; whether in the hoods or the drops, in or out of the saddle I can fly through turns with confidence and though not as stiff as a Venge, it feels as though no watts are lost between my legs and the road, especially while climbing and sprinting. Additionally, thanks to the fact that the seat tube is not locked to the top tube, it offers a surprising amount of dampening over bumps and debris in the road; I wouldn’t take it gravel-grinding, but the absorption is noticeable and I wouldn’t fear taking it down relatively well maintained dirt roads.

I do have two minor complaints, though. First, the seat tube is perfectly round. While I know that is the standard shape and allows the use of other seat post brands, I prefer a more ovular shape for better aerodynamics and not having to worry whether or not the saddle is pointed straight. My second complaint is with the tire clearance. I like to run 28mm tires for their greater comfort during the base training blocks of long rides, but I have barely any clearance with them on the frame, which makes me worry that I’ll stop them up if I ride through any muddy conditions. 

Despite these two small issues, I would definitely recommend the Tarmac to anyone looking for a moderate to high end road bike; stock, it will perform well in all conditions, and if one has some additional funds for specialized components (aero-bars, carbon wheels, etc.) one could certainly tailor it to excel in any type and category of race. I personally am very satisfied overall and can’t wait to race this spring!

Wahoo Bolt

The Wahoo Bolt

or many years, if you wanted to take your riding and training to the next level with a GPS computer for your bike, you bought a Garmin, end of discussion. No other company came even close to offering as sophisticated, reliable, and easy-to-use product to the masses.

n recent years, though, Wahoo Fitness has risen and challenged Garmin’s near-monopoly on the market, striving to take the giant’s product line to another level. Wahoo began with the Elemnt and after only a couple of years launched the auxiliary model, the Elemnt Bolt.

dvertisements for the Bolt emphasize that it was designed to maximize aerodynamic efficiency, cutting edges and contours to leave a near-seamless integration of the computer and mount that is claimed to save 1.5 Watts at 20 kph. While I cannot verify that last claim, I can attest that just as much attention to detail was paid to the inside as the outside. 

he true beauty of the Bolt is its stupid-easy usability. To get up and going, you literally just have to download Wahoo’s partner-app and scan the QR code on the screen. From there, you can change the data fields displayed on the activity pages (everything from speed to lap times to 5 second balanced left-right split) with just a couple clicks. Furthermore, the front face has 7 multi-color LED’s that can display heart rate zones, power zones, and even turn-by-turn navigation. Linking the app with other accounts like Strava, RideWithGPS, etc. is extremelysimple as well: completed rides will upload in seconds and you can even import maps completely over Bluetooth. No computer or USB required!

n the bike, one controls the main features of the Bolt (starting and stopping rides, scrolling between pages, etc.) with the three buttons on the bottom of the front face. Additionally, one can zoom in and out on the map or on the ride data (displaying more or less data fields of smaller or larger size, respectively) using the two buttons on the side. 

oing from a Garmin Edge 810 to the Bolt did entail a couple of lost features, namely a color touchscreen in addition tothe ability to keep up with multiple pieces of equipment and tohave multiple activity types saved. However, with a couple of small adjustments on my end, I was quickly able to customize the Bolt to meet all my needs. For the pure ease-of-use, the superior mobile uploading speed, and the LED feature at a significantly cheaper price, I have no regrets with the swap. 

To all my fellow riders, if you want a reliable, yet simple training and navigation computer without any unnecessary bells and whistles, you should seriously consider the Bolt. To Garmin, you should seriously consider taking a look as well.

 

Byron

Employee Spotlight: Byron

 

You might say that Byron’s tolerance is paper thin… And you’d be right.

 

2000ths tolerance. 0.05 millimeters. The width of a piece of paper.That’s all the allowance Byron had with cuts during his time in precision machinery. That leaves little room for error.

That’s how he can find that noise on your bike that’s been driving you crazy. That’s how he can diagnose tricky mechanical issues that leave other bike mechanics scratching their head. It’s all about the details.

Byron has been a mechanic in the bike industry for 18 years and has been riding for 31 years. Born in California to a military family, Byron found himself in quite a few cities before moving to Columbus. He has enjoyed all the routes and rides that he has been able to find in his time here and doesn’t plan on leavingsoon. When he says riding, he means logging 10,000 miles a year!

He cites the 2002 Savannah Century as one of his best rides ever.

100 miles in 

4 hours and 6 minutes.

“We covered 27 miles in the first hour. We were flying,” Byron said while looking over his glasses from across the lunch table. “All you could hear was the sound of gears clicking and the humming of wheels. It was an incredible ride that year.”

Whether it’s fixing bikes or riding them, he’s not someone you want to bet against. He set out to ride to Panama City on a $50 bet… 

And won. 

After 13 hours, lots of rain, working with toe straps and friction shifters, he made it back to tell the tale. The downside to the story is that he’s still waiting on that $50.

“I know I could have made more money staying in the precision machinery industry, ” he says “but bikes are just too much fun.”

When asked why he enjoys riding bikes so much his answer was simply, “there’s just something special about getting out on two wheels and on the open road.”

We couldn’t agree more.

Ride On, friends.

 

2017: The Year We Ride

“The Year We Ride On”

We all know the feeling.

Shortness of breath, legs on fire, desperately searching for the end of the climb you find yourself on you wonder how the line between pain and pleasure can get so blurred..

You ask yourself why anyone would subject themselves to the pain you endure as you finally reach the top to find… relief, satisfaction, and the will to press on. That’s what can be so satisfying about a bike ride. Each experience has its own story arc and keeps you coming back for more.

What makes a great ride?

For us, sometimes it’s about the company you keep along the way, and other times it’s simply the satisfaction of cresting those hills you thought you couldn’t climb. There’s also something to be said for finding yourself out on a county road with complete silence save the sound of your gears clicking and the whirring of your wheels through the wind.

Life can be pretty simple behind (handle)bars. Just pedal. We all have our reasons for why we ride. It’s a good way to set aside the mundane, and have a bit of adventure in your day. The county line sprint can be a good way to let out some steam, too. 

Here at Ride On Bikes, we’re looking to recapture the thrills of a great ride. The slower months of winter can be a great time to catch up- and we’ve been busy. We’ve got a lot of things in the works for more group rides, and we’re not talking just the Riverwalk.. We have a vision for where our cycling community can go, and we’re calling all cyclists to join.

2017 is the year we Ride On… Will you?

Fill your cup up...

This photo showed up in my Facebook feed this morning and it has been taunting my subconscious all day.  Given the time of the year, I think it is appropriate to address the importance of taking time for yourself.

So often we get lost in the hustle and bustle of life and combined with the stress of wanting or needing to get training sessions in can cause the same signs of over training.  We may lose sleep (even though we are exhausted), elevated or suppressed morning HR, longer HR recovery periods, persistent illness or injury, and/or lack of confidence and overall lack of quantitative progress.  Basically we turn into a burning ball of fury that is ready to explode on our loved ones or coworkers.

Although many of us see the off season as a chance to work on our weaknesses, build strength or speed, or simply reassess our goals, I can’t stress the importance of taking time for yourself – outside of training. Don’t be afraid to take more active recovery days, restructure your microcycle, grab an extra massage, or simply go for a walk.

Personally, I have a workaholic, obsessive personality and it is very hard for me to break away from my routine.  I remember going through a particularly challenging time in my life a few years ago when a friend said, “just come over and relax”.  My immediate answer was, “and do what?”.  Wave the red flag.  Just like you, I’m a work in progress.  I’m becoming better at taking ‘me-time’, whether that is a walk with the dog in the dark, a coffee in the corner of coffee shop (please do still come and say hi if you see me hunkered down.  I would love to chat.), or taking part in the latest coloring craze.

So when you find yourself overwhelmed with the holiday cluster, Christmas Eve shopping, in-laws, and cramming training sessions in, take a step back.  Take care of #1 and the rest will fall into place.

Happy holidays!

Iron Sharpens Iron

Iron sharpens iron.  In order to succeed in our lives, whether it be in work or in play, the importance of having a mentor(s) or a person who we look up to, can’t be stressed enough. For the most part I like to think that it is human nature to strive to be better and athletic ventures are no different.  There are a few exceptions to every rule out there, but most of the crowds that I dabble in set goals for themselves, whether it be in their jobs or in play, and strive for growth.

I have plenty of mentors for different aspects in my life and I have found myself reflecting on their importance more often lately.  Some know that I view them as a mentor, some do not.  Regardless, I reach out to them when I need advice, want to bounce ideas around, need a fist bump (or sometimes a hug, shocking I know), or simply need to be inspired.  Some, I follow on social media, some in type and text, some in social circles, and some in their careers, but I assure you they all serve a purpose.  I should be clear, these are not people I’m jealous of or covet, rather they are people who I admire and know I can learn from.

I challenge you to find a person(s) who can push you outside of your box to be a better person or athlete.  Find one for all aspects of your life.  Write their names down and visit the list often.  I promise you won’t regret it.

-Ride On-

Joanne Cogle

 

The great Riverwalk debate

Now that spring has officially arrived (can we say that without the weather changing?) there are bound to be more users of our Riverwalk.  More users equals more pedestrian traffic and higher chances of incidents.  Let's do our part to keep the Riverwalk safe for all by starting with these three simple steps: 1. Ride on the right side of the Riverwalk.  As a cyclist you are considered a moving vehicle.  That's what we fight for on the road isn't it?  The same rights as a car? By staying on the right side, the flow of traffic is kept to a manageable level and prevents confusion for oncoming traffic.  Normalcy will keep us a little safer.

2. Announce yourself when passing or just in general with a friendly "on your left". We can't tell you how scary it is for a beginner cyclist to have a rider buzz by them out of the blue.  That being said, make sure you leave your headphones at home (or at the very least keep them out while on the Riverwalk) so you can hear those announcements.

3. Ride a little slower.  Take the time that you ride on the Riverwalk to warm up or cool down.  We know your time is valuable but so is the safety of our community.  Slow down, enjoy the moment.

Ride On!

 

Urban Mountain Bike Race and Time Change Party

Our time change party will be here before you know it! We will kick it off this year with the first ever Urban Mountain Bike Race. This 1/2 mile 6 lap course will not disappoint with obstacles, music, and even a trip through The Mix Ultra Lounge. Open to ALL levels of racers. See you March 7 at 430pm!

 

Light It Up Blue

Join us for the second annual Light It Up Blue night ride on November 8 at 630pm. All proceeds go to our local Autism Hope Center. Over $10k in raffle prizes are up for grabs and tickets are $50. Since Jason doesn't have hair to shave this year he has agreed to compete in Ironman Louisville if $30k is raised. Let's whip him into shape! See you soon!

IMG_3361.JPG

Yes. You. Can.

On request of a role model, turned coach, turned friend, I am writing this. Perhaps it will inspire those who are sitting on the fence about trying something new or motivate those who are already active. Somewhere a cycling hobby turned into triathlons. I’ve always been able to finish on my own accord, although it hasn’t always been pretty. I don’t just get up and race. I used to, but not anymore.

I am pretty stubborn, don’t like to be told what to do, and I march to the beat of my own drum. There have been two people who really stand out in my triathlon career. They have been able to tell me what to do, and how to do it, and I’ll listen the first time with few questions asked.

One of these people challenged me to start training with a purpose. So 4 months ago I accepted. I focused. The goal, to round out my Ironman total to 12. Ironman Louisville August 24, Ironman Chattanooga September 28, and Ironman Florida November 1. 3 Ironmans. 3 months.

This challenge has called for some incredible life-balancing.

I am a wife, an Army wife at that I am a mother I have a real life, full time job I am a coach, trainer, and mentor I am race director I am a friend I am self confident and believe in my potential I am an Ironman I am focused

My new found focus has taken me on highs and lows. I have focused on quality over quantity. I have swam miles to nowhere in the pool, made friends with Cardiac hill on and off the bike, and run and rode under the cover of darkness.

The result? Speed has started to compliment endurance. Faster swim times, increased speed and power on the bike, and run times at paces I've never seen before. All put together has translated into an entirely different race and training mentality. I look forward to pushing myself, to sweating, and feeling the endorphin rush. Yes, there have been times when I've had self doubt, but that has quickly erased with firm words of affirmation of my potential.

I've had to make sacrifices. My house isn’t impeccable, but I know where everything is. I don’t cook every night, but we are pretty nutritionally sound. We vacation, sometimes to races but we spend time as a family. This is my passion, what makes me happy, relieves (and sometimes causes) stress. I am a firm believer everyone can be a triathlete, runner, cyclist, swimmer, or whatever they want to be. No matter how big or how small. It’s all about quality vs. quantity. Take a leap, you never know how it might change your life.

Sitero Review

Some time ago I lost track of my race numbers.   I fail miserably at tracking my training and I'll ride just about any bike, in just about any type of clothing.  My friends and athletes have seen me out in my flip flops on a tri bike or wearing a sweat shirt on one of our group rides.  I roll with the punches most of the time.  We kind of have to, don't we?  That being said, there has been one constant in my racing and cycling career.  For 15+ years I have never sat squarely on my saddle and I can say with confidence that is not comfortable.  But as athletes we learn to embrace pain and suffering. That all changed when I discovered a new seat called Sitero by Specialized…

The pelvis is made up of several bones that, in conjunction with the lower back, work together to support the body’s weight, anchor abdominal and hip muscles, and protect delicate vital reproductive organs.  If the bones of the pelvis are not supported properly, the soft tissue of …well…”down there” takes the brunt of your torsos weight.  This ultimately results in numbness, tingling, inflammation, and possibly serious health concerns.

Historically, popular road performance bike saddles have been designed to be as skinny as possible, forcing the body to be supported on soft tissue.  However, there have been significant advances in saddle construction that allow for a more anatomically healthy position.  Specialized has recently released one of the highest blood flow rated seats on the market.  The Sitero (pronounced Sit Aero) tests at 98% percent blood flow (I’ll leave the testing methods to your imagination). The Pro model weighs in at 211 grams and is approximately 145mm at its widest point.  This is Specialized’ first split nose saddle designed for triathletes and is their answer to the ISM Adamo, etc.  It is reasonably priced at $175 for the Expert and $225 for the Pro.

The Sitero is not designed to be sat on at the tip or the nose, but rather in the perforated ‘sit zone’.  This is the area that is designed specifically to relieve pressure.  What is the difference between the Sitero and its competitors?  The Sitero focuses on the athlete sitting on the Pubic Rami (pelvis) rather than on the ischial tuberosities (sit bones).  Therefore, when in an aero position more blood flow is achievable.

sitero

The Cons are limited.  There is a small limitation with the fore and aft of the saddle since the rails are not long as some of the other aero saddles out there.  Therefore, although uncommon, it might not fit all athletes.  The saddle can be a little hard if you are used to a very cushioned seat.  However, it does soften up over a few rides.

rails

The long story short is the Sitero has changed the way that I feel about riding.  I felt like I got too much flex from completely separated nose pieces such as the Adamo or Koobi and not enough support from other split seats.  The Sitero allows me to sit comfortably on my bike and gives me more than adequate blood flow.   I liked to ride my bike before but never looked forward to the after effects.  But now, I love to ride my bike and can’t wait for the next ride!

Where can you get your self on one of these seats?  Well right here at "probably the best bike shop in the world".

 

 

National Bike Month

April showers bring...the best month of the year! May is National Bike Month, sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists and celebrated in communities from coast to coast. Established in 1956, National Bike Month is a chance to showcase the many benefits of bicycling - and encourage more folks to giving biking a try.

Columbus' Bike Week

Tuesday May 6 - Ride on Bikes Tuesday night group ride

6:30pm in front of the shop on Broadway. We had 270 riders last year!

Let's break 300!

Wednesday May 7 - 10th Annual National Ride of Silence. Meet at 6:30pm. Ride begins at 7:00pm from the Lakebottom park band shelter. There will be a post ride social with free burgers and hotdogs.

Friday May 9 - 6th annual Bike to Work Day. Energizing stations for morning commuters available from 6:30am-9:00am at Fall line trace - Machester expressway park and ride Fall line trace - Talbotton rest area. Lake bottom park in front of the tennis courts RiverWalk across from oxbow meadows.

Stations will have great snacks and giveaways for morning commuters

May 9 6:00pm - 4th Annual Ride with the Mayor. This ride starts from Woodruff Riverfront Park at 1000 Bay Avenue. The ride is 5 miles, police escorted-bicycle rentals available at Ride On Bikes. After the ride, join Mayor Tomlinson as she closes bicycle week and kicks off RiverFest.

More information available at www.activevalley.org