Women Bike Mechanics

Women Make Great Mechanics, Specialized is Helping the Cause with Training

A great article by Kath Bicknell was posted on Flow Mountain Bike. The article made some key points about how women make great mechanics and how better training could specifically make the void disappear of highly skilled women in the bike industry.

Taking it a step further, I believe that if we take the time to single out women to pave the path a little bit more for more advanced training it will open up and encourage more women to work in the industry. Think about this, if every shop had a couple women on the floor and behind the bench, and every shop bike ride had a women as one of the group leaders… how much more inviting would this be to women and men alike?

As a woman working in a bike store, you’re definitely an anomaly. Last time I worked at a bike shop, every now and then, a customer would ask to speak to one of the ‘guys’. ‘Ask me your question, and if I can’t answer it I’ll go and get some help,’ I’d say.

Things usually went pretty well from there. If help was needed, I’d call on our female mechanic, just to make a point.

In a sport that still attracts a lot more men than women, it follows that female staff in the bike retail sector aren’t as common either. This can sometimes lead to the unfortunate assumption that women aren’t as skilled as their male counterparts, or can’t provide the same level of customer service and advice.

Read the full article here.

Photo credit: Kath Bicknell

cyclocross

Colorado Cyclocross Calendar

it’s my first year living in Colorado for cyclocross and I’m starting to get excited! The calendar on BRAC (Bicycle Racing Association Colorado) is lacking links and non-sanctioned races/clinics so in my effort of research, here is what I have found for cyclocross racing in Colorado.

Cross of the North 2012 – Men’s Open from Jamie Servaites on Vimeo.

August

20Formula Four Boulder

23 – FasCat & Jeremy Powers Cross Camp Boulder

27 – Relay Sixty Boulder

September

7 - Women’s Cyclocross Camp 2-5pm in Fort Collins. $25 for the camp
crosscamp
7 - Kick It Cross Festival 
Fort Collins

8Cross of the North Fort Collins

14 - Zero Gravel Cross Littleton

15 - Cyclo X Flatirons Mall Boulder

21 - Cyclo X Valmont Boulder

22 - Body Synx CX Golden

27 – BRAC Junior Cyclocross Camp

28 – BRAC Junior Cyclocross Camp

28 – Cyclo X Rhyolite Park

28 – Queens of Cross Arvada

28 – LTR CX #1 Grand Junction

29 – BRAC Junior Cyclocross Camp

29 – Storm the Castle Castle Rock

October

5 – Frisco Cross Frisco

6 – Primalpalooza Arvada

19 – Colorado Cross Classic Boulder

20 – Boulder Cup Boulder

26 – Cyclo X Xilinx 

26 - LTR CX #2 Grand Junction

27 – Frites CX Parker

November

2 – Schoolyard Cross Brighton

3 – Feedback Cup Golden

9 – Cyclo X Interlocken

9 - LTR CX #3 Grand Junction

10 – Blue Sky Cup Longmont

16 – Cyclo X Louisville Louisville

17 – Mile Hi Urban Cross Denver

23 – Cyclo X Westminster Westminster

23 - LTR CX #4 Grand Junction

24 – Green Mtn Sports CX #2

28 – Turkey Cross Morrison

30 – Castle Cross Castle Rock

December

1 – Cowboy Cross Denver

7 – Cyclo X Boulder Boulder

8 – The RLW “in Memoriam” Cx 

14 – Colorado CX Championships Louisville

15 – Colorado CX Championships Louisville

28 – Tune-up Cup Golden

 

lust header

Intro: 2014 Liv/giant Lust Full Suspension 27.5 Women’s Mountain Bike Line

While I’m only half way through the review of a Liv/Giant Anthem X 29er, Liv/Giant rocks us all back on our heels with the news they will only be doing 27.5″ wheels on their mountain bikes starting in 2014. Over the next week I’ll be featuring all the new models, spec and pricing. Make sure to follow the search term “Liv/giant 2014” over the next week.

What makes for a great mountain bike? I believe it’s a mix of the right fit so you are comfortable, the right balance so you can climb and descend with confidence and has to be down right sexy. The new line from Liv/giant tagged “Lust” may fit all three of those things out of the box. 27.5″ wheels, both carbon and aluminum models and geometry that on paper should fit many women well.

Liv/giant Lust Advanced 0

2014 Liv/giant Lust Advanced 0 MSRP $8,050

Sizes: XS, S, M, L
Spec: 4″ of suspension, RockShox SID XX fork, SRAM XX1 drivetrain
Thoughts: This will be a “dream bike” for many women. The best of the best is on every part of this bike and I would be interested to see what a medium weighs out to. Maybe 24 lbs with some hardware swaps?

Liv/giant Lust Advanced 2

2014 Liv/giant Lust Advanced 2 MSRP $3,400

Sizes: XS, S, M, L
Spec: 4″ of suspension, Fox 32 Float CTD fork, Shimano SLX & XT drivetrain
Thoughts: A more reasonable price tag, YET with a very well spec’d out parts package. This is the model I would have my eye on in this line up!

Liv/giant Lust 1

2014 Liv/giant Lust 1 MSRP $3,200

Sizes: XS, S, M, L
Spec: 4″ of suspension, RockShox SID RL fork, SRAM XO/X9 shifting, with GRIP SHIFT!!
Thoughts: With a more reasonable price tag, YET a very well spec’d out parts package this would be the bike my eye is drawn to.

Lust2

2014 Liv/giant Lust 2 MSRP $2,450

Sizes: XS, S, M, L
Spec: 4″ of suspension, Fox 32 Float fork, Shimano Deore
Thoughts: Does that photo of the Lust 2 have a purple rear triangle? Yes it does. With the parts and spec on this bike I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the top seller of the Liv/giant mountain bike models over $1,500. Personally, this is on the short list for my Emily’s next mountain bike!

IMG_3574

Review: Clif Bar Sierra Trail Mix

Clif Bar is one of the original energy bars on the market and are a pretty standard energy snack on the trail or in a cyclist pocket. It’s great to see when they add more flavors to their options to keep people interested and not burnt out on their selection

Clif Bar Sierra Trail Mix $15 per box of 12

WCB13_388-Nutritionals_Clif-Bar_STM

Ingredients

Organic Brown Rice Syrup, ClifPro® (Soy Rice Crisps [Soy Protein Isolate, Rice Flour, Barley Malt Extract], Organic Roasted Soybeans, Organic Soy Flour), Organic Rolled Oats, Organic Peanuts, Chocolate Chips (Dried Cane Syrup, Unsweetened Chocolate‡, Cocoa Butter‡, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla Extract), Organic Raisins, Organic Cane Syrup, Organic Peanut Butter (Organic Peanuts, Salt), ClifCrunch® (Organic Oat Fiber, Inulin, Organic Psyllium), Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Roasted Sunflower Seeds (Sunflower Seeds, Sunflower Oil), Organic Date Paste, Sea Salt, Natural Flavors, Natural Vitamin E (Antioxidant).

IMG_3576

Taste Test

This bar really tast like a great bag of trail mix in a bar but with some additional moisture so you don’t have cotton mouth. It’s a welcoming difference of many bars with it’s chocolate chips, soy rice crisps, raisins and pumpkin seeds. Yummy goodness! I

f you are looking for an easy choice for calories in a wrapper, give this your own taste test and let me know what you think!

raleigh cyclocross

Intro: 2014 Raleigh Cyclocross Bikes

Hot on the heels of my review of the 2013 Raleigh Capri Carbon 4.0Raleigh USA has released information on their 2014 line up. Over the next week I’ll be breaking down the line up by category. Keep up to date by checking out the search keyword “Raleigh USA 2014“.

While the cyclocross category is specific to women, Raleigh does have the RX1.0 in women but I can’t help but mention the other bikes in their line up as they are pretty stellar.

Raleigh RXC Pro Disc

2014 Raleigh RXC Pro Disc MSRP: $5,000

Spec: Carbon frameset with Shimano Ultegra Di2 (6770) with FSA SL-K cockpit
Weight: 18.9lbs for 55cm
Sizes: 50, 53, 55, 57, 59cm
Thoughts: Disc brake and electronic shifting will be seen more and more this season on the cyclocross courses. Less to gunk up and less to go wrong (in theory.) I’m surprised with the price tag of $5k that this bike is weighing in at 18.9 pounds, but I can only assume most of that is in the wheels. It looks like a great training wheel set that may be adding some rotational weight to the other wise race spec’d bike.

Raleigh RXC Disc

2014 Raleigh RXC Disc MSRP: $2,700

Spec: Carbon frameset with Shimano 105 10 speed
Weight: 19.5lbs for 55cm
Sizes: 50, 53, 55, 57, 59cm
Thoughts: A more reasonably priced cross racing bike that is coming with mechanical shifting and less racy parts. A great build and price for a carbon bike for the racer in you.

Raleigh RX 2.0 Disc

2014 Raleigh RX 2.0 Disc MSRP: $1,750

Spec: Aluminum frame with carbon fork and Shimano 105 10 speed
Weight: 22.3lbs for 56cm
Sizes: 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62cm
Thoughts: I’m a bit biased to this fabulous color, but the bike is a strong competitor for killer disc brake cyclocross race bike. Swap out the wheels and drop off a couple pounds easy.

Raleigh RX 1.0

2014 Raleigh RX 1.0 MSRP: $1,500

Spec: Aluminum frame with carbon fork and SRAM Apex 10 speed
Weight: 21.5lbs for 56cm
Sizes: 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62cm
Thoughts: The only cantilever option in Raleigh’s “unisex” line up this year.

Raleigh RX 1.0 womens

2014 Raleigh RX 1.0 MSRP: $1,500

Spec: Aluminum frame with carbon fork and SRAM Apex 10 speed
Weight: 21.3lbs for 52cm
Sizes: 48, 50, 52, 54, 56cm
Thoughts: Previewed right here on Bike Shop Girl back in June – I’m happy to see this women’s geometry cross racing bike updated for 2014.

Bike Commuting

August Challenge: 1,000 Commuter Miles

Last week I wrote about the bike commute into my new job at Pearl Izumi. After nailing down my inbound and outbound routes it takes between 1.5 – 2 hours each way. This is going pretty easy and really only attacking on the way home to get home faster!

Fast forward to this week, I drove in the first couple days this week and became more frustrated as I sat in traffic 45 minutes each way. I also learned about a pretty cool challenge going on by LiveWell Colorado called Colorado Get Moving Challenge. The challenge is to make Colorado the most active state by having folks commit to 30 minutes of exercise every day in August.

Print

All of this got my wheels turning…I need base miles for cyclocross, I need to be on my bike, I hate sitting in traffic and I would love to commit to this challenge. With the encouragement (and reality check from my better half) I checked myself thinking I would commute all 22 work days of August and decided committing to 1,000 commuting miles in August is more reasonable. This allows me to drive one day a week to bring food and clean clothes in/out of the office and 3 days of recovery.

Along this process I’ve also become an ambassador of the Get Moving Challenge. You’ll see my tags #COgetmovin on Twitter and Instagram, and my fitness updates on MapMyFitness. Every few days I may do a mental download here on things I’m learning, food I’m eating and adventures I’m having by putting in roughly 240 commuter miles a week. I may not be very social this month during the week, and if you see me I’ll probably always have food and water in hand!

If you are in Colorado check out the Challenge and give it a go!

Liv/giant 27.5

Liv/Giant Goes to Only 27.5″ for Mountain Bikes in 2014

While I’m only half way through the review of a Liv/Giant Anthem X 29er, Liv/Giant rocks us all back on our heels with the news they will only be doing 27.5″ wheels on their mountain bikes starting in 2014. Over the next week I’ll be featuring all the new models, spec and pricing. Make sure to follow the search term “Liv/giant 2014” over the next week.

Liv/giant 27.5

Liv/giant is dedicated to providing women with the best possible off-road cycling experience. The evolution of the 27.5-inch wheel size has led Liv/giant’s engineers and athletes to one conclusion: 27.5 is the optimal wheel size for all riding styles and levels of female riders. It perfectly combines the most desirable attributes of 26 and 29-inch wheels, giving you a ride that truly delivers the best of all worlds. This year Liv/giant’s entire off-road line-up, from sport-level to elite, features bikes with 27.5-inch wheels.

  1. Lighter Weight
  2. More Efficient
  3. Better Control

In comparison to 26 and 29-inch wheel size options, our research shows that 27.5 offers the ideal combination of light weight, efficiency, and control for female riders. Here are the factors that make this wheel size especially ideal for women.
These three factors combined create the best possible ride quality and bike fit for female riders. The inherent light weight and efficiency of 27.5 gives you the energy to elevate your riding. And 27.5 allows Liv/giant to design our 3F frame geometry to better balance female riders of all heights over the bottom bracket and front wheels for unparalleled control. It is this balance that truly defines the Liv/giant riding experience.