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This week on Bike Shop Girl we are covering triathlons and the basics of getting started in this quickly growing sport.  We began the series with “Talk of Triathlons” and then moved on to “Basic Things to Know About Triathlons.”

Today we are covering the essential equipment or gear I feel with get you across the finish more comfortable and confident.  At the end I will also list things that aren’t essential but a good long term investment.

8 Jun ’10 5 comments
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Over at Velorution they talked about a program that rents the small push/glide bikes by the week.

This triggered many thoughts in my head as I love the push bikes instead of training wheels.  It allows a child to learn relying on themselves only, and not training wheels.  The learning curve is gentle and quickly conquered.  My shop sells the Strider running bike, light weight and under $100.

The biggest concern I’ve had with these Striders are once the child learns to ride it, they are ready for the next bike with pedals.  The purchase is very short lived if the child progresses quickly. Unless the parent has another smaller child, or perhaps a friend they could pass it on to.  Yes, these little things hold their value and could sell on Craigslist quickly, but why bother?

Now, what about a rental program to allow the child to try it?  A week for $20 seems fair to me.

Parents : What are your thoughts?

19 Feb ’10 6 comments
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Shimano Alfine and Velocity Halo Dyad

Shimano Alfine and Velocity Halo Dyad

A set of wheels are in for review and in the midst of getting installed on the famous Salsa Casseroll.   Utilizing a Shimano Alfine groupset I have been piecing together in the past 6 months, and the new Velocity Dyad Halo reflective rims.

The wheels and review are also based all around the Shimano Alfine groupset, as I’ve been interested in internally geared hubs (IGH) since trying the Civia Loring with SRAM i-Motion.  Combine the IGH and a Dynamo front hub for a motion powered front light.

30 Jul ’10 3 comments
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We featured the new bikes from Puma over at Commute By Bike at the beginning of the summer and many people commented on the aesthetics of the bikes. Regardless of if you like them or hate them, they spurred enough of an opinion inside of you to comment. Due to this, their marketing and design team did their job very well.

Welcome the Puma Cargo Bike

From Puma’s Headquarters, Somwhere in Crayonland : PUMA Mopion is rock steady for the daily grind. It mixes city bike features, and cargo bike features, making it a sturdy companion. It comes with a super-size innovative front carrier for heavy duty transport of your groceries or other needs. Developed for city dwellers, Mopion features a light aluminum frame, making it a one-of-a-kind lightweight cargo bike weighing only 22 kilos.

19 Sep ’10 0 comment
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We can almost count the time to Christmas in hours and unfortunately I missed Hanukkah for all my Jewish friends and followers.  I’ve been asked by many what to get their cycling loved ones or friends for those last minute gifts or stocking stuffers.

Top Last Minute Gift Ideas

Gift Cards - that’s an easy one.  If you aren’t local to your cycling loved one buy one from REI or Competitive Cyclist.  Also, many shops sell gift cards now – make it around service because during the upcoming year we’ll all need a good tune up, or wheel true.

Planet Bike Rear Blinky Light

Rear Blinky Light - Even mountain bikers can use these if they ride at night, and for safety reasons you can never have enough rear red blinky lights!

Old Chub Cycling Socks

Socks - Wicking, wool, tall or short.  They have decorative, fancy or plain fun.  Go crazy, even the cyclist in denial of their funny bone will wear these in hiding away from their snobby friends.

Cliff Bar

Nutrition - Those funny bars, and snacks that we like to eat on our rides or for a late breakfast.   Chances are you can find these at your local grocery store, the cheapest I find them is at REI.  Take a sampling of different types.  Maybe you’ll find your cyclist a new favorite.

Twin Six Water Bottle

Water Bottles -  There isn’t a cyclist alive that will turn down a good water bottle.  Unless,  they are ugly and cheap.  My favorite are the insulated Camelbak bottles.  Combined with the nutrition gels/bars inside, it makes a great looking stocking stuffer!

Last Minute Shopping

Most everyone has a local bike shop in town.  Even if you aren’t a cyclist I recommend you support the locals.   Most of the above ideas are available at your local bike shop.  Variation may change but the use will not!  I also know Real Cyclist and some others are guaranteeing shipping if you order by 5pm MST on December 22nd!

What Do You Want?

After asking on Twitter what was on the cyclist holiday wish list I received many different responses. Some were thoughtful, useful or even a few that money couldnt buy.

@KatyChancey is looking for a new Sweat Pea A-Line, Swrve Knickers and Women’s winter bike shoes

@LorenCaff has a high vis waterproof jacket on her list

@ElRach @thequestess @Tomas_quinones @nicknull All are looking for warmer clothes

It seems like knickers are a very popular want from @doyouwabisabi

@wjcstp @parenthood21 @g_berger @BRAINtechPLEASE @BradGrass Some form of bikes are on their list

My favorite of all the comments :

@BikeShopGirlcom what I really need is a bike maintenance elf. Rei is out of stock & bike shop boys don’t believe they exist. :(
From : @debiquity

What is on your list?

22 Dec ’10 0 comment
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It was a stupid idea, I knew that within 30 feet of entering the trail head.   Night riding on the most root strewn trail, the night after a huge wind storm blew threw the area which left roughly 2 inches of wet leaves to hide those evil roots.

It was a Stupid Idea Night Riding Last Night

I could feel it, my lights weren’t picking up depth with the colorful leaves thrown across the trail.  They weren’t picking up the roots I knew that were around that corner.  I had to ride.  I had to.  I needed it, my soul needed it and I needed to feel again in away that riding at night can only give.

Cautiously I rode on.  The trail is around 3 miles long and I felt confident in my navigating skills.  I had ridden in the pouring rain without site before, this would be fine.  I would be fine. I would feel again.

Pushing myself carefully around the turns.  Testing my brain and memory skills from riding the trail a few nights earlier.

Oh shit moments.  Back tire spinning in place stuck on a root that I hadn’t seen under the golden leaves.

Smile with happiness as I glide through the creek bed.  I’ve almost completely one lap on the trail, I knew I could do another.  This wasn’t as bad as I thought.

Dabbing.  Why did I second guess myself there?  I know this trail. I know how it feels, I know where the roots that grab your tires are, I know what to avoid.

With one last section left to clear, I eased up and slowed down a tick.   The night was beautiful.  It felt great to be out, in the middle of November in spandex.  Feeling at peace from a crazy day.

The rooty berm was ahead.  I picked my way threw.

My Rear Jammed and I Crashed

Laying there, I looked to see what my wheel had stopped on.  I saw nothing, I didn’t see a reason for the sudden stop of momentum.  What just happened?   Thankfully the golden pile of leaves (that probably had a golden shower from a dog or two) caught my fall.  I was fine, but I was baffled as I didn’t see anything that would have stopped my 29er wheels.

I laid, and thought, and breathed.  Silence. My helmet light shined off the trees over head.  In that moment I believed something stopped me.  Something grabbed my tire at that moment, right when I would fall on a pile of leaves.  I was meant to be laying here in this golden pile of leaves to reflect and find peace.

These are the Moments I Ride For

Going fast is fun.  Being faster than your friends is nice.  The moments when you stop and look at where you have come from, or maybe that large hill you still have to climb.  I’m happy to be on the bike, and happier to share these moments with people that care.

18 Nov ’10 0 comment
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A follow up to my cycling short basic, here is a selection of my favorite cycling shorts and why.  Be prepared to hold your wallet, as these are on the higher end of shorts.

Giordana Giordana Body Clone $150

No elastic waist band, comfortable compression all around and cut to bend with your leg.  One of the more comfortable shorts I’ve used in awhile but after a season and a half they need replacement.

8 Dec ’09 2 comments
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I’m tentatively going to expand into merchandise and small product sales on Commute By Bike and Bike Shop Girl. But I would like your feedback. What type of things would you purchase through us vs Amazon? Would it be enough to know you are supporting a great resource to purchase that light or bag through us?

Let me know what you think and what you would be interested in!

2 Dec ’09 0 comment
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In 2009 Bontrager released their first ever cycling shoe line.  After teaming up with Esoles in order to get thousands of foot scans.  The result was a well fit shoe, with replaceable arch support and a bargain compared to other shoes. The line was very in depth with women, men and triathlon shoes.  (Personally, I have two pairs and I love them!)

For 2010 they are going even deeper with the line and adding more color.  The women are staying pretty subtle but the mens line have a lot of orange through out.

29 Jul ’09 0 comment
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