Gear & How-To’s

Finding local group rides, classes, and clinics

You’ve been riding and building your base, but you haven’t ventured very far from home. Maybe you’re nervous about riding alone too far away as you aren’t sure how to change a tube if you get a flat, or you don’t have a solid base. Perhaps you aren’t familiar with the trails, want to increase your distance, or just want some company while riding. Group rides and clinics are a great way learn basic maintenance, see new trails, and make friends who also enjoy cycling.

But how do you find events? Cycling a wonderful thing, and the professionals in the industry are typically very eager to share their love of cycling with the rest of the community. As such, many local bike shops (LBS) offer a variety of opportunities for cyclists of all levels to learn more about bikes, ride with others in group rides, and build their base with indoor cycling classes. There are also a lot of people just like you looking for friends to ride with. Continue reading

Recover Right

As a competitive athlete – and an injury-prone one – I am a big recovery tool aficionado. There’s a plethora of products available on the market, from high-tech tools such as recovery boots to traditional household remedies such as epsom salt.

The importance of rest and recovery

Whether you are training or just riding a lot, we all put our bodies through often increasings amount of stress. To reap the benefits of training or to keep healthy and fit, it is essential to pay equal attention to rest and recovery. With a myriad of tools available to improve our recovery time, here’s a selection of my favorites to make your body recover.

Compress it – Foam roller

rollerProbably the tool everyone has a deep love-hate relationship with. While I love stretching out my back on a regular foam roll, I came to love the TriggerPoint Cold Roller. Especially after long rides in the heat of summer, the cooling effect of the roller eases the discomfort of rolling and eases pain and inflammation in your muscles through the power of ice and compression. This video gives a great overview of the Cold Roller. Continue reading

3 Essential Items for Feeling Fresh at Work

xtracycle jamie chorney chenxing sideI’m a committed cycle commuter. I’ve done several years of both a 10- and 2-mile-each-way commute and have loved (almost) every day of it. For more of my tips on cycle commuting, see Cycle Commuting: Looking Good When You Arrive from the Moxie blog in March

But, let’s be honest – as much as I love cycling and working, the two pursuits oppose each other a bit when it comes to feeling fresh at work. So, here are my top 3 must-have items to take to the office when you’re commuting by bike: Continue reading

For Your Eyes Only

At least officially, it has been spring for a while, and all cyclists are dying to put their trainers back in the basement and get out on the roads.

Sure, better weather and longer days are definitely welcomed by all of us, but they also require a well thought through investment into protective eyewear. When spending hours upon hours outside, it is important to have the right lenses, right fit – and, let’s be honest – the right design. Just like with helmets, many women tend to need women’s specific glasses, and luckily many brands have invested in women-specific designs for high-performance sunglasses. I tested a variety of glasses to see which ones work best for the many different kinds of riding and racing that I do. While all lenses provide 100% UVA/UVB protection, they each have different strengths.

Here is a guide for what’s new for your eyes in 2016: Continue reading

Camping Gear for Bike Touring

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Two of my favorite things – biking and camping.  To be able to take off on a weekend and do both is the best of both worlds!  Riding down a tree-covered trail by day and sleeping under the stars listening to the symphony of night.

I started collecting ultralight camping gear to allow me to stuff my kayak and overnight on a gravel bar.  After I had all the light-weight camping gear, the next logical step for me was to buy a backpack.  I am now an avid backpacker and regularly carry all I need for a weekend in a 65 liter backpack that normally weighs 35-40 lbs packed.  Next step…..let’s try to get all that gear I carry in a backpack and see if I can manage to get it on my trail bike so I can do an overnight ride on the Katy Trail.

I have two choices for sleeping.  If I will be on a trail where I know I can find trees, I will Continue reading

A Little Maintenance Goes a Long Way

Regular riding is great for your body, but can be hard on your bike and gear! While our steeds are built to take a beating, treating them right along the way will help you get more consistent performance and a smoother ride while on the road or trail. Below is a simple guide to help you stay on top of the simplest maintenance tasks which can have a big impact on your bike’s wear and tear.

Every Day Before You Ride

Give those tires a squeeze! If they feel soft, you better check your pressure and see if you’ve picked up any thorns and punctures on your last ride. If you’re riding tubeless, pulling out the thorn/nail/whatever and spinning your wheel should allow the puncture to seal back up. Don’t forget to top off your sealant every 4-6 months depending on your climate.

Optimal Bike Tire Pressures:
Road Bike: 100-120 psi
Mountain: 30-50 psi
Hybrid: 50-70 psi

How are them brakes working? Before you even start to roll, Continue reading

A Basic Guide to Bike Computers

If you are thinking about buying a bike computer, here are some things to help you decide how to choose one that will meet your needs.

Why Should I Get a Bike Computer?

The main reason to get a bike computer is so you can view data from your bike rides. By tracking your speed, distance, cadence, heart rate, etc, you can improve your riding performance and bring yourself to the next level of fitness. Or you may just want to know how far you have ridden or how fast you are going. Once you figure out why you want a bike computer, it will help with the selection process. Start by asking yourself:

  • What kind of data/information do you want?
  • How will you use this information?
  • How much are you willing to spend?
  • What other functionality is important to you?

Continue reading

The Adventures of Karmel & Jester

A true story as told by Jester, a Moxie Cycling ambassador’s first Moxie jersey.

Although I was sandwiched among dozens of tops for sale at the 2012 Utah Goldilocks Century, I was optimistic that someone would take me home. Indeed my bright colors and diamond pattern of the Moxie Jester style and unique T-Back tank design did not scream “typical cycling jersey”, yet it was this distinction that gave me hope I would catch your eye.  You approached me –  exhausted yet victorious after riding 100 miles for the first time ever – and determined to treat yourself with a new top for this sport that you have recently fallen in love with.

Since you were not particularly fond of the current women’s cycle apparel that was on the market at the time, you were THRILLED when you finally found me. I was flattering, functional, and most of all – fabulously fashionable. As a fitness instructor and overall generally active gal, you knew immediately that you would not be wearing me on the bike exclusively.  In fact, for the next few years, even though you wore me quite often, it was rarely on the bike.  And so began the Adventures of Karmel and Jester.

IMG_2272After that first century ride in May 2012, you wore me often to the gym where you teach a variety of fitness classes including indoor cycle, boot camp, Zumba, and aquatics.  You love how my moisture-wicking fabric dries quickly after teaching an intense sweaty class.  You love how my back pockets are so perfect for holding the microphone pack. You love how my fashionable design and colorful pattern invite compliments from students and colleagues on a regular basis.

But our adventures were not limited to the gym. I joined you often at the local amusement park on hot summer days.  Purses are not allowed on some of the rides so my pockets held your keys, phone, and wallet. You beamed with pride when a couple of gals behind us in line on one of the rides asked you, “Where did you get your pocket top??? We love it!”

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Although your outdoor cycling took a back seat in 2013 when you started running Spartan obstacle races, I did not. In fact, after running 6 Spartan races wearing various tops that did not hold up well during all of the mud pits and wall climbs and barbed wire crawls, you decided to give me a shot – and I came through for you like champ.  Since you didn’t want to wear a bulky Camelbak or a water bottle holster which could get caught on some of the obstacles, you carried your water bottles in my pockets.  My fantastic fit and built-in bra supported you perfectly as you climbed and crawled and pulled and ran and hoisted and leaped. And best of all, I cleaned up beautifully.  While some of your other tops have been ruined after a Spartan race, you have continued to wear me since, and my colors are brighter than ever and my shape and form are still wonderfully intact.

Our many adventures include travel as you absolutely love me for sightseeing and hiking.  Once again, my pockets allow you to enjoy various destinations without having to lug around a purse or a backpack.   I thrive in the humidity and heat of various climates as I can keep you cool and dry while still making you look stylish.

I looked amazing at the top of Willis Tower in Chicago with the city far below us.  My kaleidoscope of colors complemented the hues of Roberto, the macaw we met on a hike in Cancun.  I performed wonderfully when you climbed a sandy hill in Moab.

You have added to your collection of Moxie jerseys since you first discovered me four years ago and each jersey in your collection performs just as effectively, looks just as flattering and stylish, and earns just as many compliments.

So continue to cycle, run, hike, climb, leap, crawl, jump, dance, teach, swim, and play in your Moxie as much as your heart desires.  We can not only take it… we welcome it.

PrintKarmel is a Moxie Cycling ambassador and blog contributor. Check out her bio here!

Rainy Day Gear

Yes, it is that time of year.  There is a reason for the old saying “April showers bring May flowers”, so it is always good during these cool spring days to prepare in case of rain during our rides.  I normally choose to not ride in the rain, but we all know sometimes we don’t have a choice.  You leave on a nice, sunny spring morning, and BOOM – you are 20 miles from home and those first rain drops start falling. Continue reading

Top Ten Cycling Gear Items

This summer marks a decade since I first participated in RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa) – the largest bicycle touring event in the world.  Since then, I have learned a lot about bicycle gear – what’s helpful, what’s not, and some things I never would have even imagined would be useful. Moxie gear is my go-to for cycling clothing because their jerseys are highly functional with feminine styling.  But, in addition to great clothes, you need some great gear for successful bike rides. Some of my favorites are:

#1: Bright Rechargeable LightsIMG_1673

When I got my first grown-up bicycle, I found myself on longer rides and lingering at Tacopocalypse Tuesday at the Cumming Tap well past sunset.  Lights were necessary for a safe trip home.  I started out with battery-powered lights.  After a few years with those and lots of used up AA batteries, it was time for an upgrade.  I went in to my local bike shop, Kyle’s Bikes, and announced I wanted “a headlight brighter than two matches.”  They set me up with an Cygolite Expilion 850 head light and a Thunderbolt tail light.  Both are rechargeable and have served me well on many night rides!

#2: Helmet

All bike helmets are created equal, right? Wrong! Continue reading