Wade Franck Memorial Bicycle Ride

There are bad days on bicycles. Bad days like when the wind is in your face, the sun is just too hot, or you bonk real hard. And then there are really bad days on bicycles. Those are the days where you leave for your bike ride and have no idea that by the time you return, your world will look completely different than it did when you put on your jersey, pumped up your tires and rolled out of the driveway.

I had one of those days on August 16, 2015. My boyfriend, Wade Franck, and I were scheduled to compete in the Urban Assault Ride – a bicycle scavenger hunt – that day. He picked me up at my house, loaded my bike on his car, and we joined many friends and acquaintances at the starting line in Downtown Des Moines. Here we are at the start of the race:


Jess and Wade

We raced through the course, completing obstacles and having a great morning together. It was a really good day – right up until it wasn’t. About half way into the race, we were 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

Morgan: Planning & Training for Long Races or Rides

My first endurance cycling event, and I’m almost ashamed to admit it because it wasn’t Race Across America, The Triple Bypass or some other legendary cycling feat, was RAGBRAI. Yep. The annual bike ride across Iowa. Pretty sure I just killed any sex appeal or athlete envy you might have had for me. So, moving on…At the time, I was new to the bike and the thought of riding 500 miles in one week was daunting. I trained by riding alongside Ryan, trusting that by doing exactly as he did I would prevail. After all, he’s an Iowa boy, forged in the RAGBRAI tradition since birth.When July rolled around, I was ready: My bike was dialed in, I had a thousand miles in the saddle and was well rested. My first day was glorious. My legs and lungs dutifully carried me through 70 miles of corn-speckled hills. When we rolled into camp, I felt like a champ, ready for the next six days. By week’s end, I was a blistered and bitter trainwreck. In spite of my training and Ryan’s ever-present encouragement, I was OVER with RAGBRAI and everything having to do with Iowa. God save the poor bastards who escorted me home that year.Ten years and ten RAGBRAI later, I understand what went wrong–terribly wrong–during my virgin endurance event. To this day, I share this nugget of hard-won wisdom with my clients and ride buddies who endeavor to ride an endurance event: It matters little how well you’ve trained if you can’t enjoy the experience because of (understandably) rookie errors.

Before I even consider prescribing a training plan I climb high on my soap box for the How to Prepare for an Endurance Cycling Event That has Nothing to do with Riding a Bike lecture.

And so it begins… *(Don’t fret, next edition I will give you the never-fail, top-secret, chick-rider-only training program)

5: Spend an Extra “Ben Franklin” for a Professional Bike Fit.

Let me be abundantly clear on this one, gals: The 43 second slap shot job performed by the 18-year-old who sold you your bike does NOT qualify as professional. Nor does having Neighbor-Who-Rides-All-The-Time bestow his well-intentioned and erroneous opinion regarding your bike and body. Why am I so adamant about this? Because riding an ill-fitting bike is inefficient, uncomfortable, and dangerous. Not only do you risk irreparable damage to joints and soft tissue, but you’ll likely stop training due to pain or disdain. By training for an endurance event, you are agreeing to spend more time with this machine than your husband. A professional fit is not optional.

4: Plan the Ride, Ride the Plan.

I promise you I’m not stating the obvious here. This isn’t a pep talk about riding adequate miles. Plan the Ride, Ride the Plan is being honest about your intentions during the ride. If you intend to get up early and ride before dawn, do that during training. If you plan on eating gels and bars and sports drinks, do that during training. If you plan on sleeping in, riding on coffee and candy bars until the first bar graces the horizon, do a variation on that during training. This might seem like a strange bit of advice coming from a wellness professional. However, I’ve seen too many people train like a saint and ride like a she-devil and wonder why they feel like road kill. If you join a ride to perform, train for performance. If you join to party, I hereby give you permission to train for that, too. Either way, you’ll likely be more prepared and safer than if you plan for one and do the other.

3: Use Protection.

Imagine this: Day five of RAGBRAI; A haggard blonde combing the aisles of the drugstore filling her basket with balms, salves, blister guards, creams, and bandages. She is desperate to create a barrier between the gaping sores on herself and the bike seat, (which might as well be made of sand paper). After testing various combinations, she manages to eek through the final 150 miles of rub-rub-rubbing on her weary privates. The moral to my true and tragic story? Protect yourself.

If your event is multiple days of riding, practice riding multiple days in the chamois you intend to wear and on the bike seat you intend to rock. Do not ride a new chamois or a new seat. That, my friends, is torture. Furthermore, do not, under any circumstances ride a chamois two days in a row without washing it. Just imagine all the bacteria growing down there… all day.

It’s a vulnerable area—Protect it.

2: On the Bike is Secondary.

What could be more important than what you do on the bike in an endurance cycling event? What you do off the bike! In fact, ask any experienced rider to share an off the bike saga and prepare to settle in for a long tale.

What you eat, when you eat it, how much you eat, where you sleep, when you sleep, how you sleep in a high school gym with 200 other farting, snoring, restless riders while it’s raining to beat hell, where you pee, where you poop, where you poop right frickin’ now because that burrito just hit you like a freight train, what to do when you start your period, how much stuff to carry, what to wear, what not to wear… As you can see, off the bike is exceedingly more unpredictable than on the bike. Hence, the goal going into any event: Be consciously aware that off that bike events are bound to happen, they will affect your best-laid, on-the-bike training plans, probably require more effort to rectify, and when taken in stride are a glorious, maddening, harrowing, and exhilarating part of the on the bike experience.

When off the bike throws you a curveball, tap a veteran cyclist for support, be creative, and practice letting go. When off the bike is finally resolved, get back to the rhythmic predictability of on the bike.

1: Take Care of Your Body.

This is your trainer speaking. On the surface, my profession is dedicated to helping clients train for various events. Our real job is stewarding bodies. We are that little voice that reminds you to take care, for without her any event would be impossible. You may hate her. You may look at her in the mirror and lash out. Starve her, stuff her, work her, neglect her, cover her up, cut her, mock her, pinch, prod, and curse her. All that, and at the end of the ride, she–this villain–will loyally pedal you through life.

You might not like her, but if you train her and take care of her, she will adapt and grow stronger. Feed her good food; Nutritious stuff that will help her rebuild after a tough training ride. Take her for a massage or a visit to the chiro or the spa; Let some healing hands have their way with her, especially the sore parts. Smear her up with sunblock, wear a helmet, stay off of busy roads, and make sure she doesn’t get smashed or ripped open or burned or hurt. And, when you’ve had a particularly good day in the saddle, maybe riding further than ever, or effortlessly passing some punk, or climbing a hill you never thought you could, or just feeling frickin’ awesome, give her a little pat on the arm and a “Good job, honey, we did it.”

It’s a simple deal: You take care and she (that little voice in your head) will shepherd you through the ride. And, maybe somewhere along the way, you might come to an agreement.

– Morgan

Have a topic you’d like to read about from Morgan’s perspective? Leave a comment below or ping us on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram with #MoxieMorgan

Fall Inspiration and Foods

Food & fitness for your consideration // Fall is just around the corner, but salad season isn’t over yet

I’m sure that after I post this, we’ll find ourselves in another stretch of hot, humid days, but this last week has gotten me thinking of the leaves changing colors, the approaching Holidays, and slightly cold but still sunny days of Fall.

moxie cycling women's cycling gear jersey fall sunset

This morning on my ride to work, despite the high of 81, I was wearing layers and kinda wished I had gloves. It was chilly! You can tell that Fall is on the way with the crisp air and, unfortunately, shortening days. One good thing about the end of summer is the excess garden vegetables that somehow appear in bucketfuls when your co-workers get sick of making salsa and BLTs and end up with more produce than they can handle. Fresh midwest produce should never go to waste, so take advantage of the bounty with this delicious fresh mozzarella, tomato & basil recipe from the folks at Wisconsin Cheese: Continue reading

Roundup: Ragbrai 2012!

What we love this week // RAGBRAI 2012!

It’s probably obvious now that we are big fans of the annual bike ride across Iowa, but in case you aren’t familiar with the event, we are happy to give you the rundown of how much fun this cycling gathering is! RAGABRAI actually stands for Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. The ride first began in 1973, making this year’s ride the 40th annual RAGABRAI. In the first year, there were 114 riders who completed the ride, and since then, the numbers have continued to grow until they had to limit the ride to a total of 8,500 week-long riders and 1,500 day long riders. This means on an average RAGBRAI day in Iowa you can see some 10,000 cyclist’s going down the road!

RAGBRAI Iowa annual ride 2012 moxie cycling

Just another day in Iowa on RAGBRAI

And when you get that many cycling aficionados together, you get a very diverse but wonderfully united crowd. Some of the team names we came across were brilliant…as well as the men dressed like Elvis, the older couples dressed in all pink including feather boas, the multiple groups of proud beer drinkers, and of course the lovely ladies dressed in Moxie!

moxie cycling jerseys ragbrai 2012

Tamara, Abby & Brooke in two of our styles coming out in 2013

The first day we were able to get the Moxie Men out on the official Moxie Tandem bike! Thanks to a recent ‘pimp my tandem’ makeover, this relic is looking super shiny and in the signature Moxie green. After the 50 mile ride, Alex and Denton confirmed that it takes some major man moxie to pedal that single-speed.

moxie cycling tandem ragbrai 2012

One fellow RAGBRAI rider had to ask, “You know that’s a single-speed right?” But the men of Moxie were able to persevere!

Denton and Jordan even completed the Century ride and earned their patch.

ragbrai century ride moxie cycling

What us Moxie ladies are celebrating about is the expo before the first day of riding where Moxie Cycling had a booth debuting our 2013 line with a pre-sale! We are so proud and excited to reveal our new patterns and styles, and have had some great feedback so far. It was great fun to see women the remainder of the ride wearing our jerseys! Check out these Moxie spottings:

moxie cycling women's jersey ragbrai

moxie cycling women's jerseys ragbrai 2012

moxie cycling women's jersey cycling ragbrai 2012

And here is Team Moxie Cycling at the finish! Dipping our tires as per the tradition.

moxie cycling women's jerseys ragbrai

moxie cycling ragbrai 2012 women's jerseys

If you would like to look into purchasing any of the latest jerseys, please send an e-mail to brooke@moxiecycling.com or deb@moxiecycling.com to get your preview catalog and receive ordering information.

ragbrai moxie cycling women's cycling jersey

Were you at RAGBRAI?? Send us your Moxie Spotting pics and we’ll share them in our next post!

Are you interested in joining us at RAGBRAI next year? Drop us a line at the above email address, in the comments below, or at our Facebook page and we can coordinate information! We are always interested in finding more women cyclists to join us!

Stay Sassy…

Team Moxie

Where to Ride: Lake Independence Trail

In the Twin Cities & across the country // Head North for a Ride into the Countryside on the Lake Independence Trail

Start: The Lake Independence Trail connects to the Luce Line, Baker Park Reserve and Crow-Hassan Park Reserve, giving you plenty of options for a starting point. The total length of the trail one way is 15.8 miles, so if you’d like to make it a longer trip, I would recommend starting from the Medicine Lake area which connects with the Luce Line, giving you ~60 miles round trip. Myself and two buddies did this last Saturday and I was very happy with the ease of the trai; I love to take longer rides on the weekend, but I do not like having to stop to look at a map every 5 miles, which is why this route was enjoyable. Once you connect from the Luce Line onto the Lake Independence Trail, it is a straight shot out of town north with rolling hills and a nicely paved and maintained bike path.

The trail starts by curving around Baker Park Reserve, with gorgeous views of Lake Katrina and some of Lake Independence. Baker Park Reserve itself is a great destination for outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, swimming, fishing, and golfing. The bike trails were wonderfully entertaining and curvy, allowing you a varied route that includes climbs, downhills, and tight turns. On the Northwest side of the loop you have the option to continue North out of the park on the bike trail, which goes directly up to Crow-Hassan Park Reserve along County Road 19.

End: Crow-Hassan Park Reserve is also very picturesque, but unfortunately the park does not have paved bike paths. You can hike or horseback ride into the reserve however and enjoy the natural prairie that changes colors with the month.

In Between: Since the ride from Medicine Lake was a decent jaunt, we took a break for snacks and a water refill at a gas station in Loretto. The station even had some outdoor seating, which was nice as it was  a sunny day and relaxing in the shade was a welcome escape. After the long ride home, my Moxie jersey tan line was getting pretty defined. And I’m rockin’ it like I do my goggle tan after a long ski season!

moxie jersey tan line

Is that a skin-colored Moxie Jersey you have?

When to Ride: If you are looking to log some miles during the week, starting at either park reserve will have you at 30 miles out and back within a couple of hours, but on a sunny later summer weekend, this would be a great way to get out of town without the gas tank suffering. Once the temps drop from the 100’s as it has been the last few days, camping would be a fun options as well!


Stay Sassy…

Team Moxie 

July Means BBQ Time, Baby!

Food & fitness for your consideration // July  means BBQ time baby!

Alright kids, who’s excited for the 4th of July? This Moxie lady!! Besides Christmas, which is an automatic winner in the Holiday game because of the family gathering aspect, the 4th of July takes a close second. Think about it: you get a day off to be low-key, hang out in the sun, wear some red-white-and-blue, and enjoy some fireworks just after the sun goes down. And since you have ALL DAY to enjoy yourself, I would recommend making your late afternoon barbeque a step above the rest with some Korean BBQ tacos and a refreshing Matcha Green Tea smoothie from Mrs. Regueiro’s Plate & Healthy Happy Life.

Korean Style BBQ Tacos

Continue reading

Stealthy & Healthy

Food & fitness for your consideration // Pina Colada Cupcakes with Lime Frosting are the perfect sweet treat for a summer rendezvous

Typically here on Stealthy & Healthy I try to feature a recipe or new tidbit that is beneficial to our health, but once in a while I like to indulge a little, as we all should. A friend of mine is having a much anticipated Summer House Party next weekend and as I was contemplating what I should contribute to the get-together, I remembered a recipe I tried last summer that turned out beyond delicious. The recipe I came across on Pinterest from a blog titled ‘I’ll Eat You.’ And if you like pina coladas [and getting caught in the rain] then you’ll LOVE these cupcakes.

Malibu Pina Colada Cupcakes with Lime Cream Cheese Frosting

The cupcakes themselves taste like gooey pineapple and coconut, but what really makes these amazing is the zesty lime frosting. I had made these in small canning jars with the intention of sending them off to family and friends who lived close by, but they never it made it that far… ssh!

The recipe calls for a lime wedge as a topping, but I think my variation of shredded coconut and lime peel curly-cue worked pretty well.

Can you guess which one is mine?

I’m pretty excited to re-create these – this time in a larger batch.

And if you don’t already know, Moxie Cycling is on Pinterest – click here to see what we’ve been up to!

Stay Sassy…

Team Moxie 

Stealthy & Healthy

Food & fitness for your consideration // Just BEET it!

Since it is mid-week and we are almost ready to say goodbye to another work week, I think we all deserve a little MJ today along with our Stealthy Healthy.

Just beat it, beat it, beat it, beat it
No one wants to be defeated
Showin’ how funky and strong is your fight
It doesn’t matter who’s wrong or right
Just beat it, beat it
Just beat it, beat it
Just beat it, beat it
Just beat it, beat it

And now that you will be singing that the rest of the night, let’s change up the lyrics and ‘Beet It.’ I came across this lovely food blog the other day called Pure Vege and had to share this one-of-a-kind recipe. I find the taste and texture of cooked beets very interesting and unique, but they are almost always a side dish or just a colorful addition to an entrée. In this recipe they are incorporated into the actual pasta, giving you gorgeous red-tinted dough and a savory taste quite unlike the typical noodle. Click the picture for the full recipe:

The intense coloring of beets is due to the presence of betalain pigments, giving them a dark red/purple appearance, which is why they were nicknamed “Blood Turnip.” When using beets in juicing or smoothies, even with a small amount, you can expect a deep red color. Beets are also an excellent source of calcium, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, sodium and high-quality iron, which makes them an excellent addition to a detoxification routine. For a short period I stopped eating meat and stuck mainly to produce and during that time I was reminded at how many vegetables and fruits there really are. Some are more accessible and easier to cook than others, but don’t take the variety forgranted! Beets are one vegetable I have welcomed back onto my grocery list.

image via http://kissmyspatula.com

And here are some purchasing tips for anyone who would be buying their very first beet:

Choose beetroots that are firm and unwrinkled. With the greens attached, beets can keep for only three to four days in the fridge as the root has to supply moisture to the leaves. Without the greens attached, beetroot can keep for a couple of weeks.

Beets with round bottoms are sweeter than flat-bottomed ones. Eat beets fresh to enjoy its flavor better. Do not overheat beets when cooking as heat destroys all the essential nutrients. Remove the skin before cooking.

If making juice, put in about a quarter slice of a lemon (with peel) to a medium-sized beetroot to increase the nutrients absorption rate, and to enhance the juice taste.

– via http://www.juicing-for-health.com/beets.html

Now get in there and beet it!

P.S. Did everyone get their RAGBRAI confirmation? We hope so! Check out the RAGBRAI participant guide to see our very first advertisement!

Stay Sassy…

Team Moxie 

Moxie Trends

What we love this week // Moxie Cycling is now offering customized jersey’s for you and your cycling group! DNA by Moxie

Moxie Cycling Co. is excited to announce DNA by Moxie! You can now work with Team Moxie to create a unique design true to your style and personality.

We help you find the perfect colors and pattern to make you and your team stand out. Looking for a fun way to dress up your group for the upcoming season of cycling events? Contact us through the end of May to get your order for this season. Low minimums and always high in style!

Here is how it works:

If you are a previous RAGBRAI participant, you may already be familiar with the company The Peanut Butter Jam – a family owned group that makes loaded PB&J’s for the riders of RAGBRAI. [Get the full scoop at www.thepbjam.com] This year at RAGBRAI they will be wearing one of our custom made jerseys that are exclusive to their team.

Check out the designs we came up with:

Want to see which one they decided on? Stop by their location throughout the RAGBRAI ride and see in person!

If you have an interest in getting your own custom Moxie DNA jersey, e-mail MoxieMail@moxiecycling.com to get more information and pricing details.

Stay Sassy…

Team Moxie