Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Biking > Running

Why is biking better that running?

     Well, let's take this on a recreational level. You're able to go a lot faster. Why is this good if it's only for rec. you ask? Because rec. is so you enjoy things and have fun. And going fast covers more distance, thus, more to see, more to enjoy.
     But what else is better, well, your health is better. You can get just as good cardio from biking as you can running. It's also a ton easier for your joints (knees especially). While when running, you're constantly banging your feet against the ground, and restarting that motion over and over. In biking, you push down and carry that motion up and down, no hard bangs or clangs.
     Is that all? Of course not.  It's easier to talk to a buddy when your biking rather than running. For a few reasons, running wears you out faster, you get all huffy and puffy and can't talk. Biking, you can feel burn, but you're not excessively tired. Biking is usually quieter in the overall noise level too. While running you have the clapping of feet on the ground, in biking, you only have the hum of the tires (and the clicks of the hub if you stop pedaling, so don't stop).
     You don't have to worry about dropping things, like water bottles. While in running you've got to hold it or wear it in those stupid waist-strap things. Biking, bottle cage. 'Nuff said.
     If those things can't convince you, then stop reading my blog. And finally, a seat. Yeah, simple and sweet. You get to sit down while you exercise.
     So next time you want to go recreationalize a bit. Go grab that dusty metal clump in your garage and give it a spin.

Happy trails fellow bikers. (And don't be afraid to mow down some joggers and their dogs (but don't really, that's messed up)). Pic for pleasure.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

What Bikes Not to Buy

Okay, nice and simple post today. Nothing complicated for you guys. What bikes should you not buy?

There could be many different answers. It could depend on what riding style you have, where you live, price range, etc, etc. But for all people, of all age, of all regions. Do not buy the piece of shit department store bikes. You know what I'm talking about. Bikes from Walmart, Target, Kmart, those places. Those bikes are complete and utter shit. The wheels are weak and bend (sometimes taco), the brakes will glaze, the grips will rot, the components will wear quickly, the seat is uncomfortable. And most of all, the thing weighs a metric shit ton. Bikes like these
But how do you avoid these traps? Well first, if you're in Walmart, it should be obvious. But how else? Well, there's things to look for on bikes of such nature. First of all, you can look for kickstands, just about ALL quality bikes, do not have kickstands. They're extra weight and provide little usefulness. Also, an excess amount of reflectors should inform you. High end bikes don't have many reflectors, if any, they're useless. Also, on the fork, useless bikes commonly have the rubber scrunchies on the forks. This isn't always the case though, high end bikes occasionally also have them. Finally, price, most good bikes will cost about 200 and up all the way into the thousands. Junk bikes are almost ALWAYS below 200.

Good Luck not buying crap! And a picture to make up for the one above.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Cateye Strada Wireless Odometer

This is a review on an odometer I personally adore. It's called Strada Wireless, and it's made by Cateye. You see, this isn't some junk you get at Walmart for $10, this is a quality unit with plenty to back it up.

The Features
Current speed, pretty self-explanatory, with minimal set-up, you can get an accurate reading of your speed for your exact bike.
Maximum speed, this tracks your max speed for the current trip. Real nice if you like bombing hills for the sole purpose of crazy speed, like me.
Average speed, tracks average speed for the current trip. Next to the current speed, an arrow is shown to tell you if you are above or below average speed.
Odometer, this tracks total distance over the life of the product. You can get thousands of miles logged, it's all up to you. Plus, if you're transferring units, and you want to input a previous amount, no problem.
Trip distance, pretty simple, tracks total distance for the trip. As primary trip, all the above features are included with THIS trip.
Trip distance 2, also fairly simple (seeing a trend here?), tracks distance as a secondary tracker. Only tracks distance, no extra features. Can be reset separately from the primary Trip Distance.
Elapsed time, shows total time you've been biking, not resting, but on the bike moving.
Clock, standard feature, gives you the time. Plus, no clunky watches.

This is by far the easiest mounting system I've ever used. And this doesn't apply to just biking. This stuff is easy. Best of all, no tools needed, everything is included.

So here's how it goes.
The sensor, this is what picks up how many times your wheel is spinning, and thus, how fast you're going. Place it on the fork where you want it, and zip tie (included) to the fork.
The unit mounter, wrap the mount around your bars or stem, add a bolt-like item. Done.

Customer Service/Durability
Here's how they tie together. First of all, I've dropped the little guy a few times (hopefully, I'll be a better parent) and it's held up fine. But when I'm chilling on the nice, safe, simple road, and someone calls my name while I'm riding with only one hand, and I pull the brakes at 2mph. Well.......let's just say it was mounted in a bad spot (bars, top-most spot of the bike). The screen cracked pretty badly. So I called Customer Service in a hope that maybe, MAYBE I could get another one for cheap. Well they did better, I got a replacement for free, yeah, FREE, they even paid for shipping. I just had to send the broken one in. All covered under warranty, I'm not sure of details, but I've had the thing for years, so there's no 90 day crap.

I do believe MSRP is around $60. But don't worry. I got mine on Craigslist for $25 used. And I've seen countless other places selling it for $40ish.
Or buy it here on Amazon Cateye Strada Wireless Bicycle Computer

So good luck!
And here's a picture unrelated to the post. But hey, it's awesome.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

DIY Tutorials

If you're like me, you like to do a lot of your own repairs. It's cheaper, you don't have to go to the bike store, etc. But sometimes you just don't know how, and that book you bought isn't quite doing it. Well, there's some great guides on the internet. There's also some real bad ones. But which ones are which? First off, look for quality in the video, if it was taken with a cell phone, chances are, it's not gonna be very helpful. I've got a link to some good videos here Technical Tuesday. These come from a site called Pinkbike. This is most likely, the biggest biking website there is. It's a huge community. And they have a special called Tech Tues. The series is expanding and can really help any of you DIY'ers. From changing a flat to installing headsets to measuring chain wear.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

What's good about XC

Okay, so if you don't know, XC stands for cross-country. In biking, this is the most common way of mountain biking. Although sometimes practiced on fire roads. The best way is, no doubt, single track. XC is usually fairly flat, with gentle ups and downs. No downhill style drops and hugely technical rock gardens. XC gives you the fun of regular biking and it builds your cardio for everything else. You're continuously pushing your bike farther and farther at considerable speeds. While most bikes for XC are hardtails, full suspension bikes have been gaining popularity. Good luck, and happy riding!

Hello Everyone

This is my first post, I plan to start posting more info later. Woot.