Posts in the category Training

Peaks Coaching: Tips for Muddy Racing

By Brig Brandt, PCG Elite Coach

Peaks Coaching Group Brig Brandt

If you’re a mountain biker, you are very likely to race in the mud if you haven’t already, which can mean equipment failures and cold race conditions. And as this year’s Dirty Kanza proved, mud isn’t just limited to fat tire escapades.

Click through for three key tips to help minimize the common pitfalls racers may encounter during their spring racing campaign… READ MORE ->

New Polar M450 GPS cycling computer pushes all the right buttons, V650 gets maps!

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To hear Polar’s tech folks tell it, their focus is and has always been accurate measurement of your heart rate as the foundation for a proper training device. Over the years, power measurement was added, too. But when Garmin came on the scene with GPS, it took a chunk out of their sales. So, for the past three years they’ve been integrating location tracking into their sports watches and the flagship V650 cycling computer introduced last fall and it’s breathed new life into the brand.

Now, they’re adding a second GPS cycling computer at an exciting price point – the M450. And it’s exciting for far more than its ability to track your ride’s whereabouts. It’s loaded to the gills with features and tricks that put many cycling computers costing twice as much to shame.

Full details and first ride impressions below, but let’s stick with GPS for a moment. The V650 will be adding mapping capability via a free software update in August. The mapping will use the built in GPS to show where you are thanks to Open Street Maps, which means free maps for anywhere in the world…

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BKool Adds 3D Real Weather Simulator to Virtual Training System

For the last few years, BKool has been making incremental improvements to their virtual reality based training programs. First they offered video simulations, then went 3-D, and then BKool started adding in real-world conditions like wind resistance. Their latest software extension adds a whole new level of realism to indoor training, and it’s based on what’s really happening outdoors.

The company’s newest innovation is called BKool 3D RealWeather technology, which recreates the current weather conditions on any route in the world. If you’d like to see what a rainy ride around London or a sunny cruise of coastal California would be like, check some actual weather reports and virtually warp to your ideal conditions and location, all from the comfort of your indoor training area…
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Zipp Introduces Limited Firestrike 404 Tubular Wheels, Updates Clinchers

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Last year, Zipp introduced the latest in a long history of aero wheel designs with their new Firestrike platform. Starting with the 404 clincher, the Firestrike moniker became the calling card of Zipp’s highest end wheels. By using a new rim shape and ABLC (aerodynamic boundary layer control) dimple pattern, the new design maximized the amount of stability the wheels provided essentially allowing you to use deeper rims than the conditions would normally allow. Other improvements included their new Showstopper Silicon Carbide (SiC) brake track for drastically improved wet weather braking as well as new hubs, printed graphics, and a new molding process.

There was only one drawback. The Firestrike 404 wheels have only been available in clincher – until now. Not only are the Firestrikes now available in tubular form, but the Firestrike 404 clinchers receive a few updates as well…

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Drop some Weight, Pick Up Power with new Powertap G3 Disc hub

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The need for power isn’t just a roadie thing. With more and more mountain bike racers looking to wattage for training purposes, the off road power meter market is experiencing a similar evolution as road. For Powertap, that means taking their already popular mountain bike hub based powermeter and dropping a big chunk of weight. Compatible with both quick release and thru axles dropouts, the New Powertap G3 rear disc hub clocks in at more than 30% lighter than the previous model…

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The Sufferfest remasters Downward Spiral w/ 2015 Paris-Roubaix footage & fresh tunes

The Sufferfest has slowly and steadily updated their library of cycling trainer videos, remastering the more popular originals with better graphics, sound and tweaked workouts. Now, they’ve put the modern spin on their original and best selling video, the Downward Spiral.

It’s an hour long set of intervals that gets you in shape to chase down the leaders and sprint for the finish, set to footage of the 2015 Flèche-Wallone and Paris-Roubaix races. More sample footage and workout chart below…

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Scicon AeroComfort 2.0 TSA Soft-sided Bike Travel Bag – First Impressions

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Looking at our spring and summer that will have us stuffing bikes on trains and airplanes to get out and ride in some new places and return to some old favorites, we thought to give another thought to how our bikes would happily and safely make the trip. Whether it was our road and cross bikes that usually traveled by air, or the occasional trip to rail some far off mountain bike trails, we needed something up to the task of protecting just about any of our bikes. Taking a cue from the pros, we’ve started to test the newest AeroComfort 2.0 TSA bag, with its soft-side construction and built-in wheel bags, and are curious to see how it will stand up over time. Our experience so far hasn’t been without a little hiccup, as there are definitely pluses and minuses to a soft case, but our bikes have made it safely to their destinations.

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Having refined the AeroComfort for more than 30 years, Scicon has established itself as an industry leader and has earned the trust of the professionals riding at the top of our sport. With four Scicon-sponsored European pro teams racing their way across California this week,  some interesting infographics recently popped up in our inbox breaking down the logistics behind the race. 96 bikes in Scicon AeroComfort bags have made their way across the Atlantic and through countless transfers to bring these four teams to the start lines, and so far none have seen any damage in transit. Fly with us across the break to get more details on this newest iteration of the Scicon’s soft bike travel bag, to get a glimpse at what the pro teams pack, and find out what we think so far…

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Get Tightier and Mightier With Skins’ New Compression Cycling Gear

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SKINS was started by an Australian skier in 2002, who spent the previous five years chasing his goal of developing performance and recovery enhancing athletic garments. Their company mission is simple, and perhaps a little cheeky: to radically improve the world of sport, one pair of tights at a time.

While there is some debate over the functionality of compression wear, SKINS is clearly on the ‘Pro’ side of the argument. They’re quite happy to cite scientific studies and point out that their garments must be effective since they’re banned from all professional cycling tours! SKINS has a bunch of new compression gear for men and women in their cycling specific line, so click past the break for photos and details…
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Zwift opens up cycling’s massive multiplayer online training game to everyone!

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Remember the days when kids would line up outside Best Buy for the latest console or Halo edition? Well, if you’ve been pulling the digital equivalent and waiting for your invite to Zwift’s beta, you’ve just made it in the door.

As of today, Zwift has opened the beta to all, letting you sign up and ride in their ever expanding virtual world. Yep, since their limited launch in September 2014, they’ve been continually improving both the virtual island you’ll soon be riding on and the overall functionality and accessibility of it. In February, they added a Mac compatibility, and in March they added a mobile companion app to show your stats on your iPhone and keeping your big screen showing the lush pixel perfect scenery. Heck, they even setup competitions to help you earn a spot on a real, live pro team IRL.

Time to fire up that computer…

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