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What is Slowing You Down?
What is Slowing You Down?
There are so many things you can do to improve your speed, but what is slowing you down? Here's a look at a few things that could be the culprits.
Cycling in a city with poor air quality inhibits your lungs from peak performance. Those of us with bronchial issues like asthma have it even worse. Studies have shown that pollution is one of the top irritants for asthma. Professional cyclists such as 3 time Tour de France winner Christ Froome is a known asthmatic and is open about using his inhaler since he was a teen. Pollution is one of the causes of acute bronchitis. The solution is to seek nature. Beach areas such as Santa Monica, California, home to Bike Attack and Bike Attack Electric or Playa Vista, home to Bike Attack's newest location are prime locations for cyclists. There is always fresh coastal air blowing through the beaches and you'll be upwind of all that smog.
Big Box Store Bike
Millions of people use bikes as their primary form of transportation. People are willing to spend tens and even up to hundreds of thousands on a vehicle, but that mindset doesn't always carry over to bike purchases. Bike shops carefully research which brands, models and suppliers they choose to carry in their shops. Big box stores not so much. Big box stores look primarily at the bottom line, what can they sell for the highest profit margin. Bike shops look more at quality and performance- the customer satisfied with their bike shop purchase now has a relationship with the shop- maintenance, custom fittings and personalized knowledge all come with your bike shop purchase. You will get the highest performance out of a bike that was chosen for you, rather than a bike that was on a shelf. It's Grab-n-Go versus professional expertise.
Your bike needs a tune up regularly. This is a fact. Over time, derailleur springs wear down, cassette teeth become round and the cables will stretch out. When you try to shift with those problems, you're gonna have a bad time. Slow speed will only be the first of your problems. Correctly shifting at the right time equals momentum, and shifting with a drivetrain in proper working condition is where you start.
Having the right bike for you is SO important. Height, weight, strength, no we're not talking about you, we're talking about your bike's height, weight and strength. Is your bike built for speed? Is it able to handle the correct terrain? You need to have the right bike in order to go and go fast. Maneuvering through traffic takes different skills than maneuvering through dirt tracks in the mountains. That's why there's different builds of bikes and different categories. Talk to your bike shop specialist. Let them feel your needs out and make a recommendation for a bike that fits you and your needs.
Loose fitting jersey, ill fitting shoes, the wrong sunglasses, baggy pants, the list goes on. Your gear starts with you walking out your front door. What you wear should not hinder your cycling. Firstly for safety reasons, and secondly for performance. You'll need a full water bottle, helmet, cycling shoes, lock and chain, and a small multi-tool with Allen keys, Torx bit, screwdriver and chain extractor are all basics.