Just The Tip - With Suzi

Are you ready to ride? Is your bike ready to ride?


We’ve covered ride safety and preparation from multiple angles in this series. With the ride just ten days away, this is a good time to make sure your trusty companion is ready for all the fun miles ahead. Performance Bicycle is offering a free 25-point inspect and adjust at the Kearny Mesa and Point Loma locations. Just wheel on in and mention you are registered for The Recovery Ride.

Now let’s have a safe and fun ride keeping the following in mind:
•    Protect your noggin - helmets are required on The Recovery Ride.
•    Obey all traffic laws, signs, and signals.
•    Be aware of your surroundings whether the road conditions, traffic, or your fellow cyclists.
•    Indicate your intentions with hand signals and verbal commands.
•    Ride predictably. Make eye contact. Assume drivers don’t see you.
•    Avoid distractions. Do not listen to music or talk on the phone while riding.
•    Yield to pedestrians. Always.
•    Dress appropriately for the weather conditions.
•    Eat. Drink. Rest. Stretch. Laugh. Repeat.

One last tip: This is a ride. It’s not a race. Take your time. Mingle with your fellow cyclists and the many volunteers at the rest stops. Enjoy every mile. Relish the experience of being in community with others who share your passion for cycling and a commitment to making a difference in the lives of others. Thank you for riding. Ride safe. Be safe. Have fun!



Recovery Ride Spin Class at CycleBar

Recovery Ride Spin Class at CycleBar

We had a great time today at the Recovery Spin Fundraiser at CycleBar - thanks Dylan for leading us to a great finish.




Just The Tip - With Suzi


I stand in awe of my body.”

– Henry David Thoreau

If we take good care of our bodies, our bodies will get us to places we might never have imagined. Properly fueling and hydrating during exercise is key to both performance and safety. Eat a good meal a couple of hours before a ride to “fill the tank” for the road ahead. Keeping the tank full while riding provides a steady stream of energy to tackle the hills and conquer hours in the saddle. The type of fuel that works for each person is unique, so try different things on shorter rides. Certainly energy bars and gels are plentiful, but here are some suggestions for foods that travel well:

•    Bananas
•    Dried fruit
•    Nuts
•    PB&J sandwich
•    Bagels
•    Muffins
•    Pretzels    
•    Hard-boiled eggs
•    Sweet potatoes
•    Beef jerky

Hydration is a full-time job. You can keep your body hydrated even when not exercising by drinking water regularly and eating a variety of fresh foods rich in vitamins and minerals. There are many electrolyte replacement drinks out there. Find one that works for you – and that tastes good! A few things to remember:

•    Electrolyte replenishment is recommended for intense exercise lasting longer than an hour
•    Carry one bottle of water and one bottle of electrolyte replacement drink to stay hydrated
•    Learn to drink regularly while riding or stop to take regular hydration breaks

After intense exercise, remember to fuel and hydrate your body. Yes, again. Your tank is running low and needs food and electrolytes for energy and muscle recovery. The Recovery Ride wants you to have a safe and enjoyable ride, and still be going strong to enjoy the after-ride festival. Eat. Hydrate.

Ride safe. Be safe. Have fun! 



Just The Tip - With Suzi


For warm-weather lovers, the thought of riding in cold weather can be daunting. Sure, cold in San Diego is nothing like some parts of the country, but we do have our share of mornings in the 40s, and even colder if you are riding inland. Riding in the cold can be enjoyable once you find the combination of clothing that works for you. Dress in layers starting with a base layer on your torso for insulation and wicking moisture away from your body – a dry body is a warm body. Then add the following depending on just how chilly it is:

•    Full finger gloves
•    Thick or wool socks
•    Shoe or toe covers
•    Tights or shorts with knee/leg warmers
•    Long sleeve jersey or arm warmers
•    Vest or windbreaker
•    Lightweight rain jacket
•    Skull cap and/or ear warmers

As your body warms and the temperature starts to rise, you’ll find yourself peeling layers; proper storage is essential to a safe ride. Tightly roll arm and leg warmers to stuff in your jersey pockets. For jackets, first fold in the sleeves and drawstrings. Then fold to the size of your pocket and roll tightly. Tying your jacket around your waist is not advised as it can come unrolled or untied and end up in your wheels. More than a few cyclists have sustained injuries when their ride ended abruptly due to a wayward jacket.

Cycling can be the perfect way to warm up on a chilly day, so hop on your bike and enjoy all that winter riding has to offer. It will make that stop for a warm cup of coffee even more fun! Ride safe. Be safe. Stay warm. Have fun!

- Suzi Reagan-Harlow

Just The Tip - With Suzi


Whether you are riding through a construction zone or managing Mother Nature, road hazards are a given when adventuring on two wheels. The Recovery Ride happens during San Diego’s wettest month, and the current Santa Ana conditions are a reminder that the wind can also be a hazard, not just from being blown about on the bicycle, but in navigating debris that finds its way to the road. Regardless of weather conditions, being on alert for road hazards is a safety must for every ride. Here are a few hazards to look out for and some things to remember:

•    Grates, plates, covers, posts, holes, bumps, railroad tracks, standing water, painted pavement, debris, leaves, branches, twigs, thorns, glass, tacks, nails, staples, parallel grooves, road kill
•    Puddles and leaves sometimes conceal potholes
•    Standing water may be slick with algae
•    Wet pavement is always slickest just after the rain begins
•    Painted lines/road markings, metal plates/grates are super slippery when wet
•    Approach railroad tracks at a 90° angle and keep up your speed as you pass over them
•    Avoid getting in the groove of road cracks and gutters

“Keep your eyes on the ball” is relevant on the road, i.e., if you look directly at an object, you’re more likely to hit it. Your bike will generally go where your eyes focus, so look ahead 50-100 feet, and if you see a hazard in the road, look a little to either side of it as you approach to steer clear. Call out hazards for those following and slow when necessary. When in doubt, dismount. Ride safe. Be safe. And keep your eyes on the road (hazards).

- Suzi Reagan-Harlow

Just The Tip - With Suzi


Whether you are dusting off a bike that’s been crying for attention or starting off 2018 on a bike that nears best friend status, following the ABCs of a basic bicycle safety check will ensure your bike is in good working order for The Recovery Ride. Make it a habit to spend a couple of minutes on these simple steps before every ride:

•    Air – Proper tire inflation not only makes for a smooth ride and optimal traction, but goes a long way to preventing flat tires. Rubber is porous and tires lose air over time, so pump your tires before each ride and check for tire wear and damage from debris. You may find a thorn or some glass before it has a chance to work its way into the tube resulting in a flat. On wet days, putting a little less air in your tires will allow for better grip on slick roads.

•    Brakes – Squeeze your brake levers to make sure you’ll have the power to slow and stop safely. Look for fraying and stretched cables. Check that your brake pads are contacting only the metal surface on your rims. Remember when riding in wet conditions that your brakes won’t work as quickly, so allow a little extra time and distance for safe stopping.

•    Chain – Inspect your chain and drivetrain making sure all components are clean and free of debris. Give your crank a quick turn to see that everything is working as expected. Take a little test ride and run through the full range of gears to identify any problems with rough shifting or chain slippage. 

If you remove your wheel(s) for transport or storage, be sure the quick release is completely tightened and remember to close down your brakes after reinstalling your wheel. Hitting a downhill with no brakes is NOT the adventure we’re going for on The Recovery Ride!

Finally, if you have any doubts about the safety of your bike, have a mechanic at your local bike shop look it over. Servicing your bike on a regular schedule will give you peace of mind when it comes to safety on the bike. A safe ride is a fun ride.

Just The Tip - With Suzi


Riders participating in The Recovery Ride will travel through multiple communities and as many as 5 cities during the event. Your behavior while riding will affect not only your safety, but the safety of those around you, and the perceptions of the communities we ride through. Here are a few guidelines to keep everyone safe on the road:

•    Keep at least one hand on the handlebars at all times.
•    Ride single file and leave at least one bike length between you and the rider in front of you.
•    Communicate your intentions. Use hand signals to indicate right turn, left turn, stopping. 
•    Look behind you before passing to make sure it is clear.
•    Pass only when it is safe to do so.
•    Pass only on the left.
•    Before passing, call out loudly, “On your left!” 
•    Alert others to potential hazards by pointing and/or calling out in a loud, outside voice.

We want each and every one of you to have a fun ride and make it safely back to Swiss Park to enjoy all that we have planned at the post-ride festival. Thank you for riding and making a difference in your community!

- Suzi Reagan-Harlow

Just The Tip - With Suzi


The Recovery Ride is a community event that brings together cyclists from varying levels of ability and experience. Regardless of which route you choose, our goal is for each participant to have a fun and safe ride. The first and most important safety tip is to remember that bicycles are subject to all the rules and regulations of the California Vehicle Code. You’ll be sharing the road with automobiles, other cyclists, and in some places, pedestrians. To ensure your safety and that of others on the road, obey all traffic laws, traffic signals, and signs, including but not limited to:

•    Stop at all stop signs and red signal lights. 
•    Never wear headphones while on your bike.
•    Ride as far to the right as is safely possible.

While California law does not require adults to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle, The Recovery Ride cares about your noggin, so ALL participants MUST wear a helmet whether pedaling 12, 25 or 40 miles.

- Suzi Reagan-Harlow