31 March, 2014

Adjusting to Spring Bike Lifestyle

Now that Spring has sprung, I'm seeing lots of smiling faces on two wheels, my local bike shop/cafe filled with bicycles for a tune ups, and a home now currently filled with bicycles. Coming from a state that has no seasonal weather and 330 days of sunshine (I'm blowing kisses at you California), it's not easy to adjust to the extreme weather changes. What's harder is not having the ability to ride my bike almost everyday, not being able to physically endure the weather patterns regardless of the preparation and research. This makes life on two wheels a bit of a challenge during the cold seasons. And although I admire those who can ride in the snow, I won't do it. Call me a spoiled Cali girl, but this adjustment to the East Coast is a big eye opener on tackling bicycle lifestyle one season at a time. Adjustment isn't easy, and I'm sure my friends from home are giggling at me, but I'm just so excited for this sunshine and warm weather!

If you're on the same road (pun intended), here are some tips to help you get inspired and adjust to Spring's seasonal bike lifestyle...

Dress up for your ride: florals please!
Bike to your favorite spot, park, cafe, farmers market, beach.
Enjoy the freedom and breath it all in.
Meet people. Cyclist are uber friendly and make great cycling partners.
Take selfies while riding your bike.
Explore your city or town.
Bring a journal to draw or write about your ride: note what you see, hear, smell, and feel.

I hope wherever you are, nature is being good to you, and your adjusting well to getting back on two wheels!

24 March, 2014

Bicycle Inspiration & Mantras

"When I go biking, I repeat a mantra of the day's sensations:  bright sun, blue sky, warm breeze, blue jay's call, ice melting and so on.  This helps me transcend the traffic, ignore the clamorings of work, leave all the mind theaters behind and focus on nature instead.  I still must abide by the rules of the road, of biking, of gravity.  But I am mentally far away from civilization.  The world is breaking someone else's heart. "

Diane Ackerman

Do you have daily mantras while riding your bike? When I read this quote I thought about my daily mantras that I practice and remember what it felt like riding my bike feeling these exact sensations. It's the perfect way to start the day, let alone, the week.

19 March, 2014

Spring Cycling Essentials

spring cycling essentials

Spring is in the air and it's time to pack winter up, along with those heavy boots, nubby mittens, and gargantuan scarves, and poise yourself for nothing short of a spring revival. This year, my sights are set on a bounty of fresh seasonal picks — from a delicate floral scarf and wedge sandals to the perfect picnic dress and bicycle basket to carry fresh seasonal flowers in. And just because I'm expecting 60 degree and sunny weather to bound, that doesn't mean I don't have my mind set on spring showers and chill mornings that may damp your ride a little. Feeling inspired? Just read on to get your new spring shopping essentials secured... I'm right there with you. 

Barbeque Charmer Dress// Trench Cape Hoodie//Tretorn Elsa Rain Boot//T-Bar Wedges, Welcome Backpack// Quilted Riding Gloves// Floral Digital Print Scarf// The Row Sunglasses// Origin8 Brass Bike Bell// Asungtaba Bike Basket// Bookman Lights// Yakkay Cambridge Gold Helmet

Gear Up For Spring Bicycling

For anyone who is currently unaware, Spring is around the corner. While I'm coming out of winters resting period, I'm also excited for this time of renewal and pedaling. To welcome the showers, flowers and everything in between, I thought I'd do a little digging in the archive dirt to help fill up your dreaming with some tips for cycling into Spring. While your filling your days aching for warmer weather and bicycle adventures from picnics to magnolia gazing, butterflies to baseball, dust off your bicycles and get ready to head out into the city with a little spring in your pedal! 

Get Your Bike Ready
Clean and tune up your bike. If you're not familiar with how to do so, go to your nearest bike shop to ensure that the job will be done right. Decorate and adorn your bike with a bike bell, basket, and some lights.

Acquaint Yourself With The Road
If you have not cycled for a while start off by doing a few laps of your local park then graduate to short routes that you know, to the shops, the gym, or local café.

Map Your Ride
When you feel ready to cycle all the way to work or to a night out, check your route. Use Google Maps or Map My Ride, select the cycling option and type in your starting point and destination and it will recommend a route on quieter, more cycle friendly roads.

Get Cycle Fit
When you have mastered your route just cycle in twice a week to start with to get your fitness levels up. Never force yourself to cycle when you don’t feel like. If you find yourself at the gym, try doing a couple of these stationary bike workouts.

20 February, 2014

Bike City Guide: Plan Your Chi Town Adventure

I’ve always loved to travel. In fact, I once traveled the world for a job with a travel company. These days, I enjoy living in a town that has a reputation for being hospitable to the many travelers that come here each year. If you’ve never been to Chicago, it’s definitely time to take the trip. This city should be on everyone’s bucket list, and I’m willing to bet that after your first visit, you’ll be eager to return.

1. Chi Town Museums
I love the museums in my hometown. Many world-class exhibits come on display here. The Field Museum is one of my kid’s favorite places to go. Honestly, I always have a good time there too. The collection of dinosaur bones here is amazing. Exhibits on ancient local cultures are excellent as well, and the many rotating and visiting exhibits at the Field Museum make each visit here unique.

2. Chi Town Sailing
Located on Lake Michigan, Chicago is a good place to enjoy some time on the water. One of my favorite excursions on the lake is a trip on the Tall Ship Windy. Fun, educational tours depart regularly. Kids and adults both will enjoy sailing on this 150-foot schooner. Adults who need a little together time without the kids will enjoy an evening cruise on the Tall Ship Windy. A variety of tour options are available.

3. Chi Town Hospitality
One of my favorite things about Chicago is the beautiful skyline. Massive skyscrapers and unique architectural wonders make it one of the most recognized skylines in the world. When choosing accommodations for your stay, find a room with a view. To search for a hotel that meets your specifications, go to Gogobot. You’ll find plenty of excellent options.

4. Chi Town Dining
There’s no shortage of great places to eat in my hometown. If you take a day to shop the amazing flagship stores along the Magnificent Mile, you’ll find several great restaurants nearby. One of my favorites is RL, the Ralph Lauren restaurant. Adjacent to the world’s largest Polo store, RL features finely crafted all-American classics. On a chilly day in the Windy City, I enjoy the grilled cheese and tomato soup.

Chicago is a great place to visit any time of year. If you’ve never spent time here in my hometown, I hope you plan a trip here soon. If you’ve been here before, you know there’s a lot to do and see. Come back soon! We’ll be expecting you.

This article was a guest post by Kendra Thornton.
Kendra is a Travel advocate, TV spokesperson, PR businesswoman, proud wife and mama of 3. She is a long time travel expert who has been packing her bags and traveling the world since she was 3 months old. Her utmost desire in life is right in her own home. She has been able to combine her excitement for travel and love of writing by sharing some of her personal travel tips. She can be reached on twitter by her handle @KendraThornton.