How To Buy A Bike?


Cyclists_at_red_2I am assuming by this time, you would already have an idea of what type of bike perks your interest. If you are not sure or simple didn’t know there are options,read this article first.

Next you need to figure out how much you are willing to spend on the bike, however, you need to first have a little understanding in choosing a bike. A good price tag does not necessarily mean a good bike and a great bike in the hands of a beginner is just a bike. Imagine giving the keys of a brand new Ferrari to a 16 years old. If you don’t know how much you should fork out, simply read on and maybe by the end of this article you might have a better idea.
Generally though, I advice beginners to put out around RM3,500 for a road bike, RM2,500 for a mountain bike and you can get a decent folding bike for around RM1,000. If you just want a simple commuter bike just to get around the neighbourhood, then park aside around three to four hundred.

SECOND HAND BIKE

I just have to put a word in about second-hand bikes. There is always somebody trying to get rid of his or her bike. For a beginner, considering a second hand bike might be a good idea. Firstly, you will only spend a fraction from the cost of a new bike. Second, you can test it and trash it and not worry too much about the bike’s survival. You will learn more about the sport and as you grow into it you will learn more about what bikes are good, where to get deals and most of all, what exactly you want in a bike. More importantly, will you still be cycling 6 months down the road or would you have moved on to something else.
In fact both my first and second bikes were second hand bikes. Both times the owners were upgrading and sold their bikes for a good price. My Cinelli came with a Shimano Ultegra groupset that would have set me back 7 to 8 thousand, but instead I only paid RM3,000 plus.

NOT JUST THE BIKE

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAThe bike is just the first part of your purchase. The other essentials don’t come with the bike. I’ll do a quick rundown now and get into more details in the future. Here’s a list of things that you will also need to buy:

  1. Safety helmet
  2. Front headlights
  3. Tail lights
  4. Bicycle lock
  5. Cycling gloves
  6. Cycling glasses
  7. Cycling apparels
  8. Cycling shoes
  9. Repair Kit (Spare tube or patch kit, multi-tool, tyre levers)
  10. Emergency pump
  11. Cleaning equipment and tools

These accessories will easily set you back RM1,000. The good news is you don’t have to buy them all at once. The most important of the lot are your safety helmet, lights and lock. A decent helmet will cost you around RM100, a set of lights (front & rear) will cost about RM50 and a simple bicycle lock will only cost RM30.

Gloves
There are generally two types of cycling gloves – one for road bikes and the other for mountain bikes. Road bike gloves fit snug and comfortable without compromising on movement. They are also thin so that it can wick sweat off faster. It provides you little padding and only in specific areas to relief  stress off the palm of your hands. Mountain bike gloves are stiff, have thick padding and protection around the knuckles.

Cycling Glasses
You might wonder, “Cycling Glasses”?
Well, a cyclist is general exposed to the environment around him/her. You need cycling glasses to protect your eyes from flying insects and pebbles from passing vehicles.

Cycling apparel is not necessary but it does add to your comfort and also the look.
For road bikes; the top is usually snug fitted and has 3 pockets at the back and in arm’s reach where you can store your wallet, phone, a small towel or even some snacks. The shorts usually don’t have pockets and are usually very snug.
For mountain bikes; the top is usually a long sleeve and worn a little loose. These also have back pockets. The short look like regular khakis shorts except they have sewn-in padding.
All cycling shorts have padding on the inside to provide you comfort when sitting on the bike for extended periods. The shorts also prevent chaffing of your skin in the crotch area.

Cycling shoes is not a must but if you have ever had your laces caught in the chain of a bicycle, you will know why there are shoes for cyclist. Also, if you get serious into the sport, cycling shoes will help with performance drastically as they clip onto the pedals so that you can add power by pulling the pedal up and not just pushing down.

If you plan to do long distance cycling, a repair kit is vital. The repair kit is usually packed into a small bag under the seat and usually consist of a spare tube, tyre levers, a patch kit and a multi-tool for cycling. Along with this, you will need an emergency pump that is small and serves only to temporarily inflate your tyre till you can get to a shop.

Last but not least, cleaning equipment. In order to prevent your parts from coming apart or deteriorating to natural element, you need to clean your bicycle on a regular basis. Soap and water alone is not enough. You will need the right tools and cleaners as well as lubricant to keep everything in tip-top condition.


This sums up the first part. Next we will get into the things that affects the cost of a bicycle.

Terry Fox Run KL 2014


It was a cold morning after a night of rain that started from the evening earlier. We got to the parking area just before 7 a.m. and found parking quite easily and very near to the event area. It did not seem like there would be many people showing up until about a quarter to seven when droves of people started flocking in from all over the place. By the time the organizers started the warm-up session, the field and its surrounding area was filled. It start to pour just then but it didn’t seem to deter the participants. Luckily the rain didn’t last for long and before we knew it, it was time to run.

The 2.5km around the lake was very refreshing. This annual event is organized to raise funds for cancer research and is conducted annually. All it takes is for you to purchase a T-shirt to participate.

For more pictures visit our Facebook page.

Authentic Homemade Tomato Sauce


Here is an authentic way to make tomato sauce for your pasta, lasagna and whatever else you wanna use tomato sauce in. Tomato sauce not only adds great flavour to your dishes but it is also a very healthy sauce. 

Tomatoes are rich in vitamins A, C and K. One cup of tomato sauce will provide you a quarter of your recommended daily intake of vitamin A and half your daily requirement of vitamin C. Your body needs vitamin A to maintain low-light vision and for building connective tissues under the skin. Vitamin C fills multiple roles within your body, including keeping your teeth and gums healthy, speeding wound healing, metabolizing fats, and absorbing other vitamins and minerals. Vitamin K affects blood clotting. The potassium and manganese in tomatoes help your body build stronger bones and stave off the muscle cramps you could get from low levels of these minerals.

Tomatoes are also naturally rich in the antioxidant lycopene and it also provides fiber. Lycopene, vitamin A and vitamin C all serve as antioxidants that protect your body’s tissues from damage.

Debunking The Paleo Diet


Hunting
There have been so many diet programs over the decades enticing people to lose weight the most efficient and fastest way possible. There is the Volumetrics Diet, The Paleolithic Diet, The Atkins Diet, Low-Carb Diet and then there are nutrition companies coming up with diet systems of their own to promote their products. Such as Herbal Life who encourage you to consume large quantities of their product and be healthy.

I have had my share of diet programs and I personally believe that if the program tells you to not eat certain food group(s) or if they suggest not eating real food or if they even suggest large periods of starvation, then they are on the wrong track.

Here are some basic points you should consider if you are considering a diet program:

  • All food groups are essential to your body
  • Starvation is short term and your body will retaliate at some point
  • Exercise is vital to an effective diet program
  • Diets should be about consumption management and deprivation

The most recent diet program to hit our shores is the Paleo Diet. The first time I was introduced to this was by a fitness trainer, who himself was on the program (to what reasoning I have no idea). As he explained with deep conviction about the diet I became more and more reserved about it. Well, I finally came across a talk that debunks this program and I share many of her viewpoints on the program.

Heck! Watch it yourself and you decide if this is a diet program worth your sacrifice.

There Are No Walls


I watched this talk on Tedx and thought that some of you out there could use some motivation whether for your health, your weight or your life as a whole and who better to give it than a person who have talked in front of more than 5 million people, received 30 awards, he won best actor in a short film, made his own music video, wrote 4 books and sold over 800,000 copies on the first one alone. So, what makes him special?
He was born without all four limbs that we take for granted. Imagine going thru life as an outsider or a joke and yet achieving more than most of us have.

Nick Vujicic spoke at Tedx in Novi Sad, Serbia in 2012. Hearing him speak is almost like hearing words from God simply because he not only speaks from the heart but through personal hard experiences and what to most of us would be impossible challenges. Two lines that lighted up like an LED display in Japan:

“There are no walls”
“If you don’t get a miracle; you can still be a miracle for someone else”

Share this with your family and friends, whether or not you think they need a “pick-me-up” because I personally believe that he will inspire everyone.

Endomondo Sports Tracker


I had recently been told about this workout app called Endomondo. I heard about it while enquiring about the Polar Bluetooth chest unit (a.k.a. heartbeat monitor).
If you have tried it out I would like to get your feedback. I would also like to know how it fairs against Runtastic.

Well, I just downloaded it and will give a review on it in a couple of weeks.

The Future of Safety


Cycling helmets have come a long way in terms of aerodynamics, safety and design. Motor cycle helmets, however, have kind of stagnated over the last decade or more. It seems like they have only come up with cooler looking artwork and decals over the most important part of your body.

Introducing the Skully AR-1. This is revolution!

The Skully AR-1 comes with a transparent heads up display, 180 degrees rearview camera, GPS maps, voice control and phone link-up. My first thought when I saw this video was, “Is this the next step to cycling helmets?”