Monday, March 31, 2014

Get The Maximum Mileage From Your Cycling Shoes

"If cared for, a quality pair of pedal pushers could last five or even ten years!"

One of the best features of cycling shoes is that they last far longer than other sports shoes. For example, you must replace running shoes every six months (or sooner) because the materials inside the soles lose their ability to provide cushioning. Also, regular sneakers are in constant contact with the ground and the soles and uppers wear rapidly. Contrarily, if cared for, a quality pair of pedal pushers could last five or even ten years! 

These easy tips will help you get the most from your shoes:

Maintaining the fit: We recommend wearing only cycling socks with your riding shoes because these thin socks won't stretch the shoes, which can ruin the snug fit so important for efficient pedaling. 

— Walking: Shoes made for off-road use or touring sport lugged soles and recessed cleats that are made for easy walking. Road-specific shoes, however, are designed for optimum power transfer when pedaling. While these shoes may include heel and toe tabs for walking, it's best to walk as infrequently as possible. Walking flexes the soles and stretches the shoes. Over time, this changes the fit and the stiffness of the shoes, which decreases efficiency and comfort.

— Moisture: Water won't hurt cycling shoes as long as you dry them properly. To do this, as soon as you get home, extract any removable liners and stuff the shoes with newspaper, which will absorb the moisture and dry the shoes. Do not place the shoes by a heat source Check those cleat bolts so they won't loosen and ruin your ride!because this can damage them. If the shoes are really wet, replace the newspaper after a few hours (the first batch is probably saturated).

Check those cleat bolts so they won't loosen and ruin your ride!— Maintenance: While not much can go wrong with cycling shoes, we recommend checking the bolts that attach the cleats to the soles about monthly. If these loosen, the cleats can change position, which may cause knee pain. If you have a pair of shoes with buckles that ratchet, they may be attached with hardware. It's a good idea to regularly check that this hardware is tight, too.

See a related post: Preserving Your Drivetrain

Come to Finish Line Bikes in Bakersfield, CA for all your cycling needs! We are located at:

8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Friday, March 28, 2014

2014 Giant Defy Advanced 2 — Simply One Of The Best of Its Type

Cycling Plus Bike of The Year Finalist — "With a perfect 5 stars, Cycling Plus fell in love with Defy Advanced all over again in 2014"

"..we really do love the Giant Defy Advanced 2. Last year we crowned it best of the best, and in 2014 it's still got it... we've yet to find a rider who doesn't get on with the Defy the moment they turn the pedals."

Testers noted that Defy Advanced is now better than ever - maintaining the perfect formula that saw it win Bike of The Year, while offering greater value in 2014 with a new lower price;

"By sticking with a winning formula and lowering the price, Giant have arguably made the Defy even better. This year you're getting more bike for your money than you did last. What's not to like?" 


The frame is — quite simply — superb. It handles wonderfully, exciting to ride, yet incredibly comfortable. Giant has done a great job selecting the right drivetrain for this bike. Comes with an industry standard 50/34 chainset up front, but in back it comes with a nice wide set of gears with a 28 tooth bottom gear which will pretty much get you up any hill. On the non-drive side chainstay is Giant's ANT+ device for seamless and wireless communication with your Garmin, measuring both cadence and speed.

It's got a great Shimano 105 spec, Giant PSL wheelset, Fi'zi:k saddle - and this year the price has been brought down just a bit.

1. OverDrive 2

Designed to offer unprecedented front-end steering performance, the system’s oversized headset bearings (1 1/2” lower, 1 1/4” upper) and tapered steerer tube work in harmony to provide supreme steering stiffness.

2. Modified Monocoque

Construction Similar to Monocoque technology, but Modified Monocoque eliminates the outermost woven composite sheet (found on heavier framesets) to reduce weight without affecting ride quality, strength or stiffness.

3. PowerCore

A massively oversized bottom-bracket/chainstay features a fully integrated, 86-millimetre-wide bottom-bracket design. Asymmetric chainstays provide additional stiffness on the driveside and stability on the non-driveside.

4. MegaDrive

A massive rectangular downtube and oversized toptube work in unison to provide superior front-end lateral and torsional steering precision. The precisely engineered, rectangular shaped downtube yields unprecedented pedalling stiffness.

5. Vector Seatpost

This full-composite, lightweight (210 grams) and highly aerodynamic seatpost is engineered specifically for the unyielding demands of the performance-minded road rider. It offers increased fore/aft stiffness for maximum energy transmission, improved aerodynamics (compared to a traditional round seatpost) and two offset options (-5 to +25mm).

6. Tuned Composite

Hand-cut composite swatches are strategically laidup, piece by piece, to create each frame. The frame’s ride qualities are meticulously crafted and controlled through precise layering of each individual swatch (there are more than 500 pieces per frame) in an exact schedule. The direction of each individual piece’s composite grain allows Giant engineers to custom tune each frame’s individual ride characteristics.

7. RideSense

Giant’s all-new chainstay integrated, wireless data transmitter. The fully integrated, removable transmitter sends wheelspeed and cadence information directly to any ANT+ compatible computer.

8. Compliant Seatstays

The seattube/seatstay junction has been engineered to provide integrated compliance into the rear of the bike by producing a leaf-spring effect that absorbs road shock and vibrations.

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

All About Lighting Systems - How To Choose The Best One For You

Safer Night Riding Begins With Good Lighting

Modern high-end light systems offer enough brightness to give your riding companions sunburn (kidding!). And, they come in a wide variety of price points. But, how much light is needed for safe road or off-road riding?We have a wide assortment of bicycle lights for every purpose!

Light It Up

To illuminate the road or trail ahead for your own eyes, not just to be seen at night by others, 10 watts is a good starting point. In general, the greater the headlight's wattage, the brighter the light. There are also systems with yellow and white light, the latter being brighter at the same wattage.

Find The Right Features

Modern lighting systems are packed with features. There are twin- and single-beam headlight systems. There are different battery types (rechargeables are found on better lights). There are ingenious quick-release mounts so you can install and remove the light in a blink. Most lights offer high- and low-beam options like your car (use the high beam for downhills, pitch-black woods, high speed and intersections). There are even computerized light systems on which battery usage and light output is controlled via microchip.

Trail Torch

The ultimate trail setup is having one handlebar light and another on your helmet. The head-mounted light illuminates your field of vision and is especially handy for following bends in the trail because it moves with you as you turn to look (just don't look directly at friends when riding because you'll blind them for a few seconds). Meanwhile, the bar-mounted beam allows monitoring conditions directly in front of the bike for bumps, roots and trail irregularities.

Portable Power

High-watt light systems require large amounts of power so battery systems have gotten very sophisticated. In ascending order of cost, bicycle lighting systems use lead-acid batteries, Nickel-Cadmium (NiCad) batteries, and Nickel-Metal-Hydride (NiMH) batteries. NiCad batteries are lighter and less susceptible to power loss at high or low temperatures than lead-acid, and will last many more recharge cycles. NiMH batteries weigh 30% less than NiCad batteries and offer similar run-times and durability. Proper care and feeding of your battery must be followed to insure you get maximum battery life. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions regarding charging and use of any rechargeable battery.

Night Rides Can Be The Best Rides

Having a good light means you can ride safely at night, which is sometimes the best time to ride. It's after car-commuting hours so the roads are less busy. The sun's gone down, so it's often the most comfortable time of day, too. And, at night, off-road riding can be magical. The best way to decide on a lighting system is to come in and look at some to compare features and cost. Which one is best for you really depends on how and where you plan to use it and how much you'd like to spend. If you can answer these questions, we can help you pick the perfect light.

Stay tuned to our blog for more cycling tips like this one, as well as bike reviews, cycling news, events and more! 


Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Monday, March 24, 2014

2014 Cannondale Trail and Trail SL Bikes Are Packed Full Of Features

2014 Cannondale Trail SL 29 SS: Proof That A Great Riding, Long Lasting Bike Doesn't Have To Break The Bank

After years of racing on the World Cup, Cannondale has trickled features down from it's high-end bike models all the way to the Trail and Trail SL bikes. Available in both 26" and 29" models, there is a Trail for every rider.

IMG: BikeRadar
The frame and fork are both alloy and are finished in a way that surpasses expectations at this price point. Instead of using horizontal dropouts to keep the correct tension, the Trail SL frame instead uses an eccentric bottom bracket.

Cannondale has included their proprietary Helix 6 hydraulic disc brakes, a TruVativ E-400 crank and a square taper bottom bracket. It comes with tubeless-ready Stan's ZTR Rapid rims and Schwalbe Racing Ralph Performance tires.

The 700mm riser bar and sensibly-sized stem hint at the Trail SL being a playful bike.

See our video about another 2014 Cannondale Bike:

The 2014 Cannondale Supersix Evo 5C 105

    As an upgrade over Trail, our Trail SL line gets a 1.5” head tube which increases front end stiffness for better steering and control.

    Trademark double-pass smooth welds showcase Cannondale’s aluminum frame mastery. Since we don’t patch fill with putty and paint, our process eliminates the stress-risers and weak points found on traditionally welded frames, enabling us to build lighter, stronger frames everywhere in the line.

    Optimized seat stay and chain stay shaping provides vertical compliance for a more comfortable ride with no loss in lateral rigidity.
    Like the F29, the Trail SL 29 and new Trail 29 have super short chainstays, a relatively low BB and steep head angle, which give them point-and-shoot handling and a lively feel, but with the stability and roll-over-anything ability of bigger wheels.

    For 2014, the Trail gets a new lighter weight frame. In addition to a more refined look, it features a 27.2mm seat post for lighter weight and better trail vibration damping.

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Body Moves To Help Smooth The Ride

RIDING TECHNIQUE: Incorporate These Easy Tips To Keep Yourself From Getting Too Tired Or Sore

Stop And StretchStretching helps flexibility and comfort yet it's often overlooked by cyclists. All it takes though, is thinking of it and taking a break to loosen up (we don't recommend on-the-bike stretching because you might crash). One great stretch for the back that's easy to do is standing straight, raising your arms over your head and reaching as high as you can. Hold this position for thirty seconds or so and you'll feel much looser. Also, bend your neck to both sides and to the front and back and hold for a few seconds in each position to ease any tightness. To relieve pressure on the hands and arms that causes fatigue and pain, every few miles remove one hand at a time from the bars and shake it out by your side.

Photo Cred:
Breathe DeeplyAnother good relaxation techniques is monitoring your breathing. Many athletes tense up when exercising and actually hold their breath, which increases muscle tension and fatigue. If you can exhale completely every few minutes and draw in deep breaths of fresh air, you'll help your muscles relax and remain fresher.

Refresh Yourself
On warm rides, a great pick-up is washing the face, neck, hands and arms with cool water (usually available on organized rides; or stop at a store). This will remove any salt, cool the skin and feel great.

Always Hook A ThumbWhile it's important to relax your body to smooth the ride, don't mistake relaxation for a lackadaisical approach to safety. Be sure to keep a secure grip on the handlebars at all time, especially as trails get rougher. Remember to always keep at least one thumb hooked beneath the handlebar. It'll prevent your hands from slipping off the bars, a dangerous mishap that can occur if you grip without hooking a thumb.

Softer May Be BetterFinally, something that can make it much easier to relax is using lower tire pressure when riding off road. This will soften the tires helping to absorb shocks from the trail and keeping them from reaching your body. Many cyclists ride with 50 to 60 psi but a pressure of 34 to 40 will feel much more comfortable as well as provide better traction and control.

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Monday, March 17, 2014

Fixing Your Flat Tire Doesn't Have To Be Difficult

Let Mitch From Finish Line Show You The Easiest Way To Fix A Flat, and Help Keep It From Coming Back

In this video Mitch outlines the basics of removing the tire, finding the cause of the flat, and then re-installing a fresh tube. He also gives you a tip for preventing future problems with your new tube: Installing Rhinodillo Tire liners.

Learn more about Rhinodillo tire liners at

Learn more about Finish Line Bikes and see more maintenance tips at our website:

Thanks for watching!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

2014 Colnago C60 Pays Homage To Colnago's Roots

The latest iteration of the Colnago C60 has been called a combination of history and technology, equal parts memoir and textbook.

Available with or without disc brakes, a new bottom bracket press-fit standard, oversized tubes and new alloy dropouts. Colnago says the frame is significantly stiffer, and the C60 Disc is 140g lighter than the C59 Disc.

From "The ultimate goal is to improve the bicycle: to make it more efficient, with less rider fatigue and no sacrifice in strength or reliability. In the C60 various cross sections of tubes have increased volume, thinner walls and drastic tube profiles. The rear dropouts have been completely redesigned for reduced weight and increased lateral stiffness." The new design is intended to bring Colnago's premium frame up to technological par with other top frames available today.

The key to the claimed increase in the C60's stiffness is an all-new bottom bracket junction, with Colnago's brand new press-fit standard, ThreadFit82.5. Colnago says they looked at the currently available standards and decided none met their requirements, so they developed a new one. The key is the wider shell and removable threaded sleeves which can easily be replaced.

There isn't a single round tube on the entire frame. They are using star-shaped tubes and lugs in homage to the famous Master steel frame which helped the company make its name.

"Star-shaped tubes are a proven design element and have become a signature design element for Colnago frames" says Colnago. It adds that full-length star shape "allows for better control of wall thickness and lamination of the entire length of the tube."

Building a C60 is simultaneiously quite simple and quite complicated. Construction is a simple process of gluing shaped tubes to identically shaped lugs; but the details of each of these components has a dramatic impact on ride quality.

The most obvious change is the new downtube, the largest individual tube ever produced by Colnago. it tapers dramatically, widest at the BB and narrowest at the head tube, and utilizes the Master shape from tip to tail.

The seat tube sees a similar size enhancement, jumping from 31mm in diameter to 55mm. The tube is now asymmetrical, with most of the increase in size occurring on the non-drive side, as the tube spreads out to fill the most of the width of new, wider bottom bracket shell. The increased seat tube diameter means the C60 will use a 31.5mm seatpost.

Colnago offers the C60 in nine sloping top-tube sizes, five traditional (level top tube) sizes, plus custom. Each size also comes in two drivetrain options: one dedicated to electronic groups, and another that accomodates electronic or mechanical with a convertible housing-stop system.

It will be available in 12 color options, and the rim-brake version is available now. A disc version with a standard QR9 fork is also available now.

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Monday, March 10, 2014

[Video Review] 2014 Colnago Strada SL — Carbon Feel at Aluminum Price

2014 Colnago Strada SL is Sure to Impress

New for 2014, Colnago has introduced the Strada SL. It's an aluminum frame that is extremely lightweight. It has got such a snappy ride quality that it almost rides like a carbon frame! The model showcased in the video has a Shimano 105 package on it, but it is also available with an Ultegra 11-speed group.

This bike comes with a Deda bar and stem, and fills out most of the rest of the components (wheels, brake calipers, and saddle) with proprietary parts to keep the cost down.

If anyone has ridden a Colnago, they know that it is one of the best riding bikes, whether aluminum or carbon. It has great handling with a very solid, positive frame.

Price-wise for Colnago - this bike is only $1700!! So a very good value for a very good ride.

Come in to Finish Line Bikes today to see this bike and many more! Test ride your favorite, and we'll help you pick out the best bike for you!

We hope to see you soon!

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268

Monday, March 3, 2014

Train Your Core — Improve Your Ride

Cycling - Core Training Exercises

You know how important it is to have strong leg muscles when cycling, because they provide the most tangible source of power. If you have strong leg muscles, this is how you are able to start every ride strong and get up to a nice riding speed. Soon though, you find yourself getting back aches, and feeling tired in the saddle.

The problem is, "You can have all the leg-strength in the world, but without a stable core you won't be able to use it efficiently," says Graeme Street, founder of Cyclo-CORE, and a personal trainer in Essex, Connecticut.

Your abs and lower back are the vital foundation from which all movement, including your pedal stroke, stems. What's more, a solid core will help eliminate unecessary upper-body movement, so all the energy you produce is delivered into a smooth pedal stroke.

It only takes about 10 minutes to complete this intense routine designed by Street.

Dimity McDowell of and Street say that if you do this routine, in this order, three times a week you will create a core that lets you ride faster, longer, more powerfully - and finish stronger than ever.

1. Boxer Ball Crunch
   What It Works:
Transverse abdominus, obliques, lower back

A. Lie with the middle of your back on a stability ball, your knees bent 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor. Place your hands behind your head, but don't pull on your neck.

B. Squeezing your belly button toward your spine, lift your upper back off the ball. Keeping your shoulders off the ball, trace a clockwise oval with your torso. Apply pressure with your lower back to keep the ball still through the entire motion. After 15 clockwise ovals, trace 15 counterclockwise.

Why It Works: Despite the straightforward motion of the bike, your body moves in three directions: forward as you head down the road, vertically as your legs pedal up and down, and laterally as your hips and upper body rock side to side. "This fluid, circular exercise builds control," says Street, and that helps you minimize lateral torsion and wasted motion.

2. Power Bridge
    What It Works: Hip flexors, glutes, lower back

A. Lying on your back, bend your knees and place your heels near your glutes. Arms are at your sides, palms down.

B. In one smooth motion, squeeze your glutes, raise your hips off the floor and push up from your heels to form a straight line from shoulders to knees; toes come off the floor slightly. Hold for two seconds. Keeping your toes raised, lower yourself three-quarters of the way to complete one rep. Do 20 repetitions.

Why It Works: In addition to stretching the hip flexors, often extremely stiff in cyclists, the bridge strengthens the link between your lower back and glutes.

3. Hip extension
    What It Works: Lower back, hamstrings, glutes

A. Lying with your hips and stomach on the stability ball, put your hands on the floor directly under your shoulders, and extend your legs with toes resting on the floor.

B. With a straight spine and shoulder blades back, as if you're trying to make them touch, lift both legs off the floor, keeping them straight. If possible, raise them slightly higher than parallel to the floor. Hold for two seconds and lower. Do 20 reps.

Why It Works: This movement builds backside strength, for added efficiency on the second half of the pedal stroke.
 4. Plank
     What It Works: Transverse abdominus, upper and lower back

A. Lying on your stomach, place your elbows under your shoulders with forearms and hands on the floor.

B. Lift your hips off the floor, keeping your back straight and abs tight, and rest on your toes. Aim for 60 seconds.

Why It Works: The plank builds the strength and muscular endurance you need to ride powerfully in the drops or in an aero position long after others have surrendered to the top of the handlebar.

5. Transverse Plank
    What It Works: Transverse abdominus and obliques

A. Lie on your right side, with your right elbow under your shoulder, forearm in front for stability, and stack your left foot on your right. Raise your left arm over your head.

B. In one motion, lift your hips to create a straight line down your left side. Lower your hips a few inches off the floor; do 10 to 15 reps, then switch sides.

Why It Works: Strong obliques improve your stability in the saddle, letting you take on hairpin corners with more control and speed.

6. Scissors Kick
    What It Works: Transverse abdominus, hip flexors, inner and outer thighs

A. Lying on your back with legs straight, place both hands palms down under your lower back.

B. Pushing your elbows down into the floor and pulling your belly button toward your spine, raise your shoulders off the floor and look toward the ceiling. Raise your leg 4 inches off the ground and scissor them: left leg over right, then right over left. That's one rep. Work up to 100.

Why It Works:  A comprehensive movement that connects key cycling muscles, the kick also builds inner-thigh muscles, which help you achieve hip, knee and forefoot alignment for a proper and efficient pedal stroke

7. Catapult
    What It Works: Entire core

A. Sitting with a slight bend in your knees, press your heels against the floor. Extend arms to the front at shoulder height, palms facing each other.

B. With a straight spine and upward gaze, inhale deeply, then exhale and slowly lower your torso to the floor over five counts as you inhale. Arms are overhead.

C. In one smooth movement, leading with the arms, exhale and explode back to the starting position. Do 20 reps.

Why It Works: Contrary to its name, the catapult encourages supreme body control.

8. Boat Pose
    What It Works: Transverse abdominus, lower back

A. Sit, resting both hands lightly behind you, and lean back until your torso is at a 45-degree angle.

B. Keeping your legs together, lift them off the floor as you extend arms forward at shoulder height. Abs are tight, as thighs and torso form a 90 degree angle. If your hamstrings are tight, you'll need to bend your knees a little. Work up to holding for 60 seconds.

Why It Works: As with the plank, this pose builds the lower-back stability and core strength needed to remain bent over the handlebar for hours, or to blast up hills without compromising power or speed

Following this regimen will give you some improvement in your core strength, riding ability and endurance. Stay Tuned to our blog for more cycling tips!

Come Visit Us At Finish Line Bikes! We'd Love To Help You Find The Best Bike For You!

Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 883-6268