All Aboard

Check out Jen, our Manager at TBL Springfield. This is a post from her blog “Training with your jogging stroller“. Yes, she is pretty bad ass but she is also a great example of how to be creative in getting your training in and getting the kids out on bikes.

All Aboard

I still run quite a lot, but with the popularity of “multi sport” (triathlons, etc) plus the draw of being able to go farther and bring more, we have borrowed the concept of the road train! Certainly I am not the first parent to string together several wheeled devices, but we love it. We sometimes go to the grocery store or to cub scouts with all in tow. Even with several young children at home, you could train for a cycling event! Probably not a century ride, but these kids would be cool with 10 miles. Revisit Destination Running to break up the distance. You may be able to tell that I have all this fun stuff hooked up to my single speed bicycle. That means that there are no gears. If you wanted to try a trailer bike, a trailer, or both, I would recommend a geared bike and more specifically a mountain bike or hybrid bike because those types of bikes have an easier gear ratio than a road bike. Or do what I do if you just like things crazy hard 🙂

via Training With Your Jogging Stroller: All Aboard.

The “Sweet Pea” Bike Blender Impacts on Healthy Eating

The Bike Lane recently donated a bike to the Capital Area Food Bank to help provide a fun way to show kids how to eat healthy! We are excited that a bike can be such a great tool for awesome education.  It’s just another example of how bikes can save the world!

Bike Blender Impacts Communities with New Perspective on Healthy Eating

My name is Jeremi, I am the Family Market Coordinator at the Capital Area Food Bank located in Washington, DC. My role at the food bank is to help supply food to schools that are in high-need, and under-served areas around the DC, MD, and VA regions. I really enjoy what I do, especially knowing that a hungry child may have an extra meal or two because of the generous donations of others.

One thing we are trying to implement this year into the program is educating those we serve in areas of nutrition, and healthy eating. A fun way to help teach students and families about these topics is with our brand new Rock the Bike Smoothie Blender, also known as “Green Machine” or “Sweet Pea” because of the vibrant color! The bike will travel with me to several of my school sites, that host these emergency food pantries, periodically throughout the year and will be used as an educational tool as well as an exciting way to engage the students and the families. That is me in the picture below powering a smoothie for our regular food pantry agencies that wake up early in the morning to come pick up food from us to distribute to the community throughout the day. What better way to start the morning, right? We are very excited about our new toy that will have an impact on our communities perspective on eating healthy! Thank you!Capital Area Food Bank

Above: Jeremi bike blending on Sweet Pea with the Fender Blender Universale Stationary Kit. Sweet Pea was donated to the Capital Area Food Bank by The Bike Lane in Springfield, Virginia.

New Program Introduces Youth to Tri

Tri Team XcelTri Team Xcel (TTX) is a USAT youth triathlon team located in Northern Virginia dedicated to introducing youth to the sport of triathlon. Athletes will be given an opportunity to train with peers in a fun, social, and athletic atmosphere. Toward the end of the 10-week session, athletes will have the option to participate in a race. Race participation and prior race experience is not mandatory to join the team.

2013 Summer Session June 3 – Aug 12th.
Recreation team (age 6-12)
Competition team (ages 10-17)

Team workouts:
Mon @ 4:30 pm Run at The Virginia Academy in Ashburn
Wed @ 4:30 pm Bike at The Virginia Academy in Ashburn
Thurs @ 5:30 pm Swim (Competition team only) at Claude Moore Recreation Center in Sterling.

For youth that can’t attend the workouts but are still interested in being part of a their competition youth triathlon team, they offer an affiliate program (ages 10-17) at a discounted rate.

Specific details and locations can be found on their website http://jrucoaching.com/TTX.php . Online registration closes June 2.

Up The Road: 9 ideas to get your kids to ride

9 ideas to get your kids to ride

“When my oldest daughter, Phoebe, entered elementary school, I was astounded by the number of 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th graders who couldn’t ride a bike. I think of the joy they are missing out on…” Read the rest of Sarah’s blog for tips on how to get your kids happily riding. Sarah Bowen Shea is co-author of Run Like a Mother and Train Like a Mother. She is the proud mother of 3 and riding bikes is one of her family’s favorite pastimes.

While I think my three children are beautiful, brilliant, and loving, I don’t have any lofty notions of their athletic prowess. All three of them play on soccer and basketball teams. They score goals or make baskets on occasion, but they are by no means in the limelight. Yet, I am proud of how relatively early they learned to ride bikes; My boy-girl twins were 4 ½ years old, and their big sis had just turned 5 when they figured out how to balance and pedal on a two-wheeler. I thought that was the norm until my older daughter, Phoebe, entered elementary school: I was astounded by the number of 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th graders who couldn’t ride a bike. I think of the joy they are missing out on—riding bikes is one of our family’s favorite pastimes.

Here are some tips to get your children riding and keep them happy, so they’ll become lifelong cyclists.

Set a good example. We all know children are sponges, absorbing more than any of us realize. Talk about your own love of cycling around your children, tell them details of your weekend ride or biking adventures you remember from your childhood. Let them see you head out the door with a smile on your face as you bike-commute or train for a triathlon.

Start them early. All three of our children used balance-style bikes (no pedals) to push themselves around playgrounds. From there they progressed to riding on very small bicycles. With a properly fitted helmet strapped on their heads, children can take some slow-moving tumbles. Watching my children learn to ride bikes, especially my cautious older daughter, I was reminded at how resilient (and determined) a child can be.

Offer encouragement, but don’t pressure them. If your child seems reticent or scared, put the bike back in the garage for a while. You don’t want to force biking on your child as it might backfire into a dislike of this wonderful life-long activity.

Let them tag along. Consider getting a pedal trailer for younger children, letting them ride along without the pressure of learning to balance, brake, or navigate traffic.

Head to parks, playgrounds, and open fields. These venues allow new riders not to worry as much about braking, navigating curbs, watching out for cars, or scraping their knees (in the case of the field). My kids love to do endless loops around a nearby schoolyard, where there are often other children to ride with. One of friends taught her children how to ride in a grassy field because it offered a softer landing for eventual falls.

Teach them the rules of the road. Make sure your children know to ride on the sidewalk or with traffic. Teach them to stay close to the curb, and to obey all traffic signals. Tell them that, when in doubt, let the car “win.” Many communities offer free or low-cost bike safety courses, which are a great opportunity to educate burgeoning cyclists.

Start slow and short. Once your child is riding, take family rides together. We live in Portland, Oregon, near several schools; we love to ride to various school playgrounds. The rides are short—a third- to a half-mile—and the destination holds special allure (swings, slides, and monkey bars!). By keeping the distance short, it minimizes the chance of meltdowns and complaints that, if my children are any measure, are fairly common among young riders.

Stick to quiet roads at less-than-peak times. I won’t lie: It can be nerve-wracking to keep a close eye on school-age riders. Any blood pressure lowering benefits of exercise are negated by the stress I feel when I ride with our 6-year-old twins; but, I’ve found great joy in riding one-on-one with them. Whether with one or two (or three), we ride on less-busy roads.

Add on accessories. A bell lets your children announce their approach (and, come on, kids love them!), and a tall flag on a bike or riding-trailer helps driver see children on bikes.

Have fun!

via Up The Road: 9 ideas to get your kids to ride.

Cyclefest 2011




Cyclefest 2011, a set on Flickr.

The Bike Lane’s 5th annual Cyclefest was the biggest one yet! It was a gorgeous day at the Reston Town Center. The Bike Lane hosted over 25 booths for local cycling clubs, organizations, and vendors such as Trek, Yakima, Camelbak, Mavic, Felt and more. Paul’s Ride for Life kicked off the day with over 300 riders. Trails for Youth hosted a kids bike safety rodeo and BMX shows kept everyone entertained. It was a great day and we look forward to going big next year.

A big thank you to Paul’s Ride for Life and our vendors: Team Z, MS Ride, Tour de Cure, Positively Chiropractic, Team in Training, the Reston Bike Club, Amyazing Youth Tri, Fairfax County, JCC, Mon Ami and Community Canteen, Wilderness Voyageurs, Evolution Cycling Team, Pedal Pushers Club, FABB, NVRPA, MORE, Trails for Youth, Washington Regional Transplant Community, Trek, Felt, Camelbak, and Mavic.

Strength Training for Junior Cyclists this Winter

To all local Junior Cyclists:

The Bike Lane has been working with Wakefield Park to put together a strength training program for our Junior Cycling Team. We are really excited to put this together and we hope that it helps the kids learn the importance of cross training and weight training, not only for cycling, but for other sports as well. The staff at Wakefield is also excited to assist us in putting this program together. The rec center will have certified trainers working with the kids using all kinds of strength training techniques and our volunteers will assist in cross training exercises that will help keep the kids motivated. The program is 12 weeks long on Monday nights starting on January 10 from 5:15- 6:30 pm. We will start the class with a warm up on the spin bikes, followed by ½ hour strength training and 20 minutes of cross training and we will finish with stretching. We are opening the class for youth ages 8- 16. The cost of the class is only $55. You don’t have to be on our Junior Team to join the classes. Although, we might recruit you!
Please register at http://tinyurl.com/TBLjunors. You can email anne@thebikelane.com with any questions.

The Bike Lane Junior Team Wakefield Ride