I pulled up into the Higher Gear parking lot for my first group ride of the season and was immediately overcome with a bad case of bike envy. I found myself drooling over custom Sevens and brand new Specialized Amiras.
As cyclists, we all know that the perfect number of bicycles anyone of us can have is n + 1, where n = the number of bikes we currently own. Who doesn’t want a new bike? Sometimes, however, a new bike doesn’t fit into our plans or our budget.
I knew I wouldn’t be getting a new bike this year, so I decided to do the next best thing. I found a cure to my bike envy by upgrading the components on my bike!
Cosmetic upgrades might include changing the color of your bar tape, saddle and stickers (on the frame or wheelset). I went with upgrades that would enhance the performance of my bike.
The components that came standard on my bike so many years ago were woefully out of date. Even with regularly scheduled tune-ups, cables and cable housing updated annually, a new cassette and chain, the drivetrain and shifters just couldn’t hold a candle to the newest technology.
My frame might be 2008, but my components and wheels are now 2015! The shifting is so smooth, I feel like I’m on a completely different bike. The deeper wheels are lightweight and cut through the air so easily.
My bike weighs less and feels so much more responsive. It feels and even looks brand new! I’ve even received compliments on my “new bike.”
A new bike may not have been in my budget, but it certainly feels like I’m on a new bike. It’s amazing what a little upgrade or two will do.
Is it time to spruce up your ride? Come in and talk with Higher Gear’s knowledgeable mechanics. They can direct you on how you can get the most bang for your buck when it comes to upgrading your bike based on your riding style, bike usage and budget.
In case you’re interested, I upgraded my bike with a Shimano Ultegra drivetrain and components, but Higher Gear mechanics are equally well versed in SRAM and Campy. For wheels, I went with Roval Rapide CL, but you might consider Zipp, Easton or even custom-built wheels. I went with Zipp Service Course bar tape, which is by far the best bar tape I’ve ever used. The Specialized Turbo Pro tires are everything they claim to be and more.
Would you like your bike to feel like new again? Come in to Higher Gear and chat with our mechanics about how to get the most bang for your buck in upgrades.
Joy Sherrick is a three-time Boston-qualifier and a Boston Marathon 2013 survivor. Joy runs, but she also bikes, swims, strength trains, practices yoga and plays soccer. She is a fitness coach and Higher Gear’s own fitness guru. She is also her IronMan husband‘s biggest cheerleader.