This week's money tip: Make a plan to create a fun fund. This is a savings account to only be used for fun things like shopping sprees, happy hour dates, vacations and toy purchases. If you have a fluctuating income, contribute a set percentage of your weekly income to the fund. For more tips visit here. - Danetha Doe.
Happy New Year! One of my resolutions for this year is to road bike, and blog about it, as often as possible.
A portion of my fun fund will go towards a new road bike.
Ladies, biking is THE BEST workout for the booty and legs. It's easier on the joints than running, and is the perfect combo of cardio and toning. Ever since my boyfriend introduced me to it fourish years ago, I've gotten so many compliments about my legs. If you don't live in California, or a place with year-long summer, check out spin classes. I take those too, and they are super fun and very challenging as well.
On New Year's day, me and my man did a tough, yet exciting ride, through the Oakland hills. If you're in the Bay Area, you should definitely do this route. It will get your heart pumping, sweat dripping and smiling about your accomplishment.
I am shopping for a new road bike and decided to demo Specialized's Ruby Expert Disc UDI2 (I review it at the end of this post.)
The ride was 16 miles and climbed 1700 feet in elevation. It was a gorgeous route. When you visit Oakland, CA check out this route.
Start at Trader Joe's on Lakeshore and head towards Trestle Glen. Take Trestle Glen to Park to Joaquin Miller Road. Joaquin Miller Road is a HUGE FREAKIN climb for a LOOOOONG time. The first time I did it, I had to get off my bike and walk. But, this time I rode the whole way through. I was so proud of myself. YAY.
Continue on Joaquin to Skyline. Skyline also has a climb. It's challenging, but after Joaquin it'll feel like a piece of cake. Promise. Then we took Snake road. This road is a little tricky because it's all downhill with lots of turns. I get nervous riding fast, so I held on to my brakes the whole way down. Then we grabbed Shepherd's Canyon to Mountain Boulevard.
We were frozen (it was only 51 degrees out, windy and there were a lot of trees blocking the sun) so we stopped in at Peet's coffee in the Montclair Village. Their hot cider tea is the bomb dot com. After we thawed off, we finished the final three or so miles of our ride by taking Moraga to Pleasant Valley, which was mostly downhill.
Review of the specialized ruby expert disc udi2:
I freakin LOVE this bike. It's super light and so sexy. However, it is on the pricey side at $4500. I loved the electric shifting. It's super easy to shift gears on a windy and hilly road. And I really liked how sensitive the braking is---this felt a little uncomfortable at first because I am used to a bike that requires a lot of pressure to brake. But, it was easy to adjust to the heightened sensitivity and within the first couple of miles of the ride, I felt comfortable braking The seat was super comfortable and the light-weightness of the bike made climbing hills SO MUCH EASIER.
My only complaint about the bike is the electric shifting. While the light touch was great, as my fingers became numb during the ride (it was cold!), I could no longer feel the difference between the down and up-shift. You are supposed to be able to feel the difference (one is textured, and one is smooth), and halfway through the ride, I couldn't tell the difference between the two.
Other than, and the high price point, it is definitely a great bike. I'll keep you posted on which bike I decide to go with.
What I'm wearing:
- Castelli Skort for about $50. Unfortunately, it's no longer available but you may be able to find it at this Amazon link.
- Jeggings or Castelli leggings for about $70.. Castelli link.
- Bike Smart gloves, Lyca XC, for $29.99. Bike Smart link
- Cute socks for $18. Check out Maglianera. $18
- Thermal for about $95. Check out Smart Wool.
- Specialized Utility hoodie in pink for $150. Specialized link.