Bumpin’ while Bikin’: Third Trimester with my Pedego

Stuff the FTC makes me say: Pedego provided me a complementary bicycle in exchange for my coverage on the Double Chin Diary and social media as part of being a Pedego Electric Bike Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

Hello! I’m now officially in my third trimester (WOOHOO!), and I’m excited to check in today because I’ve been feeling a little bit better the last week. My stomach is still dicey and I’m still exhausted, but I’ve managed to take Cora the Pedego out for a few spins this week as we’re also finally get out of the 100 degree weather (today was a chilly 90. ha!). I had my first third trimester ultrasound today, and the doctor spent some time going over exercise and nutrition with me… and let me know that my active habits and food choices have paid off, because I have yet to gain a single pound this pregnancy! (Yes, for someone starting their pregnancy at my weight, this is 100% healthy and baby is growing right on track.)

FullSizeRender

I can definitely thank Pedego for that, because it’s been a simple way for me to get a little bit of activity when even feeling like taking a shower feels like a big event. In fact, today I rode the bike to my local CVS, and I was having so much fun using the throttle going down the street that I had to remind myself that ya know, I can still pedal and get some exercise. Haha! Just being honest. It was cool at CVS too, because a woman stopped me to ask about my bike and why it had “that big thing in the back”. It was neat to explain to her how it was electric, and she ended up writing down the name of the bikes in her phone, so you never know. As a marketing nerd, I think those real life opportunities to connect with people about something you really like is so cool. (And yes, as the disclosure states, I am an ambassador for Pedego, but that doesn’t mean I am forced to say it’s great or anything like that. Sorry, but who wouldn’t like a beachy bike that zips around?!)

image1

This week also marked a new occasion because my bike had a “guest star”. Matt wanted to grab a burrito from the local taco truck one night, so he took my bike. I can tell he was having fun because of all the selfies I got. What did he think about his late night spin? “It’s fun to ride a bike, but it’s a completely different experience being able to hit the throttle,” he said. Oh yeah. I know what he means! There’s that word again… fun. Pedego’s tagline is even “Hello Fun!”.

The above picture Matt took and it’s hard to see because it’s at night, but it’s him and his reflection in the rear view mirror on the handle bars. I liked it, pretty avante garde!

In other biking news, if you’re in LA County, check out these free bike safety classes. You even get a free helmet for attending. I’m bummed because of course the weekends it’s in my hometown, I’m out of town, but hopefully someone else can benefit. Big thanks to Linda at Pedego 101 for letting me know about this!

I’m hoping to get out and ride more the next few weeks, which will be interesting as the bump doubles in size the next few weeks. Bumpin’ while bikin’… a whole new experience. I hope you have a beautiful day!

Biking through the heat: tips and tricks to keep your cool

Hello and happy Friday! This week was a super weird one in terms of weather for Southern California – through out the weekend and early into the week, we had rain and thunder storms, so that kept me off my Pedego electric bike… and the next few days we had scorching 95 degree heat. Yowch! Neither of these make an ideal environment for a prego looking to get some outdoor activity. I was sad to miss out on quality time with Cora, especially when I felt all accomplished for learning how to adjust the swivel of the seat all by myself. (Hey, it’s the little things.)

Pedego_ElectricBike_DoubleChinDiary

Today was a cooler day (85), so I felt comfortable taking a ride through the neighborhood. I also spent some time researching hot weather biking tips, because I feel like this is one of those things you don’t think about… and then before you know it, you’re outside exercising and you’ve got the uncomfortable spins from being overheated. It’s happened to me before during a particularly ass-kicking krav maga session on a hot day (before I was pregnant), and overheating during exercise SUCKS! So — here are a few of the most helpful tips I use, with clarification from Biking.com:

1) Water. Yes, obviously. But, if you don’t make sure you have water with you, you can get dehydrated so quickly, especially when you’re sweating. Take it a step further and hydrate with a sports drink — something like Gatorade with electrolytes and sodium. I never gave the Gatorade thing much credence until I started doing a bootcamp in the morning and found that I felt considerably better after sipping some light Gatorade. Placebo? Who knows, but it works.

2) Freeze it up. Go a step further with your water bottle by pre-freezing a layer of ice in the bottom. This helps prevent your nice, cool water from turning into gross, lukewarm liquid.

3) Need to cool your skin down? Either invest in cooling fabric shirts, or for a more inexpensive but effective solution, try a cool-tie. I recently bought one of these specifically for biking/walking during a hot day, and it’s awesome. Simply wet it, and the cooling ingredients activate, and you’ve got a nice chilly neck wrap or something you can press against your inner arms, wrists, or hands. (Note: affiliate link.)

4) Sunscreen. A sun burn doesn’t help anything, but just the act of a barrier on your skin can help keep you cool.

5) Take breaks. Find a shady tree and rest, and don’t put out as much exertion as you’re used to. Hot weather can quickly zap your energy, so you have to take it a little lighter.

I hope these tips are helpful to you whether you’re walking, biking, or doing something else in the hot hot heat. While I have you, won’t you please take a moment and vote for Pedego in the Small Business, Big Game contest. They have a chance to win a Super Bowl commercial! You don’t have to provide any personal information, and it’s just one quick button click. For a quick reminder about what Pedego is all about, watch this video.

Stuff the FTC makes me say: Pedego provided me a complementary bicycle in exchange for my coverage on the Double Chin Diary and social media as part of being a Pedego Electric Bike Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

People of Pedego E-Bikes: Meet Mary and Patrick

Happy Saturday, friends! When I got my Pedego, I was added to a Facebook group called the Pedego E-Bikes Owners Group. It has just over 400 members and is a bustling community where people share photos of their rides, bikes, ask questions, share tips, and generally just enjoy being a part of the e-bike club. (It’s certainly come in handy for me a few times as I’ve had questions about my bike.) One of the first Pedego owners to befriend me was a friendly lady named Mary. Over the past few weeks I’ve noticed her posting more and more amazing photos of the adventures she and her husband take their bikes on, so I wanted to find out more about Mary, her husband, and their bikes. Mary and Patrick are from Redding, CA, which is Northern California, and have lived there since 1986. Enjoy!

Mary and the bikes in Moab, Utah

Mary and the bikes in Moab, Utah

(Editor’s note: That blue color in the photo is the other photo I really debated about when ordering my bike! It’s the same color as my car… isn’t it a great color?!)

I asked Mary why she decided to get a Pedego. “We used to ride regular bikes all the time with a group of friends. We are older, I being 65 and my husband is soon to be 63. It became increasingly hard for some of the members of our group to ride anymore so we quit riding. Patrick, my husband, has type 2 diabetes and our doctor said it was mandatory that he loose some weight. So, we started researching exercising methods. We have machines (treadmill and stationary bike) but we didn’t do them often enough and it wasn’t much fun. Patrick started looking into bikes and stumbled upon electric bikes. There are many on the market but the Pedego brand stood out because they seemed to have everything we were looking for such as pedal assist, a throttle and that it was made in the USA. We decided on the Interceptors because they had all the components we required and are built the best (heftier frame, disc brakes, slimed tires and digital display).

We found the closest dealer to us was in Sacramento. We hopped into the car and two and a half hours later we were test driving two Interceptors. It only took 15 minutes of riding these bikes that we knew these were the bikes we had been searching for. No more sore muscles climbing hills and no more down time the next day. We ordered two Interceptors on the spot, mine a 24 inch step through and Patrick’s a classic. That was the first part of December 2014. We received them a week before Christmas.”

Amazing photo by Mary and Patrick of the Pedegos at Arches National Park

Amazing photo by Mary and Patrick of the Pedegos at Arches National Park

One reason I wanted to talk to Mary is that I see amazing pictures she posts from all over the country. I asked her favorite place she’s taken her Pedego.

“I think one of our favorite places we have ridden is Moab, UT (first photo in the post). They have a fantastic paved bike trail that should be the model for all cities. Another place that was great was Yosemite. We rode the whole valley. We also have a wonderful trail system in Redding that keeps growing. We are going to the Grand Canyon in a week and I hear they have a good rim trail now. So many wonderful places.”

Next I asked Mary, what is the most important thing about Pedego that you would tell someone who stops you on the street?

      “We talk to a lot of people when we are out and about. People are always surprised when we tell them that we can ride 20 plus miles a day. Then they find out the bikes are electric. A big smile usually comes after that and many questions. We tell them that no matter your age or disability you can still ride this bike and  have FUN. Both of us have joint problems and this bike allows us to get exercise again without all the pain. We have let people demo our bikes and you see the surprise and delight when the motor kicks in and a big smile follows. We have been told a couple of times “we’re going to get one of these!”

A great selfie of Patrick and Mary and the bikes!

A great selfie of Patrick and Mary and the bikes!

Lastly, I asked Mary if there’s anything else she would add about Pedego bikes. I love her response!

“Patrick has lost about 20 lbs since he started riding. He sometimes rides twice a day. I am not an early riser and he is so sometimes he goes out really early in the morning and then he will go out again in the afternoon when I’m ready to go. He feels bad when he can’t go out because it’s raining or there is no opportunity for him to ride. These bikes have given us something to do together which is important at this time of our lives. He retired two years ago so this trip that we are on is one that we have been planning on for many years. We’re having lots of fun and can say without a doubt that purchasing Pedego bikes was one of the best purchases we have made in a long time.”

Don’t Mary and Patrick sound like a fun couple? Big thanks to Mary for taking the time to answer my questions and share with us here about her Pedego experience. Do you guys have any questions for her or Patrick?

I think taking my bike to Arches National Park is a new goal… now to get Matt a Pedego, and a baby seat for our little lady!

I’ll be back next week to report about some fun, longer rides I’ve been taking with my bike. 🙂 In the meantime, I hope you have an amazing weekend!

Stuff the FTC makes me say: Pedego provided me a complementary bicycle in exchange for my coverage on the Double Chin Diary and social media as part of being a Pedego Electric Bike Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

Biking while bumpin’: Adventures of being pregnant with a Pedego

BumpinOnABike_DoubleChinDiary

So what if it’s my helmet and not an actual bump? 😉

When my friend Linda first told me about Pedego’s call for applications for Brand Ambassadors, I was rockin’ a little secret. I was about five weeks pregnant, and I knew that getting a Pedego would be an awesome way to maintain some level of fitness without going crazy during my pregnancy. But, I was struck with that fear of spilling the beans in my application before I hit the supposed “safe” mark of 12 weeks. I noodled about it for a few days and decided to let them know my story, and that yes, part of that story was that I was newly pregnant and plus-sized, and determined to not let my pregnancy be an excuse for abandoning all I knew about the healthiest way for me to live my life.

Well – Pedego agreed it was a good fit, and here we are: me loving my Pedego! I can happily say I’m one week away from being half way through my pregnancy, and I’ve gained one whopping pound. I’m so happy to type that because I had major fears of being plus-sized and pregnant, that I would gain tons and tons of weight and my body, with its fondness of storing every extra calorie, would balloon to massive proportions. Now – I still have 20 weeks to go, and I know a lot can change very quickly, so I’m not out of the woods yet. I’m at the point in my pregnancy where I will start to gain weight, because that’s what happens, the fetus begins to grow and so will my appetite. But I’ve been instructed to try and limit my weight gain to 12 pounds, 25 being the absolute max, and I’m going to work hard to try to stick to those limits.  What does that mean? It means 1) continuing to eat within reason, not depriving myself of cravings, but reminding myself that portion control and healthy choices are best, and 2) continuing to ride my bike and take walks. I want to take my Pedego on more leisure rides, as I’ve mostly been using it to run errands. Running errands on the Pedego is great, but when I use it for grocery shopping, I have an awkward balance of a heaping bike basket and trying to make sure I don’t hit any lumps and dump my dinner 🙂 (See picture… tonight I used it to buy pork chops, lemonade, strawberries, grapes, lemons and a chocolate croissant. That basket was heavy!) (It’s also my fault because I went to the store for pork chops. Everything else just happened to fall into the basket. What can I say? The baby loves fruit! Ha!)

IMG_0163

I also want to check out a prenatal yoga class so I can get my zen on and stretch out some of the parts of my body that are getting achey (lower back!). Someone recently asked me if riding the bike is uncomfortable while being pregnant, and I can gratefully say, not at all. That may change as my stomach gets gigantic, but the nice thing about this bike is I have the step-through model, which means I don’t need to swing my leg over the seat to get on it. Preggo-approved!

So, at 19 weeks, you have a very happy, healthy-feeling prego, thanks to my Pedego. 🙂 Ladies who’ve been pregnant: how did you exercise during those nine months? Even if you’re not pregnant or don’t intend to be, what’s the one form of exercise you never mind doing?

Stuff the FTC makes me say: Pedego provided me a complementary bicycle in exchange for my coverage on the Double Chin Diary and social media as part of being a Pedego Electric Bike Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

Pedego A Go Go: Biking and following the rules of the road

Stuff the FTC makes me say: Pedego provided me a complementary bicycle in exchange for my coverage on the Double Chin Diary and social media as part of being a Pedego Electric Bike Ambassador. All opinions are my own.

RulesOfTheRoad_Pedego_DoubleChinDiary

When I first got my Pedego, the owners of Pedego 101, John and Linda, went with me on our first spin around the neighborhood. I admittedly had never ridden a bike in street traffic, so I was nervous and listening eagerly like a good pupil to make sure I was obeying traffic laws. One of the first things I did was take off in the opposite direction of traffic — a move which Linda politely told me was called “Salmoning”, because salmon go up-stream in the opposite direction of currents. Oops! So I knew right away I needed to do some research on the correct way to bike.

Image from Veldrone.CA

Because they put it much more succinctly and efficiently that I can, the kind people at BikeLeague.org have the following rules on their site.

In all 50 states, people on bikes are required to follow the same laws as other drivers.

Here are a few key principles that underpin all US traffic laws:

First Come, First Served
Everyone on the road is entitled to the lane width they need. This includes the space behind, to each side and the space in front. If you want to use someone else’s space you must yield to whoever is using it.

Ride on the Right
In the United States, everyone must drive on the right-hand side of the roadway.

Yielding to Crossing Traffic
When you come to an intersection, if you don’t have the right of way, you must yield.

Yielding when Changing Lanes
If you want to change lanes, you must yield to traffic that is in your new lane of travel.

Speed Positioning
The slowest vehicles on the road should be the furthest to the right. Where you position yourself on the road depends on the location of any parked cars, your speed, and your destination. Always pass on the left.

Lane Positioning
Bikes can share the same lane with other drivers. If a lane is wide enough to share with another vehicle (about 14 feet), ride three feet to the right of traffic. If the lane is not wide enough to share, “take the lane” by riding in the middle.

Intersection positioning
When there is a lane that is used for more than one direction, use the rightmost lane going in the direction you are traveling.

Follow all street signs, signals, and markings.
Self explanatory.

What other rules would you add to this list? Mine is not necessarily a traffic law BUT… always wear a helmet! I love that my nutcase helmet specifically has padding on the inside that is printed with the saying “I love my brain.” Heck yes I love my brain! And you should love yours too. Always wear a helmet!

 

Why Pedego is a good fit for me: bikes for all sizes and shapes

Stuff the FTC makes me say: This post is part of a series of posts about Pedego I’ll be sharing in the coming weeks as part of my agreement of being a Pedego Brand Ambassador. Pedego did provide me a complimentary bike in exchange for my review and discussion.

A few weeks ago I was helping a friend pick out a cruiser bike. We were shopping online, and this friend is plus-sized, like me. “Oh, wait,” she said, as she looked at the bike’s details. “This one has a 200 pound limit.” That bike was a no-go, because despite dieting best intentions and what that number on the scale COULD be, you want a bike that will safely carry your body weight now. One of the things that first attracted me to Pedego Bikes was that their bikes come in all kinds of ranges and sizes, perfect for many different body types. In fact, one of their customers, Rhonda, used to weigh 457 pounds, and her Pedego was a main reason (in addition to healthy eating) that she lost over 250 pounds.

RhondaToday

Picture from Pedego.com

“The first time I rode a Pedego, it was freedom to me. It was back to being a kid again. It was the best feeling I’d felt in a long time. The smile I had on my face when I got back — I swear I had it for days,” said Rhonda.

Because her mobility was so limited, the Pedego was a perfect stepping stone to becoming active again. It empowered her to get some exercise, fresh air, and social interaction — and it was fun. “Riding my Pedego was something that I wanted to continue to do. It wasn’t something I dreaded. It wasn’t a chore. It was just enjoyment for me.”

I definitely understand what Rhonda is saying, because if you gave me a choice between riding a bike around the neighborhood and going to kickboxing, well, the bike wins any day – and I LIKE kickboxing. But it feels less like one more thing you have to do, and more like you’re a kid again – just cruising around the neighborhood. It’s kind of like tricking your body that you’re exercising 😉 Matt and I went up to Pedego 101 a few weeks ago today to test out the bikes, and the best part about the Pedego was that heading up hills was a lot simpler with the throttle option. I’m noticing that pregnancy has me out of breath a lot faster than before I was pregnant, and I guess now I’m breathing for two. It was so awesome to give the throttle a twist and get a little zip, allowing my body to rest when it needed it. Did that make the ride easy? No, but it made it easier — which is perfect. I still got a great workout that day!

The other size-friendly or age-friendly thing I love about Pedego is they offer some very advanced options for bike frames, in terms of mobility. My bike model has what’s called a “Step Through” which means instead of swinging my leg over the seat like I’m about to hop up on a camel, I just step through the frame of the bike and gently sit myself down. There’s no heave-ho or grunting as you try and hoist yourself up on the seat. For people who want an even easier option, they have the Boomerang, which has an even lower frame (9″). This is perfect if you have knee or joint issues, or just want a bike that’s less of an ordeal to hop on. I’m so jazzed that my bike has the step-through, because as this bump grows into a beach ball, it’s going to be a lot more convenient to have a prego-belly friendly bike.

Boomerang from Pedego.com, with easy step-through access.

Boomerang from Pedego.com, with easy step-through access.

While I’ll be in New York for a few more days and am away from my Pedego Cora, I’m still thinking of my lovely bike… including wishing I had it as we wrapped up a very looooong day of walking in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. I had to snap a pic of myself with this cool bike mural in Brooklyn because it reminded me of Pedego.

DixonsBikeShop

Not quite an easy step-through on that model… but awesome, nonetheless. I hope you have a wonderful day!