Category Archives: How We Ride

Life on Two Wheels: Revisited

Josie Smith, writer of the Life on Two Wheels blog, first interviewed me in May of 2015 about my reasons for riding, my personal inspiration and my thoughts on women’s cycling in Los Angeles and in general terms. So much has changed since then (SO MUCH!) and I was glad she came back around to do an update interview. Many of my thoughts have changed, really become more personal because of injuries and health related to cycling, so I had a different view on how I find my inspiration and motivation nowadays.

I’ve been struggling with how to talk about my struggles. At first, I didn’t want to depress other cyclists by discussing the darker side of our sport – the crashes, the injuries, the traumas – but now I realize that it’s good to share, both for me and for a reader who shares my feelings. I’ll try to cover an abbreviated version of what’s happened since I last checked in on the website and dive further in depth on the aspects that can be more relatable.

But I am still biking! And I still believe that biking has given me more than it has taken away. We do know that biking can be dangerous, but it can still be rewarding and give life great meaning and hope.

With that said, you can read the entire Revisited interview here to get an idea of what has been going on the past year.



Bike Bits for Sale!



I’m making room for 2 humans, 2 felines, and 6 bikes soon (where is that apartment??) and am letting go of some great bike products and parts that you might want. Priced to go, and hopefully to homes that will love them as dearly as I have. Pictures and info below. Email brakingthelimits(at)gmail(dot)com for details and purchase. As soon as it’s purchased, it comes down from the site. I hope you enjoy!

UPDATE as of 9/25/14 – There will be two GREAT bikes getting posted soon!

UPDATE as of 9/29/14 – BIKES FOR SALE! ūüôā (Lord help me, my pictures do nothing justice)

UPDATE as of 11/7/14 – Bikes still available. Wheels and track bike are newly added!

UPDATE as of 11/13/14 – Fuji track bike is sold ūüė¶

UPDATE as of 12/11/14 – Everything is SOLD. Thank you!



Timbuk2 Bullit Pannier SOLD
Blue & Black
Condition: Excellent (all I ever did was carry this bag by hand to the school library actually)
Where you can find it for more details:
Price: $30



Linus “The Sac” Pannier¬† SOLD
Blue & Yellow
 Condition: Good (the yellow bottom is a bit dirty on the corners but can be washed_
Info here:
Good review here:
Price: $20 (strap included)



Giant handlebars NOT AVAILABLE
Narrow size for women – about a 38 width
Clamping size – 31.8
 From a brand new Giant bike I just acquired. Took them off for wider bars because of cyclocross. These bars are so light and perfect for us with smaller frame bodies.
Price: $15



XS-size cycling gloves SOLD
Never been touched
They fit a small hand like mine, but I already 5 pairs (eek!)
Price: $10



Fulcrum RED WIND clincher wheelset – $800 SOLD

Fulcrum website (newer wheel displayed but same specs):

Carbon wheels with aluminum brake surface, complete with Shimano¬†Ultegra¬†10-speed cassette that I added on. Raced these wheels under 10 times in my infamous race career. Vittoria Open Corsa¬†tires. The package comes with the wheel bags and a spare Fulcrum freehub for your own cassette. I bought these in 2012 and since they were one of the expensive wheels I have ever bought you better believe I treated these things like gold.¬† Ask me anything. Specs are not worth repeating since the website above really nails it, ya know? I’m not a specs gal, I’m a spokes gal. GET IT?

B I K E S !

2012 Giant TCX  W Р$900 (Full price is $1,950) SOLD

Original link here

Story: I got hit by a car. I became afraid of cars. I decided to try cyclocross to get my confidence, strength, and smile back. Strength yes, but I have to face that I don’t quite get the hang of riding off-road. And I miss the road, a lot. So I want to buy a Giant road bike. Why? Cause Giant is awesome! But that means I need to sell this bike. I bought it in excellent condition from a friend who works at Giant in Ventura, and I am selling in excellent condition, with even better parts. Race ready, fun ready.

Deets: It’s an XS. I’m 5’4″ and it was purrrfect. The original parts are SRAM rival groupset, Kenda¬†700×32 tires, 36/48 chainrings, and a Giant Connect stem. I added a bigger SRAM cassette for easier climbing (from a 28 to a 32), 44 handlebars but am selling the original 38 handlebars with it, and upgraded you to TRP¬†CX8.4 mini-v brakes¬†(awesome!!!). Because of the bigger cassette, I upgraded to the SRAM Apex derailleur to shift smoothly. I can throw in my Crank Bros Candy pedals to sweeten the deal. And you can keep the Profile Design water bottle cage, though if you’re going to race you won’t need it.


1984¬† Peugeot Chambord Women’s Mixte – $500 NOT AVAILABLE

Pretty neat Peugeot verification here

Details: I bought this stunning beauty 2 years ago off craigslist. Guy kinda knew what he had but didn’t have the energy or patience to restore it. I DID. I removed every part and scrubbed it with a toothbrush to restore sheen, remove and stop rust, remove dirt and make it all pretty and working again. Original everything, except Bontrager¬†tires, special edition (!!!) purple Brooks Colt saddle to match the Brooks purple leather bar tape on the original handlebars. Original fenders, brakes, kickstand and rack. Well, the rack is original to me when I bought it but maybe not the actual bike. Paint all original and rusting should have stopped because of my care. I upgraded the brake levers to Velo¬†Orange, the amazeballs¬†silver cable housing from Velo¬†Orange, and the sweet ass pedals, also from Velo¬†Orange. You want that rear bike light? It’s yours! The bell and drink holder not included. I also upgraded you to a bar end shifter. Oooh¬†baby. I worked on this bad boy for 6 months to get it to the awesomeness that it is. It does break my heart to sell it, but that effing car that hit me left me a snapped road bike that is a level more important than riding this beauty to get groceries. So you benefit. And boy do you!


2012 Fuji Classic track bike – $300

Read more specs here:

49cm frame in great shape. Upgraded to Origin8 48 chainring, Deda Pista 40 width track drops, Cannondale 110 stem, Mavic Ellipses wheels, and an amazing Fizik Vesta saddle that is worth a lot and in amazing shape (hardly ridden at all!). Front and rear brakes available, with levers. Sweet ass pedals not included.



July 2014 photo-4

I love bikes. And I love racing bikes. I’m not necessarily good at it, but that’s why I enjoy watching those who are!

I got into road and crit racing last year. When I did, I really, really got into it. It brought me to challenge myself physically and mentally, more than I ever knew was capable. To educate myself on racing – technique, tips, strategy – I started following women’s professional racing.

I was dumbstruck at the inequity between genders in the sport. Here are bright, natural talents who put heart into racing for the pure love of it yet they rarely get compensated or reach households who are interested in watching. Then I looked around at my local races here in SoCal. The disparity is evident here, too.

This year alone, we’re making strides both locally and internationally on respecting and growing women’s cycling. On this podcast we’ll talk about the landmark decision to bring women’s racing back to Le Tour de France (yes, a return!), local race series Wolfpack Hustle’s influence on women’s racing, major players drawing media attention to the sport’s inequity, and muse about why more women aren’t racing.

And the most exciting part is getting to answer your questions and discuss your topics. Tweet me using #womentalkbikes to @brakingthelimit or comment below before June 29 to be a part of the conversation!

Pick a Charity, Any Charity

This past weekend I participated in a 70-mile charity ride for the Aptalis¬†Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I had never gone that far on the bike and didn’t think I could make it. It was hot, dry and hardly a bit of shade could be found (sorry East Coast Frankenstormers). I didn’t train, only relied on my commuting and a prayer to get me through.¬†What I found was¬†that charity rides can be no-stress, fun ways of challenging yourself on the bike and feeling stronger as a rider. I had way more fun than I expected and learned to love these kinds of rides. Here’s why I would sign up for every charity ride I could find:

1) The cheerleaders!¬†You exit the starting point – cheering. You come to a rest stop – cheering. You exit the rest stop – chanting. You come in sweaty, exhausted, and so tired to the finish line¬†and you want nothing more than to be¬†off the bike finally¬†– cheering loudly! How can you beat that? The volunteers of a charity ride have smiles on their faces despite being up earlier than you, are counting on you to support the cause and do what those with cystic fibrosis (or many diseases) cannot, and are REALLY, REALLY glad you came. You can’t help but smile when you pass the cheerleaders, and frankly, you should smile big. You are great for getting out there and pushing yourself! Too bad you can’t have a cheering section everywhere you went. Your chain falls off on 4th Ave near Fairfax. Woohoo, you can do it! You are climbing that not too steep but annoying hill on Sunset Blvd near Dodger Stadium. Go! Go! Push! You¬†pedal your way into work on a Monday. YAY! You’re grrrrr-eat!

2) The food & drink! Charity rides can be big or small, but they will always come with perks for participants. My CF ride held the start/finish at Golden Road Brewery in Atwater Village and there is nothing like a cold, refreshing pint of beer after a long, hot ride. Most charity rides will have lunch provided, a bagel spread for breakfast, even food trucks at the finish area. The fun snacks at the rest stops along the route can be sugary sweet but just what you need. I definitely did not need to eat two peanut butter and fluff sandwiches. Fluff!

3) The route!¬†Like I said, I had never done 70 miles on the bike before this. Maybe 50 miles if I round¬†up¬†somewhere. The route map was provided¬†days in advance so you can drive it or follow it on Google Maps to get comfortable beforehand. I was really excited to see we were heading to Long Beach! I’ve heard of long journeys on bicycles down to this alt-transpo¬†mecca but I didn’t think I could ever do it. Now was my chance to learn the safest route and the rest areas on the way so I can now do this trip anytime I like. There are varying distances you can sign up for, so there are options for all the riders in your group. Charity rides can teach you about new routes, new hills to train on, new sharrow lanes or bike paths you hadn’t seen before or could translate from online map to real life directions. It’s a great way to learn to ride more of your city!

4) New friends! I signed up for this ride alone. Mostly because I didn’t think I could do 70 miles and figured it was easier to bail at the first sign of struggle without answering to someone. And just as I expected, I thought I was going to turn around at the 20 mile mark, then the 25 mile mark, then again…until I met a group of women riding their first 70-mile route too. Sharing laughs and getting to know each other made the time fly by, helped me forget about the burning in my legs and absolutely kept me going to the finish line. We found we shared a lot of passions and interests and now keep in touch and have things planned together.

To become a stronger rider and to challenge yourself to the next level of riding, I can not recommend charity rides enough. There’s no competition to beat the fastest time so there is more room for camaraderie and fun. Heck, it took me almost 6 hours to make it back to the finish line and I don’t care. I experienced a great day on the bike and can’t wait to sign up for my next charity ride.