On 10 a.m. on the first day of 2013, City Park's Great Lawn will fill with people ready to start the year off not with a resolution, but a commitment—a commitment to a healthy lifestyle. They'll run, walk, or jay-walk through the park and Marconi Drive on the flat, fast course, which it circles back to the Great Lawn where they started. After the race, runners can stick around for a post-race party to celebrate a successful first morning of the New Year.
In more than 30 cities across the nation, other runners will be participating in similar events as part of a movement that aims to stymie the rising rates of obesity and inaction in the United States.
When Hungarian road cyclist Frank Barvik immigrated to America in the late 1950s, he laid the foundation for his American dream by opening his own bike shop. Inspired by their patriarch’s love of bicycles, his descendants opened up a bike shop of their own in 1984. Adventure Cycling still welcomes cyclists today, with a carousel display near the entrance inviting customers to scrutinize new models of Orbea, Yeti, and Specialized bicycles. Stockpiles of cycling shoes, helmets, air pumps, and other accessories line the vivid red and blue walls, competing for attention with posters, vintage photographs, and the childhood height chart of Greg LeMond. The shop’s in-house bike mechanics repair and replace worn-out parts, getting wheels ready for guided rides on Saturday mornings and Monday evenings.
Water is a powerful compound. It can carve deep canyons, power hydroelectric plants, or even give people superhuman abilities. The latter feat is accomplished aboard Rocky Mountain Flyboard Colorado's water-propulsion flying machines. Nozzles strapped to hands and feet lift pilots up to 40 feet in the air, let them dive into the water, or allow them to perform advanced tricks such as back flips.
Exercise enthusiasts Annie Garland and Lori Melchior founded Epic Ryde to provide indoor cyclists with an experience that rivals that of outdoor cycling. Their modern facility recreates everything but the wind in riders’ hair, with bikes positioned in stadium seating in view of Sloan's Lake and immersive widescreen video of outdoor scenes. Completing the scene are RealRyder ABF8 stationary bikes, whose articulating frame allows riders to lean from side to side to simulate turns or demonstrate extreme swagger.
Epic Ryde’s facility also incorporates TRX training, which uses resistance from suspended body weight and gravity to give exercisers a full-body workout. A team of certified instructors teaches the array of classes, which include Mountain Ryde and Epic Mix, a combination of cycling and TRX training.
For almost 20 years, Colorado Sports Rental has helped visitors and locals alike get their adrenaline pumping in any season with gear in affordable rental packages. In the summer, they lend out recently purchased jet skis, fishing boats, and dirt bikes; the winter months bring new models of skis and snowboards from brands such as Burton, Neversummer, and Salomon, which patrons can rent for a day or all season. To accommodate resort hoppers, the staff can also supply ski racks and Thule boxes for the tops of cars.
As the world's only indoor velodrome and mountain bike park, Boulder Indoor Cycling has netted considerable press attention along with a member base of passionate pedalers. An open-to-the-public mezzanine level overlooks the 142-meter track, whose corners tilt at a visually confounding 45-degree angle. First-timers can veer down the course at a moderate pace while advanced bikers gun for competition-level speeds, eyeing the current lap record of 7.690 seconds set by 2006 U.S. National Track Champion Kevin Selker. The velodrome track also encircles a mountain bike playground of wood platforms meant to mirror outdoor obstacles, such as log bridges, rock piles, and sleeping gnomes that send cycles careening over uneven terrain. Professional athletes and national champions comprise BIC's elite staff of cycling coaches. Both on the track and across the park planks, their classes acclimate cyclists of all ages to several tiers of biking techniques. Children ages 2–10 years can pilot a mountain bike without ever relying on training wheels or indebted wind gods during CycleTykes sessions. Youth programs, track cycling seminars, and adult race leagues also permit members to saddle up and whiz by at their preferred pace.