ALAN LEY

Hometown:
We moved to Bentonville from Colorado Springs, but I grew up in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Occupation:
I’m learning about being an editor for Bike Arkansas. I have been a part of Bike Bentonville and Arkansas NICA, and I am working with Coach and Athlete Development for International Triathlon Union (ITU) and USA Triathlon. But it goes without saying that being the best dad I can be is my top occupation!

Where I ride:
I ride on the roads, trails and gravel roads and when it’s cold or rainy I ride the indoor trainer. The last six months I have been riding on the gravel roads around Avoca, Cave Springs and Rogers.  “Gravel grinding,” as it’s sometimes called, is a superb workout. Unlike trail riding that’s similar to intervals, gravel riding provides a longer more steady-state workout. That provides strength and endurance without the short breaks. I like the benefit-to-risk ratio of gravel riding and the beautiful Arkansas backroads. A typical week this summer has been three gravel rides and two mountain or road rides lasting 75 minutes to 2 hours. 

The playlist:
I don’t listen to music when I ride, but I do when I’m working on my cars or driving. If the garage door is open you may hear Credence Clearwater Revival, Atlanta Rhythm Section, Coldplay, Whitesnake, Aerosmith, Golden Earring, Led Zepplin or Buffalo Springfield. 

The Bike:
On gravel and the trails, I ride an all carbon ORBEA Alama hardtail. For the road I saddle up on an old aero BLUE bike that was the sponsor of the 2004 Olympic team or the very light Cervelo R5 that fits me perfectly. I switch bikes around like my riding. Indoors I have an old aluminum TREK permanently mounted (or rusted) to an ancient Cat-Eye Cyclometer. I have covered that trainer with buckets of sweat and it keeps on working.

Why I ride:
I used to ride to race. That was all that mattered—speed and fitness. Then I rode with my son, Nathan, when he raced until I couldn’t keep up anymore. Now I ride for fitness, fun, a little social riding and ‘cause I just like to ride.

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SIDI Shoes  “Notice the bright yellow SIDI shoes. These shoes fit me perfectly, and, because they are constantly rotating, they are a great safety device. I have ridden for over 35 years, and safety is always my first priority. Being cool is not as important as being seen. Even when I ride gravel or the trails, I like brightly colored clothes, shoes and helmet. The ORBEA Alma bike is bright orange with neon green letters.”  Starting at $139.00

SIDI Shoes
“Notice the bright yellow SIDI shoes. These shoes fit me perfectly, and, because they are constantly rotating, they are a great safety device. I have ridden for over 35 years, and safety is always my first priority. Being cool is not as important as being seen. Even when I ride gravel or the trails, I like brightly colored clothes, shoes and helmet. The ORBEA Alma bike is bright orange with neon green letters.”
Starting at $139.00

The Rag  “The small rag attached to my handlebars is a piece of an old t-shirt. I use this to clean my sunglasses when the sweat from under my helmet drips on them. If I tie it loosely on the handlebar the wind will dry out the cotton rag out as I ride. It also works well if I fall or get cut as a temporary bandage.”  Free .

The Rag
“The small rag attached to my handlebars is a piece of an old t-shirt. I use this to clean my sunglasses when the sweat from under my helmet drips on them. If I tie it loosely on the handlebar the wind will dry out the cotton rag out as I ride. It also works well if I fall or get cut as a temporary bandage.”
Free.

GIRO Helmet  “I usually wear a white GIRO helmet because it fits me perfectly, I can wear it gravel, road or mountain biking; it’s light and easily seen.”  Starting at $45.00

GIRO Helmet
“I usually wear a white GIRO helmet because it fits me perfectly, I can wear it gravel, road or mountain biking; it’s light and easily seen.”
Starting at $45.00

The Gloves  “I don’t wear gloves when riding the road but I always do on gravel or the trails. I like full-fingered gloves. I cut the tip off the index finger on the right glove so I can have more sensitivity when braking/steering and if I need to use the phone a sweaty glove is very hard to get off.”  Price varies.

The Gloves
“I don’t wear gloves when riding the road but I always do on gravel or the trails. I like full-fingered gloves. I cut the tip off the index finger on the right glove so I can have more sensitivity when braking/steering and if I need to use the phone a sweaty glove is very hard to get off.”
Price varies.