Women on Bikes Series: Allie Bachelder

Meet Allie who teaches in the Nursing department at Luther College. In the summer months she's head coach for the summer swim program. She's married to Kelly and they have three daughters: Emma, Grace, and Savannah 

When did you first start riding a bike?
I first started riding bike as a little girl. It was only this year that I started actually competing in triathlons and taking my training to a new level. I have always loved to bike! 

What motivated you to ride as much as you have over the years? 
I love to be outside and getting in a good workout and being outside is a double bonus for me.  I love the sweat and the nature all in one!

Have you competed in events (or will you be?) If so, what were/are your reasons for competing?  
I love to compete and I have competed in sports all my life.  In high school I did swim team all year round and volleyball and I swam in college at UNI.  
I love to see how far I can push my body to strive to be the best I can.
I did the Hickory Grove Triathlon in Ames in May and finished first in my age group, Kansas Ironman 70.3 which I just completed and finished 8th on the bike portion. I also have two more races on the books this summer. I have a Lifetime Triathlon in Minneapolis in July and a Hy-Vee Triathlon in Des Moines on Labor Day weekend.

What would be your favorite competitive biking event?  
For sure triathlon and ironman distances, I love the triathlons because of the variety it involves. I do not like to train for one thing consistently because I get bored.  I love being able to do a different sport each day, for example I’ll do a 2 hour ride followed by a quick run and the next day I will do a long swim. I love the variety!

What kind of riding is your favorite? (paved, gravel, mountain, etc.) 
Paved for sure.  

When you started riding regularly (competitive or not) did you have any nervousness at all? How did you overcome?  
Yes each time I get a new bike or transition into a better faster bike it is always a learning curve.
I purchased a tri bike and I was very nervous at first because the bike fit is so much different than my road bike. I have now gotten over the nerves of it all and love the speed! It took me a few rides to feel comfortable on my tri bike. I had it on my trainer through the winter which helped with the transition to outside and having to balance and hold on :)

Do you use clipless pedals? If yes, what are some tips/suggestions for beginners that you would share?
All three of my bikes have clipless pedals. This was also a learning experience for me. Suggestions for beginners:  when you are slowing down clip out so you are ready and do not come to a complete stop before you can get clipped out. I learned this the hard way :)  

Have you had a bike accident? If so, how did you recover on a physical/mental/emotional level? 
I have not had any serious bike accident. I have dumped my bike a few times because I could not get clipped out in time and I have dropped my chain at a race before; I’ve been pretty lucky!

What do you love about riding your bike? 
 I love being outdoors and in the fresh air. I feel lucky to live in northeast Iowa and experience the beauty we have on our trails while riding. I also love getting my heart rate up and the speed factor with biking!
What bicycle products/accessories/gear do you enjoy having? What would you recommend to new riders as well as those who want to compete?
I just got tubeless tires put on my racing bike which I love! I am really a novice when it comes to fixing bikes etc. so it really gives me a piece of mind when I am out riding. Also I have a fear of a flat on a race and I no longer have to worry. Well worth it!  It is very cheap for the peace of mind and not having to change flats.
I also enjoy having multiple water bottles for my very long rides. I have a little pouch on my mountain bike to carry things along the way.  

Tell us about your bike(s) and which one(s) would you consider to be a favorite?
I have three bikes that serve very different purposes for me.
1.  Specialized Crosstrail bike. I use this when I am out with my family on a stroll or when we bike together with other people. This is my fun bike when I am not competing and it has many miles on it!
2Specialized Ruby road bike. It is comfortable and gives me more speed than my cross bike.  I currently have it set up in my basement on my trainer to do indoor rides. It’s my in-between bike and I love riding it on the paved trail!
3Trek Speed Concept 9.5. This is my fastest racing bike and I love this bike and how fast I can go!  This is my latest purchase and I am totally in love with it!
Do you have a dream bike?
I have my dream bike! The Trek Speed Concept that I purchased from Travis at Decorah Bicycles.