What are your plans for Independence Day? For the cycling community in Shreveport-Bossier, an extended weekend means it’s time to wake up early, zip into lycra skin-suits, and get their training miles in.
Northwest Louisiana is hot, humid, and relatively flat; producing iron-legged, sun-tanned road warriors whose competitive spirit inspires them to carve out big wins in Texas and Louisiana races. Shreveport’s two main clubs – Team La’Sport and Shreveport Bicycle Club have riders at almost every regional event that I’ve been to!
For fellow “roadies” who might not be up to those speeds just yet, here are some options of how to break into the local cycling community. First, visit one of Shreveport-Bossier’s local bike shops (LBSs in cyclist jargon). River City Cycling has a great post on their website entitled “Everything You Need To Know About Shreveport and Cycling” to get you started. Scooter’s Bike Shop is a very personal experience, while Bikes Etc. is an excellent cycling community for those of you on the east side of the Red River. Close to the after-work cycling hotspot, Ellerbe Road, The Bike Pedaler has everything a triathlete or competitive cyclist could need.
The LSU AgCenter Pecan Station is packed every weekday with cyclists to ride with, or use as a launching point for solo rides in a low traffic area. Another social group departs from Rhino Coffee, so be sure to look for announcements via their Yahoo Group. Female cyclists overwhelmed with too much machismo in the cycling community? Oh yeah, there’s a group for that.
Tuesdays and Thursdays are the default days for training rides leaving the Ellerbe Baptist Church at 6 p.m. and are hosted by the Shreveport Bicycle Club. This ride is for experienced riders who can maintain a quick pace, 20-24mph for about 25 miles. They also have a 7:30 a.m. Saturday ride leaving from the same location for 30-60 miles.
Shreveport does offer organized charity rides with Seize the Road and Heart of Hope Life Cycle, offering full rest stops and a variety of distances for cyclists of all experience levels. Now get out there and ride!