Saturday was a pretty good day. I rolled in just before 10am, cruised the expo floor, and then spent the rest of the day learning everything I could about running a bike shop.1 My first stop was a seminar on inventory management where I had my mind absolutely blown by the volume of what I didn’t know. Lunch followed, then another swing through the expo floor, where I talked to the guy from Oval Concepts about their aerobar line, chatted with the dude from Crank Bros. about the future of their product line, and then cruised back upstairs for a seminar on the cost of doing business — a 90-minute session that covered everything from initial start-up capital, to applying GMROI to employees, to the transition from credit-based operations to cash-based operations. At the end of the day, my head was spinning, I was more psyched than ever to get my shop opened, and I had resolved to go out and get myself an MBA.
Sunday was more sedate, and I made it more about “me”…my skull-splitting hangover and I attended a class on performance nutrition where I managed to keep my cranium from disintegrating and watched a few old cycling adages get thrown under the bus. After that, I went to the Salsa products brainstorming session where I won a Salsa jersey, and participated in throwing out of ideas — everything from product concepts to how Salsa should market itself to a shop’s customers. From there it was back to the expo floor to look at Salsa’s cross-top levers.
A few minutes later, I had to scamper back upstairs to go through the pedal fitting session — a how-to run by the staff from Bikefit. Afterwards, I had my forefoot varus measured, and wow. It would explain some of the issues I’ve historically had with my bike fit and my knee and back problems. So I’ve fired off an email to Superfeet to see how many degrees of varus it compensates for, and I’m going to order some Bikefit wedges to use in-tandem, to rotate my feet back into alignment.
Talked to the dude at the Alpha-Q booth for a bit about the new forks coming out, and got hooked-up with a free t-shirt. I do love some free schwag. Hit the nutrition booths on the way out and got a ton of samples. I’ll be trying some of that stuff over the next week or so.
All in all, it was a really good time. It wasn’t quite Interbike (which I plan to attend this year), but it was still pretty good. If you’ve got the opportunity to go, I recommend it.
1. You did know that I plan to open my own bike shop, yes?