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Michael Walker

Michael Walker

Salt Lake City, Utah

Michael Walker's Passions

Road Biking
Snow Skiing
Mountain Biking

Michael Walker's Bio

Born and raised in central Illinois, I have always enjoyed sports and the outdoors since I was a kid. Although stick and ball sports were my focus for most of my teenage life, the last few years my active life has began to revolve around bicycling and snow skiing. In particular, mountain biking has become my latest outdoor passion. I have a couple college degrees earned in Illinois and was ready for a big change, so I looked out west where I only visited for snow skiing a couple times a year. As Midwesterners know, the icy ski hills in Wisconsin and singletrack in central Illinois are fun but have their limits. So, I decided to launch my professional career here with Competitive Cyclist to work in an industry that I enjoy playing in.

Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on February 10, 2018

3 5

This is a nice post ride option to feed your body what is needs after workouts. I am not a big fan of the Apple Berry flavor with water, but didnt expect it to taste great anyway. If you are looking for a great tasting recovery option, you may want to opt for something like Skratch, which basically tastes like chocolate milk. The chocolate flavored Vega products are the way to go, stay away from the fruity options.

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on February 10, 2018

4 5

Out of the protein and recovery Vega drinks I have had, the All-in-one has been the best tasting. It doesnt leave a weird after taste like the proteins sometimes do and tastes just fine with water. The taste was better using regular almond milk. For less than 200 calories per serving, it satisfied my hunger urges and feel good after drinking it. The French Vanilla was my least favorite between the Chacolate and Mocha.

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on February 10, 2018

4 5

Overall, this is a good tasting protein powder. First time I used it, I did not add enough water and it made for a weird chalky consistency. Compared to other proteins on the market, it is just average but still good considering it is Vegan. I have used it a couple times after hard workouts and it seemed to help speed my recovery.

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 20, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

So many things to like about this jacket. Like Scott says below in his review, this is a phenomenal jacket and the nicest cold weather piece I own. The quality is unmatched as you would expect from Giordana. It has a lot of small details to appreciate from the reflective paneling on the back, fleece collar, to the Giordana lettering on the inside. The details are more noticeable on the blue jacket with green trim. There is a nice small zip pocket on the left size big enough to fit my iPhone 7 no problem that keeps it from bouncing around on my ride.

What I was most impressed with this jacket is how breathable it is when doing intervals. It is like the chameleon of jackets when it comes to temperature change…if that makes any sense. What I mean to say is it has the qualities to keep you comfortable in all sorts of conditions and temperatures and adjusts as needed. The sweat and moisture you produce is wicked away and vented out of the jacket keeping you cool when charging up a canyon. The eVent technology in this jacket is amazing! With many traditional jackets, you end up soaking in your own sweat and get cold when the sun goes away. This is jacket keeps your temperature steady and skin dry so you have one less factor to worry about on your ride. It monitors your heat and sweat output and adjusts accordingly to keep you comfortable, it’s awesome.

When heading back down the canyon with a constant wind, it prevents you from being chilled from the sweat you worked up - totally windproof. It is DWR coated too so no worries if you hit some rain. 50 degrees F overcast with some showers in the radar? Wear this solo. 25 degrees F and need to hit the road for 4 hours? No problem, pair this with base layer or two and it will keep you warm. For as warm as it keeps you, I must say it is quite light and not bulky at all.

I am 5’10” 155lbs and the medium fits me perfectly. The material is pretty stretchy, I have room for up to two base layers underneath. It is a comfortable jacket that fits slim, but not extremely tight. From the racer putting in frequent and hard efforts in to the weekend warrior looking for base miles in cold temps, this is a great option. Do yourself a favor and invest in this, you will not be disappointed.

Please to reach out with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 15, 2017

5 5

At first glance, this jacket screams visibility and reflectivity all over the jacket. Even in regular light, the Super Black and P-10 Membrane combine to make this jacket pop in unlike any other jacket I have seen. Just because it isn’t highlighter yellow doesn’t mean you won’t stick out like a sore thumb while on the road. Although Capo has done a great job of making reflective materials, it has the warm, flexible, and water/wind repellant qualities allowing it to go toe to toe with the highest quality all around jackets on the market. This a breathable piece with perforation strategically placed all over helping make this nice option for high intensity efforts. I could see this jacket being worn down into the high 30’s to low 50’s. The small zip pocket on the back center pocket is water proof, so you can ride in the rain with a phone or other valuable item

Capo’s Padrone collection is form fitting and known for its high level of on the bike performance and comfort. The jacket is stretchy and mobile but still a slim fit for the race crowd. Although it is stretchy, the material feels extremely durable. At 5’10” 155 lbs, the Large was fit nice with some extra room in the upper arms and the ability to layer underneath. I could probably fit in a Medium as well. The jacket is very comfortable in the bike position. This is one of those jackets that feels a little strange walking around upright but when getting in the drops, it fits perfectly around your body.

This jacket is designed for a serious crowd who really wants to be seen on the road. It is a fine Italian made jacket loaded with high quality features, you won’t be disappointed.

Feel free to contact me with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 10, 2017

5 5

For the avid weekend warrior to the professional XC rider looking for a light, comfortable, and protective jacket, this piece is for you. It’s a high quality mtb jacket with lots of attention to detail to make this a fantastic shell. Here are a few nice features to glamour over. First, the zipper. Not usually something to get excited about, but very heavy duty and waterproof. The abrasion resistant sleeves are shaped to fit over top of a glove and cut longer on the topside by a half inch for a better fit. Underneath the outer shell of the sleeves are elastic cuffs that prevent the sleeves from being loose or flappy while allowing mobility. For ultimate ventilation, POC put 5-6 inch open vents on the sides and laser cut holes underneath the arm pits. They are strategically placed to allow airflow without sacrificing protection from the elements. The pockets on the back have flaps that go over them to prevent water from getting in and the waterproof zip pocket in the middle has plenty of room for a large cell phone. The claimed wait is 270 grams, but find this hard to believe. It is easily packable into a jersey pocket for an endurance ride.

While shredding single track, staying athletic and agile on the bike is essential and this jacket’s stretchy fabric is very mobile allowing for that. At 5’10” 155lbs, the Medium fit me well with room for one or two base layers under the regular fit. For riding in true winter conditions, I would consider sizing up to the large to fit a thick soft shell underneath. It is a great jacket - light, breathable, durable, and ready to shred in the bad weather. Every mtb rider should own this.

Feel free to contact me with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 9, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Simple yet more than sufficient for being a nice all around training jacket. This soft-shell jacket has everything you need for hitting the road in the cool weather. With wind protection in the front, It is a nice option for windy conditions and has multiple pockets for storage. 3 good sized open pockets on the back with a small zip compartment in the bottom right. The middle pocket is larger than the two side ones with plenty of room to fit a jacket and a base layer. The pocket on the inside of the left arm is a nice addition to stash nutrition with easy accessibility. The semi fitted jacket fits slim but is a very stretchable material giving ultimate comfort. It is meant to be ridden with a base layer or two without fitting too tight. I wouldn’t put this in the same category as a full on winter jacket. I see it as more of an option for the low-mid 40’s at the coolest. It could be worn comfortably with a light base layer into the high 50’s. Like most other De Marchi tops, the size Medium fit me well at 5’10” 155lbs. As a very breathable piece, it is a great option for the racer doing intervals in the cool Fall weather. I would also suggest this for someone looking to put in base miles in a comfortable fitted jacket. Really nice quality jacket that is versatile

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 4, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

De Marchi makes some stylish clothing and this is one of those pieces. Its Matte White finish is a good look that is simple and clean that is complimented by the black zipper and De Marchi lettering on the chest. The jacket has two layers with a mesh liner and fully windproof polyester outside. It is extremely lightweight and packable; it competes with some of the lightest jackets there are to offer with the ability to be packed down smaller than a tennis ball with ease. The jacket version of this has sleeves and weighs in at 100g’s, which is impressive considering it is windproof and water resistant. It has an old school vibe as it is partially see through to your layer underneath - a neat feature if that is what you are going for. The collar has two layers of polyester rip stop giving the feel of extra durability and security around the neck. The vest is stretchy so you can fit a couple layers underneath.

The Large jacket doesn’t fit me perfectly at 5’10”. I probably could squeeze into a Medium for better luck. The jacket claims to be form-fitting, but it feels like more of a casual, regular fit even for the Large. The core of the vest was too wide and baggy to prevent flapping in the wind. It also feels like it is for someone shorter in stature coming up a slightly shorter at the waist than I would like. With this being said, this is still a great option for a rider looking for a lightweight and stylish vest not overly concerned with aero dynamics trying to shave seconds bombing down a mountain. It is a great quality piece.

Feel free to contact me with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 1, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

No doubt a 5 star jacket. You just can’t go wrong with Gore-Tex Shakedry. This jacket is feathery light but will keep you protected in the wind, rain, and even snow with some base layers. This piece can pack down to the size of a small fist and be thrown in a race jersey pocket with ease. And, the best part about Shakedry technology is the breathability aspect, unlike lots of other weatherproof outer shells. For a cross country rider doing intervals up and down a mountain to a recreational commuter just trying to stay dry on the way to work, this piece will be one of the best options on the market. Although the off centered zipper may look sort of funny, it is really nice because it steers the zipper clear of your chin and face making it seem like it disappeared. The zipper goes down pretty far, so its not a wimpy quarter zip; it reaches down past my chest, far enough to really dump some heat if needed. This also makes makes taking on and off the jacket easier. The zip design itself brings both edges very close together. Some jackets have a big burly zip going up the center of the coat, this is not like that at all. It is a slick design that complements the lightweight theme perfectly. The pocket on the chest is convenient and large enough to fit my iPhone 7 or some nutrition, but not a huge pocket. There are accent marks to increase visibility too.

As for the fit, the Medium for me at 5’10” 157 lbs was perfect. Tight enough for a racer without any loose ends, but still providing room for layers underneath. It’s super mobile and comfortable in a bike position as well as when just when walking around post-ride. The cuffs seal up around the wrists nice and snug to prevent water from coming in, but are stretchy enough to fit over a light pair of gloves. The waistline is similar - snug to keep the elements out, but stretchy and comfortable. The hood is small and compact preventing any wind catch while having the purpose of stretching over your head under a helmet. Overall, this is a packable jacket that caters to lots riders. Weatherproof, lightweight, and tough enough for getting rowdy on the trails. Awesome jacket!

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on November 1, 2017

5 5

I am very impressed with the WRX jacket. A medium fit me well with at 5 10 160 lbs. It had some extra length below my waist in front and back to help with coverage when moving around into different positions while mountain biking. There is a lot to like about this jacket. It is very flexible and mobile to help you stay loose while riding. Very lightweight and packable for a questionable adventure. There is enough room to wear some elbow pads underneath if desired. It is thin and lightweight and you can hardly tell you are wearing a rain and windproof jacket when moving around. Although thin, it is abrasion resistant and scuff/scratch proof in the woods. You could throw this jacket over multiple layers without a problem and without a baggy fit. The hood is one of the coolest features. It will fit right over a trail bike helmet and shrinks up tightly when not around your head without having to worry about it getting caught up. Strategically placed vents underneath the armpits and behind the hood provide room for heat to escape without letting in rainwater seep in. This is a fantastic jacket that is very lightweight, full of nice features, and will protect against wind and rain. Excellent!

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 28, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Not much to dislike about this soft shell; warm, comfortable, breathable, and versatile. The fleece lining on the inside and Gore-Tex Windstopper membrane make this a piece that could be worn into the low 40’s or high 30’s with a base layer or two under. No problem if you overheat, the breathable material is also complimented by three zip pockets that will help vent the extra heat. The open pockets on the back are angled at 45 degrees making them very accessible when on the bike. Like the pockets on the back, the front zip pockets are placed higher than most jackets resting more on your core instead of waist (maybe 4-5 inches above the bottom). This is nice because it will help prevent items from bouncing around as much as they sit higher out of your way. The waistline has grippers on the inside for keeping the jacket in place when ripping. If there was one thing I could change about the jacket, it is having bigger zippers for better accessibility, but they do a good job of going unnoticed. I really liked the fit of the jacket, the medium was perfect. It is relaxed and flexible with room for 2 or 3 thin base layers. For someone with more of an “American fit” with a few extra pounds, this would be a nice option. You can wear this off the bike no problem, it is very comfortable and versatile. It’s suitable for the xc crowd, work commuters (reflective elements too), and even recreational road rider.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 21, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This jacket runs pretty big and loose, more than I am comfortable with. I felt like I was swimming with too much room in the torso, sleeves, and neck - I need a size Small at 5”10” 157. I would recommend sizing down from what you would wear in Fox and Gore jackets. Since it is baggy, there is tons of room to fit many under layers underneath in the freezing temperatures and room to armor up for DH riding. It would be a good option while fat biking in the snow or hitting the parks. For comparison, a Size Large in the regular All Mountain Jacket (https://www.competitivecyclist.com/alpinestars-all-mountain-jacket-mens?s=a) still fits slightly smaller than the medium in this All Mountain 2 WP. When zipped all the way up, there is protection for the bottom part of your face. The hood will easily fit overtop of a large helmet. The loose fit has all the coverage you will need to keep you dry and protected in the nastiest weather. Despite the large fit, it does have some nice features. The jacket feels extremely rugged and well made to handle brushing a tree or falling down. The large sleeve cuffs could fit over a bulky pair of gloves or be velcro’d tightly to get tucked in. The heat vents on the sides are massive, probably the longest i have ever seen on a jacket going from the center of the chest down to the mid back. The screen vents at the collar feel heavy duty like a screen door and provide another element of breathability. The jacket also has straps around the hood and waist to help eliminate the loose ends. This is a nice outer shell option for the rider looking for great coverage in some wet weather.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 21, 2017

5 5

So many features to love about this jacket to go crush it in the foul weather. The Downpour definitely has some nicer qualities and features than the Downpour LT Jacket making the extra few bucks well worth it. I like how the hood attaches to the bottom of the collar and stays back behind the jacket, making it feel like you don’t have a hood (you can tell in the product photo). If you aren’t going to use the hood, you can roll it up under a flap that velcro's down, really practical! The jacket is completely waterproof and windproof with the Ultra Q4 laminate, but has side vents that zip wide open without webbing in between your under layer. The jacket has lots of small design details and reflective accents to make you visible at night. The elbows have some added abrasion resistant material to protect from a spill. The size medium fit me perfectly at 5’10” 157lbs. Although it is categorized as a regular fit, it is pretty slim and fitted. The collar is double layered and zips up snug and comfortably. There is room for a base layer and thin soft-shell without being too tight and keeping its lightweight and flexible feel. You may want to size up if you plan on using this as a winter piece. It’s plenty packable for a long and questionable adventure. The length of the jacket in the back is a couple inches longer in the back without having it feel like a flappy dress. The slim fit and adjustability features of the jacket will protect you in the worst conditions. From the competing mountain biker to the casual commuter, this is a fantastic option.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 18, 2017

5 5

This jacket is the legit. I expected nothing less from Castelli with this top of the line piece. So many nice features and qualities that make this jacket a cold weather beast. Multiple layers that each have a specific purpose make this one of the best options for sub freezing rides. The inside thermal layer adds warmth while the outer shell provides full windproofness and near waterproofness with DWR treatment. The double zipper may seem like too much, but you hardly both and have the benefit of adjusting either as your body heats and cools. The vents on the upper back are a nice touch giving more breathability. Conveniently located is a 4th pocket in the front that is user-freindly and easier to get at than the three in the back. The thin cuffs will make it easy to put a heavy pair of gloves over your sleeves. This jacket is shaped for the slim racer and form fitted snug against your arms and core. A Large for me fit with room to throw one base piece easily with room to squeeze two thin layers. The collar zips up cleanly with the flip up collar. The jacket is sharp and dapper, and is meticulously constructed for the die hard needing the best Castelli has to offer.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 17, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This definitely has a race fit construction to it, fitting snug in all areas of the jacket. It has the feel like a jersey with some extra insulation. The large fits almost perfectly, with some extra slack on my forearms and wrists. In comparison to other Castelli jackets, it fits pretty true to size keeping the race fit in mind. Slightly awkward walking around a bit restricted, but you feel locked in a riding position. This would be a nice piece for some hard efforts in the mid 40’s or cruising moderately in the low 50’s. It has room for one base layer and could probably keep you warm enough during an intense ride around 40. It is plenty breathable with stretchy side panels and the ability to release heat. It has Gore Windstopper fabric in the front so it has the properties to protect from the wind. It is snug at the jackets ends (waist, sleeves, and collar) not letting any cool air in. I love the flip up collar in the event of getting chilly. It is a perfect jacket for a dry windy day in the 40-55 range. Overall, it is great for the dry, cold weather and with a slim but mobile fit.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 17, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

The fit of this vest is pretty tight even for Castelli. Because it is a race fit cut, it is snug from the shoulders all the way down to your waist with no material to spare. For me, it ran a little short when in a riding position, slightly more than I prefer. At 5 10 160 lbs, I still had room to fit a couple base layers, but would consider trying on the XL because I like the extra room and would wear it to ride primarily recreationally with staying warm a more important factor than weight or being aero. It feels like a jersey with extra insulation for combatting the elements. The Windstopper X-Lite Plus material on the front and shoulders will do a great job cutting the wind while still having a degree of breathability. The Nano Flex material on the back will be more breathable and less focused on wind and rain protection. Two large pockets in the back have plenty of room for stashing gear and other goodies for longer rides. When fully zipped up, the collar fits perfectly snug preventing. The Perfetto is a nice versatile option that can handle many conditions well.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 16, 2017

5 5

This jacket runs true to size as far as Castelli goes. More of a form fitting jacket shaped around the body to sync with the riding position. At 5 10 160lbs, the large fits me pretty spot on, with some extra material bunch up in the forearms. A couple features stuck out with the jacket that I really liked. The jacket is Castelli’s bike specific fit, but still flexible and stretchy. The sides have are extra stretchy and help give the jacket breathability to ditch body heat. The cuffs are heavy duty and secure, as well as around the neck with the flip up collar. The collar is a nice touch to help prevent a sweaty upper back from becoming chilled. Like many other Castelli pieces, the zippered pocket in the back is a nice feature to keep small valuable items protected. There isn’t much not to like about this jacket. It fit me well and provides enough material to protect from the wind and cold. Pair this up with a base layer or two and sub 30 F rides won’t be so torturous.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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Michael Walker

Michael Walkerwrote a review of on October 16, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This is a great option for winter riding to put in some base miles in the unfriendly cold. A medium fit me perfectly and the elasticity of the jacket allows for layering up underneath. Lots of flexibility and mobility with this jacket creating comfort. The fit of the jacket is relaxed and less of a race fit than Giordana’s AV lineup, but far from a loose/flappy fit. The Fluo Yellow/Black color is super sharp looking especially in the back. I like how the outside pockets in the back are angled making it easier to reach into, which can be difficult when wearing a heavy winter glove with poor dexterity. The zipper in the middle pocket is a nice feature too. The pockets are pretty tall so there is plenty of room to throw objects in your back. The outside membrane is DWR treated so it has a degree of water resistance to protect from rain. For somebody looking to get a stretchy jacket that allows for layering up and putting serious hours in the cold, give this jacket a try.

Feel free to contact with any questions!
Michael Walker - Customer Account Manager
801-204-4687.
mwalker@backcountry.com

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