At Flow State, our core purpose is to build and nurture the bike community in our region. What better way to work towards that lofty goal than to host intentional discussions on a variety of cycling-themed topics?
Over the coming months — and until our bikes arrive — we are cooking up creative ways to use our space towards that end. We've already kicked things off with our Sunday MTB Film Series showcasing some of the most inspiring and awe-inducing mountain bike films and documentaries.
Starting in December, we'll be launching our Hub & Spoke Series with an incredible line-up of speakers. Topics will be wide-ranging and include everything from training and performance to mental health, adventures and travel, and bike advocacy, weaving a common thread of cycling as an unstoppable force for good in the world.
We'll be releasing speakers and dates on this page so be sure to stay tuned via our social media and email newsletter.
Talk #1: The Key Pillars of Athletic Achievement
December 8th, 7:00PM-8:30 PM
Perfecting your training takes years and top performances don’t happen overnight. Join Mark Cullen — head coach of LP Endurance — and Jessica Cullen — winner of Ironman Canada 2022 — as they share the key pillars of athletic achievement and the secrets to having the best season yet in 2023.
About the speakers
Jessica Cullen is a competitive triathlete coached by her husband, Mark. She has competed at the national and world championship level for triathlon, duathlon, and adventure racing and won Ironman Canada in 2022. She’s an award-winning communications professional (Top 40 Under 40 in PR, Woman on the Rise and Communications Professional of the Year) and is cohost of the Endurance Icons Podcast.
Mark Cullen is founder and head coach of LP Endurance, a Kitchener-Waterloo based endurance club that launched in 2021 and is currently ranked in the top 5 in Canada. He is a competitive triathlete, competing in three multi-sport world championships and two Boston Marathons. He is cohost of the Endurance Icons podcast.
Talk #2: The Art of Bikepacking
January 26th, 7:00PM-8:30PM
You can spend countless hours planning, prepping, and packing…but you should accept that something is bound to go wrong on your bikepacking trip. Being mentally prepared to embrace the unexpected can help you find magic in the madness. Bikepacking duo Heather & Paulo will share photos from their adventures, tell a few stories of times when things went memorably wrong, and bring some of their favourite gear for show-and-tell.
About the speakers
Paulo’s passion for cycling and adventurous spirit have taken him to many beautiful and unique places in the world. His bikepacking trips fulfill lifelong dreams of exploring the world by bike, experiencing diverse cultures and documenting his travels with photographs. Closer to home, Paulo is an active member of the local mountain biking communities in Guelph and Milton and sits on the HAFTA Board of Directors. Paulo is most at peace when he's out riding his bike – solo, with friends or his partner Heather. He often has his camera at the ready and is known for his mountain biking and nature photography. Paulo’s second-favourite activity is bike maintenance in a well-equipped home workshop with his trusty sidekick, retired trail dog Maya, snoozing nearby.
In late 2016, Heather fell hard for mountain biking in more ways than one. Six years later, mountain biking has completely reshaped Heather's life. She has embraced the culture and community of mountain biking, especially the wonderful friendships and camaraderie of the women's MTB scene. Bikepacking adventures with Paulo have taken her to incredible places around the world and sparked in her a passion for exploring by bike and for sharing her experiences through writing projects. Together with Paulo’s photographs, Heather’s stories of their bike adventures have appeared in the Bikepacking Journal, the Esker Journal, and on The Radavist website.
Paulo & Heather live in Guelph in a little bungalow overflowing with bikes and dog hair.
Talk #3: The Hydrocut — From Wild West to Model of Success
February 16th, 6:30PM-8:30PM
The Hydrocut has a long and storied past over the last three decades. From rogue trail system drawing inspiration from Vancouver’s sketchy North Shore to a successful model of land management, conservation, and stewardship, the Hydrocut is one of the most visited and celebrated trail systems in Ontario.
Catch the 2020 documentary Ribbon of Dirt and hear from two pivotal characters in the Hydrocut's history — Andy Cox and Brent Ellis — as they dig into the evolution of the trails. They’ll reveal some of their successes, failures, and where they see the future of the Hydrocut.
About the speakers
Brent sits on the board of directors of the Waterloo Cycling Club (WCC). He is a past President and Treasurer of the Club. He is a founding member of the WCC Trails Committee — which manages all aspects of The Hydrocut — and has served on the committee since its inception.
Andy has owned and operated King Street Cycles in Waterloo since 2003. Along with Brent, he is one of the founding members of the WCC Trails Committee. Andy is the Director of Good Times and coordinates riding and social events at The Hydrocut.