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Monday, May 6, 2013

Thinking about Commuting by Bike?

Overcoming Bike Commuting Excuses

  • I’m out of shape
    • Ride at an easy pace; in a few months you will be in great shape.
    • Ride your route on a weekend to find the easiest way to work.
    • You will improve your fitness level when you become a regular bike commuter.
  • It takes too long
    • The average commuter travels at 10 mph; the more you ride, the faster you will become.
    • Trips of less than three miles will be quicker by bike.
    • Trips of five to seven miles in urban areas may take the same time or less as by car.
  • It’s too far
    • Try riding to work and taking mass transit home, then alternating the next day.
    • Combine riding and mass transit to shorten your commute.
    • Ride to a coworker’s house and carpool to work.
  • No bike parking
    • Look around for a storage area in your building or office.
    • Stash your bike in a covered, secure place such as a closet or even your office.
    • Formally request that your employer provide bike parking or lock it up outside.
  • My bike is beat up
    • Tell a reputable bike shop that you are commuting and have them tune up your bike.
    • If you can’t maintain your bike yourself, identify bike shops near your route.
    • Make sure that your bike is reliable and in good working order before you ride.
  • No showers
    • Most commuters don’t shower at work; ride at an easy pace to stay cool and dry.
    • Ride home at a fast pace if you want a workout; shower when you get there.
    • Health clubs offer showers; get a discounted membership for showers only.
  • I have to dress up
    • Keep multiple sets of clothing at work; rotate them on days you drive.
    • Have work clothes cleaned at nearby laundromats or dry cleaners.
    • Pack clothes with you and change at work; try rolling clothes instead of folding.
  • It’s raining
    • Fenders for your bike and raingear for your body will keep you dry.
    • If you are at work, take transit or carpool to get home; ride home the next day.
    • Take transit or drive if you don’t have the gear to ride comfortably in the rain.
  • The roads aren’t safe
    • Obey traffic signs, ride on the right, signal turns, and stop at lights.
    • Wear bright clothing.
    • You are at no greater risk than driving a car.
    • Wear a helmet every time you ride.
  • I have to run errands
    • Bolt a rack to the back of your bike to add carrying capacity.
    • Make sure that you have a lock to secure your bike while you are in a building.
    • Allow extra time to get to scheduled appointments and find parking.
    • Encourage your employer to provide a bicycle fleet for office use. 

Information from League of American Cyclists