Will You Ride Your Bike to Work This Friday?

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
5/13/2009 5:50 AM   :  201 comments

See More: fitness, news, green living,
This Friday, May 15, is National Bike-to-Work Day, one of many events scheduled to celebrate Bike Month.

SELF magazine is celebrating National Bike Month by showing how bicycling can slim you down, save you money and safeguard the environment. Whether it’s the best in biking gear or pointers on proper positioning, SELF gets your gears in motion in time for Bike-to-Work day on May 15.

3 reasons to push pedals
1. You'll slim down. Have fun, burn fat: Biking at a moderate to vigorous pace inside and outside the gym zaps about 500 calories per hour, says Pete McCall, an exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise in San Diego. Leaner legs and a firmer butt are also benefits of biking—ride on!

2. You'll fatten your wallet. It costs roughly $8,115 a year to own a car, reports the American Automobile Association in Heathrow, Florida. A bike's annual setback is $263.

3. You'll reduce your carbon footprint. Fuel for thought: If you bike to work three days a week, you'll save about 38 gallons of gas per year, says Heather Stephenson, cofounder of IdealBite.com, a website that offers daily tips on green living.

For more info on biking to work, including the 411 on biking to work and road safety, read the rest of the article.

Since finally learning how to ride a bike, I've become quite a fan of cycling. I take Spinning classes, hit the bike trail on the weekend and have a standing weekly bike-and-dine date with a friend during warm weather. I've never ridden my bike to work, mostly because I live 10 miles or so from the office and would need to ride on some pretty busy roads and steep hills during high-traffic times.
I hope to someday have the confidence to ride my bike to work (my city is not a very bike-friendly place) on a regular basis. Until then, I'll stick with riding my bike to run errands on the weekends.

How about you? Will you ride your bike to work on Friday? Do you ride your bike to run errands or take short trips?


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Comments

  • NARENS
    201
    I use to ride my bike to work just for fun, but we recently turned our car into the east bay air quality control org. and now my fiance and I are liberated. There are moments (like when a huge rain cloud sees me coming) when I miss the supposed luxury of a car, however, we both are so much more relaxed when it comes to transit. Life honestly is better for us now that we aren't dependent on our car. - 4/23/2010   5:24:30 PM
  • 200
    I just got me a new bike. Started riding a couple of weeks ago. However, I can't ride it to work. One it is 12 miles on a not so "bike" friendly road. two, I have to pick up my son at the baby sitter. ANd it would be way too dangerous to have him out on those roads. I wish there was a trail or something and I could. That woud be great! We do have the "silver comet trail" here, but it doesn't take me to work unfortunately. (maybe i need another job :)

    I do love riding now though! It is great exercise.
    - 4/22/2010   1:52:47 PM
  • 199
    I highly commend (and envy) those who can and do ride their bikes to work, but it's just too far for me. It would take me about two hours to get to work if I were to try to ride my bike. - 4/22/2010   12:43:51 PM
  • ACATHRYN
    198
    I bike to work 4 days a week. It is 9 miles one way. I am fortunate enough to have a shower at work so it works great. - 5/17/2009   11:52:23 PM
  • 197
    I'm super proud of myself because I did ride my bike to work this past Friday. My town and my workplace had set up a bunch of incentives for the day like drawings and snack/drink booths on the trail. I had never biked to work before because I live on the top of one side of a valley and my workplace is on the other side...even thought it's only about 4 or 4.5 miles. Let me tell you it was tough work. I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and it was cold (about 35 degrees when I got out at 8:30 in the morning) and I have just gotten my bike out of winter storage and have not ridden a lot yet. I did a lot of getting off and pushing my bike, but I had a huge sense of accomplishment (and exhaustion) when I made it to work. I think that I'll probably do it again sometime, though I don't know if I'll be doing it regularly. - 5/17/2009   10:43:41 AM
  • 196
    That picture is Minneapolis! Yay for my hometown which is full of bike commuters!! - 5/17/2009   10:29:04 AM
  • 195
    Like so many others have said, I can't ride my bike to work. It's 24 miles each way on the freeway....further than that if I were to take non-freeway roads, and those would be extremely busy as well. Plus, living in Minnesota, the weather wouldn't be very co-operative. Finally, I can't imagine what I'd look and smell like to my co-workers, lol. - 5/16/2009   6:49:20 PM
  • 194
    One of the teachers at my school rides her bike to school - I live way to far and the roads are not ok for me to do so. I would love to walk or ride my bike to school (work). But, since we have no shower.....that seems it would be a problem. We used to all walk together after work - that was fun!! donna - 5/16/2009   5:51:29 PM
  • DENNISDWE
    193
    I love riding the bike ok coaster brake bike with balloon tires..no cables to mess with i ride about 2 or 3 miles aday.. but at least i get up and ride..been shooting for 45 minutes rides. - 5/16/2009   1:17:27 PM
  • 192
    I do like to ride my bike to work but the conditions need to be just right. Helmet hair is not good. If it's too hot, I don't have a place to shower once I get to work. I love to ride early in the spring and in the fall. I did ride to work this week one day. I would have liked to ride more but it rained 3 days and I took a day of vacation. Don't be afraid of riding 15 miles, just take it easy, rest when you need to and enjoy the ride! - 5/16/2009   10:44:56 AM
  • 191
    No bike and no safe way to ride if I did. I live in the Ozarks, 2 lane curving roads with no shoulders in a lot of places. Also, I have over 20 miles to ride to work. - 5/15/2009   10:31:37 PM
  • 190
    I always ride my bike to work. So far I haven't taken my car even once this year, so I hope I can keep that up. I bought a racing bike last weekend, so now I'm at work at bit faster as well. The good thing is that we have relatively good bike pads here, way you can ride safely. - 5/15/2009   2:01:46 PM
  • 189
    Would that I could, but my route to work is far too dangerous to Cycle!! plus as its also 15 miles I might die on the way, but well done to all who manage it!!! - 5/15/2009   12:10:49 PM
  • STARDUST_21
    188
    I was so ready to ride my bike to work today (I usually ride a few days a week anyway) but we got several inches of snow yesterday. :( So no cycling for me today, I hate being cold. - 5/15/2009   10:11:27 AM
  • AMELITA2
    187
    I used to bike a lot when I was a child.Even later when I was working as a music teacher, one day I decided to bike to my job. When I was coming back from the job some teenagers yelled at my ear and I never used my bike again to go to work. Since then I understood that the bike it is not to take to work. - 5/15/2009   10:03:46 AM
  • A1TERRY
    186
    roads to dangerous to ride to my work - 5/15/2009   9:53:15 AM
  • 185
    I can not. My job is to drive people where ever they need to go! Most of the time it is to one of our areas airports, the closest being 25 miles away! - 5/15/2009   8:59:44 AM
  • 184
    I don't. But technically I guess I could, hummm...something to think about this summer :) - 5/15/2009   8:59:22 AM
  • 183
    I'll walk.
    The traffic is toooo scary to ride a bike. - 5/15/2009   8:45:28 AM
  • 182
    This past September I bought myself a decent hybrid bike with fenders, panniers, headlight and taillight. Since then I've been riding back and forth to the law school more often than not. Now that I've graduated and am moving to D.C., I'm deliberately considering the bike-friendliness of various neighborhoods where I might want to settle. - 5/15/2009   8:20:02 AM
  • 181
    I should - I only live 2 km from my work - but right now, there is still snow on the ground so I will wait until it warms up.... - 5/15/2009   7:06:36 AM
  • 180
    I live about 10 miles away from work, and I probably could ride a bike to work...if I rode a bike at all! I haven't owned a bike since elementary school and the last few times I rode, I fell & hurt myself. I've been afraid to get back on a bike for more than a decade. Even thinking about getting back on a bike makes me feel like a scared little five-year-old again. - 5/15/2009   12:08:05 AM
  • 179
    I really wish I could bike to work... I live 27 miles away, one way, from my job. It takes 35 minutes to get there from the freeway, and traffic is horrific in my big city... plus 3rd shift employee. The odds are against me..lol. - 5/14/2009   10:31:09 PM
  • HAGEMEIERT
    178
    I have walked to work every day this year. It's only a 1/4 mile away so don't give me too much credit. I think getting on the bike would actually ADD communte time due to the time it would take to get it out each day and lock it up each day. - 5/14/2009   9:47:10 PM
  • 177
    I would love to. When I lived near my job I rode every day and I was in the best shape od my live. It was a mile and a half each way. Now I live 10 miles away and traffic in my city has doubled in the past 20 years, it's more dangerous. I take public transportation and I don't own a car, just a bike! - 5/14/2009   9:46:43 PM
  • 176
    I used to walk to work when I was closer (about 1.5 miles, quite hilly). Since I've moved and switched jobs, though, it's not so practical any more.

    Four reasons why I don't walk/bike now:
    1)The majority of my route to work is along a large road with a 45 MPH speed limit... and even if there were a sidewalk, it is illegal to ride a bike on the sidewalk here (which I think is really stupid!)
    2)My coworkers would not appreciate the stench!
    3)It's a long enough ride that a pasty girl like me would have to put on super-high-SPF sunscreen each and every day.
    4)Dislike the idea of losing an hour of sleep and probably 2 hours of my day just to commute by bike. - 5/14/2009   9:37:00 PM
  • 175
    I'd love to, but my work is more than 15 miles from my house. There's nothing within a mile I could go to, either. There are some stores between 1-3 miles away, but all have major roads to cross/travel on, and many places are without sidewalks, so they're not very safe.

    - Josie - 5/14/2009   9:22:42 PM
  • 174
    I don't own a bike, I don't know how to ride a bike... yes I know I'm too old not to know- I just didn't have much interest in it when I was a kid... anyway if I could I probably would. - 5/14/2009   9:03:59 PM
  • 173
    As much as I'd like to ride my bike to work, I won't be able to. I live about 25 miles from the office, and the main route to work is I-10; definitely not conducive to safe riding! - 5/14/2009   8:37:14 PM
  • 172
    I have a bike. Need to see if the tires are still inflated and YES, I think I will bike to work tomorrow!!! - 5/14/2009   6:47:57 PM
  • 171
    hmm i don't have a bike, and im actually surprised to see how many people responding to this post dont have one either. I live about 5 miles from my job, so it would be possible for me to ride a bike to work, except... that it'd be a little bit dangerous, i'd have to cross a bridge and there are no sidewalks... the whole way. in addition, i usually bring my lunch and gym clothes with me to work every day, in addition to my books and office work.... how would i ever lug all that on a bike??!!! for those of u who can bike to work... LUCKY!!! :) - 5/14/2009   6:27:53 PM
  • RAPUNZEL53
    170
    No, I work 30 miles away so it is not possible. - 5/14/2009   5:06:08 PM
  • 169
    No, I don't have a bike. And even if I had a bike and a job it would be way too far and dangerous. Bikes are fun if you have a good place to ride them. - 5/14/2009   4:42:52 PM
  • BYHISSTRENGTH
    168
    I do not have a bike and I also work from home. I will try to do a little more exercise tomorrow though. - 5/14/2009   4:37:03 PM
  • 167
    The neighborhoods between home and work are not safe enough to consider riding 25 miles one way. One of my coworkers has been riding her motorcycle farther than that since the weather is better though. The longest I think I ever rode was from the repair shop to our home - 6 miles. That's another problem with cars - it costs more to fix them when they break. - 5/14/2009   4:07:22 PM
  • 166
    Live too far from work-don't have luxury of a shower. Also I don't have a bike! - 5/14/2009   3:26:27 PM
  • 165
    Every day. Eighteen miles one way, half path/bike lanes and half roads.

    I nagged my boss for years to put in a shower, since we work in an industry that supports an active, outdoor lifestyle. After endless wet - wipe "showers" in a bathroom stall, I finally have the real thing. - 5/14/2009   3:14:15 PM
  • 164
    47 miles of highway to work, it's not very safe in my van let alone a bike... the weather is finally getting warm enough to ride around the city though. - 5/14/2009   2:31:59 PM
  • 163
    I wish I could, but I have two kids to drop off at daycare in the morning, and a noon-time run to take the oldest to Kindergarten. I might have to go for a ride this weekend, though! - 5/14/2009   2:16:22 PM
  • 162
    I would love to bike to work. It is only about 20miles, but I'm not sure how safe it is, though I've seen others do it.
    After seeing the yearly cost to own a car, I'll have to do some checking into this biking to work, maybe if I could get someone to do it with me it might be safer. - 5/14/2009   1:54:02 PM
  • 161
    Don't have a job & sadly my DH is too busy to fix my brakes! Although in my neighborhood & town, this activity posese serious opportunity for bodily harm! No shoulders on the roads & no bike paths : ( - 5/14/2009   1:35:41 PM
  • 160
    I have a fine road bike, and two months ago purchased new lights to replace the ones my batteries corroded, a seat to replace the one long broken one, a helmet that is cooler than my old one, gloves to soften my handbar grip...have I ridden it yet? let alone unpacked these items from the bag? No. But, this article - and being reminded of National Bike-to-Work Day - gives me the impetus. My father even gave me his old compressor, so I have no excuse. ...except, maybe, I work out of my house. Let's see...maybe I can bike for coffee and bagels. That's a minimum 4.5 miles round trip! - 5/14/2009   1:12:34 PM
  • 159
    I work virtually, so I have no office to ride to this Friday. That said, I'll go out for a morning ride just to keep in the spirit.

    I also have a Rails to Trails ride set with a friend Saturday, and Pedal Pittsburgh is Sunday, so it looks like a full riding weekend.

    Sweet!! - 5/14/2009   12:43:55 PM
  • 158
    I can't remember the last time I rode a bike...I am 65; I have no bike, and do not have the balance to stay up on a bike these days. I do not have a "work" to ride to; I would like to have my own stationary bike, but have no money for one-- - 5/14/2009   12:05:01 PM
  • 157
    I won't be riding to work Friday because I will be traveling to a sponsored bike ride in Matthew's Co. Virginia. I did ride to work today. I live 7 miles from work and the ride is along the beautiful New River. I work a 12 hr. rotating shift and try to ride most days. I have found that I can't do it every day with that shift because I get too tired by the end of the week. It is warm and sunny here today, so I will definitely enjoy the ride home this evening. - 5/14/2009   12:01:01 PM
  • 156
    While I will not be riding my bike to work due to lack of sidewalks or paths where I live to work, our company is sponsoring a ride to work and we have many people that will be meeting early tomorrow morning and riding in together.

    I am rather disappointed that I cannot bike to work from where I live. The distance to work is well under 2 miles but it is much too dangerous to ride on the open roads. If the city ever provides sidewalks or paths in the area, I will be cycling to work. Of course it also helps that we have full gym with showers so if one were to get hot and sweaty, we can shower at work.

    Good luck to all those that are riding - 5/14/2009   11:53:24 AM
  • AMBER727
    155
    I work over 30 miles away from my house one-way, so I'd have a 60+ mile bike ride. Plus I don't own a bicycle. But if those two things weren't standing in my way, I'd definitely give it a shot! :) - 5/14/2009   11:26:26 AM
  • 154
    Probably not - I don't like the traffic and I want myself to be put together when I get to work - not wind tossed or sweaty. Vanity... We do ride bikes often just not to work for me - dh does though every day. - 5/14/2009   11:15:56 AM
  • 153
    If I had a bike, I would definitely ride it to work - it would only take about 5-10 minutes, but it's 10 minutes of cardio every day that I could and would certainly use! - 5/14/2009   11:10:11 AM
  • BIGSKY101
    152
    In case anyone's wondering, that's a lovely picture of Lake Calhoun and the Minneapolis skyline. As for biking to work, that is a dream of mine, but with busy traffic, steep hills and MS, it's too much for me. I live only 4 miles from work, so it would be ideal. However, I never know how I'm going to feel from day to day, so it's kind of a crapshoot. I try to compromise by not driving very much, and bundling my errands in a single area. I still bike though. We are fortunate to live in an area of the Twin Cities that has lovely terrain and an abundance of wildlife. It's a bit too hilly for my physical limitations, so I try to find flatter areas to ride. Cycle on! - 5/14/2009   11:09:30 AM

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