For casual or serious cyclists. Know of a good ride, route or resources? Share! Want to organize a ride? Invite!
My First Time Biking to Work Lessons Learned
June 30, 2011 at 1:33 pm #134280
As a first timer I did take a few mental notes for round two — thought I’d share them for others ready to embark on this Earth saving adventure…
1 – Plan your route. I’ve walked this same path a few times but didn’t take into account the one area I would typically walk up/down that is not suitable for a road bike. Luckily the bike was light enough for me to carry. Once I was done with this impromptu hike I discovered the easier more bike suitable route other bikers were taking!
2 – Look out for other moving things. Obviously we watch out for cars…that’s a given. But paying attention to other bikers is important too…they can show you new paths, almost run you over or almost get run over themselves. I learn best by doing…but watching is a good way to learn in this type of situation. I did find a new path by following other commuters which is always a plus! (hopefully I won’t have to write something in here about animals — did not have one of those encounters)
3 – Prep for work. Face it, you are going to be a sweaty mess when you walk into the office. I found it incredibly helpful to bring face wash, deodorant and apply make up upon arrival. One thing I didn’t do, but will next time is wear a different set of clothes (change at work) and bring an extra pair of socks (for the trip back).
Have You Biked Into Work?
What Tips Do You Have For Others That Are Doing The Same?
July 1, 2011 at 12:54 pm #134286
You got to wear the GovLoop bike jersey for sure…
July 1, 2011 at 8:31 pm #134284
Megan, Welcome to the ranks of the commuters on two wheels. For the most part, all of the things you mentioned are key to getting you safely to and from work. Some other things you should consider are just common sense.
- If you are on the road, make sure you act like a car and obey the traffic signs and signals.
- Be consistent when you ride. Don’t make jerky moves or decisions. If you are going straight, ride straight. If you are turning, move in a predictable way. Avoid the last minute maneuvers.
- It’s a ride, not a race. If someone is passing you, allow them the right of way. Move to the right. Slow down when they are beside you and allow them to pull in front of you if necessary. Don’t compete for the same space.
- Wear bright colors and put bright things on your bike. Not just lights. There are many reflective materials that are available. Find open and moving parts on your bike where a simple piece of reflective tape can go. Just because you have a flashing light in the front and back of the bike it doesn’t mean the person at an intersection will see you.
- Keep a log of the miles, how you felt on the ride, what would make it better, and what you saw. It makes for entertaining reading during the cold months of winter.
- Smile and say hello, even when the other person doesn’t. You never know when you can make someone’s day.
Just have fun
July 4, 2011 at 12:04 pm #134282
For us girls I found it incredibly helpful to buy and leave an extra set of makeup, toiletries, blowdryer, etc at work. Takes a lot of planning as you think through your morning routine to determine what you’ll need to have. There’s a locker room in the building next to mine so that also means thinking about bringing a towel, flip flops and hauling all the stuff over to the shower. I look at my calendar each week in advance and decide what days I can ride based on my schedule. Then I bring my suit/heels at least a day in advance. And of course that also means I can’t take the laptop and other things i might normally bring home from the office the day before the ride. I also make sure the bike is set and ready to go (like enough air in the tires) the night before. And be sure to bring an extra tube and pump 🙂
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