By Bicycle Network
SOME of us need a goal to get ourselves moving, which is why Bicycle Network’s Ride2Work Day on Wednesday 16 October might just be the push you need.
Riding to work is the perfect way for you to fit in the daily exercise you need to stay healthy, both physically and mentally.
It’s also a great way to save money.
How much do you spend each week on petrol, parking or bus fares?
Now add that up over a year and think about what else you could use that money for – that alone could be incentive enough to get your bike out.
And if that’s not enough, if you register for Ride2Work Day you go into the running for a $1000 Webjet travel voucher.
There’s also the time benefit – riding means you can avoid traffic jams and know exactly how long it’s going to take to get to work, which can remove stress from your mornings.
Don’t be turned off by the weather, riding to work in the open air with all your senses activated is a real joy.
You’ll find that you come to enjoy cool winter mornings just as much as the summer ones, you just need the right clothes to see you through all the seasons.
And as for rain?
Hobart has one of the lowest rainfalls of Australia’s capital cities and anyway, as the Dutch say, “you’re not made of sugar, are you?”
So, where to begin?
Work out a route to work that mostly takes shared paths, bike lanes or quiet streets. Remember, in Tasmania you can ride on the footpath except for a few short sections of city streets.
If you live too far to ride, consider driving part way and riding the rest. That way you can still save on parking costs, use less petrol and get some exercise in.
Try the ride on a weekend to time how long it takes and tweak the route. And, it’s not a race. Just ride at a pace that feels good for you.
Get your bike ready – pump the tyres, make sure brakes are working and charge your lights. Take it to a bike shop to get any repairs made and make sure you have spare inner tube, pump and tools.
You don’t need to kit yourself out in lycra to ride to work. Comfortable cotton shorts/leggings and tops are fine, along with raincoat and rain pants. If you are riding shorter distances, then the clothes you are wearing to work will do.
Choose a bag that won’t crease your clothes. Backpacks are good for starting out, but pannier racks mean you can carry more things easily and not get a sweaty back doing it.
Check where you will park your bike at work and where you can get changed, and possibly shower if you think you’ll need it.
Find your closest Ride2Work Day breakfast – Mawsons Place in Hobart is the main breakfast – and ask whether anyone else in your workplace is interested in going, maybe you can ride in together?
Now you’ve done it once, you can do it again.
But if the thought of riding to work every day gives you a headache, then start out riding one day a week.
As you get used to it, you can up the number of days until you are riding all week, all year.
Ride2Work registration and resources are available at www.bicyclenetwork.com.au/ride2work.