Author Topic: Biking To Work  (Read 7583 times)

Mistah Cash Lion

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Biking To Work
« on: March 23, 2015, 08:02:39 PM »
Feeling like a boss right now.  Just bought my first bike from Nashbar for about $270. Assembled it on Saturday, watched some YouTube videos on how to adjust the front derailleur and tested out a trip to my work and back on Sunday. Here's a picture of this beauteous bike.



Got up this fine Monday morning at 4am to get in my usual bodybuilding workout and managed to get ready in time to bike to work.  So I did it!  13 miles one-way and it took me just under 60 minutes.  I'm betting that I will get the time down a little bit as I get more used to it.  Not a bad ride at all though!  It certainly helps that we have an amazing 44 mile paved trail that runs from my town (Glenwood Springs) to Aspen, CO.  I had no excuse not to do it when it has been made so easy for me!  Here's a quick shot from my ride in to work this morning.



My plan is to bike commute to work 3-4 days/week and for all my in town grocery shopping and errands. I estimate that I will bike 100 - 150 miles per week which is 100 - 150 miles less on my car!  At $0.30 / mile that is an average of $160/month saved or $2000/year! Not bad!

Jakejake

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2015, 08:09:20 PM »
Congrats!

It's been almost a year since I switched from occasional biking to work to having the mindset that it's my default method unless it's too rainy or icy to be safe. My ride's a bit shorter (11.5 miles each way) and I'm slower than you, haven't managed to come in under an hour. But in my defense I'm a 50 year old woman.

I'm completely jealous of your bike path, btw. Looks like a gorgeous way to start your day!

Mistah Cash Lion

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2015, 08:16:47 PM »
Congrats!

It's been almost a year since I switched from occasional biking to work to having the mindset that it's my default method unless it's too rainy or icy to be safe. My ride's a bit shorter (11.5 miles each way) and I'm slower than you, haven't managed to come in under an hour. But in my defense I'm a 50 year old woman.

I'm completely jealous of your bike path, btw. Looks like a gorgeous way to start your day!

Good for you!  That's nothing to sneeze at. That will help give some motivation to people who think they're too old to bike around! 

Frugalwannabe

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2015, 07:16:16 AM »
Good for you guys. One of these day I will be brave enough to drive my bike to work. My work place is only 4 miles away from home. However I live in the Atlanta, GA and the traffic/car drivers intimidate me. Plus the hubby and everyone always think I am crazy for even thinking about it! I need more Mustachens here in GA.

GuitarStv

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2015, 01:40:28 PM »
That's pretty awesome!  13 miles is a great commute distance . . . long enough that you get a good workout, but short enough that it doesn't eat your whole day.  That paved trail looks wonderful, my commute is all busy city streets without bike lanes.

enigmaT120

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2015, 03:43:18 PM »
How much of your commute is along that path?  That looks great.  How do things like that get built, is it a Rails to Trails thing?


Mistah Cash Lion

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2015, 05:57:05 PM »
That's pretty awesome!  13 miles is a great commute distance . . . long enough that you get a good workout, but short enough that it doesn't eat your whole day.  That paved trail looks wonderful, my commute is all busy city streets without bike lanes.

Yeah it's a pretty reasonable distance. And it doesn't feel too long at all. I'm finding that I am actually enjoying it! How long is your commute?

How much of your commute is along that path?  That looks great.  How do things like that get built, is it a Rails to Trails thing?

I would say 12 of the 13 miles! Yep! Here are the details of the trail.

Quote
The Roaring Fork Transportation Authority manages the greatest portion of the Rio Grande Trail which runs from Glenwood Springs to Aspen, Colorado. The Rio Grande has 42 miles of continuous multi-use trail and is completely protected from vehicular traffic except at intersections. The Rio Grande Trail is a rails to trails project which is built in the Aspen Branch of the historic Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad. Train operations in the corridor ceased in phases, between the 1960s and the mid 1990s. 

I believe they even plow the portion I use to get to work in the winter if there is 6 inches or more of snow. So far I have mostly had the trail to myself during the week. I usually pass 2 or 3 people going the other way, but other than that I'm all alone.


Syonyk

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2015, 07:01:25 PM »
:( I hate rails to trails.  They're great for bicycling, but terrible in that pulling up rails means that there will never again be rail lines there.

... said as someone who bikes to work on one. I'd rather it have freight traffic, because trains, on tracks, are radically less hazardous to me than trucks, on the road.

GuitarStv

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2015, 07:26:04 AM »
That's pretty awesome!  13 miles is a great commute distance . . . long enough that you get a good workout, but short enough that it doesn't eat your whole day.  That paved trail looks wonderful, my commute is all busy city streets without bike lanes.

Yeah it's a pretty reasonable distance. And it doesn't feel too long at all. I'm finding that I am actually enjoying it! How long is your commute?

I do a little over 11 miles each way.  Usually takes 40 minutes between lights and traffic.  If you don't have anything to stop you along the way in a few weeks you'll find your times getting much quicker . . .

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2015, 08:10:48 AM »
Awesome! I feel like a pansy with my 4 mile commute :)

Syonyk

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2015, 10:31:39 AM »
Nah, you just chose a distance to work that is easy to bike. :)

jmusic

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2015, 12:13:01 PM »
:( I hate rails to trails.  They're great for bicycling, but terrible in that pulling up rails means that there will never again be rail lines there.

... said as someone who bikes to work on one. I'd rather it have freight traffic, because trains, on tracks, are radically less hazardous to me than trucks, on the road.

Typically for a rail to be considered for conversion, it's already been inactive for quite some time.  The costs to reactivate such rails would be onerous because of railroad crossing requirements in addition to the substantial rehab expenses.

misschedda

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2015, 12:26:48 PM »
So jealous! It's pictures like that that make me want to move to Colorado!

HenryDavid

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2015, 12:30:22 PM »
Even if you weren't saving mountains of cash by not driving--which you are!--and also getting way fitter --which you are-- and also helping save the human race from choking on its own emissions--which you are! . .  .

wouldn't you prefer this commute to sitting in traffic?

Mistah Cash Lion

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2015, 06:52:50 PM »
Even if you weren't saving mountains of cash by not driving--which you are!--and also getting way fitter --which you are-- and also helping save the human race from choking on its own emissions--which you are! . .  .

wouldn't you prefer this commute to sitting in traffic?

I certainly would prefer this over a commute in a big city with traffic.  However, I actually do enjoy driving and don't mind the drive at all and there is hardly ever any traffic where I am anyhow.  On the other hand, biking to work is much more badass.

So jealous! It's pictures like that that make me want to move to Colorado!

It's a great place!  Some pics from on the way home today...





Another badass update: One of my coworkers noticed my bike tires were pretty low and I borrowed another coworker's bike pump and it turns out my front tire was at 30 psi and back tire was at 25 psi -- way too low!  So we pumped those babies up to 90 psi and I made it home in 46 minutes vs my usual 58 mins!  That felt pretty awesome. It just goes to show you how much tire pressure affects your gas mileage. Or in this case, my bike mileage.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #15 on: March 25, 2015, 07:17:22 PM »
Shit, these pictures are really making me want to move to Colorado. And buy a bike. And never get on a urine-soaked subway car again.

Syonyk

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #16 on: March 25, 2015, 07:21:02 PM »
Tire pressure is huge.  Bike tires also leak very badly at high pressure.

Check your tire pressure every day until you get a feel for how much air they lose, and if you're pumping them up several times a week, be aware that it's totally normal for higher pressure tires.

Mistah Cash Lion

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #17 on: March 25, 2015, 07:24:25 PM »
Tire pressure is huge.  Bike tires also leak very badly at high pressure.

Check your tire pressure every day until you get a feel for how much air they lose, and if you're pumping them up several times a week, be aware that it's totally normal for higher pressure tires.

Thanks for the tip! I will be sure to keep that in mind.

GuitarStv

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #18 on: March 26, 2015, 06:51:30 AM »
Make sure you're lubing your bike chain from time to time as well!  Besides avoiding annoying squeaky sounds, a properly oiled chain feels much quicker than a rusty one.

MLKnits

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #19 on: March 26, 2015, 06:54:38 AM »
That trail looks like heaven, OP! What a lovely ride length in a gorgeous place.

Syonyk

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #20 on: March 26, 2015, 08:57:42 AM »
Make sure you're lubing your bike chain from time to time as well!  Besides avoiding annoying squeaky sounds, a properly oiled chain feels much quicker than a rusty one.

Very good point. I forgot about that, even though I oil mine every week or two (more in the winter when it's raining).

Nothing quite so tacky looking as a rider, in Lycra, on a nice bike, chain furiously squeaking away...

acroy

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #21 on: March 26, 2015, 09:29:56 AM »
NICE!! Badass!
great views too. Jealous.

mohawkbrah

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #22 on: March 26, 2015, 11:08:26 AM »
13 miles?!

maybe i just have a bad bike but i find it hard to ride 1 mile on my bike.

im not a big fan of cardio either which probably explain things

Syonyk

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #23 on: March 26, 2015, 11:19:43 AM »
If your bike originally sold for less than about $500, it's probably hard to ride. I can bike for miles on a decent bike, and am struggling by a mile on a cheap mountain bike from a department store.

enigmaT120

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #24 on: March 27, 2015, 03:44:50 PM »
I'm starting to wonder if people don't experience fatigue and exercise differently.  I wonder what it would be like to perceive the basic results of exercise -- increased heart and breathing rate, some muscle usage but not what I would call pain -- not as joy and the epitomization of being alive, but as distress and a feeling of imminent death.  I'm exaggerating both perceptions of course, but I meet people who seem to become really distressed at a rise in breathing rate that I think is normal and desirable.  I don't think endorphin production differences explain it, because I am generally too lazy to actually push to the point of getting a runner's high any more. 

jopiquant

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #25 on: March 27, 2015, 04:48:31 PM »
I'm starting to wonder if people don't experience fatigue and exercise differently.  I wonder what it would be like to perceive the basic results of exercise -- increased heart and breathing rate, some muscle usage but not what I would call pain -- not as joy and the epitomization of being alive, but as distress and a feeling of imminent death.  I'm exaggerating both perceptions of course, but I meet people who seem to become really distressed at a rise in breathing rate that I think is normal and desirable.  I don't think endorphin production differences explain it, because I am generally too lazy to actually push to the point of getting a runner's high any more. 

Yep. It's a first world thing, I think. We don't have a good healthy understanding of what our bodies can and should do. For cringe-worthy personal example, I have a bad relationship with food. Bit of an oral fixation. (nail biter, gum chewer, food-obsessive). Consequently, it is uncommon that I am hungry. When I do get hungry, I wonder if I might actually be going to throw up. Just not used the feeling, somewhat uncomfortable, must be bad. I'm guessing some people are the same with exercise. We've optimized for finding the path of least resistance, and in a world of unlimited choice and luxury, exercise is hard.

It was a beautiful morning, and I rode in knowing full well I'll be riding in the rain all the way home. When it's a crappy wet morning that will turn into a beautiful day, it's a lot harder to commit to an hour on the bike first thing.

Mistah Cash Lion

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Re: Biking To Work
« Reply #26 on: March 28, 2015, 03:11:00 PM »
Pop goes my tube...

Today I did my grocery shopping on my bike and it was great.  I bought a little rack to go on the back to hold some stuff and I also brought my backpack along to hold more stuff. I also needed a standing bike pump as the hand pump I have is incredibly hard to use past about 70 psi.  I rode out to Wal-Mart after not finding any reasonable bike pumps from Target or Sports Authority.  I bought a $10 standing pump and headed back to my bike to top off the air.  Both tires were around 70 psi so I decided to fill them to 90 psi.  Front tire...easy. I noticed the rear tire wasn't behaving and realized the valve stem was tweaked.  As I tweaked it back....*pop hiss* I popped the presta valve clean off. Great!



Luckily, I had another tube with me just in case. Unfortunately, I had never changed a bike tire.  I pulled out the new tube and realized it was a schrader (incompatible with my wheel). I walked back into Wal-Mart and bought the proper presta tube and put everything back together.  I remember watching one Youtube video a couple weeks ago about how to change a bike tire and from my memory of that video I was able to pull it off! Note to self: pack a rag or two, because handling the chain makes your hands incredibly filthy.



An hour later I was back on the road to get the rest of my groceries. A little wrinkle in the day, but I am glad that it happened in such a convenient place.