Author Topic: Biked to Work Today  (Read 5050 times)

mpbaker22

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Biked to Work Today
« on: July 09, 2013, 08:19:51 AM »
I know other people have shared similar badassity, or is that badassery?  At any rate, I biked to work today for the first time.  This was really a wonderfully efficient thing to do.  Iíve been off the bike for a while for lack of time, and I hate driving my car.  So, I finally put the two together and biked ~12.5 miles to work.  I ride a Cannondale CAAD8 Sora road bike, so itís made to cover these distances relatively easy, and Iím used to doing it (45 miles on Saturday), just not carrying a lot of weight.  I finally attached my rack last night and road it in today, and I am excited.

To add a new level of badassery, I checked the weather when I arrived and found this special statement
Quote
TODAY PROMISES TO BE THE MOST OPPRESSIVE DAY OF THIS SUMMER ACROSS CENTRAL AND EASTERN MISSOURI AND SOUTHERN ILLINOIS. TEMPERATURES IN THE LOW TO MID 90S... COMBINED WITH HIGH LEVELS OF HUMIDITY... WILL CAUSE HEAT INDEX VALUES TO CLIMB INTO THE 100-105 DEGREE RANGE THIS AFTERNOON AND EARLY THIS EVENING.

ToeInTheWater

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2013, 09:21:26 AM »
way to go!
b

GuitarStv

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2013, 09:46:13 AM »
Way to go!  12.5 miles is a nice ride!

Throw your water bottle in the freezer at work a couple hours before you leave so you have some cold water for the first half of your trip home in humidity.

mpbaker22

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2013, 10:15:19 AM »
GuitarSTV, are there reasons for having cold water other than psychological benefits?  Iíve always heard it takes the body energy to warm it up when you drink it.  Iíve ridden long rides before, so Iím usually content just drinking ďroomĒ temperature warm water.

GuitarStv

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2013, 10:20:56 AM »
When it's really hot and you're exercising it helps your body stay cooler.  Cold water is also absorbed faster than room temperature water, which helps when you're sweating buckets and getting dehydrated.  Most importantly though, I like cold water more!

Joet

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2013, 10:27:23 AM »
nice. let me share a not-so-awesome moment from my bike commute last week (wed)

heat wave in san jose. no big deal right? not hot in the morning really. Early-release wed because of July 4 the following day! wooo

except 3pm put me right at the hottest part of the day. And 4.5 miles out I get a flat. And I left my patchkit on my desk (had just returned from a flight the sunday before, so I had cleaned out my backpack). Had a pump and tools, but no tube or patches. Woot.
So whatever, walk the last 4.0 miles right?

Maybe I'm weak or something but I was struggling/probably on the border of heat stroke/exhaustion. I'm sure I would have been able to bike it no problem but being in direct sun and hike-a-biking for 4 miles almost did me in. I stopped like 3 times under bridges/alongside buildings in the shade, took a mini-shower in a sprinkler I found on, etc. Not fun in the least.

So I've got my backpack full of my spares and all again but that experience really sucked. :( Normally I like to think of myself as pretty tough. For the next 2 days I was fighting some weird allergy/malaise related stuff that I'm attributing to my 4 mile hike-of-shame :(

surfing for 3 days straight in the cool pacific cured me though :), even if some of it (most!) qualified as groveling. Found some beachbreak shorepound with occasional 3'ers to ride and work on my late-takeoff/shorebreak ramp stuff. Good times

mpbaker22

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2013, 12:38:06 PM »
Actually, I have a related cycling question on safety.  This happened today, but Iíve noticed on other rides that while I coast to red lights, waiting for them to turn, people will come around and take up the space I had already specifically designated for my slowing down space.  In fact, I had a guy do this today right at the crest of a hill, and left maybe a car length between myself and him.  I was able to safely switch lanes, and I actually PASSED him in the other lane as the light turned green.  I looked over, and I know my face did not look happy, but I also wasnít waving my first or anything like that.  Anyway, he looked back at me and acted like I was being a jerk and at fault.
Iím talking about speeds in the mid-30s when I passed him.  It just seems that people donít pay attention while driving and assume that any empty space on the road should be thereís.  I normally leave distance to get a rolling start at lights, and Iíve actually had people pull up into that space.  Itís incredibly infuriating, yet thereís no real recourse.  AND the cars behind will think less of me because Iím actually slowed down by these peopleís insane driving decisions!

Joet

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2013, 02:40:23 PM »
I believe motorists view a bicyclist as nothing more than an annoying road cone---regardless of speed or position. You are there to be passed, regardless. Doesnt surprise me in the least. I've long since avoided antagonizing them by doing things like you mentioned though. My personal peeve is the last-minute-driveway-cutoff. EG they just have to make that one final pass before entering their workplace. Even though I'm cruising at 18-20 mph or so, and they dont have sufficient speed/space to pass me. I can either plow into their car, or nail the brakes and swerve. Usually when that happens I follow them into the parking lot and have a little chat about decision making.

But doing what you did sounds like asking for vehicular homicide.

velocistar237

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2013, 03:01:54 PM »
Most people make their driving decisions using a greedy algorithm. I think it takes its toll on the conscience.

mpbaker22

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2013, 05:26:34 PM »
Most people make their driving decisions using a greedy algorithm. I think it takes its toll on the conscience.

That's a good point.  This is why so many people accelerate to red lights to get their faster, only to wait longer because they stopped too close to the person in front of them ... It totally slows everyone down and wastes more gas.  It's like the most inefficient way to drive from all aspects of thinking.


charles_roberts

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2013, 04:59:27 AM »
At any rate, I biked to work today for the first time.  This was really a wonderfully efficient thing to do.
For the mind, body, soul & WALLET!

davisgang90

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2013, 06:20:15 AM »
I know other people have shared similar badassity, or is that badassery?  At any rate, I biked to work today for the first time.  This was really a wonderfully efficient thing to do.  Iíve been off the bike for a while for lack of time, and I hate driving my car.  So, I finally put the two together and biked ~12.5 miles to work.  I ride a Cannondale CAAD8 Sora road bike, so itís made to cover these distances relatively easy, and Iím used to doing it (45 miles on Saturday), just not carrying a lot of weight.  I finally attached my rack last night and road it in today, and I am excited.

To add a new level of badassery, I checked the weather when I arrived and found this special statement
Quote
TODAY PROMISES TO BE THE MOST OPPRESSIVE DAY OF THIS SUMMER ACROSS CENTRAL AND EASTERN MISSOURI AND SOUTHERN ILLINOIS. TEMPERATURES IN THE LOW TO MID 90S... COMBINED WITH HIGH LEVELS OF HUMIDITY... WILL CAUSE HEAT INDEX VALUES TO CLIMB INTO THE 100-105 DEGREE RANGE THIS AFTERNOON AND EARLY THIS EVENING.

Congratulations!

hybrid

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2013, 07:02:06 AM »
I believe motorists view a bicyclist as nothing more than an annoying road cone---regardless of speed or position. You are there to be passed, regardless.

Or worse....  Most of my friends have extremely low opinions of cyclists and their reasons are valid - way too many cyclists utterly disregard red lights, stop signs, traffic lanes, etc.  They give cyclists in general a bad reputation.  I work in downtown Richmond Va and the bike couriers are the worst of the lot, but the students at VCU (very large city college) are often just as bad.  So I am sure there are individuals who take it one step further as with the poster who had the issue with being cut off.  I fully expect something like that in the future and try to keep my eyes open for it.

Gerard

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2013, 07:17:16 AM »
Most of my friends have extremely low opinions of cyclists and their reasons are valid - way too many cyclists utterly disregard red lights, stop signs, traffic lanes, etc.  They give cyclists in general a bad reputation. 
I think there's a lot of truth to this (I mean, *I* go through red lights, uh, I mean, I use rolling stops). But there's also the fact that most North Americans have so normalized car-driving that they see cycling as a "thing", but not car driving.

What I mean is, when a cyclist does something stupid, car drivers see it as proof that cyclists are arrogant and stupid, or cycling is a bad idea, but when a car driver does something stupid, drivers just think "that guy's a jerk". Same with delays and traffic jams -- people on the GO train during a delay say, "fuckin' GO, next time I'm taking my car!" but people stuck in traffic jams don't say, "Fuckin' automobile culture, next time I'm riding my bike!"

mpbaker22

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2013, 08:30:30 AM »
Or worse....  Most of my friends have extremely low opinions of cyclists and their reasons are valid - way too many cyclists utterly disregard red lights, stop signs, traffic lanes, etc. 

On the other hand most motorists don't know the rules of the roads, and that's something I've noticed while driving.
Another example - I was honked at yesterday while on the return trip on my bike.  The situation was I was turning right at a yield sign, so I rolled through it at ~5mph.  While I was turning there was a car in the other lane, approaching the intersection, and his turn signal was off.  I proceeded to enter lane 1 while he was in lane 2 and a few hundred feet back.  A few seconds later he honked.  I turned my head around and he was now in lane 1, but still a good distance back.  Now, I wasnít watching the whole time - I was looking at the road in front of me as soon as I entered the lane, but the only two possible scenarios were
1)   He indicated after I had turned my head around, at which point I was already in the lane and had right-a-way (I was watching his direction until I had overtaken the lane, but he switched lanes anyway
2)   He failed to indicate and switched lanes after I had overtaken the lane
In either scenario, he switched lanes in an intersection, which is illegal by itself.
 Either way, I canít imagine a scenario where I actually did anything wrong, as all I did was enter into a lane that was empty at the time, and I was watching him drive in the 2nd lane until the time I was fully into his lane.

FWIW, failing to indicate (turn signal) is a personal pet peeve of mine as I believe, albeit not based on evidence, it is the root cause of most accidents.

GuitarStv

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2013, 09:39:12 AM »
Actually, I have a related cycling question on safety.  This happened today, but Iíve noticed on other rides that while I coast to red lights, waiting for them to turn, people will come around and take up the space I had already specifically designated for my slowing down space.  In fact, I had a guy do this today right at the crest of a hill, and left maybe a car length between myself and him.  I was able to safely switch lanes, and I actually PASSED him in the other lane as the light turned green.  I looked over, and I know my face did not look happy, but I also wasnít waving my first or anything like that.  Anyway, he looked back at me and acted like I was being a jerk and at fault.
Iím talking about speeds in the mid-30s when I passed him.  It just seems that people donít pay attention while driving and assume that any empty space on the road should be thereís.  I normally leave distance to get a rolling start at lights, and Iíve actually had people pull up into that space.  Itís incredibly infuriating, yet thereís no real recourse.  AND the cars behind will think less of me because Iím actually slowed down by these peopleís insane driving decisions!

If the light immediately ahead is red, I move my bike to the centre of the lane and roll up to the stop.  I'll move back over to the right when the light changes and everyone starts going again.  This benefits anyone who wants to turn right at the red and is behind me.  It also drastically reduces the number of cars trying to gun it past you to cut you off and slam on their brakes.

Joet

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2013, 09:54:23 AM »
I do that too, with one minor tweak, I am probably ~40% from the right-most portion of the lane and usually in the crosswalk/area/origin so that I simultaneously:

am not really in any pedestrians way
allow cars to take a right-on-red or right-on-stop behind me
am not *fully* blocking the lane for the cars behind me, they could conceivably pass me quickly to my left without much more than a tire on the center divide paint

of course, not really an issue as cars are not going to out accelerate me through the intersection, and I'll already be in the bike lane (if present) by the time they enter the intersection

I'm sure my efforts to share and get along as much as possible go completely un-noticed :)

mpbaker22

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2013, 10:32:16 AM »
I should have mentioned there were 2 lanes plus a turn lane.  Since there was low traffic and two lanes, I felt totally comfortable riding the middle of the lane(similar to what guitarstv mentioned) Ė It wasnít slowing anyone down since there was a separate, totally unused lane, to pass me in.  The driver had no business returning to the right lane after passing Ė He stayed on the same road for at least the next mile, so it wasnít to prepare for a turn.  I was purposely taking the entire lane given this situation, as it was safer for me, did not inconvenience traffic, and it allowed cars to pass and turn on my right.  Missouri has a cycling law allowing any cyclist to utilize a full lane at their discretion, for safety (potholes on the right side of the road also made me uncomfortable at 20+mph).

hybrid

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2013, 12:37:38 PM »
Most of my friends have extremely low opinions of cyclists and their reasons are valid - way too many cyclists utterly disregard red lights, stop signs, traffic lanes, etc.  They give cyclists in general a bad reputation. 
I think there's a lot of truth to this (I mean, *I* go through red lights, uh, I mean, I use rolling stops). But there's also the fact that most North Americans have so normalized car-driving that they see cycling as a "thing", but not car driving.

I agree, I think a lot of people see it as totally apples and oranges - including too many damn cyclists!  I was sitting at a light very recently with Mustachian buddy of mine carpooling to work.  Cyclist rides between the cars and runs right through the red light becuase there is absolutely no traffic coming from the other direction.  And that really exemplifies the difference.  A car cannot slip past two stopped cars and run a red, and wouldn't most of the time anyway (but roll through a light that just turned red - oh, all the time.....).  A bike can, and too often does, and even if a bike does so and potentially collides with something, it is a few hundred pounds at 15 MPH instead of 3000 pounds at 25 MPH.  Cars and bikes may share the road and the laws of the road together, but we all know they are vastly different creatures.

Now, telling on myself, I will blow a stop sign in an empty intersection within my quiet neighborhood in a NY minute.  Because I have perfect vision and hearing of what is around me and I am on a bike going somewhere between 5 and 20 MPH.  But when I am on thoroughfares commuting I obey the rules....mostly.  Rolling stops at most stop signs (like down to 2 or 3 MPH, but the feet rarely touch the ground if there is no traffic).  Always full stop at a light.  Always use turn signals.

MakingSenseofCents

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Re: Biked to Work Today
« Reply #19 on: July 11, 2013, 10:43:36 AM »
Good job! This is awesome!