Do you ride? Bike riding has always been a love of mine. Riding to work and commuting by bike is also a passion. Finally today after over a year of anticipation, thought and excuses, I rode my bike the 15km and 55 minutes to work. And I am proud as punch, happy as a galah and tickled pink with excitement.
Last week I put my bike in to get serviced at Cottesloe Cycles, a very friendly local bike shop. I am always up for a chat and I was more than pleased to ramble on to the shops owner for a good half hour. I really value great customer service, and I will return to shops for it. The boys at Cottesloe Cycles did a great job on my bike, cleaning it up, replacing brake cables, handlebar tape and giving it a good once over. Now I had no excuse to ride! And with my mint green handlebar tape and clean schmicko bike I was ready to rock and roll!
I have always loved riding bikes and think there are so many benefits to cycling; here are just a few:
- The exercise that you get cycling to work is awesome. No more guilt for not making that early morning run.
- Taking the time to enjoy nature without interruption is awesome. I had to stop for one traffic light on my ride. Normally I am sitting in traffic and fuming at idiots turning here and turning there and generally getting really frustrated by all the cars and traffic on the roads. Instead this morning I listened to birds, admired flowering bushes, and chirped hello to the other ‘Speedy Gonzales’ bike riders around me.
- With flushed cheeks and a spring in my step, I felt fully energised once I arrived to work. Most people think you would feel tired after cycling an hour, but no, the reality is the more energy you use up the more you get back. I was bouncing off the walls and more bubbly than I usually am for 8am Monday morning.
- Although it is just my first ride, I know if I keep doing it I will for sure save money. My fuel will last longer and perhaps I will only need to fill up the car every second week rather than every week.
- Cycling is simply a better use of time. Rather than sitting on my butt listening to annoying ads and talk on the radio, I am enjoying the peace and serenity of being outdoors in the sunshine and nature.
So there are 5 reasons why cycling to work is a good idea. I could probable muster about another 25 but for now they are pretty good reasons. Now I just have to keep up my new good routine.
I have to thank my Mum for getting me into cycling. Here is a funny story. My Mum lost her licence many years ago after a New Years Eve incident when I was very young. Embarrassing as the story is, it has a fantastic resolution. Rather than mope and feel bad for not being to drive, my Mum decided she was going to start cycling a bike to work. This turned out to become a very positive lifestyle choice and greatly improved her physical and mental health. She would ride her bike every day from Subiaco all the way along the river to Victoria Park. On weekends we would go out on our bikes and trip all around Perth, to Fremantle, and even all the way up to Mount Henry bridge. I used to be completely worn our from the long distances, but I was a pretty tough kid. She also taught me to be strong, to be tenacious, and to carry on even when things are difficult. Pretty good life lessons all from the trusty old deadly treadly.
I remember very strongly my first racer bike. My Mum saved up for weeks to buy this bike for me, and presented it to me for my birthday one year when I was around 8. It was light blue metallic in colour and it rode beautifully. I realise now it was one of the best presents I ever received! My Mum had her bike custom built by a guy at the bike shop, and she would clean it meticulously, grease the chain and keep it in good nick, just because it made riding so much more enjoyable. She would wear her padded bike pants in black lycra and a coloured collared shirt, with matching socks of course. She loved to match all her colours and would even wear odd socks, just to fit in all the colours.
I used to love our rides together. We would cycle for hours, chat happily away and spend quality time together. My Mum inspired me to cycle and I must say when I am out riding the paths of Perth, I think about her. Even this morning when I rode through a tunnel I called out ‘coo-ee’; which is just what we would yell in tunnels all the time. It was fun to hear the echo echo echo and it served to let any other riders know you were also in the tunnel. My Mum sure did teach me some funny things. I chuckled to myself as I belted out my coo-ee call this morning. It may just have to happen every time I pass through this tunnel from now on!
So if you are thinking about bike riding to work, I highly recommend it! You will feel great for pushing yourself and generate great energy for the day. Let me know how you go!