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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 09-07-05, 06:09 AM   #1
jharte
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Lots of 'First Commute' theads

A huge contratulations to all of the 'First Commuters". I've been noticing more and more in the past couple of weeks.

It is a big step to venture out into the world of car traffic and bike to work. If you are new to this forum, stop by often. Ask questions. Ride safe. Don't give up!
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Old 09-07-05, 07:40 AM   #2
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Yes. I've seen a few more people with bags & packs lately around Burlington, Vermont. Perhaps they've figured out what we already know.

Last week someone from far away asked what we pay for gas here. I honestly couldn't answer him, and had to visit one of those gas price web sites to find out. It's not that I never drive, I just haven't put gas in a car in... Months...
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Old 09-07-05, 08:21 AM   #3
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Yeah, props to the first-time commuters -- way to go guys! (and gals) I hope some of you first commuters will continue to commute through the colder weather of winter (well in the N. hemisphere).

I can't say that I've noticed an increase in bike commuters here in NYC. We're so mass-transit oriented that gas price increases don't do much for bike commuting within the City.

OT: I borrowed the family car this weekend. It hadn't been driven for more than parking ("alternate side nyc" in Google if you must know) in months. so money was made on the gas in the tank.
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Old 09-07-05, 11:19 PM   #4
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Funny, I just found this forum today and made my first commute to work today by bike. 3.14 a gallon is where I draw the line. My wife and I just got a couple of mountain bikes (Walmart ) yesterday and have put about 3 miles on them since last night.

I cant believe the people here doing like 60 mile commutes to work. My commute is only about a mile round trip and my legs are feeling it.
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Old 09-08-05, 12:09 PM   #5
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Good for you, Postmaster! And welcome. Pretty soon you'll wonder why you were driving to work in the first place.
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Old 09-08-05, 12:40 PM   #6
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Welcome postmaster! Feel free to ask questions. Soon you will be angry and irritable when you "have" to take the car to work like I did today. You will get strong and fast, like the rest of us have.
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Old 09-08-05, 12:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caloso
Good for you, Postmaster! And welcome. Pretty soon you'll wonder why you were driving to work in the first place.
I am finishing my sixth week of commuting. I had a stem failure this morning resulting in a flat tire (luckily it was the front tire). Hopping into my car did not even cross my mind. I simply replaced the tube, pumped it up, and pedalled my a@@ off (thanks cabana_4_life) to make up the time difference. Heck...made a personal best in average speed this morning. Not bad!

I too have noticed many new commuters and have an office full of people considering it. We have spent hours on google maps looking at safe routes and bike websites to look at options for them. Who knows...maybe soon, or maybe at 4.00 per gallon they will make the change. I did...and don't even think about looking back!

Chris
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Old 09-08-05, 06:21 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Sawtooth
...Soon you will be angry and irritable when you "have" to take the car to work like I did today....
Agreed, I see it as a challenge when the possibility arises that I might have to use the car for work. This morning my poor bike had to wade ( with me on it ) through about 100 yards of water with hail floating on it that rose up past the cranks and hubs ( baddd t-storm an hour before ). The bike smiled when I gave it a bath when I got home and dried it off. Now I have to check the lube.

I hate ( ok - dislike ) driving! now that I have been commuting by bike for awhile. Even though I have only been on the list a little while welcome to all of you Cool !

Last edited by Rodney Crater; 09-08-05 at 06:25 PM. Reason: forgot greeting
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Old 09-08-05, 06:54 PM   #9
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Hi, I've started commuting for about two and a half weeks now and have really been enjoying it. I have also thoroughly enjoyed all of the humor and information that this forum has provided me in that time. Thanks to everyone for making my new commuting experience that much more fun and safer.
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Old 09-09-05, 03:29 PM   #10
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I have been commuting for two weeks now, to and from Winooski, VT. - lots of stuff to carry, instruments, etc., so I need to take the car sometimes. I am SLOW, but I really love the ride and I think I am getting better. And it's faster than sitting in traffic
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Old 09-09-05, 03:56 PM   #11
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Just started commuting as well. Only my 4th day and I'm loving it (except for my butt ) I've been scouring the forums and have learned so much from everyone. Thanks for such a good resource. I intend to keep this up as long as i can. Gas prices finally took it's toll and a 6.5 mile commute isn't worth jumping into the car.
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Old 09-09-05, 04:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodney Crater
Agreed, I see it as a challenge when the possibility arises that I might have to use the car for work. This morning my poor bike had to wade ( with me on it ) through about 100 yards of water with hail floating on it that rose up past the cranks and hubs ( baddd t-storm an hour before ). The bike smiled when I gave it a bath when I got home and dried it off. Now I have to check the lube.
I also have been known to take weather conditions as a personal challenge. It's me versus Mother Nature! And usually I win! (Except for that time last January when my gears froze up and I was just getting over being sick, so I was forced to turn around and go home again, whereupon I almost passed out on the living room floor! ) It's a great feeling! It becomes a personal best thing, and you get to brag about the coldest/wettest/snowiest/hottest weather you've ever ridden in! (Not that the "hottest" figure is very impressive here in Maine, but I've heard that it gets hot in other areas of the country! )

P.S. Cheers, and welcome to the club, to all the newbies!!
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Old 09-09-05, 10:50 PM   #13
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hello everyone, i have been riding my bike to school for two and a half weeks now and i have really enjoyed it. I am curious as to how far do you guys commute and how long does it you? i commute seven miles one way and it takes me about forty minutes. Hopefully i'll get faster and i'll also need to find a way to lighten the load on my back. Thank you for sharing.
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Old 09-10-05, 12:49 PM   #14
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I've now commuted for 3 weeks. I wish more people in my area commuted, I've noticed that not too many motorists take notice to us on bikes. I've had a couple of close calls because of this. Its like people don't know how to go around a cyclist without cutting them off. And I'm usually hugging the right edge of the road as tight as I can.
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Old 09-10-05, 01:46 PM   #15
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I too just joined the club :grin: Did my first commute on Wednesday, and the second one yesterday (Friday). It’s a long one! (for me) - 52 miles round trip - I ride through 3 States
Reading this forum definitely made me take the leap. In fact my first commute was a leap in the dark (literally). I took off at 5:30 AM with no lights and soon found out it had been a bad move when I hit the trail and saw… nothing. 40 minutes later all was good with the crack of dawn. I was going pretty slowly to avoid harm to others and self. On the way back that afternoon I had to ask for directions a couple of times because I didn’t recognize the road now that I could see it.

For the second commute day I had front and rear lights installed, and life was good. I got and gave many “good mornings”. I also ate and hydrated better at work seeing that the day before I almost bonk returning, on a hilly section (Custis Trail) about 10 miles from home.

I didn’t think it was feasible until I “just did it”. I felt great at work - very energized - and not too tired when back at home. It’s highly rewarding. Colleagues and family look at you with awe

I don’t know if it’s sustainable with winter coming and having to wake up at 5, but in the meantime I’ll try to do at least 2 days a week.

Did I say how proud I feel of myself??
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Old 09-10-05, 04:21 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by tribe3
... I felt great at work - very energized ...
That's how it feels for me too!
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Old 09-10-05, 09:24 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Sawtooth
Soon you will be angry and irritable when you "have" to take the car to work like I did today.
And also you'll soon be angry and irritable because you realize your communte is way too short and will start looking for a new house farther away...
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Old 09-10-05, 11:06 PM   #18
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And also you'll soon be angry and irritable because you realize your communte is way too short and will start looking for a new house farther away...
Funny you mention that, just yesterday I was thinking that the next county over from me takes better care of the roads, and has better hills to climb, and it would only add 25 to 30 minutes to my commute. If I could only talk my wife into moving further away so I could ride more, and she could just drive further every time she wanted to go somewhere............ I think I'll have better luck adding miles to the existing commute....unfortunately.
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Old 09-11-05, 01:35 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopydoopydoo
hello everyone, i have been riding my bike to school for two and a half weeks now and i have really enjoyed it. I am curious as to how far do you guys commute and how long does it you? i commute seven miles one way and it takes me about forty minutes. Hopefully i'll get faster and i'll also need to find a way to lighten the load on my back. Thank you for sharing.
Panniers are a great way to lighten the load! Put the weight on your bike and not on your back. I'm not working right now so commuting only for social and errand trips. Last job was about 16 km (10 miles) one way and took about 1 hour when I started out and about 45 minutes once I got in better shape.
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Old 09-11-05, 02:29 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by snoopydoopydoo
hello everyone, i have been riding my bike to school for two and a half weeks now and i have really enjoyed it. I am curious as to how far do you guys commute and how long does it you? i commute seven miles one way and it takes me about forty minutes. Hopefully i'll get faster and i'll also need to find a way to lighten the load on my back. Thank you for sharing.

Home to school; ~ 6 miles, 35 minutes (city riding)

Home to work; a little over 4 miles, 22 minutes avg.

School to work; ~ 9 miles, 45 minutes (city riding)

These times are when I got some hussle on the pedals...which is usually how I like it.
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Old 09-11-05, 04:55 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Postmaster
Funny, I just found this forum today and made my first commute to work today by bike. 3.14 a gallon is where I draw the line. My wife and I just got a couple of mountain bikes (Walmart ) yesterday and have put about 3 miles on them since last night.

I cant believe the people here doing like 60 mile commutes to work. My commute is only about a mile round trip and my legs are feeling it.





Are you a Postmaster? How funny, I just made my first commute to work due to the fact that I just reentered the workforce back into the post office. LOL!!
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Old 09-11-05, 05:07 AM   #22
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Ok, my first commute. I have posted before about commuting but I have been waiting for the job to go through. Well it finally happened, I started yesterday and I rode my bike. It was receieved well actually. I was worried that my new office would be stuffy and unaccomidating but most were like "you rode your bike?" One guy was like, "You like to ride? Me too. I have been thinking of doing the same thing now that gas prices are so high" So maybe I started something???

Things I learned on my first commute.

-Batteries don't last long in the light I have even when you are not using it.
-I really do need to wear long sleeve shirt in the pre-dawn hours
-Winter is going to be COLD, so start gearing up now
-Due to severe hills, I think riding in the snow, or ice is O.U.T.


-I love it!!

I am not only going to commute, but for sometime now I have been considering giving up my car (see post in Living Car Free forum) and have been actively looking for a child carrier.
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Old 09-11-05, 01:28 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by NuckingFuts
Just started commuting as well. Only my 4th day and I'm loving it (except for my butt )...
At first it does hurt.

If it doesn't get better, and getting a better fit from the folks at your bike shop doesn't help, consider a recumbent. Some snobs will make fun of you, but don't listen to them. They're fun and very comfortable. A bit pricy because they aren't mass-produced, but it's nice to have no pain and do something different.
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Old 09-12-05, 06:22 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by violingrl
I have been commuting for two weeks now, to and from Winooski, VT. - lots of stuff to carry, instruments, etc., so I need to take the car sometimes. I am SLOW, but I really love the ride and I think I am getting better. And it's faster than sitting in traffic
Are you riding up Colchester Ave? If so, that's a nice hill. Good for you. The way traffic is around Winooski these days, I don't doubt it's faster. Should be nice when they're all done though.

Sounds to me like you need a trailer!
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