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  1. #1
    Senior Member mrdelprete's Avatar
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    My First Day Commuting

    Today was my first day commuting to work. It is a little over 6 miles each way, it took me about 25 minutes. It is a nice ride, only one busy road with no bike line. A few mistakes I made, no change of clothes (I am a teacher and worked up a little sweat), no extra tubes just in case, never even changed a flat yet, and I never did a test run to see how long it would take (I had 35 minutes and planned on it taking 25). I guess I hit my target estimate. I look foward to more commutes, I have time about 3 days a week to do it. I will post a picture of my sweat ride in a little bit

  2. #2
    Senior Member JPinWI's Avatar
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    Well Done! Sounds like an excellent start to a great habit. I rode for quite awhile with no extra tube...finally caved in and carry a spare but I haven't (knock wood) had to change a flat in route yet. I have gotten two flats in the two years of long commuting...neighbor gave me a lift home the first time and cell phone bailed me on the 2nd one. Enjoy!

  3. #3
    Senior Member walnutz's Avatar
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    awesome!
    It's definitely worth your while to practice changing a flat when you have some spare time so that you know what you are doing/how long it takes if you ever have to during the commute.

  4. #4
    Infamous Member chipcom's Avatar
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    Congrats on your first commute.

    Some people can ride short commutes in their work clothes and not work up a sweat...I am not one of them, so I carry my work clothes (pants and a shirt), which fits easily into my rack trunk, along with my lunch. I keep shoes and belt at work, as well as a complete set of clothes, just in case Murphy decides to f with me.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  5. #5
    Senior Member mrdelprete's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. I think I am just going to keep some clothes at work, as well as pack some. AMX patriot..jpg

  6. #6
    You gonna eat that? Doohickie's Avatar
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    You don't have to plan it; just do it. When you realize your mistakes, then you make adjustments.
    I stop for people / whose right of way I honor / but not for no one.



    Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."

  7. #7
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    I just changed jobs and am moving from Florida to Pleasanton Ca. In Florida "my commute" was from the bedroom to the other end of the house. In Pleasanton I was so looking forward to commuting to work. My only request to my wife was the apartment must have a garage for all my bikes. Got the garage but the "commute" is all of 400 yards door to office ! But I can ride before and after work just not to work.

  8. #8
    nashcommguy
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrdelprete View Post
    Thanks guys. I think I am just going to keep some clothes at work, as well as pack some.
    Yeah, this is the right approach. Especially when appearance is important in one's employment. May I suggest folding your shirts 'store bought' style and rolling your pants and shirt after folding. They'll come out w/less wrinkles. This is assuming you'll ride in different clothes. The recommendation to practice fixing flats is the way to go as well. Preventive maintenance, carrying the right tools, etc. all factor in to a stress free commute. My first commute was about the same distance and it didn't take me long to figure out what I needed. Meanwhile, blinking lights(white-front, red-rear), multi tool( www.bikeisland.com has a GREAT one for 20.00 w/free shipping. It's called an MTB-3), frame pump(Topeak Road Morph w/gauge is the best IMHO), tube(s), patch kit, tire levers and a seat bag will cover most of your needs on a 6 mile commute.

    Oh, btw congratulations on your first commute and may you adopt it for a lifetime.

  9. #9
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    In addition to the change of clothes, you might want to keep a pack of baby wipes at work. They can be used for a quick clean up if you can't shower.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    So Tom only hires people that are nutty? Is part of the requirement to be a moderator on this site is that you have to be nuts??
    Forum Guidelines *click here*

  10. #10
    Old, but not really wise CptjohnC's Avatar
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    Congrats. As a recent (6 months, steady) commuter, I would echo much of what is said above. I started out riding 1.5 miles each way, in street clothes, with no cycling extras (tubes, pumps, etc..)

    I began wearing cycling oriented clothing when I decided to ride further - originally I did a longer ride on the way home, so I added cycling shorts under my casual work pants. Then I decided to ride further one or two days a week, followed by the need to ride further every day (6 miles each way), which quickly convinced me to carry my work clothes, and wear wicking shirts with my shorts (I wear baggies over spandex -- don't want to look to 'racer boy'). I don't have a shower option currently, but I shower before hand, and try to ensure adequate 'cool down' time before I need to get down to business. I work in a casual environment, with very limited client contact, so I don't need to 'look my best' very often. And I have the option to drive if necessary.

    My second flat convinced me that spare tubes, a patch kit and a pump were near necessity, unless you have a guaranteed pick up. A broken chain several weeks ago convinced me to buy a multi-tool and carry a spare master link (but I haven't actually done it yet).

    My key issues right now are 1)Visibility: early darkness has convinced me that a new light set is in my future, and I recently bought some reflective vests ($6/ea, including shipping, from Costco.com) and 2) carrying capacity: I think I'm going to join the rack/panniers crowd, and lighten the load/eliminate in my backpack, as I now ride all the way to my office (11 miles each way), which reduces my need to carry stuff off the bike.

    Anyway, stick with it, and you'll learn what works for you. One thing I've definitely learned hanging around here is that each of us has a different set of requirements and tolerances, but you'll find advice for all of your needs :-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Hangtownmatt View Post
    I ask, what's the true cost of NOT commuting? Higher blood pressure, increase weight, pot belly, reduced energy, less happy, ect. The list goes on. My reasons for commuting by bike, and the benefits I receive, go far beyond a cost benefit analysis.
    RIP Oasis Bike Works. I've shifted most of my business to @ Bikenetic

  11. #11
    One Man Fast Brick hubcap's Avatar
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    Can you tell us why your commuting time is limited to 3 days a week? I used to think that was the case for me, but I took a drastic step (at least one that I thought was drastic at the time) and sold my car. Turns out that a suburban guy with a family of 4 can get by with just one car in the household and be more than happy. I know, not all that enlightening to those who have gone car-free.

  12. #12
    Senior Member exile's Avatar
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    Learn as you go along. Just read the tips posters provide and you won't have a huge learning curve or make the mistakes some of us have.
    lil brown bat wrote:
    Wow, aren't other people stupid? It's a good thing that we're so smart. Yay us.

  13. #13
    Senior Member mrdelprete's Avatar
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    Hubcap- On Modays and Tuesdays I only have 15 minutes (tops) to get home before my wife has to run out the door for work. I cant afford to pay a babysitter just so I can ride my bike. We have a very tight scheduale on those two days, so I have to drive the 6 miles.

  14. #14
    Infamous Member chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrdelprete View Post
    Hubcap- On Modays and Tuesdays I only have 15 minutes (tops) to get home before my wife has to run out the door for work. I cant afford to pay a babysitter just so I can ride my bike. We have a very tight scheduale on those two days, so I have to drive the 6 miles.
    No worries, you don't have to justify yourself to anyone.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  15. #15
    Senior Member mikeybikes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrdelprete View Post
    Hubcap- On Modays and Tuesdays I only have 15 minutes (tops) to get home before my wife has to run out the door for work. I cant afford to pay a babysitter just so I can ride my bike. We have a very tight scheduale on those two days, so I have to drive the 6 miles.
    You make an effort to commute by bicycle and you're hopefully having fun doing.

    That's all that matters.
    My Bikes: 2010 Breezer Uptown EX | 1980 Miyata 610 | 1970 Hercules | 198? Miele ?
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