Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12-21-10, 03:44 PM   #1
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
Lengthening my Commute

I'm looking to buy a house and I've found what would otherwise be the perfect little house for me.....affordable & I like it.

Problem is its twice as far from work as I live now. I currently commute 7 miles each way, 5 days a week. If I moved to this house my commute would grow to just under 15 miles.

I do longish rides on most weekends of 30+ miles, and I try to do something of 60+ miles at least once a month..so more distance isn't an alien concept to me.

How big a deal is a 15 mile commute? I often laugh at how quickly my 7 mile commute flies by and I frequently take an extra turn to add a few miles on just for fun. I'm just really concerned that 15 miles is like just a little too far out, and I really enjoy commuting by bike. I'm not sure i'd want to give that up just to live in a house.

I'm looking for some words of warning/encouragement or any experiences anyone's had with lengthening their commute.
...or from a bunch of people who commute 15 miles each way telling me to pipe down and HTFU.
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 03:55 PM   #2
jdgesus 
sɹɐʇsɟoןןnɟsʇıbɟɯo
 
jdgesus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: seattle, too many links
Bikes: fixed gear recumbent trike
Posts: 3,990
i do 15 or more each way.
adds two hours of commute time a day. do you have that extra hour?
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by yummygooey View Post
crabon/campy/rapha/roadie-bro.

next step is recumbent.




my bikes | bike blog | beer blog | work 1 | work 2
jdgesus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:00 PM   #3
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
Yep, Time is the one thing I've got lots of.

I figure a 15 mile commute should take me around an hour at my usual pace.
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:01 PM   #4
paul2432
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Westlake Village, CA
Bikes:
Posts: 415
Plenty of people commute 15 miles each way. Mine is 12 miles each way which is no problem. If you are healthy and in good shape a 15 mile commute should not be a problem due to the distance.

Depending on what you have now you may want a different bike. You'll be getting home later and leaving earlier which could be a problem depending on your situation. (I know my wife wouldn't like it if I told here I would be home 20 minutes later every day)

Paul
paul2432 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:05 PM   #5
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
No wife, just cats.

Its good to hear from some folks who do longer commutes. Its good inspiration.

I may want a different bike....that's OK with me.... I'm always in need of an excuse to get another bike
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:22 PM   #6
chewybrian 
"Florida Man"
 
chewybrian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: East Florida
Bikes: '66 Raleigh Superbe, 80 Nishiki Maxima, 07 Gary Fisher Utopia, 09 Surly LHT
Posts: 1,542
I go 12 in the morning, and almost 15 in the afternoon, to avoid the traffic.

I often add miles for training or to run errands. If time is not a big issue for you, then I would say go for it.

Would your new route be safe, and fun to ride?
__________________
Campione Del Mondo Immaginario
chewybrian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:22 PM   #7
Andy_K 
Senior Member
 
Andy_K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Beaverton, OR
Bikes: 2013 Kona Jake, 2015 Kona Jake the Snake, 2008 Kona Major Jake, 2013 Kona Jake the Snake, 2006 Kona Kula, 2012 Ridley Excalibur, 2008 Surly Long Haul Trucker, 2001 LeMond Buenos Aires, 1984 Pinarello Gran Turismo, 1982 Trek 614, 1979 Austro-Daimler
Posts: 8,405
I thought this was going to be a thread about looking for longer routes to work so that you CAN legthen your commute.

Going 15 miles is no problem at all. By the most direct route, my commute is 10 miles. Often, especially if the whether is nice, I take a different route that makes it a bit over 13 miles. I'd go further if time were no issue, and I often head out at lunch just to enjoy some extra saddle time. It happens that my 13 mile route is on more open roads and usually doesn't take more than a couple minutes longer than the stop-and-go 10 mile route.

That said, you may have a brief adjustment period to get used to the extra mileage. Be sure to get proper rest when your legs are tired and it will be no trouble.
Andy_K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:25 PM   #8
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
Quote:
Originally Posted by chewybrian View Post
Would your new route be safe, and fun to ride?
Approxmiately Equal in Safety. At least double the fun. I currently head up towards this area when I'm just looking to go exploring on bike. It would be nice to actually live up there.
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:26 PM   #9
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
Thanks for all the encouragement folks. Its easy for me to get set into my ways having been commuting the same 7 miles for over 3 years now. It helps to think of it in absolutes...15 miles really is more fun than it is far.
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 04:40 PM   #10
mustachiod
Senior Member
 
mustachiod's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Chicago, IL
Bikes:
Posts: 699
11 miles from work, average ride is 45 minutes. I could definitely go longer, except when it's below 0F and i wish it was shorter
mustachiod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:00 PM   #11
hubcap
One Man Fast Brick
 
hubcap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicagoland
Bikes: Specialized Langster, Bianchi San Jose, early 90s GT Karakoram, Yuba Mundo, Mercier Nano (mini velo), Nashbar Steel Commuter, KHS Tandemania Sport
Posts: 1,121
My bike portions of the commute are just about 15 miles each way (I have a half-hour train ride thrown in the middle of each way too). Exercise-wise, that is about perfect for me. Only doing 7 miles each way would not be enough excercise for me to be able to say that I am saving time by not needing to run, go to the gym, etc.
hubcap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:18 PM   #12
pallen 
Descends like a rock
 
pallen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Bikes: Scott Foil, Surly Pacer
Posts: 4,022
Quote:
Originally Posted by hubcap View Post
Only doing 7 miles each way would not be enough excercise for me to be able to say that I am saving time by not needing to run, go to the gym, etc.
I do about 10mi and that's exactly how I see it. I no longer get frustrated about coming home and not being able to work in exercise time. The 40 minute commute for me is about 20 longer in the morning and about the same in the afternoon as driving and exercise is done when I get home. 15miles would still be very doable.

Bottom line: I absolutely would not let this stop a great deal on a house unless there is just not any kind of safe route to get you from there to work.
pallen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:26 PM   #13
CACycling
Senior Member
 
CACycling's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Oxnard, CA
Bikes: '08 Fuji Roubaix RC; '07 Schwinn Le Tour GS; '92 Diamond Back Ascent EX
Posts: 4,565
Why not figure a 15 mile route from current abode to work and ride it a few days or weeks to see how the longer commute feels?
CACycling is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:29 PM   #14
1nterceptor
LET'S ROLL
 
1nterceptor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: NEW YORK, NY - USA
Bikes: 2014 BMC Gran Fondo, 2013 Brompton S6L-X
Posts: 3,747
16 mile commute from NJ to NYC over the GW bridge.
3 or 4 times a week, defintely more fun in the summer
compared with the current temps in the 20's/30's F.
I've been doing this for about 5 years now.
1nterceptor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:44 PM   #15
Zaphod Beeblebrox 
PanGalacticGargleBlaster
Thread Starter
 
Zaphod Beeblebrox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Smugglers Notch, Vermont
Bikes: Upright and Recumbent....too many to list, mostly Vintage.
Posts: 7,526
Thank you so much folks, this really is the only thing that's been nagging me and making me hesitant to put an offer down. I feel much more confident, thanks.

I'll be sure to post back with pics if I get the house!
__________________
--Don't Panic.
Zaphod Beeblebrox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-10, 05:46 PM   #16
nashcommguy
nashcommguy
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: nashville, tn
Bikes: Commuters: Fuji Delray road, Fuji Discovery mtb...Touring: Softride Traveler...Road: C-dale SR300
Posts: 2,500
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox View Post
...I may want a different bike....that's OK with me.... I'm always in need of an excuse to get another bike
Would recommend some sort of cyclo-cross w/disc brakes, maybe. Good, flat resistant tires, 700x28mm, Topeak Road Morph w/gauge frame pump. Depending on your terrain you may want an IGH(Internally Geared Hub). Shimano Alfine 8 sp generally accepted as the best option.

Anyway, I do 40 mi rt(when I'm not laid-off) on a cyclo-cross. Got it from www.bikesdirect.com for 500.00. It's got over 12,000 miles w/minimal maintenance and one minor truing. 30 mi rt is a good distance. Not too long not too short. Btw, when I got my bike it had Kenda cross tires that are too soft for pavement. I swapped them out for a set of Schwalbe Marathon Plus and have been riding on them ever since.
nashcommguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 07:47 AM   #17
Jim from Boston
Senior Member
 
Jim from Boston's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 4,668
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox View Post
...I'm looking for some words of warning/encouragement or any experiences anyone's had with lengthening their commute.
...or from a bunch of people who commute 15 miles each way telling me to pipe down and HTFU.
I have a year round basic and pleasant commute of 14 miles and from May to September I expand it on a progressive training schedule of up to 32 miles. The comfort level of the commute may be a factor in assessing the distance. In addition, I have the luxury of taking a comuter rail back to within two miles of home. I have a long workday and by about 8:00 PM, the train ride beckons more strongly than the bike ride. Nonetheless, while the return trip of 14 miles is not too burdensome if done earlier, I'm probably more psyched to ride in the morning since I don't have to do the reverse.

People at work who mostly live around my suburban workplace ask me why don't I move closer, but I tell them 14 miles is a perfect cycle commuting distance. (In my head I think, "Why do you think they call it sub-urban living? )

There have been a few threads about commuting length and my impression is the concensus that 20 miles each way is a reasonable limit.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 12-22-10 at 07:55 AM.
Jim from Boston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 10:17 AM   #18
tsl
Plays in traffic
 
tsl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Rochester, NY
Bikes: 1996 Litespeed Classic, 2006 Trek Portland, 2013 Ribble Winter/Audax
Posts: 6,934
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I thought this was going to be a thread about looking for longer routes to work so that you CAN legthen your commute.
That's what I do in the nicer weather. I have a long loop that starts with six miles in the wrong direction. It ultimately adds 11 miles to my 4˝ mile commute. I miss it in the winter.
tsl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 10:32 AM   #19
hubcap
One Man Fast Brick
 
hubcap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicagoland
Bikes: Specialized Langster, Bianchi San Jose, early 90s GT Karakoram, Yuba Mundo, Mercier Nano (mini velo), Nashbar Steel Commuter, KHS Tandemania Sport
Posts: 1,121
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsl View Post
I miss it in the winter.
Are the conditions such that you don't feel you can safely ride it in the winter?
hubcap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 12:04 PM   #20
jeffpoulin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 2,173
I used to have a 12 mile commute (each way) and it felt too short in the summer, but "a little long, yet doable" in the winter. I bought a house last year and now my commute is 22 miles each way. 22 is fun from April to October, and I'll even stretch it to 30 or more when the weather is really great. However, 22 is not so great November to March especially when it's snowing or raining. Fortunately, I have the option of taking a train, which cuts the riding down to just 10 miles each way. So, I take the train most days from November to March.

If I didn't have the option of taking a train or bus with my bike, then I would say 10-15 miles each way is the perfect distance (for me) for year round commuting. 15 might seem too far in December when it's cold, wet, and dark but it'll seem nice 7-8 months of the year.
jeffpoulin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 12:17 PM   #21
Consularrider
Senior Member
 
Consularrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Arlington, VA
Bikes: Giant Transend, Salsa Pistola, Raleigh M60, Raleigh Sport Touring Team USA
Posts: 493
For the past two years, my commute has averaged between 12 and 15 miles (one way), and I haven't driven once. Like tsl, this is an extended commute from my one way direct route of 4.5 to 5 miles. However, during heavy snow falls, I have had to revert to my direct route because that is what gets plowed. We had a small snowfall last week, and the MUPs are still slick in spots so I have been adding different loops on cleared streets so I can keep up a minimum 25 miles per day ride. What would your contingency plans be if there is too much snow to ride (or wind/rain/hail/etc)? The 30 mile round trip would not keep me from choosing the house if I had some other way to get to work in the worst case scenario.
Consularrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 01:07 PM   #22
Jim from Boston
Senior Member
 
Jim from Boston's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 4,668
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
… I have the luxury of taking a commuter rail back to within two miles of home. I have a long workday and by about 8:00 PM, the train ride beckons more strongly than the bike ride.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffpoulin View Post
..I bought a house last year and now my commute is 22 miles each way. 22 is fun from April to October, and I'll even stretch it to 30 or more when the weather is really great. However, 22 is not so great November to March especially when it's snowing or raining. Fortunately, I have the option of taking a train, which cuts the riding down to just 10 miles each way. So, I take the train most days from November to March…
Whereabouts do you ride? (I’m not familiar with your location of UTC+1. ) I ask because it doesn’t seem there are many parts of the country outside of the Northeast Corridor that have commuter rail service. Here in Metro Boston, one can bring a bike only during non-peak hours; I have such a non-peak reverse commute from home downtown to work in the suburbs.

Fortunately, it takes me only a two minute ride from work to the train station so I know exactly when to leave and not have to wait, especially in the winter. My trains are usually on time too. From your post it seems you have a 12 mile ride to the train. That seems like a much harder connection to make. How does it work out for you?
Jim from Boston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 01:23 PM   #23
-holiday76
No one cares
 
-holiday76's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Yardley, Pa
Bikes:
Posts: 5,592
my commute is 15 miles each way. Like was said, two hours or riding a day. That said, I'd never even consider not making an offer on a house because it would make my commute longer.
__________________
I prefer emails to private messages - holiday76@gmail.com
Jack Taylor Super Tourist, Jack Taylor Super Tourer Tandem, Jack Taylor Tour of Britain, Px-10, Carlton Flyer,Fuji The Finest, Bianchi Squadra,Salsa Fargo, Santa Cruz Tallboy, Cetma Largo, Riv Betty Foy (wife's), Gitane 500A Mini Racer (sons).
-holiday76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-10, 02:31 PM   #24
Maxxxie
Senior Member
 
Maxxxie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Bikes: Cannondale Synapse 4 Carbon Feminine
Posts: 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox View Post
...or from a bunch of people who commute 15 miles each way telling me to pipe down and HTFU.
That'd be me 15 miles (24 Km) is a touch shorter than my "short" commute. Just do it, mate! More time on the bike = more time being happy!

Max
Maxxxie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-10, 08:30 AM   #25
tsl
Plays in traffic
 
tsl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Rochester, NY
Bikes: 1996 Litespeed Classic, 2006 Trek Portland, 2013 Ribble Winter/Audax
Posts: 6,934
Quote:
Originally Posted by hubcap View Post
Are the conditions such that you don't feel you can safely ride it in the winter?
Yes. It includes an eight-mile unplowed MUP.
tsl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:06 AM.