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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 05-28-14, 05:09 PM   #26
zacster
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I did the twins thing too. I survived and they are off to college this fall, Michigan State and Bryn Mawr.

I'd just try to live as close to the lakefront as possible, do the 5 mile commute, but find some other mutually agreeable time that you can do extra miles during the week. I love riding the lakefront trail and do it every time I'm in Chicago, usually starting at Science & Industry and going to the north end and back.

Last edited by zacster; 05-28-14 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 05-28-14, 06:44 PM   #27
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I'd take the shorter route. Before too long you'll be so sleep deprived you're not going to be able to handle your current commute.

M.
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Old 05-28-14, 07:15 PM   #28
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First of all, congrats on the little one. You will appreciate the "extra" time you have with a shorter commute. You can always figure out a way to add some miles on occasion. The thing is, in a few short years you will have the best riding buddy!
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Old 05-28-14, 09:39 PM   #29
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Hi Steely Dan,

In my experience (no scientific data or studies, sry!) one of the major reasons that commuting by bike is so healthy is because it's twice-a-day, and as long as you get in a good twenty minutes each direction the extra miles only give granular improvements in fitness. If I look through my bike logs (I'm 61 and have kept detailed logs since 1990) I discover that my fitness level has always been better when commuting short distances than riding a long single ride daily, and the fitness difference is not that much different than commuting longer distances.

Of course I'm talking about overall fitness and health; if you're interested in training or increasing endurance or other bike-related goals, yes you need the distance. But for general fitness and health (and bikehappiness) I don't think you will notice much difference with the shorter commute.

Again, I'm just speaking from my personal experience.
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Old 05-28-14, 09:46 PM   #30
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Just ride to work, back home, then back to work!

15 miles right there.
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Old 05-28-14, 10:26 PM   #31
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^^^

Or ride home for lunch.
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Old 05-28-14, 11:17 PM   #32
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Warm up for 3-5 minutes and hammer on the way home. Maybe not as nice as a long commute, but you'll get a good honest sweat in and arrive out of breath.
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Old 05-29-14, 12:54 AM   #33
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Old 05-29-14, 01:42 AM   #34
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That five mile commute may end up being the most "recreational" part of your day (on the busiest ones). Once I became a parent, SO much cycling went out the window. My piddly two mile (also urban) commute takes up to 20 minutes (lights, traffic, stop signs, hills). If I crank and get lucky, I can do it in 13. That ~30 minutes a day of pedaling is "my" time, and I love it, and if it were any longer (on most days), I wouldn't be able to pick up my kid on time, or wouldn't make more than five hours of sleep. Move. Spend time with your kid. Savor the precious minutes with your family and do some push-ups.
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Old 05-29-14, 06:47 AM   #35
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LOL! does anyone have a spare $1,000,000 that i could use for a down payment?
Sorry, left my wallet at home today!
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Old 05-29-14, 07:17 AM   #36
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LOL! does anyone have a spare $1,000,000 that i could use for a down payment?

i might pay it back.

but i probably won't.



who am i kidding, i probably couldn't even afford the property taxes on a house in lake forest, let alone come anywhere remotely close to affording the $10,000/month mortgage payment. besides, i'm still way too much of a city boy. i'm not quite ready to have my soul entirely crushed by a move to the burbs. leaving downtown will be challenging enough as it is.
Meh - just steal yourself a mansion like Eddie Murphy in Beverly Hills Cop. No property tax or mortgage payments necessary.
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Old 05-29-14, 07:26 AM   #37
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Congrats on the pending arrival of your bundle of joy. The office is moving closer to my home today, and my commute is going to go from just over 6 miles to 3 3/4. I'm wondering how that's going to affect my fitness and health too, as commuting to work has helped me greatly these past 5 years or so. The shorter trip should be long enough to start to sweat, but I wonder if it's going to be long enough to maintain my health benefits and if I'm going to have to take the long way to make up for some lost miles.
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Old 05-29-14, 08:44 AM   #38
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There is nothing that requires you to take the most direct route.
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Old 05-29-14, 08:45 AM   #39
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20-30 minutes is often listed as a good target for daily exersise. If you are worried about health benefits, find a 20 minute route.

Other options that I have used: Buy a fixed geared bike for commuting, and do interval training on the commute. Fatter tires and a heavier bike can also give you more of a work out. But the most important thing is that you enjoy the ride, whatever you do (while keeping it safe).
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Old 05-29-14, 03:28 PM   #40
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for those in this thread mentioning their experiences raising twins, i can report with confidence that my wife is currently pregnant with one single baby girl.

we're doing this family building game one person at a time, at least for now (i suppose we could be blessed with multiples in a future round of procreation).
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Old 05-29-14, 05:42 PM   #41
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Random thought for the OP. Maybe you could get a heavy Dutch bicycle. The intent would be to have a longer bike commute and burn more calories. A five mile commute can easily take over 30 minutes if you have a clunky bike.
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Old 05-29-14, 06:20 PM   #42
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Random thought for the OP. Maybe you could get a heavy Dutch bicycle. The intent would be to have a longer bike commute and burn more calories. A five mile commute can easily take over 30 minutes if you have a clunky bike.
A maladjusted sidewall dynamo would really seal the deal.
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Old 05-29-14, 07:11 PM   #43
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for those in this thread mentioning their experiences raising twins, i can report with confidence that my wife is currently pregnant with one single baby girl.

we're doing this family building game one person at a time, at least for now (i suppose we could be blessed with multiples in a future round of procreation).
So you're having twins? That's awesome, dude.
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Old 05-29-14, 08:56 PM   #44
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Congratulations!!

I can relate to your dilemma. I do a multi modal commute - bus in the AM, ride 22 miles home. I've been married 4 years, and have a 7 year old son. I love my ride home -- exercise built into my day that I don't have to think about. But I love spending time with my family. Yesterday was gorgeous - 80, sunny, and I had no plans, so I could have tacked on a few extra miles to my ride home. But then I thought to myself, "I'll get home too late to take my son to the park". Taking the son to the park won out, as it always does.

I ride in the winter as well - last winter I had to take the bus more often, not because I couldn't ride because of snow/cold, but because the poor trail conditions added an hour to my commute. It was great exercise, but that was one hour I couldn't spend with the family.

As long as you can still bike to work, you're good. The opportunity to spend more time with the family is something you won't regret.
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Old 05-30-14, 06:06 AM   #45
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Congratulations to you and your wife!! From my experience I find spending time with my kids will always win out over cycling. That said I love that both of my kids cycled with me when they were young and still both of them love cycling.

My commute changed in April 2014 from a 10 mile commute one way to a 6.61 commute one way. I miss the time on the bike in the morning so I make up for it in the afternoon by riding longer home. I can do this cause my kids are now grown and married.

My suggestion is to commute when it is available just to get bike time and enjoy your daughter as much as possible.
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Old 05-30-14, 10:20 AM   #46
Steely Dan
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So you're having twins?
huh? in the post of mine that you quoted i explicitly stated that my wife was pregnant with only one child, a baby girl.
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Old 05-30-14, 10:23 AM   #47
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Congratulations!

By experience, raising a baby involves so many small errands that you may actually get to bike around more than you expected. "We are out of wipes... AGAIN?"
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Old 05-30-14, 10:59 AM   #48
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Congratulations on the twins! You're gonna be busy! That shorter commute will be a lifesaver some days.

One trick I learned with twins is you can get one of them brand new, too-big-for-him clothes. Creates a great gangsta look that's sure to impress his peers, with the jeans sagging to the ankles and whatnot. Then when the clothes are finally fitting him you can "hand them down" to the other twin who they'll now fit a little too tight on for a vintage, ironic hipster look.

Last edited by Saving Hawaii; 05-30-14 at 11:04 AM.
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Old 05-30-14, 11:01 AM   #49
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OP isn't having twins. He is having a singleton. Or as my wife would say "Oh, just the one?"
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Old 05-30-14, 12:42 PM   #50
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Congratulations on the twins! You're gonna be busy! That shorter commute will be a lifesaver some days.

One trick I learned with twins is you can get one of them brand new, too-big-for-him clothes. Creates a great gangsta look that's sure to impress his peers, with the jeans sagging to the ankles and whatnot. Then when the clothes are finally fitting him you can "hand them down" to the other twin who they'll now fit a little too tight on for a vintage, ironic hipster look.
You will have to learn some new tricks if the twins are not the same gender.
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