I've noticed a lot of changes in my commute over the past 6 months. Curious what changes other have experienced.
In the beginning
- Rode a Trek 4300 MTB
- Was afraid to ride on the roads, especially if the speed limit was over 35mph.
- Stuck primarily to sidewalks, and planned routes based on which roads had them and didn't.
- If I got on the road, it was as short a distance as possible, as far to the right hand side as I could be.
- I wore regular street clothes. Loose shirts, basketball shorts, jeans, sneakers etc. I had no gloves or eyewear.
- I wore headphones in both ears, unless I was in the road. I'd take one or both out depending on traffic.
- I rode at night with a handheld LED flashlight that I'd turn on and wave around if I heard a car coming behind me.
- I used a backpack to transport cargo.
- I resorted to my car in the rain or if I were running late.
- I rode slow and steady, more concerned with getting to my destination safely and sweat free than how fast I could go.
Now (6 mo later)
- I ride a Ridley Fenix 7005 road bike.
- I ride exclusively on roads, regardless of speed limit.
- I ride within 1' to the left of the white line while cruising.
- I claim the entire lane when I have a left hand turn coming up. I claim my spot in line in my lane during any stops such as red lights. I even switch lanes on a 5 lane 45mph road during my commute, which is the most dangerous part of my daily ride.
- I use riding pants, riding gloves, sunglasses or safety glasses depending on the light, and have purchased assorted coats and pants for cold weather riding. I still wear regular shoes (Merrell Trail Glove 2's) and tops (long sleeve compression tops, loose fitting dri fits) though.
- I never use headphones, but sometimes use a bluetooth speaker.
- I use a handlebar mount for my Fenix PD22 and set it to strobe so anyone in a 200' radius of me is blinded at night and knows I'm there Also have a rear LED blinkie.
- I still use a backpack, but I have a rack & bag in the mail!
- I ride in the rain now. I just go a little slower and use a fender.
- I don't ever drive to work now. Even if I'm running late, I'll ride. I can now ride to work as fast as I can drive there, so if I'm late I'm late, method of transportation can't fix that.
- I go one speed. FAST.