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first ride to work today

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first ride to work today

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Old 08-30-06, 07:10 PM
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mcompton1973
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first ride to work today

first of all, thanks to everyone who posted on my other post about getting started. I figured that the best way to start was to....well....start. So today I rode to work.

So far so good. meaning I got to work, and made it home. lol. I rode IN to work on sidewalks....I KNOW ...dont yell at me. I tried to go through the neighborhood, but had never done it before, and too many twists etc...I ended up on the major road again, and was taking too long, so I rode on the side walk. The only real good thing that I had going for me is that it is a major raod, and the subdivisions all back up to it. in 3 miles along this road there are only 6 places where there are intersections or driveways or anything like that...and 3 of them are major with stop lights and such. On the way home, I went on the back roads through the neighborhood. Part of the ride is actually on a walking/bike trail around part of a lake. It was easier to get home on the neighborhood roads...although next time I will still take a little different route. It was about 4.5 miles to work, and about 5.5 miles home through the neighborhoods. there are 3 pretty steep hills....that sucked.

This week I can still wear a polo and slacks, so I just rode slow in my work cloths so as to not get too hot. Who am I kidding, I am fat, and lazy...that is why I rode slow...hahaha. Next week I will have to wear a tie, so I will have to figure out how I am going to handle that the best. I did not get a bag or anything else. I just tied a walmart sack with my lunch in it to the handlebars. I averaged 11.5 mphs the bike said...not too bad considering the hills, the fact that it is a mt bike, and all that. It took me about 23 mins on the way there, and about 5 mins more on the way home. I was not ridding fast enough that I would call it an arobic workout, but I am sure I burned a few calories at least.

So far, first ride...not to bad. I plan to ride tomorrow. Friday may not work because of rain, and I am not yet prepared to ride in the rain.
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Old 08-30-06, 07:28 PM
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kill.cactus
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You'll speed up as you go - take it slowly at first if you want. I suggest you invest in a rear rack with some panniers (or just a bag to strap on with bungee cords), because having stuff on your handlebars can make it annoying and possibly dangerous to steer. Once I had a bunch of dental floss wrapped around my left handlebar (don't ask - please) and it got all tangled with the shifter and brake. Luckily this was as I was pulling out of the driveway (sad how my genius plan to transport the string failed within 10 seconds) and I managed to stop the bike before it threw me over the bars.

You'll soon love commuting. Once you get addicted, you'll rather ride in the rain than miss your ride altogether

Good luck!
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Old 08-30-06, 07:55 PM
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mcompton1973
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I want to get a rack and such soon. Honestly, I am on week 2 of a new job. I had my previous position eliminated, so went about 6 weeks with no money. so in a few weeks, I will be able to soend a little and outif the bike better. My other job was about 40 mins by car, so i could not commute. wel i am sure that I COULD I am learning...but I never thought of it till I started working closer.
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Old 08-30-06, 08:44 PM
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JohnBrooking
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Don't worry, I won't yell at you for the sidewalks - yet. But if you want to put in some practice on the weekends, that might help get you more acclimated to the route. As you keep riding, and if you can get the clothing and carrying situation taken care of, you may find you want to start going faster than is safe or smooth on the sidewalk. Be very careful at intersections, and remember that motorists are much less likely to see you anywhere that they aren't already looking for other cars.

As for tie and clothing in general, is it an option to keep some at the office to change into when you get there, so you can ride in clothes that are okay to get sweaty? If you don't have a shower at work, baby wipes can be good to wipe down with. And it's good if you wait some time after getting there to do that, until you stop sweating anymore.

Most importantly, enjoy the ride and be safe! Congrats on starting!
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Old 08-31-06, 08:36 PM
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mcompton1973
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ok, day two down.
Today was a little better. I rode both too and from work through the neighborhoods. It adds about 1.25 miles is all....but because of the hills and such, it takes about 12 mins longer. I took a real small duffle bag that I had, and bungied it to the handle bars. That way it went long way, and was kind of centered. made it easier to carry lunch...and i had room for my shoes, tank top and shorts. this way after work I could change, and have a pretty good ride home.

I dont think I will ride tomorrow because we are supposed to get rained on...and I am not prepared for that yet. Next week starts ties, and so I am not sure how all of that will play out. so far...at least I am starting.
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Old 08-31-06, 10:34 PM
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Kudos

Great job indeed getting started. Sometimes that's the hardest part. As soon as you work through some of these logistics issues, you'll be set. It's a shame more businesses aren't tailoring to bike commuting. It sure will help save on long term health insurance costs.

Right now we have quite a few companies in and around Chicago who are realizing the benefits and providing parking/showers for bike commuters.

Keep up the good work!
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