Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

First Commute!

Notices
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.

First Commute!

Old 01-16-07, 09:26 AM
  #1  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
First Commute!

This morning was my first bike commute to work. I live in South Jersey and take the train to work in Philly. I previously walked from home to my local train station (it's less than a mile), and then I walked from the station in Philly to my job (even shorter), but starting today I'll be biking instead of walking.

I know it's so short as to be barely a ride, but it's still more fun to ride than walk.

I work in an office and I wear a suit & tie. I'd rather not wear my suit while I bike, so this weekend I drove to the office and dropped off several suits and shoes. When I got in this monring I changed into my work cloths. There's a shower here if I need it, but I don't expect that I will.

My bike is a Breezer Villager, which I bought about a month ago. It's perfect for me.

One other thing--for the first leg starting out on the way from my home to the train station, I rode along with my wife and our 8-year-old son, on his way to school. My wife usually bikes with our son to take him to school (except in bad weather). It was very satisfying for the three of us to ride together first thing in the morning.

Last edited by golftdi; 01-16-07 at 09:56 AM.
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:00 AM
  #2  
ModoVincere
Riding Heaven's Highways on the grand tour
 
ModoVincere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,675
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Awesome...I so wish my wife and kid would consider biking. Alas, I have 14 year old daughter who is completely absorbed with her image amongst her fellow high schoolers, and my wife won't even get near a bike. Apparently she feels she rode enough in her elementary school and middle school days.
__________________
1 bronze, 0 silver, 1 gold
ModoVincere is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:10 AM
  #3  
jyossarian
SERENITY NOW!!!
 
jyossarian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: In the 212
Posts: 8,738

Bikes: Haro Vector, IRO Rob Roy, Bianchi Veloce

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Welcome to the HHCMF (Happy Healthy Commuting MuthaF*ckers) Club! You will be pleased to know that your awesomeness factor has just increased by 100 and you are now the envy of all men and lusted after by an equal amount of women. Treat yourself to a donut while enjoying the admiring looks of your co-workers.
__________________
HHCMF - Take pride in your ability to amaze lesser mortals! - MikeR



We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!
jyossarian is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:19 AM
  #4  
rule
Senior Member
 
rule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Wylie, Texas
Posts: 1,922
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Welcome to the club!
__________________
rule is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:24 AM
  #5  
thdave
Senior Member
 
thdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,242
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Excellent! Many congrats and smiles for you and a big grin for your wife . If I read that right, you are biking just short of a mile, to the train station?

Even though it's short--I suspect you'll love it and it will spur on more riding.

Congrats on your bike--it sounds a lot like mine!
thdave is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:25 AM
  #6  
straightedge
Me fail English?
 
straightedge's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 135
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Good job. The only thing I wonder (and I don't mean this to be negative or to discourage you) is if it wouldn't still be better to just walk? For such a small distance to cover it sounds like a lot of work having to drive extra stuff up there, change clothes and possibly shower. Keep it up though if you enjoy it, and that's cool that you get to ride with your family a little bit each morning.
straightedge is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 10:33 AM
  #7  
j3ns
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Iceland
Posts: 273
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Good for you, hope you have a blast on the bike. I would really like to have a bike like the villager.


Originally Posted by straightedge
Good job. The only thing I wonder (and I don't mean this to be negative or to discourage you) is if it wouldn't still be better to just walk? For such a small distance to cover it sounds like a lot of work having to drive extra stuff up there, change clothes and possibly shower. Keep it up though if you enjoy it, and that's cool that you get to ride with your family a little bit each morning.
My commute is also very short. But the logical reaction for me is not to walk, but to ride a longer route. My "commute" is usually 2-7 times longer than the shortest route (although I use that one occasionally).
__________________
My advice is free of charge and of respective quality.
1982 Miyata 912
1998 Wheeler 5900 with front and rear air cushion suspension
2015 Canyon Spectral 7.0 EX
j3ns is offline  
Old 01-16-07, 12:46 PM
  #8  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
Thanks for all of the encouraging words and warm welcome! I am so glad I stumbled across this site when I was researching buying a new bike last year--I've learned a tremendous amount (mostly lurking) and have been very motivated by the posters here.

It is indeed a short commute, but as I said it's more fun to ride than walk, and I may indeed stretch it out a bit going home. And the more I ride the more I'll want to ride, I'm sure.

I also have a 12-year old daughter who likes to ride, but not as much as the rest of the family--it messes up her hair, you know?

It's been about 10 years since I last rode regularly and I'm glad to be doing it again. It brings back many good memories. When my wife and I first met we used to go riding together in the evenings after work along Lake Champlain in Burlington, VT (far cry from Jersy and PHilly, I know!), and for several years when I was in college and then law school (no lawyer wise cracks please) I rode my old Fuji Royale as my primary transport. And I used to love riding when I was a kid.
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 08:53 AM
  #9  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
Day 2--nice and brisk this morning (for these parts). Around 20 degrees (F). Everybody else in the family kvetching about how cold it is, and the kids get driven to school by my wife because it's "too cold". I hop on the bike and I'm in heaven.

This is addicting, isn't it?
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 08:57 AM
  #10  
thdave
Senior Member
 
thdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,242
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by golftdi
Day 2--nice and brisk this morning (for these parts). Around 20 degrees (F). Everybody else in the family kvetching about how cold it is, and the kids get driven to school by my wife because it's "too cold". I hop on the bike and I'm in heaven.

This is addicting, isn't it?
Yes!
thdave is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 09:01 AM
  #11  
gbcb
J3L 2404
 
gbcb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 1,075

Bikes: 2007 Jamis Nova

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by golftdi
This is addicting, isn't it?
Noticed that, did ya? I love that you have the chance to ride together with your wife and son (if the weather isn't too cold ). Sounds like a wonderful start to the day.

Careful, though. Next thing you know, you'll actually be considering a ride all the way from South Jersey to Philly... You laugh now, but just you wait...
gbcb is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 09:28 AM
  #12  
BFBridgeguy
Gamblor
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by golftdi
This morning was my first bike commute to work. I live in South Jersey and take the train to work in Philly. I previously walked from home to my local train station (it's less than a mile), and then I walked from the station in Philly to my job (even shorter), but starting today I'll be biking instead of walking.

I know it's so short as to be barely a ride, but it's still more fun to ride than walk.

I work in an office and I wear a suit & tie. I'd rather not wear my suit while I bike, so this weekend I drove to the office and dropped off several suits and shoes. When I got in this monring I changed into my work cloths. There's a shower here if I need it, but I don't expect that I will.

My bike is a Breezer Villager, which I bought about a month ago. It's perfect for me.

One other thing--for the first leg starting out on the way from my home to the train station, I rode along with my wife and our 8-year-old son, on his way to school. My wife usually bikes with our son to take him to school (except in bad weather). It was very satisfying for the three of us to ride together first thing in the morning.

Soon you'll be riding down Haddon Ave all the way to the Ben Franklin Bridge.

And feel free to contact me if you have questions about that part. . .
BFBridgeguy is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 10:59 AM
  #13  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
I've thought about riding all the way down Haddon Ave and then over the bridge--but is it safe riding through Camden?
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 11:02 AM
  #14  
cooker
Prefers Cicero
 
cooker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 12,849

Bikes: 1984 Trek 520; 2007 Bike Friday NWT; misc others

Mentioned: 86 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3923 Post(s)
Liked 97 Times in 78 Posts
Wow, you sure picked a weird season to start in!
Congratulations
cooker is offline  
Old 01-17-07, 11:08 AM
  #15  
daredevil
cyclepath
 
daredevil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: "The Last Best Place"
Posts: 3,550

Bikes: 2005 Trek Pilot 5.0, 2001 Specialized Sirrus Pro, Kona Lava Dome, Raleigh hardtail converted to commuter, 87 Takara steel road bike, 2008 Trek Soho

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I remember distinctly how exhilarating my first commute was. I remember letting out a whoop when I arrived. I've been addicted ever since. Welcome to the club!
__________________
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Without music, life would be a mistake."
-- Friedrich Nietzsche
daredevil is offline  
Old 01-18-07, 10:06 AM
  #16  
BFBridgeguy
Gamblor
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by golftdi
I've thought about riding all the way down Haddon Ave and then over the bridge--but is it safe riding through Camden?

I've never had a problem. Meaning I've never had a Camden specific problem. I've had problems with drivers not paying atention, etc. that occur pretty much everywhere.

The surface of Haddon Ave. is in pretty rough condtion (even though it's a county road). And once you get past Cooper Hospital it's just a couple of zig-zags over to Rutgers-Camden and that's right at the bridge (walkway now open to 7:00).
BFBridgeguy is offline  
Old 01-18-07, 07:05 PM
  #17  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
over the bridge

Originally Posted by BFBridgeguy
I've never had a problem. Meaning I've never had a Camden specific problem. I've had problems with drivers not paying atention, etc. that occur pretty much everywhere.

The surface of Haddon Ave. is in pretty rough condtion (even though it's a county road). And once you get past Cooper Hospital it's just a couple of zig-zags over to Rutgers-Camden and that's right at the bridge (walkway now open to 7:00).
Thanks. Right now I get on the train in Haddonfield. Maybe I'll work my way up (down?) the Haddon Ave. PATCO stops and then one day make the leap over the bridge.
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-18-07, 07:48 PM
  #18  
mander
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Van BC
Posts: 3,744
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
You will be pleasantly surprised how fast you get in shape. Last summer I started intermodal commuting just like you, using the bike to make bus connections over a 35km one way commute. The bike connections just got longer and longer and the bus trips shorter and shorter, until for the last month of summer I was doing the whole route by bike, 70 kms round trip every day.
mander is offline  
Old 01-18-07, 08:46 PM
  #19  
newbojeff
Commuter First
 
newbojeff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 1,286
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
How far is it from home to the office?

Hopefully, as others have suggested, someday in the next 6 months, you'll have the thought, "How come I'm interrupting a perfectly good bike ride to stand around and wait for a train."
newbojeff is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 09:06 AM
  #20  
BFBridgeguy
Gamblor
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 61
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by golftdi
Thanks. Right now I get on the train in Haddonfield. Maybe I'll work my way up (down?) the Haddon Ave. PATCO stops and then one day make the leap over the bridge.

That's my commute as well.

At least until the DRPA closed the walkway on the Ben Franklin Bridge because of the light coating of snow we got yesterday. So I had to take my bike home on the train.
BFBridgeguy is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 01:04 PM
  #21  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
distance

Originally Posted by newbojeff
How far is it from home to the office?

Hopefully, as others have suggested, someday in the next 6 months, you'll have the thought, "How come I'm interrupting a perfectly good bike ride to stand around and wait for a train."
It's about 9 miles or so. As we get into spring I'm sure I'll give it a go.
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 01:28 PM
  #22  
mparker326
Senior Member
 
mparker326's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,978

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount P15, Fisher Montare, Proteus, Rivendell Quickbeam

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
How do you like your Golf TDI? I have a couple TDI's. One of them is a 2002 Golf.
mparker326 is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 01:38 PM
  #23  
golftdi
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 197

Bikes: Surly Midnight Special, Jamis Coda Elite

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
I actually sold it several years ago, becuase my wife and I no longer needed 2 cars. It was a 2000. I loved it when I had it, and I was very active at Fred's TDI club (even hosted a few TDI GTGs at my house when I lived in Vermont). It was chipped and ran great, and for the last few months I was running it on 100% biodiesel.

Driving in Vermont was alot of fun. Driving here in Jersey--not so much.
golftdi is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 09:05 PM
  #24  
cwodave
Not Green, Celeste!!!
 
cwodave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Winston Salem, NC
Posts: 339

Bikes: Bianchi Eros

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Schweet! Another member.

Way to go!

Dave
cwodave is offline  
Old 01-19-07, 09:38 PM
  #25  
JohnBrooking
Commuter
 
JohnBrooking's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Southern Maine
Posts: 2,568

Bikes: 2006 Giant Cypress EX (7-speed internal hub)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Congrats!

Do you mean it would only be 9 miles to do the whole thing by bike? That's still short in some peoples' book! (Mine's only 5, though.)

We've occasionally had a "Very Short Commute Club" thread here, in response to the regular "Very Long Commute Club" threads. One of the all-time funniest posts I've ever read here was a parody of Mars' accounts of his daily competition at the time with someone he called "Hammer Bob", as follows:

Originally Posted by rickagee (4-21-05)
Here is how it went down this afternoon on the way home. I started in the lead, a 1/8 mile flat section. I decided to ride harder than Chisel Phil would like, to tire him for the single hill. I could manage 10 mph on my fat comfort bike wearing my suit, no more no less, but that seemed to be more than he liked since he was sporting a tuxedo. When he led up the hill, his pace was noticeably off. On the descent, I decided to go anaerobic and attacked. I spun out my middle gear and leaned forward a little bit for the best aero profile. Phil was in my slipstream, but I had a plan. Before I could fully implement this plan, my commute had ended. I pulled into the driveway and vowed to continue this for more than a half mile the next time.
JohnBrooking is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.