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My personal non-driving challenge

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My personal non-driving challenge

Old 04-26-07, 08:50 AM
  #1  
JugglerDave
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My personal non-driving challenge

Tomorrow will mark my 1500 one-way trip milestone (750 round trips) commuting Center City Philadelphia to Malvern. 359 (24%) of those trips have been non-driving, either SEPTA or biking or combination of both. I've "not driven" 9500 miles so far!

I'm challenging myself thru the end of July to bump that up a notch during the next 100 trips.

I want to pass 25% overall non-driving trips. That should be easy, 42 of the next 100 trips.

So far bike-related trips have been only 82, or 5.5%. 32 of these trips have been biking all the way home in the evening, 32 miles. A real challenge would for me to hit 10%; I would have to bike-on-board for 78 of 100 trips. More realistic is hitting 8%, or 46 of the next 100 trips.

Why am I doing this? I just feel that I should drive fewer miles and contribute less to traffic. When *I* am biking and/or riding Amtrak and SEPTA, *drivers* get less traffic on the Schuylkill and lower gas prices (due to reduced demand).

What can you do to help? Support bikes on transit (and especially folding bikes on Amtrak!).

I'll report back in a few months!
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Old 04-26-07, 09:12 AM
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OK took me a minute to figure out your statistics. You're trying to change your OVERALL % (across the total of 1600 trips) by what you do in the next 100 trips. (I know you said that, it's just that the "25% non driving = 42 out of 100 trips" part threw me).

Well, good luck! I think I'm so far at 100% non-driving to work. I might have driven once early on, can't remember now (it's been almost a year... I did drive to the interview). I haven't kept accurate stats but right now I'm doing roughly 40% bike 60% SEPTA. I live in Mt. Airy and work in Center City.
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Old 04-26-07, 10:05 AM
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I started counting on new year's day 2007. Right now I'm at 56 round trips by bike/bus and 1 trip all the way back by bike which is about a 22 mile one-way trip on less-than-ideal roads. I've driven 22 work days this year so far, with seven continuous work days being due to my bike wreck.

Most of those 22 days, I drove a few miles to the bus park-n-ride, not all the way downtown. Aside from the bike wreck, other times I drove involved being too sick to ride (and probably too sick to be at work, but without any sick leave available), or waking up too late to make it to the bus stop in time for the last bus by riding my bike there.

I am operating on the commute::drive statistics. Driving one day per week and using my bike 4 days per week would result in a 4:1 ratio of cycling to driving. Literally RIGHT before my bike wreck, I was almost at 3.0. Taking 9 days total off the bike (7 of them work days) knocked me down to 1.6 or so.

Since I healed up from the wreck on March 15, I've only used my car twice to get to work and my ratio is back up around 2.6. I hope to be above 3.0 by the end of May, which will require a lot of five-day commute weeks. I'd like to be up to 4.0 as my overall cumulative ratio for the year. That will mean driving less than 50 work days total for the year. We're about 1/3 through the year and I've used about 1/2 my available "gimmes" if I want to keep the numbers up.

Sounds like you're doing pretty good! Keep it up!

I'm doing the numbers kind of as a personal goal to keep me interested and motivated. The only person I want to beat is myself, and this is my baseline year -- the yardstick by which future years will be measured.
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Old 04-26-07, 10:54 AM
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Ummm What is SEPTA?
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Old 04-26-07, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Snow_canuck
Ummm What is SEPTA?
sorry. SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) - Commuter Rail in and around Philadelphia (and buses, subways, trolleys, etc.)
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Old 04-26-07, 11:54 AM
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I haven't had a full week of bike commuting in a while, let alone the "double nickel" of two weeks in a row. Then again, I'm not driving when I don't ride (hooray for the subway!). So folders aren't allowed on Amtrak? That stinks!
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Old 04-26-07, 12:00 PM
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I've also tracked this. To me, this is the fairest way since I sometimes am on travel and just can't ride on those days.

Last year, I biked in 45% of work days. This year so far I'm at a 55% clip. A nice improvement that I can attribute to my studded tires I put on this past winter.

Obviously, I could do better but my problem is that I go from work to bowling on Wednesday's in the winter and to golf on Thursdays the rest of the year. So, I can only max out at 80%.

Even at 55% however, I'm riding in pretty much every chance I get. The days I don't ride are almost always because it's raining in the morning or there's too much snow to make it through. I can't remember the last day I didn't ride when I just didn't feel like it.
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Old 04-26-07, 12:02 PM
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I was at 90% as of the end of March, I haven't done the math on this month yet, but it should up my % a point or two.
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Old 04-26-07, 12:41 PM
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Originally Posted by oboeguy
I haven't had a full week of bike commuting in a while, let alone the "double nickel" of two weeks in a row. Then again, I'm not driving when I don't ride (hooray for the subway!). So folders aren't allowed on Amtrak? That stinks!
Actually, I've been taking my folding bike on Amtrak on my morning commute. One hour flat, home to sitting-in-office (versus 45 minutes driving). In the PM, there is one conductor on an Amtrak train that won't let me board, despite the Amtrak policy of folding bikes allowed on ALL trains (per customer service). I'm still working on this issue, slowly. So I've been doing Amtrak AM, SEPTA (20 minutes slower) in the PM.
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Old 04-28-07, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by JugglerDave
sorry. SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) - Commuter Rail in and around Philadelphia (and buses, subways, trolleys, etc.)

Okies, local dialect strikes again!
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Old 06-15-07, 05:58 AM
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Thought I'd update my own thread....

Past 25 work days (50 trips)...

18 days by bike and/or bike on train
1 day train/bus/walk (no bike)
6 days by car

so, going strong at 76% non-driving commutes!

As I've stated in another thread, bike on train is now "my default" unless the forecast is for rain or I have a particular need to drive. I'm having a blast, and I'm regular & recognized on the trains I take and probably the roads too -- even the corporate shuttle drivers at the train station parking lot say hi, and they've stopped 'daring' me to unfold my bike faster.
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Old 06-15-07, 06:34 AM
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Wow, good work, and it sounds like you're doing a good job of promoting cycling in a positive light.
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Old 07-13-07, 10:59 AM
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Another Update 7/13/2007 - slightly over 2 months since Amtrak fixed their policy.
Next Wednesday is the "100 trip" milestone and my last report to see if I hit my goals.

These are just cumulative stats with my folding bike:

38 Round Trips on Bike + Train
2014 Miles Not Driven
84 gallons of gas not purchased
11,400 Calories burned (3 lbs of fat)
$228 dollars saved vs. driving (Savings of $6 per round trip counting “everything”)
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