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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 05-12-08, 04:51 PM   #1
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My first commute: good route makes a world of diff.

This morning I had my route on about 3 miles of 50 mph + traffic. I was on the shoulder of the road. And it, frankly, freaked me the freak out everytime a car/semi would pass by me.
I almost had an anxiety attack. Like another guy wrote recently about his commute on a fast highway ... I totally felt him on that because it was a miserable experience.

But, thanks to the advice in this forum, I reworked my route and it has made a world of difference!
It added on about an extra 0.6 miles (from 6.2 to 6.8 miles) but now I'm driving near a national government park. I have a mile where Im riding specifically on a bike lane. Most of the other roads I drive on are low traffic, 30/40 mph roads. Its just a completely different experience!

I still drive on the hell road for 0.2 miles. But much better than 3.0.
I thought car people were a--holes, but now I think they are wonderful because the roads Im on arent major thoroughfares.

I still have to cross a few busy roads. One of them I literally have to stand there to wait for the red light to stop people until they back up to where I am and then I make eye contact and cross and wait for the other lane to clear. .... I can tell thats gonna get old pretty quick.

Man, Im chatty.
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Old 05-12-08, 05:08 PM   #2
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Cool man. I had a Bus that flew by me to close that freaked me out a bit once. Nice that you found a way around the fast traffic.
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Old 05-12-08, 05:09 PM   #3
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Good roads makes good commute ...

I tried an alternate route but it did not work; narrow road with no shoulders with people trying to get to the booze store left hooking me.
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Old 05-12-08, 05:35 PM   #4
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It's WELL worth adding a bit of distance to avoid nasty traffic or hills... that can make the difference between looking forward to your commute and dreading it.

Personally, I will trade *at least*an extra 5 km on the flats for every hilly or hairy-traffic 1 km.
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Old 05-12-08, 06:45 PM   #5
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Finding a safer route was what bike commuting doable for me. I've been a cyclist for years and wanted to commute but didn't think it was safe. Then I really started studying maps and came to the realization that I didn't need to take the most direct route to work. Within reason, the more miles the better for training. My bike commute route is about 1 mile longer than my driving route if I take the shortest way, but I usually stretch it out so it's 2-3 miles longer. I have to ride on one fairly busy, 4-lane road for about 1.5 miles out of a 10 mile route, but the rest of the roads are all back roads and neighborhood streets.
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Old 05-12-08, 06:54 PM   #6
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I tweaked my route today on the fly.

A lot i want to tweak still but it was fun.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:25 PM   #7
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You should explore as many alternate routes as you can. Some may be better for certain wind direstions, while others may have more shade for hot summer afternoons. Main thorougfares will be better at off-peak traffic times. Other may have good places for a coffee break.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:32 PM   #8
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Plus, alternate routes are a wonderful way to explore your city. It is amazing the places you find.
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