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Anyone made a commitment to live car free?

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Anyone made a commitment to live car free?

Old 06-13-19, 01:57 PM
  #1  
Alligator
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Anyone made a commitment to live car free?

Iím changing jobs again soon, and Iíll be working 10 miles from home. Iíve biked the distance many times in the past, and can commute to work in 40-45 minutes. However, Iíve never biked to work every day of the week, all year round. Winter here will be challenging, but Iíve ridden in the winter before. Iím thinking of making a commitment to myself to try biking 100% of the time to work to start my car-free living.

Have you ever made a commitment to yourself (or someone else) which caused you to become car free? If so, did you make it? If not, what caused you to fail?
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Old 06-13-19, 02:10 PM
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No, although I have commuted a good many miles over decades by bicycle I live in the real world where such "commitments" are just simply hair-shirted nonsense.
Why not just ride when practical and not make some big deal out of it when it isn't as will happen and "commit" yourself to being at work on time and getting the groceries home.

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Old 06-13-19, 02:28 PM
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Iíve done that before, and riding to work was very enjoyable. Iíd like to kick it up a notch, and ride everyday, regardless of weather. This means riding through snow, cold weather, and rain. Making it a goal seems like something I can work toward.
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Old 06-13-19, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Alligator View Post
I’ve done that before, and riding to work was very enjoyable. I’d like to kick it up a notch, and ride everyday, regardless of weather. This means riding through snow, cold weather, and rain. Making it a goal seems like something I can work toward.
Goals to ride the bike are good, "commitments" are for something serious instead.
Good luck with that, have fun and use common sense.
How bad could that be, and you won't need a Hair-Shirt but full fenders are a good idea.

BTW: If you ride over to St. Paul stop in at "Grand Performance" bike shop to chat w/ the owner Dan.
Aside from being a former US National Hour Record holder he knows more about commuting in your environment, how to equip, enjoy and survive in it year 'round than about anyone in MN.

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Old 06-13-19, 07:10 PM
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I ride to work two-three times a week. I ride my scooter the other days. I haven't owned a car since 2005. For back up, I ride public transportation, uber, or rent a car.
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Old 06-13-19, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Alligator View Post
Iím changing jobs again soon, and Iíll be working 10 miles from home. Iíve biked the distance many times in the past, and can commute to work in 40-45 minutes. However, Iíve never biked to work every day of the week, all year round. Winter here will be challenging, but Iíve ridden in the winter before. Iím thinking of making a commitment to myself to try biking 100% of the time to work to start my car-free living.

Have you ever made a commitment to yourself (or someone else) which caused you to become car free? If so, did you make it? If not, what caused you to fail?

I became car free for about 6 years when my then-husband's vehicle was totalled in an accident.

I was already car light at that point ... cycling to/from work, taking the bus to uni, walking to shops etc. so it wasn't much of a change.
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Old 06-13-19, 08:29 PM
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When I started commuting to work I made a commitment to myself that I would ride everyday I could, however as part of that I also allowed myself to uber / taxi / take my own car once per month on average for the days where that just wasn't possible. It was great, I initially thought I had underestimated how often I'd need to use my get out of jail free card, but after twelve months when I reassessed how I was going I realised I'd only needed to use it about six times in the year, so on average once every two months.

Everyone's circumstances are different in terms of commute length, nature of the commute, access to other transport means and lifestyle aspirations etc etc, but having such a commitment can be quite a motivating factor. If you allow yourself the occasional out, you won't feel so guilty about using it, and might find that you can more easily sustain your car free(-ish) status.
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Old 06-13-19, 11:15 PM
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I commuted without using a car for the better part of a decade, and over time, started doing many other tasks (small grocery runs, going out, etc.) without the car. My significant other had already quit driving, and since I rarely used the car, I sold it in March 2014. I bought a bicycle that was better suited to winters in western Wisconsin and a trailer.

Not using the car and then getting rid of it entirely was not a commitment so much as something that seemed reasonable for my household. I like cycling, and riding for everything rather than just commuting was not a big lifestyle change. Getting to work and getting the groceries was doable and even easy by bike; I've only used a backup a handful of times.

Circumstances change, and I'll be getting a vehicle (probably a large van) this summer. I still plan to do most everything by bike, but circumstances now warrant having an available vehicle as well.
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Old 06-14-19, 03:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Hasselhof View Post
When I started commuting to work I made a commitment to myself that I would ride everyday I could, however as part of that I also allowed myself to uber / taxi / take my own car once per month on average for the days where that just wasn't possible. It was great, I initially thought I had underestimated how often I'd need to use my get out of jail free card, but after twelve months when I reassessed how I was going I realised I'd only needed to use it about six times in the year, so on average once every two months.
This reminds me of when my kids were in high school. I gave them all one "mental health" day per year -- they could skip for whatever reason and I'd write them the note. It rarely got used before May (and sometimes 'expired') because every time they'd think of staying home to work on a paper or just get some extra sleep, they always worried that they'd need it more down the road and didn't want to waste it. So they sucked up whatever it was and went to school.
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Old 06-14-19, 05:55 PM
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Anyone made a commitment to live car free?
Originally Posted by Alligator View Post
I’m changing jobs again soon, and I’ll be working 10 miles from home. I’ve biked the distance many times in the past, and can commute to work in 40-45 minutes. However, I’ve never biked to work every day of the week, all year round.

Winter here will be challenging, but I’ve ridden in the winter before. I’m thinking of making a commitment to myself to try biking 100% of the time to work to start my car-free living.

Have you ever made a commitment to yourself (or someone else) which caused you to become car free? If so, did you make it? If not, what caused you to fail?
Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
No, although I have commuted a good many miles over decades by bicycle I live in the real world where such "commitments" are just simply hair-shirted nonsense.
Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
Goals to ride the bike are good, "commitments" are for something serious instead.
Good luck with that, have fun and use common sense
.

How bad could that be, and you won't need a Hair-Shirt but full fenders are a good idea. .
I have previously posted,
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I think we can agree that LCF, as discussed above is mostly a lifestyle choice (excepting circumstances like poverty, revocation of driver’s license…).

When I was asked while living in Boston a few years before starting my career ,“Where would you like to live?.” my criteria were living near a big body of water, and the ability to live without a car as I had been much of my earlier two-plus decades; and I was already an avid cyclist….

I learned to love the water from the Great Lakes in [my native] Michigan, and the Atlantic Ocean in Boston. I vaguely considered my ambition not as “Car Free," per se, but a lifestyle choice. Through certain life circumstances I was already primed to be Car Free.

Fortunately I found a happy career here in Boston, and Living Car Free then became easy.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 06-14-19 at 06:02 PM.
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Old 06-15-19, 11:39 PM
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I'm not car free nor really that close to it, but I do commute to work every day of the year by bike, so in that sense I am car free.
I don't think of it so much as a commitment, but a lifestyle choice I made years ago and now it is just second nature. I have a perfectly good car in the driveway, but I never consider it a way to get to work (unless I inure myself playing basketball or something).
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Old 06-16-19, 08:42 PM
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Just FYI...

It would be nice to have a safety net of some sort for days where you just don't feel great. I have done it two ways:

1) I had a motorcycle at hand even tho I rarely used it to get to work. Public transport options would be helpful as well.

2) I got a job that was VERY understanding and able to live with me being late, leaving early, or just staying home due to weather now and then. I was late a few times and don't think I stayed home more than once or twice a year.

It sure took a lot of pressure off of me to have 1) and/or 2) in my back pocket. Pressure creates stress. Stress creates fatigue. Fatigue is not helpful to biking 20 miles a day, five days a week.

Cheers! And good luck however you do it.
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Old 06-18-19, 04:56 AM
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1. Not a commitment, I haven't been able to afford to drive since 2006.

2. Eight bikes are about as expensive over time.

3. Nobody is giving away a 1972 Plymouth 340 Duster like that fully restored 1973 Challenger that golfer won and gave to his caddy (that would be my best friend for life).
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Old 06-18-19, 06:20 PM
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No car since '96.

Living car-free is easy in NYC so kudos to those who do it in car-centric cities.

I have car sharing, such as Zip Car for when I need to haul used furniture from Craigslist.

Other than that, even with the availability of cheap yellow cabs, Lyft, Uber, Juno, Via, etc, I will ride my bike rain or shine 365 days a year as long as there is traction.

New York is good about clearing out the snow immediately after snow storms so I only miss riding one or two days a year.

I really hate driving and so I will do my best to never get a car again.
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Old 06-18-19, 11:02 PM
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Everything is like 40 or 60 miles out one way and 200 the other. Even the cows want a Studebaker.
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Old 06-19-19, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Bandera View Post
I live in the real world where such "commitments" are just simply hair-shirted nonsense.
Wow, such angry. What is wrong with someone making a commitment to themselves regarding something they want to accomplish? It's almost as if you have some need to tell others what they should consider important. You're not one of those people, are you?

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Old 06-19-19, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
Wow, such angry. What is wrong with someone making a commitment to themselves regarding something they want to accomplish? It's almost as if you have some need to tell others what they should consider important. You're not one of those people, are you?
Wow, another excuse for butting in with pseudo-psychological twaddle, sanctimonious tut-tutting and failed mind reading by the self appointed LCF Politically Correct Thought Police.

Did you miss:

Why not just ride when practical and not make some big deal out of it when it isn't as will happen and "commit" yourself to being at work on time and getting the groceries home.
Nope, just too real world, and certainly not part of the strident unrealistic LCF party-line to quote.

BTW: Where's your recommendation for the OP on who to get with in the Twin Cities for actual experience in the nitty gritty of commuter survival in his challenging local environment, or is the Real World not part of your role as self appointed LCF Monitor of Content and Self Righteous Indignation?
Enjoy wearing that Hair Shirt while sanctimoniously posting, I'll just get on with riding the bike as I choose to and post on LCF as I choose to also.

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Old 06-19-19, 03:31 PM
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I've gone for literally years between times I drove into work. You don't need a resolution or "commitment" to do that, you just do it.

That's not really the hard part of going completely car-free though. The grocery grind, having to schedule the formerly trivial errands, the limitations in your range, those are the harder parts.
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Old 06-20-19, 12:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Rollfast View Post
2. Eight bikes are about as expensive over time.
Oh man I wish that was the case for me. Where I'm from is pretty high taxing, even compared to other parts of Australia so I assume it's cheaper in the states, but I've calculated that I'm spending about $2000 Australian which is like $1400 US per year on just getting my car on the road, and that's before outlay for the car and the petrol to make it run. In the 13 years since 2006 that you've been car free I'd have spent about $18200 just in those basic costs, which is about $2275 per bike!
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Old 06-20-19, 02:25 PM
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Did it for 13 years. State of Ohio made a decision that put me out of business. Didn't particularly want to keep living that way after that.
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Old 06-20-19, 08:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Hasselhof View Post
Oh man I wish that was the case for me. Where I'm from is pretty high taxing, even compared to other parts of Australia so I assume it's cheaper in the states, but I've calculated that I'm spending about $2000 Australian which is like $1400 US per year on just getting my car on the road, and that's before outlay for the car and the petrol to make it run. In the 13 years since 2006 that you've been car free I'd have spent about $18200 just in those basic costs, which is about $2275 per bike!
I could have owned a small 90s BMW for $500, the people down the street were moving and had to sell fast.

Now I'll NEVER woo Molly Ringwald.
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Old 06-20-19, 08:40 PM
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Yes, implicitly in where I live... probably the only place in the US where it's easier to be car free than not.

The irony is lately I've been thinking about driving again, because I keep learning about interesting rides I'd like to do that are not reachable by train.
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Old 06-21-19, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
It would be difficult if you're young and want a social life.
Really? When I was young and had a social life, I lived in a city with limited parking. Cycling was actually faster, by the time I'd have to sit in traffic and then drive around looking for parking. As a young woman, it was also safer - I could park right outside venues, rather than walking half a mile in the dark and taking the risk of getting mugged on the way or carjacked upon return to my vehicle.

Granted, times may have changed a bit. I have an extremely difficult time these days convincing teenagers and young adults that going places by bike is really quite easy, and is often faster and safer than driving.
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Old 06-21-19, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by wipekitty View Post
I have an extremely difficult time these days convincing teenagers and young adults that going places by bike is really quite easy, and is often faster and safer than driving.
Do you wonder why that is the case? Just how many teenagers and young adults have you convinced and/or converted?
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Old 06-21-19, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Do you wonder why that is the case? Just how many teenagers and young adults have you convinced and/or converted?
OK - I'll admit that 'convincing' is too strong. 'Demonstrating' is more apt - it is not as though I am producing long arguments or emotional rhetoric extolling the virtues of my transportation methods. If people ask, I talk to them; if they don't, it's not my business how they move around. 'Demonstrating' has recently convinced two young people (that I know of.)

I do, however, wonder why teenagers and young adults are resistant to giving other transportation methods a try, including cycling as well as walking and transit. I have observed the following among individuals in this demographic whom I personally know: driving without a license to destinations less than a mile away; missing school due to lack of a car (although several buses conveniently service the school); and running out of money for food in order to pay for Uber rides to destinations serviced by transit and/or less than a mile away. Again, I do not judge peoples' lifestyle choices, as I prefer they not judge mine. I simply find some choices odd.
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