Commuting - Next week is the start of the adventure.

CloneWerks

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Upstate NY
I'm finally at the point where I feel strong enough physically, and prepared enough, and trust the bike enough, to start commuting by bike. After 8+ years off a bike recovering from surgery and so-forth I can barely believe that in two and a half weeks I feel good enough to do this but a large part of that confidence is definitely due to the on-tap assistance of the eBike. I believe I could do this on a "traditional" bike, but I'm glad I don't have to.

The majority of the 6 mile run (12 round trip) is reasonably flat, reserved bike lanes with a couple of 100 yard "share the road" sections through a low-speed neighborhood. The killer (see posted image) is the 213ft climb up the hill at the start of my neighborhood coming home.... it's a NASTY way to end a ride (LOL).


elevation change.jpg


Anyway, wish me luck. My goal is to ride 3x week until the weather gets too nasty/unpredictable.
 
ebike should make that last climb a breeze! But USE YOUR GEARS. Gear down early. Your motor will help you a lot more if you are spinning fast on that uphill than if you have already been slowed to a crawl. Let us know how it goes. Have fun! I hope you feel bionic
 
You will fine.....safe travels and enjoy.....good advice from Tom......you will get used to that hill.....you should see my driveway!
 
I'm finally at the point where I feel strong enough physically, and prepared enough, and trust the bike enough, to start commuting by bike. After 8+ years off a bike recovering from surgery and so-forth I can barely believe that in two and a half weeks I feel good enough to do this but a large part of that confidence is definitely due to the on-tap assistance of the eBike. I believe I could do this on a "traditional" bike, but I'm glad I don't have to.

The majority of the 6 mile run (12 round trip) is reasonably flat, reserved bike lanes with a couple of 100 yard "share the road" sections through a low-speed neighborhood. The killer (see posted image) is the 213ft climb up the hill at the start of my neighborhood coming home.... it's a NASTY way to end a ride (LOL).


View attachment 4936

Anyway, wish me luck. My goal is to ride 3x week until the weather gets too nasty/unpredictable.
Kudos to you on your plan to do this. It will be good for your physical as well as mental health. Hopefully, you will continue your ambitions to longer rides. My wife and I, both of us 65 years old, plan to do the Katy Trail (222 miles) in Missouri on our new ebikes hopefully in the fall of 2024. We can't wait!
 
It sounds like you and I have a similar commute distance, CW. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. My ride back and forth to work is usually my favorite part of the day.

The only adjustment I had to make was to have my morning coffee at work instead of during the drive like I used to.

My typical routine is to make a sandwich and cut up some apples before bed. Right after my morning shower, I toss my lunch bag in my backpack and head out on my bike.

I have a couple nice parks pretty close to where I work, so when the weather is nice, I get a bonus lunchtime bike ride to a scenic place to enjoy my sandwich.

Its the little things…..

:)
 
ebike should make that last climb a breeze! But USE YOUR GEARS. Gear down early. Your motor will help you a lot more if you are spinning fast on that uphill than if you have already been slowed to a crawl. Let us know how it goes. Have fun! I hope you feel bionic
LOL... I already do that, the hill is a 16% grade. Almost my entire elevation gain happens in 50 yards.
 
So after two days of pouring rain I did it... I biked in to work today! It was 6.5 miles in dusky and very foggy conditions and there were definitely some things I learned just from this one ride.

Issue: The end of my ride is the start of the "usual" rush hour. AM commuters are in a hurry and are NOT paying attention to a cyclist.
Remedy: A small alteration in my planned path and maybe one or two more "blinky lights" on the back of the bike (or me). I already wear hi-vis clothing.

Issue: 6.5 miles felt a lot longer this time than it did on the "dry run" ride last Saturday. I think it was the early hour and the pressure to be to work on time.
Remedy: I'm pretty sure I'll just have to tough this aspect out.

Issue: Thick misty fog is wet. I got a lot wetter than I expected.
Remedy: I need to get a "shell/jacket" appropriate for those conditions. I also need to have spare clothes at work. I'm going to have to do some "cycle-clothing" shopping.

Issue: I'm HUNGRY! I don't normally eat much for breakfast or early in the day but about 30 minutes after I got settled in I started to feel HUNGRY!
Remedy: I'm going to have to get some healthy snackage in the fridge at work.

I estimate I have about a month and a half to two months before the winter weather makes regular bike commuting impractical for me because I'm just too damn old to push things very far. It's going to be annoying to get in the groove and then have to stop but that doesn't mean I'm not doing it in the interim.
 
Regarding issue #4, do you normally drink coffee first thing in the AM?
If so, maybe save it until you get to work.

I always find that caffeine (my addiction) jacks up my metabolism a bit, so if I drink coffee and exercise, it feels like by sugar bottoms out. When I get like that, it’s an intense hunger which leads me to grab poor choice snacks in the break room.

Do you have an indoor place at work where you can keep your bike?
Were your coworkers massively impressed as you arrived on two wheels? :)
 
Regarding issue #4, do you normally drink coffee first thing in the AM?
If so, maybe save it until you get to work.

I always find that caffeine (my addiction) jacks up my metabolism a bit, so if I drink coffee and exercise, it feels like by sugar bottoms out. When I get like that, it’s an intense hunger which leads me to grab poor choice snacks in the break room.

Do you have an indoor place at work where you can keep your bike?
Were your coworkers massively impressed as you arrived on two wheels? :)
Coffee, sometimes but not a regular thing, mostly not even a weekly thing.

Yes I can bring the bike indoors, there is a storage room right next to my office where they are letting me put the bike. There are 3 steps I have to get up to get to the door but it's not horrible as long as I open the door BEFORE I try to bring the bike up :rolleyes:

My entire lunch got eaten up by people wanting to see the "cool bike" LOL. It was fun though I did have to endure some of the usual teasing when anything like this is introduced to an environment. (you might as well sell your car now, how many AA batteries does it take, that sort of thing).

The ride home was better though I was a touch concerned at first because my knee was complaining a bit. Once it got warmed up it was fine and I was far more relaxed and enjoyed myself. I think the time pressure in the AM is part of the problem but that will probably ease after a few rides when I know what my "usual" transit time will be. Also work is pretty lax about arrival time (get there within 15 min and nobody even notices).

Tomorrow I drive because I have a presentation at another location later in the day, but that is okay, it gives me a chance to bring in a little toiletries and towel bag I put together.
 
It's weird. Pain goes away then comes back so be careful..if it persists, see a doctor.

What type of presentation are you doing?
 
I'm an I.T. support guy. We're changing out some monitoring systems for fuel dispensing depots and I get to demonstrate the new/improved hardware so the guys with boots on the ground know what changes are coming down the pike.

The knee thing is due to an old injury and some days it's "fussy" which is why I thought I was out of biking forever. The eBike did just what I hoped by taking some of the stress off until things warmed up then I was fine. I could also have "throttled it" all the way home if needed.
 
I bike commuted for two days last week, and Monday this week... and I'm back in the car. I hate to say it but I just have to get up too damned early to bike and I am NOT a morning person. On the plus side, my car is an EV so I'm still not burning gas.

I'm a little disappointed but I simply had to face the reality that I'm not going to maintain getting up at 4:30am to give myself time to prep and then bike to work on time especially with the days getting shorter.

On the other hand, I haven't used the car for grocery shopping or "quick errands" in two weeks because I'm fortunate enough to have a grocery store 2 miles away and a Lowes, CVS, pet supply store, tractor supply co and a Dunkin Donuts all in the same plaza 3 miles away which is a far cry from my previous residence where everything was 15+ miles away.
 
I bike commuted for two days last week, and Monday this week... and I'm back in the car. I hate to say it but I just have to get up too damned early to bike and I am NOT a morning person. On the plus side, my car is an EV so I'm still not burning gas.

I'm a little disappointed but I simply had to face the reality that I'm not going to maintain getting up at 4:30am to give myself time to prep and then bike to work on time especially with the days getting shorter.

On the other hand, I haven't used the car for grocery shopping or "quick errands" in two weeks because I'm fortunate enough to have a grocery store 2 miles away and a Lowes, CVS, pet supply store, tractor supply co and a Dunkin Donuts all in the same plaza 3 miles away which is a far cry from my previous residence where everything was 15+ miles away.

LOL, I don’t think I could do 4:30 AM either. That’s too dang early! Plus, I don’t like riding in poor light.

My work day in the office begins at 8:30 AM, so with my 6 mile/25 min commute, I can get up at 7:35 (after countless snooze alarms), hit the shower, and be on my way by 8-ish.

Where I’m going to get burned soon is on the back end of my commute. I often don’t leave the office until around 7 - 7:30 PM, so with the days getting shorter, I’ll probably be driving on those days before long.

Regarding environmental responsibility, I’m certainly not one to preach to the choir. While I feel good about myself for reducing my “carbon footprint” while ebike commuting, etc, all of my family’s vehicles currently are, and have been for the past 15+ years, full combustion SUV’s (and a Wrangler, which I guess is an SUV). So I’m definitely no saint, but tryin’ to be better, LOL. :)

Good on ya for trying with the commute, though!
 
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