About a year ago, I started biking to work. From our front door to my office is just around 9 miles, and there’s a path that allows me to take back roads with solid biking paths and sidewalks, meandering from our home, through golf courses, past canals and bays, and fancy neighborhoods, and end up at work. It takes around 35 minutes (a little faster with a tailwind, and a little slower with a headwind), but is a truly excellent way to start and end the workday.
When I started biking, I thought it would be a “once in a while” or “when the weather is nice” type of thing. However, just a short year later, we’re getting ready to list our second car for sale and happily transition to being a one car couple.
That really over-compresses what the year of biking has been like, and why we’re prepared to make it a permanent adjustment to our lifestyles. Here are some more thoughts on what it has been like.
Finding Bike Paths Is Now Second Nature
Something “wrong” with this picture?
I don’t ride on main roads. Maybe if we had bike paths on them like the one picture to the right, I would. But the reality is that Florida has plenty of 6 or 8 lane roadways with posted speed limits of 55mph (which we all know means plenty of people are going 65mph), and I have no desire to share that roadway.
Instead, we take back roads and sidewalks and have yet to really find places that are within a reasonable biking distance (I consider this about 10 miles) that we can’t get to via these methods.The last year of finding new routes to familiar spots has been interesting, though.
Sometimes I look up a way to go on google maps (rather than trusting their biking directions, I go with the satellite view and look for sideways and smaller parallel streets), but other times we’ve just gone with intuition and felt our way to and from the local parks and found new routes that are great for biking. We never would have known these lovely tree lined routes existed were it not for just trying it out. Sometimes you just have to do it.
Weather Has Been Less Of A Factor Than Expected
Continue reading A Year of Bike Commuting