This editorial was published recently and genuinely captures what biking to work really does for your mind, body and soul.
Ask anyone who cycles to work why they do it, and they’ll have a story to tell, whether it’s about how good it makes them feel, how they saved money, lost weight, or won a battle with depression. Most people will tell you how enjoyable it is.
I started riding in 2011 when I was training for my first charity bike ride and I rode my bike to work for the first time after getting my first road bike in 2012. I cycle-commuted here and there throughout the years but it didn’t become part of my daily grind until 2014 when my life drastically changed, ended a 11 year relationship (all for the best) and I no longer had a boyfriend to pick my bike and I from work anymore if I was working overtime and it was cold and wet outside. Luckily, I was already an experienced recreational cyclist and in good shape but I was somewhat of a fair-weather rider. Due to my cheapness and laziness (of taking public transit, hah), I started forcing myself to ride my humble little calorie-powered bicycle to work everyday and I realized how great it made me feel so within a few weeks, the thought of driving to work was ridiculous and a waste of time! I was riding my bike to work everyday, no matter the season and the weather. Unfortunately I quit that job a year and a half later so I don’t have a workplace to ride my bike to anymore, however, I will never forget the feeling and effect the experience had on my life and well-being.
I really miss having a consistent “workplace” to bike to everyday. I don’t regret quitting my job and being free of corporate culture but I do miss my daily 25km+ round-trip commutes. I never had to waste my precious time on a cardio machine in the gym when I had up to two hours or more “effortless” cardio everyday. I love reiterating how “effortless” it was because it was… even when riding to work with a 20lb back pack full of lunches and clothing for the week. Even when breathing was laborious as the frigid winter air pierced through my lungs. Even climbing that last hill the office was on top of every morning when severely sleep deprived. It was simply a part of my daily routine, thus health, fitness, personal development was just another habit of mine. I loved it. Cycling to work rain or shine, day or night, in below freezing morning temperatures or the scorching hot sun burning tan lines into my poor skin, always made the day feel 100x better… knowing you get that precious time on two-wheelz working on yourself mentally and physically.
Understandably, not everyone has a job they can bike to everyday but if you do, just do it and I promise it will change your life. No showers? Baby wipes. Need to dress professionally? Leave a change of clothes at the office. The majority of excuses are invalid because if you really want it to happen, you will make it happen.