Riding to work is one of the easiest ways to get regular exercise, save money and do your part in helping the environment. It’s also a great way to start your day; rain, hail or shine.
Reid wants to make it easier and more fun for you to ride so to work, so here are our top 5 tips
1. Do an ABC-Quick check!
This stands for Air, Brakes, Chain and Quick Releases. It’s just a quick way to remember to check the Air in your tyres, makes sure that your Brakes are working right, that your Chain is clean and lightly oiled and that your Quick Release skewers (or bolt-on axles) are done up right and tight. Having a floor pump at home with a gauge means that you can get the tyre pressure right, quickly. The mini-pumps are best for use out on the road. Some good lube like Rock’n’Roll Gold and a chain cleaner makes the chain part easy.
2. Wear some normal clothes
You don’t need lycra, special shoes or a 200 gram racing helmet to commute to work. They’re all great for when you want to ride hard, or fast, or do epic distances, but for riding 5 or 10 kays to work, some comfortable shorts or yoga pants, a nice airy shirt made from natural fibres and running shoes will do the trick. If you’re riding in long trousers, roll up the leg on the chain side to prevent smudges. If you have long shoe laces, tuck them under the laces lower on the shoe; you don’t want them getting caught in your chain or cranks. A good breathable rain jacket is a great investment, so keep a lightweight one in your bag.
3. Carry a pump, tube and tyre lever
Don’t be late to work, so carry a mini pump, tube and a tyre lever or two just in case you get a puncture. If you’re not sure how to change a puncture, talk with a bike mate, check out the YouTube videos on the subject, or pop into one of our stores to get the rundown. The best protection against punctures is using good quality tyres and making sure that you keep the air pressure right. That’s why the ABC-Quick check is so good!
4. Go easy in the hills and headwinds
Think transport, not sport. If you’re going up a hill, go down a gear! Go to your lowest gear. Don’t worry about it. Keeping your heart rate low and breathing slow means that you won’t get hot and bothered. Having a geared bike does make this easier. You don’t need a lot of gears. You just need low enough gears to ride your route comfortably.
5. Don’t forget to be a civil cyclist!
Riding bikes is fun. Breezing past hundreds of cars stuck in traffic is really fun. Don’t forget to smile at other riders, and acknowledge when another road user shows friendliness and courtesy. When you’re in a car, it’s like you’re seeing the world through a TV screen. On your bike, you’re out in the world, in the sunshine, enjoying the world. Share the love, and maybe you’ll inspire some of the people stuck in their cars to do the same.