Wednesday, May 2, 2012

May is National Bike Month!

August, 2000 - Cross Country Bike Ride

May is National Bike Month!

Who knew that when we picked this time for the ride?!?!

Glenn found this article online this AM!   Anyone inspired?

10 Reasons to Start Biking to Work

Go ahead. Keep pounding your head against the steering wheel during another rush-hour traffic jam.
Maybe it will finally knock some sense into you.
Many of you are prime candidates to become bike commuters—mostly, you have a bike, and your commute isn't unbearably far. The question is, why aren't you?
More: Freedom From the Grind: Become a Bike Commuter
The benefits of biking to work are endless. It's healthy, it saves you money, and it's a lot more fun than driving your car all over town.
Still not convinced? Here are 10 reasons why biking to work is something you should start doing:

Save Money

How many different ways does bike commuting save money? Let's roll through a few examples:
  • You are no longer buying as much fuel for the car, and we don't need to be reminded of rising gas prices.
  • Your car is not going to break down as much if you're not driving it as much.
  • If your auto insurance company is aware that you don't drive to work anymore, they may drop your premiums.
  • Free parking for bikes!
And that doesn't even cover the long-term financial benefits of being healthier due to your increased activity. Face it: any way you look at it, bike commuting saves you some serious cash.
More: 10 Tips From Hard-Core Bike Commuters

Any Bike Will Do

You don't need a $5,000 ride to commute to work. Get a hybrid bike for a few hundred bucks. Or just drag that old bike out of your garage. That'll work.
Bike commuters would benefit from having accessories like a fender (to keep you from getting dirty) and a rack (for carrying gear if you don't prefer backpacks). But for the most part, a commuter bike doesn't have to be an expensive investment. And, let's be real: it's way cheaper than a car.
More: 5 Quick Tips to Keep Your Bike Running Its Best

A Practical Workout

If you're time-crunched and juggling family, work and fitness, bike commuting is a way to kill two birds with one stone.
A flat, 5-mile commute will burn around 500 calories a day. Biking to work is an ideal way to get your daily physical activity without needing to set aside time solely for working out.

Because You Won't Miss Traffic

If you're in a big city, and your commute is bogged down by daily traffic jams, ask yourself how much you enjoy sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic twice a day.
Now, as a cyclist, would you enjoy that 10-mile commute a little more if you were flying down the road on your bike?
Thought so.
More: 4 Tips for Finding a Bike-to-Work Route

The Laws Are Starting to Catch Up

Biking still requires you to be predictable and maybe even a little paranoid on the roads. But the increase in the popularity of cycling across the country is causing state laws to accommodate the growing segment of the population.
The 3-foot law has been passed in nearly half of the 50 states. Bicycle lanes are becoming more common. And even protected bike lanes—with a buffer zone of some sort between the bike lane and the vehicle traffic—are starting to pop up.
Bottom line, bike commuting is slowly becoming safer, and the more cyclists out there, the more drivers start to accept the need to share the road.

Protect Your Planet

Marinate on this: According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, for every one mile pedaled rather than driven, nearly one pound of CO2 is saved.
More: Safety Tips for Commuting By Bike

Be a Positive Influence

If you let a co-worker know that you're a bike commuter, he may be impressed. And he might be inspired to join you. And if he joins you, the planet gets double the protection, someone else gets in better shape, and all the sudden, your positive contribution to world wellness is even bigger.

Your Employer Can Help

In 2009, bicycle commuting reimbursement was added among the qualified transportation fringe benefits allowed by the IRS.
This is similar to perks that companies can offer employees for taking public transportation or parking at work. In the case of cyclists, employers can choose to offer a reimbursement of up to $20 a month for expenses incurred by the employee while bike commuting. So if your employer takes part, you can get reimbursed for that flat tire suffered on the way to work that one morning (to give one example).
Many companies offer their own benefits for bike commuters, too, and with good reason: Healthier employees are more productive and are less likely to be burdens on the company health-care plan.
More: Do You Need Bike Insurance?

Everyone's Doing It

Well, kind of. While less than 1 percent of Americans are primarily bike commuters, the number of Americans who commute to work by bike in 2008 increased 14 percent over 2007, 36 percent over 2005 and 43 percent over 2000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Bike to Work Month, Bike to Work Week and Bike to Work Day are perfect chances to get started in a comfortable setting. When co-workers or friends are also commuting to work, it's a great chance to get comfortably adjusted to a bike commute—and perhaps get you to start doing it regularly.

It's Addictive

It won't take long before driving your car to work just sounds like a terrible idea. With all the bad habits in the world, bike commuting is an awesome addiction to get hooked on.
And make no mistake, bike commuters are hooked. A recent survey showed that 54 percent of bike commuters commute year-round. Considering the harsh winter weather that blankets much of America, what else besides an unshakeable habit would get you on the bike in sub-zero temperatures?
Glenn certainly is addicted to biking!
His bike is in the bike shop or he would be out on a little
training ride today, I am sure :)

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