Whether or not the intention is to stay active, bypass the traffic or to save gas money, the idea of biking to work is admirable to say the least. So what’s been stopping you? Perhaps you think it’s too much work to get everything you need, or worried about arriving to work all sweaty, or just want to sleep in a little bit longer. Well, whatever your excuse has been, Bike Month is a perfect time to say, No More Excuses! and try it for once and for all!
First, you’ll need a bike (obviously). If you don’t have one, you can find bikes of all price levels at a local yard sale, Kijiji or a local bike store.
Second, invest in some essentials:
- Helmet – it’s always better to be safe than sorry
- Lights – after sunset, it is the law to have white light on the front and red light or reflectors on the back!
- Bell – The roads can get quite loud with traffic so let people know you’re there with a ding!
That is pretty much it. You’re ready to ride!
For the brave beginners, here are some tips to make sure it’s a positive experience for your body and the mind!
- Begin with an achievable distance.
- Start biking once or twice per week and increase frequency based on your comfort level.
- Do a dry run on the weekend or ride with someone on your first day of riding to work.
- Take a change of fresh clothes to work before your commute.
- Try different routes and find your favourite based on distance, traffic, and scenery.
If you have a long commute and cannot ride the whole way, you can still ride to a Park & Ride and either take the TTC or carpool! There are bike racks in nearly all subway stations and all TTC buses have bike racks.
Once you try it out, you may or may not want to improve your ride with some windbreakers or accessories. Some of our favourites are:
- Fendors to get those mud off your back
- GPS app like Google Maps or Toronto Bike Map to find the best bike paths to work
- Bicycle Cup/Bottle Holder to stay hydrated or enjoy your latte on the way to work
In order to stick to it after Bike to Work Day, find a friend to bike with someone and check out Bike Month events to stay inspired and get creative with your commute. We promise you that after trying, you’ll wonder why you haven’t tried sooner.
Join the Challenge
1 of 3 VIA Rail $500 vouchers
Log at least one bike trip using the Smart Commute online tool during the contest period and you could win 1 of 3 VIA Rail vouchers. Only one entry per person. Contest runs from May 16 – June 30. Check out the contest rules for full detail.
See you on the bike path!