November 1, 2011

The new, longer commute

It’s both easy and difficult to begin biking but after you’ve biked for a month, biking becomes old hat. However, I began commuting from the Hilltop (Mound and Hague) in October 2011 and that’s when I realized that all biking is not created equal.

An inner-city bicycle commute of less than 15 minutes is a no-brainer since at the end of a commute you haven’t worked up a sweat so clothing/temperature is not a concern. On commutes of 30 minutes or more, you have to decide between a cold startup or a sweaty end. Sometimes you freeze AND sweat. Plus, the farther you get away from urban neighborhoods, the less motorists are accustomed (read: tolerant) to bicyclists.

Before I continue to talk dirty, here’s a summary of my commuting options (you can skip to the table now if you want). The commute is about 6 miles, so I immediately eliminated walking. Driving takes 20 minutes, biking takes 35 minutes, and COTA takes 30 minutes. For cost, I added a $1 per day for gas while driving and estimated $10 a month for bicycle upkeep. Per month, driving costs $95 (parking $75), biking costs $10, and COTA costs $55. Because I love tables, here’s the lowdown:

Commute Method
Time (minutes)
Cost
Biking
35
$10
Driving
20
$95
Public Transit
30
$55
Walking
Heck
No

My options were not as clear cut this time, but as any red blooded American can attest to, multi-tasking is the bomb. Choosing biking means that I get over an hour of exercise a day and can eat anything I want. Checkmate!

This is not to say that everything is the bomb. I had to stop using my hipster messenger bag because I was getting way too much back sweat. Too much information? Maybe.

Next time: Rules of the Road

Cool link of the day: Ghostride the bike!

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