It's All About the Commute

It’s National Bike Month! So why not take this opportunity to change your mind about riding to work, or if you’re already commuting, to remind you why it's so beneficial. Here are some quick tips and reasons from our Giordana office commuters to you.

 

Advice: 

Lights:

Invest in a great set of bright front and rear commuting lights. With both, you will light your way and also let your presence on the road/ trail be known for traffic coming up behind you. LED's are a great choice, and the more lumens the better.

Ditch the Earphones:

Commuting with headphones blocks out essential traffic noise (horns, squealing brakes, etc.) that could give you the extra few seconds to swerve out of the way of an errant vehicle. Your Taylor Swift Pandora station can wait; stay safe on the bike and be aware of what’s around you!

Find a Commuting Buddy:

Riding with friends is fun – commuting in with a coworker (meet at a mutually accessible location) is safer and makes the experience more enjoyable. If your intention is to sulk whilst going to work, you may as well drive your car.

Plan: 

It’s tough to get motivated, dressed, and moving in the morning. Give yourself some wiggle room when it comes to your schedule. You never know what might come up; a flat or maybe you want to make an unexpected coffee (or donut) stop. 

Fenders:

If you’re dedicated to commute in rain or shine, a pair of full coverage fenders on your bike is worth their weight in gold. A full front fender keeps your shoes and socks dry(er), while the rear fender prevents that wonderful wet stripe up your back. Useful for also keeping essential parts of your bike clean (front fenders help prevent grime buildup around your bottom bracket), the best use for them is when it’s misting or just after it’s rained. It’s amazing how much water your tires throw up even when the roads are just a bit damp.

Bike maintenance: 

It’s incredible how many miles you put on your bike if you’re commuting regularly. Even if your commute is just six or seven miles each way, those add up, and consistent usage will start to show on your two-wheeled steed. Keeping your chain lubed, your brakes adjusted, and your tires inflated/free of debris are simple steps to prolong the life of your bike and its respective components.

Bags:

Not all offices have a locker room. So having a bag that carries your daily essentials but also comfortable is key. It’s also good to look for bright colors and reflective elements. Anything additional you can do to be visible. If your bike has a rack, invest in a good bag. It will ultimately save you headaches.

Baby wipes are your friend:  

If you don’t have shower facilities at work then baby wipes and a stick of deodorant at your desk is a fantastic way of cleaning up and feeling fresh after your commute in. Your co-workers will be appreciative. 

Last but not least...Wave! 

Be friendly to all the other vehicles on the road. Be polite and let cars pass when possible and wave when a driver gives you ample space when they pass you. The goal is to make your presence on the road commonplace, a friendly sighting on the way to work, and NOT just another cavalier cyclist on the road. Sharing the road goes both ways.

Reasons to ride:

Stop and smell the roses:

Commuting by bike should be fun! The slower pace will show you new sights/sounds on your way to your job, allowing you to discover hidden gems on your way to/from work. Perhaps you find a new coffee shop or park to plan further excursions to in your free time! 

Experiment:

Try different routes – see which ones have less traffic (or no traffic at all) during certain periods of the day. It will give you a better idea of the routes in your general vicinity and could save you an extra few minutes when you have to drive in! Exploring is the best part of commuting; being able to take that longer route home if it’s an especially nice day outside is one of the joys of commuting by bike.

Health:

Commuting by bike can change your life, giving you better cardiovascular health, burning fat, and developing muscle. Don’t be surprised that in a few months your pants start to fit a bit looser or your jersey starts to flap a bit more in the breeze. Commuting can also be relaxing and a great way to either prep for a stressful day at work or decompress from a hard day at the office. Thirty minutes on the bike can reset your mind and give you a great outlet so you don’t bring your work foibles home!

What to wear:

Giordana Wool Socks are a great 3-season piece – wool socks don’t get all funky. They’re thin and relatively light too. They keep your foot warm in cool temperatures without being too thick to the point where it’s difficult to get your feet in your cycling shoes.

Roubaix Arm Warmers can be worn at the start of the ride and easily pulled off and stuffed in your pocket as you warm up.

Sleeveless Lightweight Tubular Base Layer is a crucial piece for commuting in the summer. It keeps you cool and wicks moisture away quite effectively. 

Bibs – any Giordana bib!

A go-to piece for cooler temps is the G-Shield Bib Short. This Aqua-Zero™ treated bib keeps moisture away (great for those misty morning commutes), blocks wind, AND keeps you warm. The Cirro pad in the bibs is the pinnacle of chamois comfort as well.

For summer, the Laser Bib Short is perfect; it’s a great short to throw on underneath a pair of baggie commuting shorts if you don’t want to do the Lycra thing every day.

#itstheride #nationalbikemonth #biketoworkweek

 

05/10/15

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