I have undertaken Day 1 with Full Exuberance. I doubt I'll be able to maintain this energy for all 7 days but at least I'm off to a good start. I'm certainly learning a lot.
Packed my backpack (as lightly as possible) with my swim stuff, work clothes, and work gear. Cleaned off Bluebell, gave her some lube, pumped her tires and made sure my bike bag was packed with an up-to-date flat kit. Also checked the batteries on the lights in case I have to ride home after dark.
Alarm goes off. I hit snooze.
I finally roll out of bed. My bike clothes are laid out, making the activation energy for getting ready to roll out the door really low. I quickly feed the bunnies, eat breakfast, and hop on Bluebell.
After making several adjustments to the bike seat (I had recently put a new one on her), I'm off and rolling. On the downside, masters technically starts at 6 but the official workout starts at 6:20, which in my mind, gives me 30 minutes to get there. On the upside, it's light out and I don't have to worry about riding in the dark. There is no traffic.
I arrive at UCSD and lock Bluebell with my cable lock. Not ideal but will do the trick for my swim and is somewhat of a deterrent. Plus, it's waay lighter than a U-lock. The 7-mile ride is pleasant and uneventful, albeit a bit harried. I forgot how hard it is to ride with a 20 lb (okay, 13.2--I weighed it later) backpack. At least I can descend like a demon!
I hop into the pool, halfway through the warm-up. Not too bad, not bad at all. The swim felt invigorating and restorative after my crazy-ass weekend (62-mile ride and 19-mile run). Felt way better than I should after swimming 2800 yards. Also felt ridiculously ravenous.
Here's the workout:
Pedal over to Einsteins and gobbled down a bagel omelet, OJ, and coffee. Still hungry so grabbed another bagel with lox and cream cheese.
Arrive at lab and changed into my work clothes...still clean after my post-swim shower.
Walked to a nearby eatery for lunch. It's so nice to be outdoors moving around, especially on a beautiful, sunny day like today. I admired the hummingbirds buzzing around. Only thing is--why am I eating so much? Food has become my new gasoline. At least it's better for the environment!
Change back into my bike clothes and pedal 7 miles along the coast to my massage in Solana Beach. Has my backpack gotten heavier? I make it there in 30 minutes--exactly. Just in time. Along the way, a roadie passes me and asks me if I want a pull. I hate that! I shake my head no, and point to my backpack--my weak excuse. He asks me if I bike a lot. My reply: "A little."
I slowly pedal home. I have gotten slower and slower as the day has progressed. I am tired, and I swear my backpack has gotten heavier. My calves are a little crampy, and my lower back is sore. I make a mental note to use Strider Tuesday since he's set up for panniers. Plus, my throat is getting sore. I think my weekend's wild escapades are catching up to me. And a cold. Apparently, I'm not super-human.
I arrive home to discover a delicious dinner ready and waiting for me. Brent has cooked dinner while I got my massage. Now that makes a gal feel special! I ravenously gulp it down. Exhausted and now fighting a building cold, I fall into bed at 9:30 pm. Hopefully, some much needed rest will do the trick.
Total Miles Biked:
Total Gas Saved:
$5.53 (enough for 2 grande lattes at Starbucks)
(in my Nissan Frontier ~20 mpg; gas is currently $4.25/gallon)
Total Calories Burned:
No wonder I'm hungry!
Bring on Day 2!
Tips for Bike Commuting:
1. Plan ahead.
When using your car, consolidate and cluster errands to be more efficient and traverse as few miles as possible. Get everything done at once. Then, have the rest of the day to take a nap or go for a run! Also, on "car days", you can bring a change of clothes to work so they don't get wrinkled in your bag (this also significantly lightens the load on your back).
2. Pack the night before.
This saves oodles of time in the morning. Pack lightly too. You have to carry it!
3. Carry a repair kit, id, cell phone, and lights for riding at night.
4. Plan your route carefully.
The best route may not be the quickest one. Think about traffic volume, bike lanes, safety.
5. Make sure your commuter bike is in good repair.
6. Lock your bike when you arrive at your destination.
A cable lock works for short trips. For long trips, use a more secure lock, like a sturdy, U-lock. Because it's very heavy, I leave my U-lock at work so I don't have to schlep it back and forth.