Friday, February 10, 2012
Mental Benefits of Exercise and Bike Commuting
The reasons to get to work via bike are so numerous. I've gained oodles of leg and lung strength since I've started biking regularly (and I wasn't in bad shape before). I can get where I want nearly as quick as any other means of transportation (a little slower than driving, depending on where I go, definitely quicker than busing). I'm also more level headed than ever. I relish biking in rain and lousy weather. How can other every day stressors get to you when you are dodging potholes and have the immediate concern of miserable conditions? Don't get me wrong, long days in the rain get tiring on tour (it rained heavily for 3 days straight, on my trip from NYC to DC), but on a daily commute the feeling is just refreshing.
I show up to work relaxed and focused, though a bit physically tired. My job here at United Way is to answer questions via phone about transportation (For any transportation questions in Broome or Tioga Counties in New York, please call 1-855-373-4040 for completely free individualized transportation assistance!). I help individuals from all walks of life, occasionally in very stressful situations, and my approaching situations calmly is very important. Biking to and from work helps me to be as level headed as possible.
I do occasionally drive to work, due to meetings immediately after work or if I need to haul more stuff than I can carry on the back of a bike (today I elected to drive as I am picking up a printer on my way home though I honestly considered biking and simply bungee-ing it to my back rack). On days that I drive, I feel simply less productive and my head feels numb. There's nothing like getting pounded in the face with rain or frigid air to wake you up!
Have more energy at work, bike commute today!
Here's my question to readers: What are some things that may be stopping you from bike commuting?