How to cycle to work – a guide to commuting by bike
Returning to the office but can’t face the perils of public transport? If you are one of the 1.3 million Britswho bought a bike during lockdown, you may be considering biking to work.
Advantages of the cycling commute includes saving money, avoiding crowds and saying goodbye to delays whilst simultaneously making the most of your commute time by turning it into an opportunity for a workout.
So what are the health benefits of cycling to work?
In the first instance, every muscle is engaged while cycling. Leg muscles are worked the most – for pedalling – but abdomen and back muscles also do a job in stabilizing the body, while your shoulder-arm muscular system are busy at the handlebars. By building this all over body strength, you can expect your new travel routine to improve core along with your balance.
Wondering how many calories you can burn cycling? You can expect to burn around 50 to 60 calories per mile of your round trip to the office and whilst the cardiovascular benefits of cycling are well known, we bet you didn’t you know that cycling to work is linked with a 45% lower risk of developing cancer and 46% lower risk of cardiovascular disease compared to commuting by car or other forms of public transport.
Use ABCD to make sure your bike is roadworthy
Pretty compelling stuff - all agreed that cycling is a great alternative commute and the best way to exercise on the way to work. But how do you check your bike is roadworthy? Make these simple bike checksbefore hitting the road and ensure your bike is safe..its as simple as is ABCD:
- A is for air. Always check the bike tyres; they should feel firm
- B is for brakes. Try squeezing the right brake and pushing the bike forwards (the wheel at the rear should lift), and squeeze the left brake and push the bike backwards (the front wheel should lift)
- C is for chain. Check it doesn’t look dull (it may need lubricating with oil), and push the pedal round backwards a few times to make sure it is on properly
- D is for direction. Ensure handlebars and the front wheel are pointing in the same direction
How do you stay fresh after a cycling to work?
The only barrier now remaining to your new healthy commute is the question - how do you exercise pre work and avoid the associated sweaty clothing and unpleasant odours?
The first thing to consider is freshening up post ride without showering. Here, the most important things to ensure are a set of clean clothes and to take some time to cool off post ride before changing. Choose a lightweight bag for storing your clean clothes to ensure you don’t carry additional weight during your ride, our Sweat Bag has a roomy compartment whilst weighing less than your phone. Use a micro towel and gym wipes for longer distances or speed cycles.
If you are lucky enough to have access to showers in your workplace, dedicate a bag of essentials for workdays which live in your day bag. Avoid single use plastic mini products which can be costly and un-environmentally friendly and instead opt for refillable versions to house your favourite products from home; our BPA, Toxic free travel bottles and pots are perfect for the job and can be easily washed in the dishwasher between refills.
Consider too a lightweight Shoe Box for carrying your office footwear alongside your belongings whilst en-route, keeping dirty soles away from your other belongings and protect against them damaging laptops or other personal tech whilst in motion. Once at the office, swap them for your trainers or cleats, safe in the knowledge that the signature antimicrobial La Pochette material will stop bacteria caused by sweat in its tracks. Your colleagues will thank you too, our Shoe Box is also deodorising so no eau-de-ride escaping from under your desk.
And there you have it. We have you covered with accessories that can help overcome the impracticalities and literally have you on your bike. Your post lockdown commute routine will save you time, money and leave you with the endorphins to have a productive day ahead.