Bike to Work

The summer ritual officially began today: I rode my bike to work for the first time. I’m admittedly a fair-weather biker; I bike when it’s warm, sunny and light outside. So, today was my first time on the bike since, oh, last October or so. Combine that with two weeks or so of relative inactivity while I was home helping care for our newborn, and well, suffice it to say that I didn’t break any speed records getting here this morning. And then there’s the ride home looming, with its dreadded mile-long grind up Lawyers Hill Road. But I’ve got 8 hours or so before I have to worry about that.

With gas pushing $3 a gallon, the financial incentive to bike in (and avoid driving) is stronger than ever. The commute to work is about 15 miles round trip, and my car gets roughly 30 miles to the gallon (actually that’s being generous, it’s probably more like 25-28), so I save about 1/2 gallon of gas every time I commute by bike. At $3 per gallon, that’s around $1.50 extra in my pocket for each ride. And the more expensive gas gets, the bigger the payoff gets.

Last year, I biked to work 22 times, but I didn’t start doing it until early August. So hopefully this year I can do it a lot more. This year I plan on keeping a log so I can track my times, average speed etc. At the end of the season we’ll see how I did.