Biking To Work An Idea Whose Time Has Come

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Did you know that Dayton has been designated a Bronze Level Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists? Their national rating system evaluates miles of trails, accessibility, difficulty, and other features for cyclists.  In 2012 Dayton made Bicycling Magazine’s list of Top 50 Bike-Friendly Cities.

RiverScape MetroPark is positioned at the center of over 330 miles of connected bikeways in the Dayton region, making it the largest connected bikeway network in the country. You can rent bikes to explore this incredible bikeway network on Saturdays and Sundays, Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend. A variety of bicycles are available, as well as a host of child attachments.  The City of Dayton has installed bright blue bike racks in key points around downtown to encourage both the casual cyclist heading to dinner or a Dragons game, as well as commuters who need to stow their wheels during office hours.

Patterson Place residents are literally steps from the bikeway. With the new pedestrian corridor connecting RiverScape in Downtown Dayton with the Oregon District, Rubicon Square is a few short well-paved blocks from hooking into the system as well.

With all this cycling at our fingertips, consider taking your recreational bicycling one step further.  Next time you put your keys in the ignition, ask yourself: Could I use another form of transportation?

So glad you asked. Courtesy of Businessinsider.com, here are:

13 Reasons You Should Bike to Work

 1.  It would make cycling safer for everyone.

Much unlike cars, the more bicycles on the road, the safer it becomes for cyclists, research shows. it-would-make-cycling-safer-for-everyone

2.  t is vastly cheaper than driving.

Due to rising fuel costs and tire upkeep, the cost of owning a car increased nearly 2 percent in 2012 to $8,946, according to AAA. It costs just $308 per year to keep bikes in shape––nearly 30 times less than cars. 

3.  It’s a free gym on wheels.

On average, bicycle commuters lose 13 pounds in their first year of cycling alone.

4.  You won’t miss morning traffic jams.

Americans spend upwards of 25 minutes per day commuting to work and more than $700 per year simply burning fumes in traffic.

5.  Cycling could help you get there faster for a lot less. 

“Half of the working population in the U.S. commutes five miles or less to work, with bike trips of three to five miles taking less time or the same amount of time as commuting by car.

6.  You don’t even have to own a bike.

There’s been a wave of new bike share programs in major cities like Washington, D.C., Boston, Chicago, and Miami, which typically allow riders 30 to 45 minutes of free transportation for a small annual fee. Dayton will launch its own Bike Share in Spring 2015.

7.  Women could use the extra bone support.

As women age, they become increasingly susceptible to bone deterioration through osteoporosis. A team of researchers from a Swedish university found middle-aged women were less likely to sustain wrist fractures if they commuted by bike or participated in other physical activities like walking and swimming.

8.  We could save hundreds of millions on health care expenses.

The most important socio-economic impact of cycling lies in the area of health care,” says Andy Clarke, president of the League of American Bicyclists. An investment into biking culture will reduce waistlines and improve heart and lung function for millions of Americans. That translates into better living, as well as dollars saved.

9.  You inhale more harmful exhaust in your car than on a bike.

Though fuel emissions are bad news for any set of lungs, studies show drivers are actually more susceptible to harmful air than bicyclists, basically sucking on the tailpipe of the car just ahead of them.  In a bus, riders’ lungs are a bit above these sources. And bikers and pedestrians are on the outskirts.

10.  You’re way more likely to get sick taking the bus.

Fresh air does a body good. A recent study found public transit riders were six times more likely to suffer from acute respiratory infections. Every time someone sneezes…well, you get the picture.

11.  Businesses will save millions in lost productivity.

Two recent studies, one in Denmark and one in Chicago, found people who commuted to work by bike were less likely to call in sick.

12.  Uncle Sam will pay you to bike to work.

Since January 2012, cyclist commuters have been entitled to a $20 per month tax-free reimbursement for bike-related expenses.

bikes-at-the-office

This applies to workers who bike at least three days per week to the office. Qualifying expenses include bike repairs and storage expenses, according to the National Center for Transit Research.

13.  You’ll never have to worry about a parking spot again.

Need we say more?

We get it. Biking makes you sweat. Cab drivers are tyrants. You could smack into a car door and knock yourself out.

So, you start slowly. Buy a sturdy helmet, throw a change of clothes into your basket or, better yet, leave some at the office. Research the safest bike route to take and read up on the rules of the road for cyclists.

More importantly, you’d be surprised what wonders baby wipes can work in lieu of an office shower.

 

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