I’ve spent the last 10 years of my life living in small, college towns, so commuting to work via bike or bus has always been my go-to option. While I was in graduate school at Purdue, I didn’t even own a car and I walked most places. But since moving back to Salt Lake, I’ve been increasingly dependent on my automobile.
My car is currently in the shop after an unfortunate run-in with another motorist (it was a hit-and-run, the other motorist did both the hitting and running), so I decided to cycle to work for the first time since I’ve started working for Better UTAH.
I live just west* of the Capitol, and our office is located in Fort Union, so my total ride was just over 12 miles. I took 900 East the whole way down for a total of 50 minutes (20 minutes faster than what Google Maps predicted). I’m a fairly physically active person: I run 4 to 5 days a week (anywhere from 5 to 15 miles each time) and I go on long hikes on the weekends. But I was thirsty, sore and relieved when I finally got to the office.
Getting used to riding my bike again over long distances likely won’t take too long, but 50 minutes on a bike, twice a day, is still a huge commitment–especially if I want to do anything else (like read books, watch movies, have a social life, etc.). However, some combination of mass transit and bike riding, a few times a week, would be both practical and a significant reduction in my carbon footprint. And as the weather continues to warm, cycling to work is an activity that I wouldn’t mind keeping up.