May 22

“Muscles Not Motors”

This was my mantra on Friday.

It’s not much of a commute from my bedroom to the kitchen, but I was scheduled to volunteer at the farm, and since it was National Bike To Work Day, I decided to honor the day and ride to work. It took a little pre-planning to leave ample time, determine a safe route, and pack a change of clothes (it’s never okay for a girl to work at the farm in spandex biking shorts)! I hadn’t even gotten on my bike before I realized how much easier it is to pull off a busy life with the added flexibility of a car. But on this day, I was grateful for the opportunity to slow down.

The switch from ‘biking for exercise’ to ‘biking for commuting’ ended up being a much better use of my time, and much nourishing and fulfilling for my body and soul!

90 minute bike for exercise + 50 minute car commute = 2 hours, 20 minutes

versus

110 minute bike commute = 1 hour, 50 minutes

I got more exercise, used less fuel (saving about a gallon of gas), spared my old jalopy some wear and tear (I’m talking about my car, thank you) and ended the day feeling empowered and high. Chip (my husband and inspiration for this experiment) also rode to work in not much more time than it would have taken had he driven. I guess we know who the real cyclist is in the family!

Urban Oaks Organic Farm may be in an urban environment, but the trip there was scenic, and I definitely noticed much more now that I wasn’t zooming by.

Biking to work may not always be possible or realistic, but perhaps National Bike To Work Day is as much about creating awareness and planting the seeds for change in the way we think about commuting, exercise, and living true to our values as it was about actually biking to work. I ended up driving to the farm for the Green Faire the next day – I simply couldn’t carry home in my backpack all of the seedlings that i wanted to purchase, but there’s no doubt that I’ll be biking to work again later this week. How about you?!

Me and Farmer Mike

Be sure to check out my other inspiration – “Muscles Not Motors” – a great online community devoted to clean and sustainable living.

Eat clean, live well… and bike on!

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