Hello fellow bike commuters! Are you enjoying bike month? I know I am, I got to ride the train for free last week! The only thing that sucked was the lack of space in the car that is specifically for cyclists, there is room for about 10 bikes but there was like 20 of us riding the train. I also found interesting the number of people that were not dressed to ride but had a bike with them, I think they were just carrying their bike for the freebie.
Anyhow, today’s post is a little different since it is a book review. Yes a book review! and a hard copy nonetheless! The title of the book is “The hidden Motor The psychology of cycling” by Martijn Veltkamp. The author is a psychologist based in the Netherlands who happens to be a passionate cyclist.
The book focuses on how professional cyclists are able to find that “hidden motor” within themselves to push themselves harder and accomplish things that they not normally do. If you are a bike commuter who also happens to race or do competitive rides you will know what this is about. As a former downhill racer, I would say that most of the times that I raced it was mostly my mind allowing me to block some of the gnarly terrain I was riding and not being afraid of getting injured or maybe it was just plain stupidity.
But enough of my glory days and let’s get back to the book. The book cites a lot of examples of how the mind is able to surpass our physical abilities, a lot of the examples that the author referred to were of professional riders such as Coppy, Wiggin and Jalabert riding certain famous rides such as the Giro, Tour de Flanders and the Tour de France. Interestingly, I do recall watching some of the examples that the author refers to on his book.
One of my favorite chapters is called “Fear: The Fall of Wiggins”. This chapter describes how the fear of descending and crashing got a hold of Wiggins causing him to lose a lot of time on a Giro de Italia stage. Why is it my favorite? because this chapter described how to beat your fear by a simple method: Just do it. Yes, this can also apply to bike commuting and the fear of getting hit by a car. Even though that is always in the back of my mind, riding defensively, being predictable and obeying traffics laws have allow me to face this fear and continue bike commuting.
Even though general readers can read this book, I think if you happen to be a cycling aficionado you will thoroughly enjoy reading it.
Hello Bike Commuters! May is here and you know what this means: It is bike to work month! Funny thing is, some bike commuters don’t give a shit because “every month is bike to work month”. Party poopers.
Anyhow, I have “bike to work month/week/day” to thank for trying bike commuting over 10 years ago. In fact, thanks to “B2WM”, CommutebyBike.com was born and after we were unceremoniously kicked out from CBB, BikeCommuters.com was created for your reading pleasure.
I like B2WM because all of the free stuff we can get, for example, Metrolink (the train service I use) is giving us FREE rides from May 15 to May 19. You can also find lots of freebies on Facebook, just make sure you follow your area’s bicycle organizations.
B2WM also promotes more bicycle advocacy, I like that. So party poopers, celebrate bike to work month! After all, mother’s day, father’s day or Christmas is only ONE day.
Howdy Roadies and Mountain Bikers! This blog post is for you! You already ride a bike so why not give bike commuting a chance? Come on, you are already in shape so mileage should be no problem… what’s that? No showers at work? Really? That is your biggest excuse for not riding your bike to work? Here is a little secret; in all of 10 years of on and off bike commuting I’ve NEVER taken a shower. Why? because none of the places that I’ve ever worked had one!
The lack of showers didn’t deter me from riding to work, why? Because of products that eliminate the need of a shower. Mind you, there was a time when I used to ride 16 miles to work so breaking a sweat was inevitable.
How do I do it? Let’s start with trying to minimize perspiration. I usually wear shorts, wicking moisture shirts and a helmet with lots of vents. I also slow the pace as I get closer to work, allowing for the breeze to cool me off and dry some of the sweat. Once I arrive at work, I usually sit in front of small fan that I have on my desk so I can air dry a little more.
I then grab my bag full of the products that you see on the pictures and head to the restroom. I dry the rest of the sweat with the towel then I spray Rocket Shower all over my body. The ingredients on the rocket shower are supposed to kill the bacteria that produce body odor but I also use the moisture wipes to clean those “hard to reach” places.
Clean clothing makes a huge difference too, I know that it can be a pain to ride with a set of extra clothes but panniers such as the Garment Pannier by Two Wheel Gear allow you to transport an entire change of clothes. Worried about wrinkles? I use the Downy wrinkle release spray.
Worried about your hair? Having short hair certainly helps but I also use Dry shampoo to clean it up. I usually finish up with deodorant, mousse and a little bit of cologne.
So there you go roadies and mountain bikers, stop using “There are no showers at work” as an excuse to not ride your bike to work.
Hello Bike Commuters! I am back after a couple of weeks of water polo, swimming, doctor’s appointments and drumline performances. No, I didn’t do all of that stuff, I have two teenage daughters that keep me quite busy.
It is because of my daughters that I started to think about not bike commuting anymore, if you follow us on Facebook, we posted about Alan Snel being rear ended by a fucktard that was “driving” while being distracted. What is so fucked up is that the driver wasn’t even cited for hitting Alan because Vero Beach’s law does not favor cyclists at all. California is a little different, we do have laws against distracted drivers but most don’t give a shit and still use their phone for calling, texting, facetiming and Netflix binge watching. I am not kidding you, I’ve seen shithead drivers with their phones on their windshields watching Netflix. What.The.Fuck.
We have also seen a rash of hit and run “accidents” in Southern California, although most victims are pedestrians, a good number of them are also cyclists. So that had me thinking if riding my bike to work was really worth it. I am not really saving money in gas because of the cheap gas prices, I am not saving any time but I do it because I love riding and I’m not stuck in shitty traffic. I know that when it is time for us to go, it is time to go, I just don’t want to go at the hands of some shithead driver watching “Stranger Things” (Great show by the way).
As I was ready to throw in the towel and stop bike commuting, Governor Jerry Brown made some back room deals and the legislature passed a 52 Billion dollar plan to “fix the roads”. The bill will increase gas taxes and vehicle registration fees, even electric car drivers got screwed with an annual $100 fee. Guess who did not get screwed: Bike commuters and multi-modal bike commuters! The plan will allocate $7.5 billion for public transportation and $1 billion for walking and biking trails. So yes, if you ride your bike to work in California you will not be paying for the gas tax AND our transportation and bike trails will be also be improved! If you are one of those pissed off about the tax increase, just ride your bike to work and give the middle finger to our legislature!
Yup, this is one more reason for me to keep riding.
Greetings fellow bike commuters and super bike commuters! You are considered a super commuter in my book if you ride five days a week rain or shine. Well, I am not a super commuter by any stretch BUT I did try commuting on the rain this past week.
You may remember that Sealskinz sent me some products for me to ride while is raining so I went ahead and grabbed my trusty Spicer Cycles CX and slapped some “fenders” and headed off to work.
Although the meteorologists predicted about a half inch of rain, my morning commute to work was just cloudy and breezy but no rain.
Rain came and went throughout the day and when it was time go home it was just drizzling. Armed with my Sealskinz gloves, helmet cover and rain socks I headed to the train station. So how did the Sealskinz gear do?
Sealskinz waterproof helmet cover: The cover fit perfectly over my Cannondale helmet and it kept my noggin dry the entire time. The LED lights were visible on my cloudy commute.
Sealskinz All weather Gloves: My hands were dry and toasty during my ride. The gloves grabbed really well and did not slip from the hoods or brakes. I also love the bright color and the reflective accents, my co-workers were teasing me on how bright they were.
Sealskinz waterproof socks: OK, so when I first grabbed the socks they felt weird. The socks felt stiff and had a rubbery feeling to them. I was really concerned that my feet were going to sweat and chafe as well. To my surprise, the socks breathed well and they were really comfortable and kept my feet warm and dry.
I was not able to use the Sealskinz shoe covers because my DZR Minna shoes were a little to big for them but the covers fit perfectly on my road shoes.
So how was the ride? Riding with the right gear makes a huge difference. All of my previous rides on the rain sucked because I was not expecting for it to rain and I was not prepared at all. If I had something to complain about was the visibility because my sunglasses would get wet and it would be hard to see at times. Does any one have a trick for this?
Again, big thanks to Sealskinz for the rain gear, check out their site at https://www.sealskinz.com/US/bike for more information and for more of their waterproof stuff.