Bicycle Commute: Are You Prepared?

Bicycle Commute: Are You Prepared?

to-work-by-bike-1440576-mIn the day and age when fitness and health are considered top priorities, it is not surprising that more and more Americans are considering a bicycle commute to and from work. It is a wonderful way to be productive while fitting in the necessary workout. However, it is intimidating to consider when thinking about the numerous headlines involving bicycle-car crashes. The cyclist rarely comes out ahead in that instance. For that reason, while it is a great idea to bicycle commute to your St. Petersburg office, you must prepare wisely.

Basic Preparations

Safety is a primary concern, but you are going to be a lot less stressed and a lot safer as a rider if you aren’t worrying about forgetting something. Ensure that your office is well-stocked before you start commuting via bike. While a side saddle is a wise investment, and can carry a fair amount of your stuff, there are certain things that you are going to have to store beside your desk. This list should include hygiene needs, such as a towel, deodorant, washcloth, cosmetics, and other such things needed for “cleaning up” upon arrival. In addition to that, it is wise to leave a pair of shoes and an extra outfit (including a belt, socks, underwear, and other such accessories) at work. That way, if something doesn’t fit in your bike sack, or you forget something, you don’t have to go without.

Safety Planning

In addition to ensuring your own comfort for the day, it is wise to plan ahead for potential trouble on the road. Consider these helpful hints:

    Carry an Emergency Kit. It doesn’t have to be big or bulky, but it could save you in a severe situation. Bandages, antiseptic, a tire repair kit, and other related items are entirely worthwhile.
    Plan a Route. Riding your bike in Saint Petersburg is much different than going by car. The fastest route is not necessarily the wisest when commuting in this way. Plan ahead by choosing a path that will keep you farthest from harm’s way (even if it makes your trip a little longer).
    Choose the Right Bike. A good repair kit and a great route are going to do little for you if you choose a bicycle that is difficult to ride or not fit to your frame. Choose something simple and of a good size for your build.
    Manage Necessary Repairs. Just like cars, bikes will need certain maintenance throughout the year. Be sure that you are correcting minor issues before they become big problems. Look for tire damage, lagging brakes, or imperfections in the frame.
    Wear a Helmet. We preach it to our children, but far too many adults choose to ride without head gear. Be smart and keep yourself safe. Buy a helmet that fits well and is rated for regular cycling.
    Outfit Yourself Accordingly. Know what the weather has in store for your daily commute and ensure that your clothes are bright enough to attract the attention of motorists.
    Know the Important Numbers. First and foremost, 9-1-1 is an important phone number, but also know if your insurance company covers you in the event of a bicycle accident and know how to reach them if something like that should occur. You should also write down your personal injury attorney’s phone number and have that on hand, in case a driver’s negligence leads you to be injured during your commute.