5 Reasons To Ditch The Car And Bike To Work

By Janice Larsen
Updated April 10, 2015
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5 Reasons To Ditch The Car And Bike To WorkIn the United States, our sprawling cities have made biking to work more difficult, and our automobile-oriented culture means that almost everyone drives to work. If you can ditch the car and bike to work instead, there are some really big benefits.

1.) It's Great Exercise.

Most people these days don't get enough exercise. Making time to get to the gym isn't always easy with a hectic work and family schedule. If you can use your commute time to get some exercise, it saves you time and it's healthy too.

Biking burns about 35 to 70 calories per mile, depending on your weight, speed, and the terrain you're covering. A typical figure is that someone might burn 250 calories each day just riding to work and back. Driving burns almost no calories, so switching to a bike is a big exercise boost. The average person who makes the switch loses 13 pounds the first year.

2.) It Helps Relieve Stress.

A lot of people have high stress jobs, plus additional stress from family responsibilities and financial pressures. Getting into the car at the end of the day and facing the traffic jams heading home just builds that stress. On the other hand, getting on a bike can help you pedal that stress away. It gets your blood flowing after a day of sitting at a desk, and it helps you unplug from the work environment, as the only thing on your mind becomes making it up that hill.

3.) It's Fun.

Children love the feeling of freedom and joy they get from biking, but many adults have lost that over time. If you get back on a bike, you can rediscover the happiness it used to bring you. Breathe in the fresh air, and feel the wind as you accelerate. When you're not cooped up in a car, you can smell freshly cut grass, and enjoy the bright blue sky. You can hear the songs of the birds, or watch a squirrel scurry up a tree. You're connected to the world around you, rather than insulated from it inside your car. It is a happier way to start and end your workday.

4.) There's Little Maintenance.

Cars require maintenance, and it is generally complicated and expensive. There are so many things that can go wrong with a car, and repair bills can easily be hundreds or thousands of dollars. For a bicycle, you can probably do all the maintenance yourself, with a little helpful instruction. Check out your local bike store. They are usually happy to answer any questions, provide some guidance, and make sure you find the parts that you need.

5.) You Can Save A Lot Of Money.

You can get a cheap bike and make a few easy repairs to it for a very low price. The operating cost of a bicycle is next to nothing - all you need to do is replace the occasional inner tube or tighten the brakes. You never need to visit a gas station, and the sticker shock of a fill-up can be a thing of the past. If you normally pay for parking, that can be another money saver. Riding a bike to work saves many people $50 to $100 per month.

* Disclaimer:
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.