We're hearing that a lot of our key workers are reaching for their bike as a way of avoiding public transport for the commutes - so we hit up the Endura commute crew (who are sadly not riding in to the office at the moment) for ten top tips for those new to bike commuting or returning to it after avoiding the worst of winter’s crappy weather.
Firstly, it not all or nothing – we can’t all make the full time switch to bike commuting; real life often gets in the way and it’s all too easy to decide that you can’t make it work, even for a two or three days. Go on, you totally can.
Give your bike a once over and keep it in good nick – there are lots of great “how to fix” tutorials on YouTube that can help. If you don’t know how to fix something then it won’t take long to Google it and find out how to repair a puncture, tune skipping gears or replace a gummed up brake cable.
If you’re trying your commute for the first time, then a dry run at the weekend is a great way to work out whether it all works seamlessly.
Gather together a little commuting repair kit and tuck it away in your backpack, saddle bag or whatever you use to carry kit. We’d start with a decent pump, a spare tube or two, tyre levers, a good quality multi-tool (with a chain splitter) and a quick link for your drive chain. If you’ve got room then a drop in a pair of latex gloves and a CO2 inflator – you’ll thank us for the last two after a puncture on a rainy day.
There are more than one way to skin a commute. Maybe drive in / ride home / ride in / drive home. Or perhaps catch the train halfway and riding in from there or train in and ride home?
Lay it out – make sure your next day’s kit is prep’d - out and ready to go the night before and ready to slip into – be more like Wallace. Check the forecast and make sure you have a waterproof if you need one and ditch it if you don’t.
Have a think about where and how you lock your bike. We’re lucky with a bike rack in front of our reception area and a bike shelter tucked away at our HQ. You might not be so lucky. Avoid places where thieves get a free run at your pride and joy. Invest in locks – leaving the lock overnight saves having to lug it around too.
Work out where you can dry kit during the day – wring it out first and chance are it’ll be pretty dry by home time.
Treat yourself to a second breakfast when you arrive at work – a jam jar with a dollop of Skyr, a squeeze of syrup topped with muesli is our post-commute snack of choice at the moment.
Stash a set of underwear somewhere at work. You will forget at least once. Going commando and breezy ankles can be avoided...