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Thread: Article: How Far is Too Far to Bike to Work

  1. #21
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    I'm still wrapping my mind around the intersection of cycling advice and oil-based hair styling products.

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  3. #22
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    All of the women at work that I have tried to convert to bike commuting have cited safety concerns, esp at dark, as being a major issue. The second issue is grooming/clothes.

    I can attest to both. I don't feel safe traveling at night along the W&OD in many areas though I'm okay on the MVT. The Custis scares me at night because of the moguls, grooves and icy spots.

    Oddly travelling through DC at rush hour rarely bothers me at all though I find it frustratingly slow. I also worry about breathing in that much exhaust.

    I have major hair issues. I have long, frizzy hair that may look great after I've spent 15 minutes flat ironing it at home but looks like I stuck my finger in a socket by the time I get to work after a 28 minute commute regardless of the weather. In the summer I wind up with very sweaty, frizzy hair and my new office doesn't have a gym or showers. It is further complicated by the fact that the A/C in my office is practically non-functional. Trust me guys, it can be a major hassle, if not an impossible task, to look 100% put together for a lady bike commuter. I am seriously envious of guys with crew cuts!

    I just spent $40 on a mini flat iron which I hope will allow me to look more presentable at work. It doesn't help that I share an office with a guy who simply doesn't understand why I have a drawer full of high heels. Sigh.
    Last edited by KLizotte; 02-28-2017 at 10:20 AM.

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  5. #23
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    I liked the article! Thought it to be about right although I do have to agree with bobco

    I have commuted to work everyday for about 3 years now..I'm not sure how to get to my office by car any more!

    Here are my motivating hints:

    1) My commute can be as short as 5 miles but I usually do 10 - 16...but just knowing that I could do it in 20 min door to door gets me on my bike everyday...after 2 miles I usually decide to make it longer.
    2) I do have a daughter and at times I need to get home faster so I'll either do the 5 miles or take an Uber (very rare)
    3) The dark doesn't bother me on any trail or street, in my mind I tell myself I'm too fast for anyone to stop me...
    4) I have quiet a few shoes, dresses, undergarments and makeup that I keep at the office.
    5) $$ saving...garage fees, gas, car maintenance, parking tickets, and I have little need to join a gym!

    I wish I could go car free...but that kid I mentioned plays softball and I can't seem to get her equipment to fit in my panniers!





    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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  7. #24
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    It's about 22 miles for me one way to work, so a 44 mile roundtrip commute. Door-to-door I'm just as fast or faster on my bike as it is if I take the Metro door-to-door (which first involves a short walk, a short bus ride to the Metro, and then a short walk on the other end to work). So, I don't gain more family time, get home quicker, or any of that jazz by not riding my bike.

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  9. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvcalhoun View Post
    At my age, I'm not sure 500 miles a day would be enough!
    I recall you saying that you've lost a good amount of weight from biking, so at least better naked. Hopefully, at least feel better. I've lost about 35 pounds since I started regularly biking a year and a half ago. This year's Freezing Saddles has shaved another 5 lbs off of me even though I'm eating massive amounts of food. I would probably bike a lot more if I could find two more hours in the day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    I recall you saying that you've lost a good amount of weight from biking, so at least better naked. Hopefully, at least feel better. I've lost about 35 pounds since I started regularly biking a year and a half ago. This year's Freezing Saddles has shaved another 5 lbs off of me even though I'm eating massive amounts of food. I would probably bike a lot more if I could find two more hours in the day.
    Alas, since I started bike commuting 25 miles a day, I've actually gained weight. Body fat percentage has gone down, so I guess the extra is muscle, but it's still demoralizing.

  11. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by KLizotte View Post
    Trust me guys, it can be a major hassle if not an impossible task to look 100% put together for a lady bike commuter. I am seriously envious of guys with crew cuts.
    When I get my hair done, I always tell the stylist "this needs to look good with little to no work after I pull a bike helmet off my head". They usually look at me like I just asked them for a baby unicorn.

    But having a ton of straight, fine hair does mean styling is easy--my hair is always flat, or flatter regardless of how much work I put into it! I found adding tons of layers helped me look presentable quickly, along with some volumizing and texturizing spray. But I am lucky to have a gym with showers, so I can rinse off and put myself mostly together. The women I work with who have more intense makeup/hair routines often cite that as a reason they don't want to bike to work or go to the gym in the morning--it's just a pain to do all of that curling and clipping in a crowded humid locker room.

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  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emm View Post
    When I get my hair done, I always tell the stylist "this needs to look good with little to no work after I pull a bike helmet off my head". They usually look at me like I just asked them for a baby unicorn.

    But having a ton of straight, fine hair does mean styling is easy--my hair is always flat, or flatter regardless of how much work I put into it! I found adding tons of layers helped me look presentable quickly, along with some volumizing and texturizing spray. But I am lucky to have a gym with showers, so I can rinse off and put myself mostly together. The women I work with who have more intense makeup/hair routines often cite that as a reason they don't want to bike to work or go to the gym in the morning--it's just a pain to do all of that curling and clipping in a crowded humid locker room.
    I'm in the same position, except that my hair is so thin that it is very difficult to get it to hold a style at all. I don't wear make-up, and go for hairstyles that require minimal effort. But then again, I did that before I biked--I just couldn't see spending any great amount of time on hair and make-up.
    Last edited by cvcalhoun; 02-28-2017 at 10:23 AM.

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvcalhoun View Post
    Alas, since I started bike commuting 25 miles a day, I've actually gained weight. Body fat percentage has gone down, so I guess the extra is muscle, but it's still demoralizing.
    I know from personal experience that it is possible to be losing weight even when the scale says otherwise (exchanging fat for muscle). Best thing to do is to get out a pair of trousers that fits one size too small. Try them on every week and see if they fit a little better. Only try them on for a minute or two else you will start stretching them out. If all goes well, you will eventually be able to wear them comfortably! I've dropped a size since the beginning of December despite being sick with a sinus infection for two months. Still got a few more sizes to go.

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  16. #30
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    The big issue that the article and this discussion has ignored is type of bike. I'd agree that 10 miles on a flat-bar is nutter.

    But there are more types of bikes than are dreamt of in your philosophy. There are ebikes that make 10-miles each way easy. There are cargo bikes that enable kid- (and softball-equipment-) hauling. And there are e-cargo-bikes that allow some of us to do the dance of dropping off kids and getting to work and responding to emergencies, while reaping the benefits of getting (moderate) exercise, reduced cost, and more certainty as to travel time (and probably reduced time spent in travel too).

    In other words, join those of us on cargo ebikes, and you can tote your kids around, park for free and get to work without being sweaty!

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