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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    23

    Communting to work 28 miles round trip - Newbie

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    Hello Everyone,

    My name is Sabrina and I am returning to biking. I want to begin communting to work. I have taken the traffic safety biking classes. My bike is currently being serviced and should be ready in the next week. While I am waiting on my bike (Samatha's) return I want to prepare for the commute.

    My question is - I have googled my route to work 14 miles / 28 miles round trip. I am wondering if this will too much? I workout regularly even through I am overweight.


    My reason for communting - Get to know my new city (Dallas) I love it here. I need to lose weight. And I like to bike... its so much fun.

    I will be purchasinig a rack with Panniers also to help with clothing and basic supplies.

    Rina

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Posts
    5,269
    Welcome to TE and to commuting!!

    It kinda depends. Can your ride 14 miles right now comfortably? If so, then 28 should be no problem since you're splitting it in two, with a little work thrown in between. Also, if there's the possibility of catching a bus along the route if you find yourself running low on daylight or energy, or the weather just turns sour- that would be a great thing to have as a back-up.
    If you're in good shape already, then I see no problem! Sounds like the perfect way to get to know your new city, and to get some great exercise/stress relief in every day!!
    Check out my running blog: www.turtlepacing.blogspot.com

    Cervelo P2C (tri bike)
    Bianchi Eros (commuter/touring road bike)

    1983 Motobecane mixte (commuter/errand bike)
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,144
    When I commuted, it was almost exactly the same length. It was not enough to be overwhelming and just enough to feel "good." I did it consistently twice a week. If you can ride 14 miles now, you can do this commute. I always went slower in the morning...
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
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    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,834
    My commute is about that long. It gets easier the more you do it. I often take a longer, prettier route if I have time. Remember that the shortest route may not be the best or fastest. Plan around traffic if you can. Sometimes, 15 minutes can make a world of difference. Sometimes there's a parallel road to the busy one that is better for cycling on.

    Food is your fuel. Make sure you eat something before your evening ride. I usually have a yogurt and some nuts.

    You're going to love it!
    '02 Eddy Merckx Fuga, Selle An Atomica
    '85 Eddy Merckx Professional, Selle An Atomica

    '10 Soma Double Cross DC, Selle An Atomica

    Slacker on wheels.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    23

    Awesome

    Thanks Everyone, I am really excited about getting my cardio in the mornings. Now I have to get a safety kit together.

    1. pump
    2. patch kit
    3. Rain gear

    I know more to come...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,063
    That's about my commute. I've been doing it for a year now. My weight is finally under control (woohoo!). Obviously, I think it is a doable distance. That said....

    Don't underestimate how much work it is. Prior to commuting I rode about 100-150 miles/week. Most of it was on the weekend, but I also rode 2-3 days during the week. It took me several months for me to adjust to the distance of the commute and be able to do the 5 days/week bike commute. Heck, I'd say that commuting 5 days/week is harder than riding a couple of days/week with a century on the weekend.

    So, I'd recommend you start easy. Do a couple of days/week. When your body says that's easy, add another. Remember the idea of easy days where you ride at a pace that mimics a saunter, even if the wind is blowing hard.

    Enjoy the commute. It is a great way to get your exercise. There is nothing better than a commute home to shake off the stress of work.

    Oh, yeah...and for getting to know your city? I've lived here for 50-some years, but in the last year I've learned things about my city I never knew--you're right, commuting is a great way to get to know the neighborhoods you ride through.
    Last edited by Thorn; 04-15-2012 at 03:45 PM.
    2009 Waterford RS-14 S&S Couplers - Brooks B68-Anatomica - Traveller
    2008 Waterford RS-33 - Brooks B68-Anatomica - Go Fast
    2012 Waterford Commuter - Brooks B68-Anatomica - 3.5-Season/Commuter
    2011 Surly Troll - Brooks B68 Imperial - Snow Beast

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,982
    I did a 30 km. work commute round trip by bike daily for 7 months of the year for about a decade when I lived in Toronto. Other years in that city, it was a 18 km. round trip for a different work location.

    Really, it got me back into shape after each winter. Usually I would take 3-4 days off from bike commuting per month during the cycling months. But as people know, your body gets hooked to cycling! I was lucky enough in those days, to jump onto the subway when the weather was lousy or I was feellng cycling-burnt out.

    Now it's way shorter where I live now that I wish I did have at least a 20 km. round trip ..but it's up to me to extend bike commute trip after work.

    28 mile round trip would have been my absolute limit without feeling I was spending lots of time cycling to get to and from work daily.
    Last edited by shootingstar; 04-16-2012 at 03:26 AM.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know what’s in a person’s heart.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,738
    My commute is ~9 miles each way. I find that the distance is reasonable, but the intensity of the ride combined with the extra effort to carry stuff can really wear me out. If I want enough "gas in the tank" for long weekend rides, I have to limit my commuting to 2-3 days a week.

    That said, I love commuting, and I think that you should give it a try!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083
    Thorn has very good points. It's a fine distance, but riding that far every day is quite a drain on your energy unless you've already been riding regularly. It may sound a lot shorter than a long weekend ride, but you don't get days to recuperate. Going out to ride twice a day no matter the weather is also more of a challenge for your mind. And you get to do it all over the next day.

    Take your time, increase gently and let your body get used to it, and don't be discouraged if you suddenly feel very slow, or need a day or three off. It's terrific exercise and a great way to start and end your work day. I'm sure you'll find yourself completely addicted

    There's a ton of good info here for commuters, and feel free to ask any questions at all.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    perpetual traveler
    Posts
    1,302
    One thing to consider is commuting three days a week, leaving off Monday and Friday. Monday you can bring in work clothes and any other supplies you need. Friday you can take home bike clothes that you left at work. This gives you a chance to adapt to biking. And you are fresh for a long weekend ride if you want one.

    Another way to get into it gently is to drive in to work, bike home, and the next morning bike in to work, taking the car back home at the end of the day. This gives you a one way commute if you have a safe place to leave your car at work.

    Enjoy!
    Trek Madone 4.7 WSD
    Cannondale Quick4
    1969 Schwinn Collegiate, original owner
    Terry Classic


    Richard Feynman: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool.”

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,144
    Yes, I commuted 2 days a week for all of the above reasons. I brought clothes in on Mondays and home on Fridays. I wanted to be fresh for weekend riding and have at least one day a week where I could ride after work. There was also less of a temptation to wimp out, because I wasn't over tired from commuting 5 days a week.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

 

 

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