12 Tips for Surviving Bike to Work Day

How cyclists are preparing for May 17


Published:

Bike to Work
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock (Rikard Stadler)

Last year, 7,265 San Diegans rolled into the office on two wheels (okay, 14,530 wheels) during a record-breaking Bike to Work Day.

Here at the magazine, our senior marketing designer Corey Hollister will be biking a whopping FIVE HOUR round-trip—from Oceanside to downtown San Diego. That’s 90 miles total! Naturally, we thought he was a good one to give us some advice. See below! (And check back tomorrow to see how his morning commute went.)

1. Plan your route. Take in consideration traffic, closed roads, etc., and give yourself extra time for emergencies like a flat tire. If you’re casually riding, assume you’ll go about 12 miles an hour.

2. Alert your boss that you’ll be biking to work. In case you’re late.

3. Make sure your bike is in tip-top shape. The ride will be harder, the worse shape it's in. Tires should be fully inflated and the chain lubricated and moving freely. If in doubt, take it to a local bike shop. It’s good to stock up on a spare tube, bike pump, and tools in case you get a flat (Corey rides with a spare tube, CO2, a patch kit, a bike tool, and a tire lever).

4. Dress properly. Tomorrow's forecast is a high of 67 degrees, 10% chance of rain, and 68% humidity. If you don’t have the full Spandex cycling outfit, just remember that lightweight, comfortable, non-restrictive clothing is best. For the morning, it'd be great to have a light jacket that you could shed. And don’t forget a helmet!

5. Clean up when you get there. Ideally, your office building has a gym with showers. If not, perhaps a friend or family member lives nearby and you could freshen up there. You could also try that hairspray stuff that makes your hair look less sweaty and oily.

6. Remember sunscreen and sunglasses. While it’s supposed to be cloudy tomorrow morning, the ride home should be sunny! Depending on your work hours—if you’re going to ride in the dark, get a bike light in the front and rear.

7. Eat a light breakfast so you have fuel. Don’t ride on an empty stomach. Skip the coffee before the long journey.

8. Hydrate! Experts recommend 20 ounces every hour. Bring a Camelbak or water bottles. And eat something every hour, like a Clif Bar!

9. Start slow. Get your legs warmed up, blood flowing, heart-rate up. Rest your legs before hills so you don’t burn out.

10. Break up the journey with markers you can see coming. Mini-goals are more obtainable. Corey looks for markers like the top of a hill and tells himself, “I want to make it there.” A good mantra that works: before my first half-marathon, the fitness director-turned-deputy editor at SELF told me, “Mind over miles, Erin!”

11. Obey all bicycle and traffic laws. Here they are, in case you need a refresher, from the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition.

12. Get free stuff. Register at iCommuteSD to qualify for the free snacks and t-shirt at designated pit stops. The iCommute trip tracker will also tell you how much gas you’ve saved. Strava is another fun way to track your ride and share it on Facebook. There’s also MapMyRide.

For more advice and anecdotes, two cycling San Diegans demystify the commute here.

 

More »Related Stories

Top Docs 2014: Meet some Local Heroes

San Diego doctors and medical researchers are busy trying to save the world

San Diego Thanksgiving Guide 2014

Where to dine out, order catering, buy pies, and turkey-trot your way through the holiday

South of the Border in Beer (and Bites)

Latino-owned breweries prove that Mexican beer is more than lager with a slice of lime

Subscribe to the Blog

 


Cityfiles

Local News Updates And Things To Do In San Diego

About This Blog

San Diego Magazine's editorial staff (Erin Chambers Smith + Erin Meanley + Kimberly Cunningham + a handful of smart, thoughtful contributors)  and web designer (Sanna Coates) blog everything from restaurants and bars to behind the scenes gossip to the best events happening this weekend. Looking for foodie and restaurant guru Troy Johnson? He's got his own blog here.

Recent Posts

Archives

Feed

Atom Feed Subscribe to the Cityfiles Feed »

Most Popular

  1. Secret San Diego
    Psst! You didn’t hear it from us, but this town has all kinds of "hidden gems" (yes, we said it). And we’re not talking ghost stories at the Hotel Del.
  2. FIRST LOOK: Bottega Americano
    With Bottega Americano opening this weekend, Downtown gets its first gourmet food hall
  3. FIRST LOOK: Fairweather
    Anthony Schmidt tackles "sunny" vacation drinks at Downtown's new patio bar
  4. The Baja Moment
    In eight short years, Baja’s gone from a virtual dead zone to one of the globe’s top food and drink destinations. Now what?
  5. INCOMING: Duke's
    Iconic Top of the Cove restaurant location gets new life
  6. Wake Up And Smell the Coffee
    As American coffee culture moves past the nonfat vanilla lattes toward a more elevated brew, San Diego is right on trend