Good for the heart and hip pocket

Cyclist riding through a busy roundaboutCommute by bike
The cry that continues to ring out across the nation, “petrol prices are on the rise” is opening the mind of many people as to how to meet the cost of living and keep driving a car.

Cycling to work is a cost- effective means of transport.

At the same time it has the benefit of increasing your health and wellbeing.

It also reduces the fuel bill, not to mention making a contribution to reducing green house emissions and the reduction of car park spaces required.
Selecting a route which is reasonably safe and direct to your place of work does take planning and thought.

The selection of a route may well take into account the use of share bike and walking paths if you have limited skills of riding on the road.

Bendigo has a wonderful network of shared paths and maps are available to assist.
Getting onto one of these paths may require a minor deviation off the direct route but the peace of mind and safety may make this well worthwhile.

Most roads in Bendigo have a designated bike lane.

These are not necessarily continuous and can place you into the main stream of traffic.
It would be good to take note of how continuous the bike lanes are on the route you choose.
Avoiding right-hand turns across traffic pathways needs to be a high priority as these can place you in a vulnerable position on the road.

Keeping clear of roundabouts can be all a matter of timing of the day.

Learning the vehicle flow and volume can dramatically change in a few minutes. Take note when you drive as to how heavy or light traffic is and the time of day that this relates to.

Certain times of the day can be quite hectic and challenging. Even considering how flexible your place of employment is with  work times can make the choice of riding to work more appealing.

Other stumbling blocks for making the decision can be, where do I park my bike? Are there lockers to store a back pack and helmet? This all is part of the assessment and having a store room that can accommodate a bike could be a start.

A simple wall hook could be installed to get the bike up off the floor space and these are readily available and Bicycle Victoria website has this sort of information.Even considering staging your ride time and length by doing only part of the ride and combine with a drive.

Find a friend that is closer than you are and this could be a motivation to make a start.
If you do make a start give yourself plenty of time and even a couple of dummy runs over a weekend can give you the confidence required as to timing and not being late.
Please take into consideration that traffic flows can be different at the weekend so make allowances for this.

Above all, getting a sense of enjoyment and achievement happening, along with making yourself predictable to other shared road users will take the stress out of the experience.

See you on the commuting trail soon. God willing.


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