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How important is bicycling to you?

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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

How important is bicycling to you?

Old 10-03-12, 05:21 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by bjjoondo View Post
We can't afford a car, it just put's too much stress on our meger budget, I have two very mean forms of arthritis and it makes walking a chore. Although it still hurts to ride a bicycle, I can actually get somewhere at a distance in a decent time frame and I REALLY do not like riding the city bus due to bladder control problems in my being 50+. I totally MISS owing a motorcycle so we could do "longer distance touring" in a much shorter time span than trying to do it via bicycles. Motorcycles are VERY expensive, upkeep wise, tire's are insanely priced for the few miles you get out them, maint. shop time is close to $100 an hour, nowadays and accessiories are even more expensive. The bicycle is the ONLY "moving vechical" that works for us, we can get to work, get food, haul stuff, ride across town in a fairly short time. Without the bicycle I'd have to walk to the store, haul the food in a two wheeled cart, hassle getting that kinda load on a city bus, we'd be STUCK to this area only for recreation, ect. My bicycles are extremly important to ME!
Not sure how cycling and arthritis play together. Since it's generally how impact, it's easier on your joints. But there are some cycling styles that might not work too well. If you have to do a lot of hills, good idea to get really low gearing and spin up the hill.

I have some arthritic pain in my hands from time to time and if you do, might be an idea to have a more upright riding position... although that will slow you down in wind and even just regular pedaling.
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Old 10-04-12, 12:30 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
Ice is easily avoided. Don't ride after ice storms, or any time when you think it might be too slippery. Or you can stick mostly to riding on the arterial roads and intemediate roads that are scraped and salted, and walk your bike on the little side streets. If you follow this plan, you shouldn't even need special tires and riding will be possible many days of the winter.

However, you might find that riding a bike (with studded tires) is easier than walking when it's slick--especially if you're a klutz.
Black ice anyone? Ice is not always predictable.

A coworker rides her bike all winter. Last year she lost control of her bike on a hidden patch of ice, fell, and cracked two ribs. Ouch.

(I'm guessing her situation isn't all that unusual; it could certainly happen to me....)
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Old 10-04-12, 03:48 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by gerv View Post
Not sure how cycling and arthritis play together. Since it's generally how impact, it's easier on your joints. But there are some cycling styles that might not work too well.
I suppose it depends on the individual, but my orthopedist told me bicycling is the best thing for arthritic knees.
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Old 10-04-12, 06:21 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by cycleobsidian View Post
Black ice anyone? Ice is not always predictable.

A coworker rides her bike all winter. Last year she lost control of her bike on a hidden patch of ice, fell, and cracked two ribs. Ouch.

(I'm guessing her situation isn't all that unusual; it could certainly happen to me....)
True black ice is fairly rare, there is plenty of glare ice that is hard to see, however studded tires and careful riding make that a non issue IMHO. If I lived some where ice was a seasonal thing, like Minneapolis I would definitely have a second set of wheels or a second bike set up with studded tires.

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Old 10-04-12, 09:14 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by cycleobsidian View Post
Black ice anyone? Ice is not always predictable.

A coworker rides her bike all winter. Last year she lost control of her bike on a hidden patch of ice, fell, and cracked two ribs. Ouch.

(I'm guessing her situation isn't all that unusual; it could certainly happen to me....)
Black ice is not some mysterious thing like black holes. It's ice that freezes clear, so it's a little harder to see. Usually you can see it fine from the seat of a bike, if you're paying proper attention. It's less visible from a car seat. A small patch of black ice usually won't affect bike handling.

But actually, like I said in an earlier post, my suggestion was for you not to ride in icy conditions. That would be a few days out of the entire winter--possibly more in the mid-southern latitudes. In areas that get a lot of snow, side streets may not get plowed, so they can get icy when the cars pack down the snow. But main streets and intermediate streets are plowed and salted in most locations. 24 hours after a winter storm, they are typically passable by bike or car. Usually in the city or suburb, it's just a matter of walking your bike a couple blocks to a more major street, then riding most of the way to your destination, maybe walking the last couple blocks.

It's up to you, of course, but I think it would be fun and convenient for you to cycle--even on only half the winter days. You seem to have a sense of adventure, so I bet you could really get into it.

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Old 10-04-12, 11:37 AM
  #31  
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Black ice looks just like wet pavement. Which around here, generally surrounds it. We don't get it enough to make me invest in studded tires, thankfully. But it's nasty.
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Old 10-04-12, 05:51 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
True black ice is fairly rare, there is plenty of glare ice that is hard to see, however studded tires and careful riding make that a non issue IMHO. If I lived some where ice was a seasonal thing, like Minneapolis I would definitely have a second set of wheels or a second bike set up with studded tires.

Aaron
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Old 10-04-12, 08:47 PM
  #33  
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i know bicycling is important to me and since my car bit the dust i would love to get ahold of a recumbent trike instead of a bike i'll ride what i got but that is what i want i figure since i'm gonna stay riding this time i might as well get something i would like to ride yeah they are different riding and some are hard to peddle but i think it would be a lot better ride for my situation
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Old 10-05-12, 12:13 AM
  #34  
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Cycling has exceeded any reasonable expectation I might have had when I started, with a vague goal of getting fit. I lost over 100 pounds, I saved enough being carfree to buy my condo, I set and acheived some lofty goals, like a triple century this year.

I'm not burned out yet. I hope to continue into old age in some capacity. I think I'd even enjoy a career in some aspect of cycling, if I could get past the health insurance hurdle.
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Old 10-05-12, 01:07 AM
  #35  
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Black ice anyone? Ice is not always predictable.
Hate the stuff. The only time I ever came off my motorcycle was because of that stuff. Had 200kg of machine come down on my thigh and it was tender for weeks afterwards. As for biking.. if I can ride my motorcycle all through the winter to work then I can ride a bike. It will be warmer at least. If my wife were to say "Stop riding or I'll leave you." Then I guess I'd be single because there is no way I'm stoppping riding.
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Old 10-05-12, 02:55 AM
  #36  
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Riding is very important to me. I turned 71 last month. I ride to keep fit and because I enjoy it. I hope to keep it up for at least another 20 years.
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Old 10-05-12, 10:24 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by krobinson103 View Post
Hate the stuff. The only time I ever came off my motorcycle was because of that stuff. Had 200kg of machine come down on my thigh and it was tender for weeks afterwards. As for biking.. if I can ride my motorcycle all through the winter to work then I can ride a bike. It will be warmer at least. If my wife were to say "Stop riding or I'll leave you." Then I guess I'd be single because there is no way I'm stoppping riding.
Me too, I low sided heading into a shaded curve. At least I didn't get hurt.

I've ridden my motorcycle on lots of ice. I've never felt particularly smart about it though.
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Old 11-04-12, 11:48 AM
  #38  
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I ride in defiance. In rage. In solitude. In despair. When I am blue. It restores me. To hear a little kid wave and say hi to me when I'm on my bike and she on hers with training wheels still mounted. To wander through streets unknown in the dusk of a warm summer evening.

Bicycling is very important to me.
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Old 11-04-12, 12:02 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by longhaulblue View Post
I ride in defiance. In rage. In solitude. In despair. When I am blue. It restores me. To hear a little kid wave and say hi to me when I'm on my bike and she on hers with training wheels still mounted. To wander through streets unknown in the dusk of a warm summer evening.

Bicycling is very important to me.
Nice post! It describes what many of us feel about cycling.
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Old 11-04-12, 12:15 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by longhaulblue View Post
I ride in defiance. In rage. In solitude. In despair. When I am blue. It restores me. To hear a little kid wave and say hi to me when I'm on my bike and she on hers with training wheels still mounted. To wander through streets unknown in the dusk of a warm summer evening.

Bicycling is very important to me.
WOW! I was going to say something like this and after reading your post realized I could not even come close to how you said it. Well said and right on the spot.
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Old 11-12-12, 01:16 PM
  #41  
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My bike has replaced my gym and my car, if I need a car I have money to rent one. The cost of car ownership is not going down. I love having money in the bank, I love being in good shape. i see nothing but win win in this scenario.to sum it up Cycling is everything to me.
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Old 11-14-12, 04:24 AM
  #42  
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I've rode bikes for most of my life. Sometimes because I couldn't afford a car, but mostly just because I like the freedom of riding a bike. The government uses cars, and the so-called 'privilege' of driving, to intimidate, persecute, and take money from people. They can't do that if you ride a bike. I also refuse to pay the ridiculous prices for gasoline. I don't even have a Drivers License anymore (by choice...).

Riding is calming to me, and also satisfies my incessant need for adventure. Every little errand becomes an odyssey. I can go where I want, whenever I want, without having to have governmental permission, or worry about being detained because my papers, and car tags were not in order. I am truly free.....largely because of my bicycles.
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Old 11-14-12, 05:28 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by Schwinnhund View Post

Riding is calming to me, and also satisfies my incessant need for adventure. Every little errand becomes an odyssey.
For me too.
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Old 11-14-12, 05:41 AM
  #44  
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If I'm not riding,you can bet your chainlube that I'm THINKING about riding or bikes in general
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Old 11-14-12, 04:30 PM
  #45  
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The bicycle itself means nothing to me, its just that walking is too slow, cars are too expensive and public transportation usually doesn't go where I want it to go.
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Old 11-14-12, 04:57 PM
  #46  
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It's a great antidepressant.
I defy anyone to stay glum on a bicycle.
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Old 11-15-12, 02:23 PM
  #47  
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Biking is important to me because its my only transportation besides walking, it allows me to get food and supplies, exercise, explore different places and meet new people with out costing too much, and a reliable way to get to work and back.
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Old 11-15-12, 11:15 PM
  #48  
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Bicycling is extremely important to my quality of life. It allows me to be independent and get to places I need to go. I don't like walking (a waste of time unless it is a romantic walk) to destinations beyond 5 blocks. I refuse to take public transit because it's crowded, stinks, expensive, full of loud mouthed a***h, and also a waste of my time. So, by bicycling, I'm independent, save a ton of money, stay fit, and avoid all the hassles mentioned above.

Being in the moment of bicycling is also one of the few moments when my brain isn't thinking. I get into the zone and just ride, and so bicycling for me is a form of meditation where nothing is on my mind at all. Just my legs and body are in motion, mind peaceful and calm (most of the time!). I can't sustain any inner dialogue or story or fantasy when I'm riding my bicycle. I really like this feeling of being completely free of thought on my bicycle. Sometimes I get sad when the ride is over because the thinking starts again!

I spend a lot of time reading bike stuff (news, advocacy, this forum), looking at new bikes, dreaming of new builds...

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Old 11-16-12, 10:55 AM
  #49  
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Bicycling is the rock I hook my mental anchor to for my sanity.

Even if I don't ride ,at times, I still am involved with cycling in some fashion to keep me sane.
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Old 11-16-12, 06:21 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by agent pombero View Post
. It allows me to be independent and get to places I need to go. I don't like walking (a waste of time unless it is a romantic walk) to destinations beyond 5 blocks.
Yep. The bike is a great vehicle for anything over a mile or so. In North America -- with so many spread-out city layouts -- the bicycle is almost essential if you don't have a car.

If you were living in Manhattan though... that might be a different story.
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