The Benefits of Cycling to Work
Though we might not like to admit it, there are many of us in the UK who aren’t particularly fit or active. It can be difficult to establish a regular exercise routine around a busy lifestyle and full work schedule. However, it is possible to integrate your working day with a workout. If you want to engage in an activity that fits around work and leisure time, cycling to work is an effective method for boosting your health and vitality.
If you live in a big city and drive to work, you’ll know how long the rush hour feels. Cycling can halve the time it takes to reach your place of employment in busy metropolitan areas. You’ll avoid the stressful scenarios of the daily commute, such as sitting through stagnant traffic jams, and enjoy the benefit of exercise along the way.
Cycling is an ideal means of boosting stamina and motivation. Energy levels rise when you exercise and the fatigue you experience after a period of physical activity helps to promote deep sleep for effective recuperation. Physical activity also helps boost your immune system and digestive system, helping you to lose weight, while the brain benefits from the cardio-respiratory fitness you get cycling to work, increasing alertness and concentration.
Cycling to work can also contribute towards a positive impact on the environment due to the reduction in air pollution that occurs as a result of abstaining from using diesel or petrol powered vehicles.
Top tips for cycling to work
Always research your route before you get going. Look for cycle lanes and back roads that will keep you off the main thoroughfares wherever possible. It is best not to think like a car driver when route planning, but focus on roads accessible for cyclists. Make sure that you keep safe and avoid busy main roads when possible. Remember that it is illegal to jump traffic lights or ride on pavements when cycling.
Ensure that you can be seen by drivers and other road users. In daylight, it is recommended that you wear high-visibility clothing. In addition, at dusk or when it is dark it is important to have a flashing light at the back of your bicycle and a strong light at the front. Flashing lights fitted to the front and back of high-visibility jackets or vests are also available.
Wear a helmet. In the event of an accident, it could save your life.
Make sure that your employer has a safe and secure place for you to park your cycle at work. It is possible to fit around 20 cycles into one car parking space, so it makes sense for employers to encourage people who can to commute by bike. Good signage, bike racks and shelters can help promote the message for both workers and their bosses.
Understand how your bike works so that if you have a technical problem, such as a flat tyre, you can deal with it.
Remember that cycling is an excellent way to exercise. It will make you healthier, save you money and will remove the stresses associated with driving.