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Cycling

Cycling to Work Should be Your #1 New Year’s Resolution

Every year is a clean slate to set new goals, and for most of us that means setting goals for our fitness and mental wellbeing – but if you spend every day sitting in traffic, followed by eight hours of sitting behind a desk, it can be a little hard to keep the motivation after a long day. That’s why cycling to work should be your top New Year’s resolution!

Cycling to work has numerous benefits that can help you stick to your New Year’s resolutions. Want to get fit or lose weight? Tick. Want to rack up more training miles? Tick. Want to feel less stressed, less anxious, and more productive? Tick, tick, tick!

Here’s why you should make cycling to work your number one New Year’s resolution, and how you can get started.

 

Is Australia Bike-Friendly?

Unlike smaller countries, like the Netherlands or Denmark, you can’t consider the bike-friendliness of Australia on a countrywide level. Instead, cycling comfortably to work depends on which city you live in.

In 2021, the US-based cycling advocacy group PeopleForBikes conducted their annual City Ratings report that looked at 35 Australian cities and assessed their cycling-friendliness based on the quality and connectivity of the bicycle network and citizens’ perceptions of how safe and accessible cycling is.

 

 

According to their report, these are the top 10 cities for cyclists in Australia:

  1. Canberra (ACT)
  2. Alice Springs (NT)
  3. Melbourne (Vic)
  4. Sydney (NSW)
  5. Eurobodalla (Batemans Bay & south coast NSW)
  6. Brisbane (Qld) 
  7. Perth (WA)
  8. Adelaide (SA)
  9. Unley (inner southern Adelaide)
  10. Fraser Coast (Hervey Bay, Maryborough Qld)

 

Cycling to Work Adds to Your Training Miles

Like many of us, the chances are you made at least one cycling resolution for New Year’s.

According to MapMyRun, miles ridden isn’t the be-all-end-all of cycling training. Instead, you should look at all of the following factors together:

Many studies prove that those who cycle to work are happier than those who drive or take public transport. Cycling releases endorphins, which are natural mood-enhancing hormones, and decreases your cortisol and adrenaline levels (both of which contribute to stress and anxiety).

If that isn’t enough motivation to hop on your bike, there are some additional benefits to cycling that you can’t recreate by going to the gym or cycling on a stationary bike. Green exercise (exercise in natural environments) has been shown to improve mood, increase Vitamin D, boost self-esteem, and add social and entertainment value to your exercise. Along with the scientifically proven benefits of riding your bike to commute, some others are harder to measure – like interacting more with your community and keeping your mind engaged by experiencing new routes.  Plus, if you have a hectic work schedule or busy family life that cuts into how much time you have to exercise or get outdoors during the week, your morning commute can act as “me time,” exercise, and an opportunity to get some fresh air all in one go. Win-win-win.

 

Cycling to Work Protects the Planet

Currently, almost 87% of Australians commute by car, and in Australia, road-based pollution contributes to a more significant proportion of CO2 emissions than the global average. When deciding whether to change your morning commute to cycling, it doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing choice.  Research has shown that commuting by bike instead of driving just one day a week makes a significant dent in your carbon emissions. If your commute is too long or strenuous to do by bike, consider buying an ebike. You can also use a combination of public transport, carpooling, and cycling to reach your destination.  Just because you can’t commute by bike every day or all the way to your destination doesn’t mean you should scrap the idea altogether! Incremental changes to your lifestyle can make a big difference to the planet.

 

Make Your Commute Easy with an eBike

If your commute is too long or difficult to ride, you’re unfit, or you have a disability, an ebike might be your perfect match.  eBikes have become the go-to bike for commuters who want a functional bike that can get them from A to B without breaking a sweat – literally. A study by RedBull shows that those who commute by ebike sweat 300% less than those who ride a regular bicycle, making it an easy choice for commuters who don’t want to change out of sweaty cycling clothes once they reach the office. Unlike electric cars, ebikes don’t need specialised charging stations. This means you can travel with peace of mind knowing that you can charge your ebike at the office, coffee shop, or home without any additional gadgets.

 

Is Your Bicycle Covered During Your Commute?

As demand for bicycles booms, unfortunately so has theft. According to a study by Bicycle Network, the only LGAs in Victoria where bicycle thefts didn’t increase in 2021 were Wodonga, Ballarat, and Campaspe. With these statistics, it’s not surprising that many people want to ensure that their bicycles are covered. Whether you have a brand new or dearly beloved bicycle, you probably remember that it didn’t come cheap. Specialist bicycle insurance from Velosure covers your bike against many of the dangers it’ll face outside of the home, such as theft, accidental damage, and malicious damage. 

 

Tips for Your First Cycling Commute

 

 

  • Don’t think of cycling to work as simply a New Year’s resolution. It’s a lifestyle change that you ideally want to keep up for the rest of your life. Changing your habits is a marathon, not a race. Go easy on yourself if you miss a day due to bad weather, running late, or simply being tired. Simply try again tomorrow!
  • In all Australian states, it’s mandatory to wear a helmet while cycling. While it isn’t illegal to wear headphones while cycling, you must be able to hear ambient sounds around you for your safety. Unless your route takes you on a motorist-free bike path, you should skip the music or podcast during your commute.
  • Watch your luggage. A backpack is far easier to carry than a shoulder-slung laptop bag. Consider fitting a pannier rack to your bike if you regularly need to bring items to work.
  • Don’t pressure yourself to go from driving to work to completely switching your commute. Start with just one day or one segment per week and build up over time.
  • If your commute is more than 30 minutes or is physically demanding, consider riding to work in cycling gear and changing at the office. If it’s an easy ride that won’t leave you sweaty, you can wear your work clothes for your commute.
  • Wear bright, reflective clothing that makes you visible to motorists. If you don’t want to take a change of clothes to work, you can put on a hi-vis vest or jacket over your outfit.
  • Dry run your route on a day that you aren’t working so you know how long it will take. It’s much better to know this beforehand than deal with the stress of wondering whether you’ll be late for work.
  • Tailor your route to avoid as much traffic as possible. While this might mean you need to take a longer way, it’ll be much more enjoyable than contending with motorists and car fumes.
  • Get your bicycle insured by Velosure so that your bike is covered in the event of theft (from and away from home), accidental damage, malicious damage, and more.

Issued by The Hollard Insurance Company AFSL 241436. Consider the PDS and TMD on Velosure.com.au

  • The time you ride
  • The distance you ride
  • The number of days you ride
  • The quality of your intense days

Not only does cycling to work add to your training miles, but it also counts towards the time you spend riding every week. While your ride to work won’t be your most intense ride of the week, every little bit helps!

 

Commuting by Bike Makes You Happier and Healthier

Many studies prove that those who cycle to work are happier than those who drive or take public transport. Cycling releases endorphins, which are natural mood-enhancing hormones, and decreases your cortisol and adrenaline levels (both of which contribute to stress and anxiety).

If that isn’t enough motivation to hop on your bike, there are some additional benefits to cycling that you can’t recreate by going to the gym or cycling on a stationary bike. Green exercise (exercise in natural environments) has been shown to improve mood, increase Vitamin D, boost self-esteem, and add social and entertainment value to your exercise. Along with the scientifically proven benefits of riding your bike to commute, some others are harder to measure – like interacting more with your community and keeping your mind engaged by experiencing new routes.  Plus, if you have a hectic work schedule or busy family life that cuts into how much time you have to exercise or get outdoors during the week, your morning commute can act as “me time,” exercise, and an opportunity to get some fresh air all in one go. Win-win-win.

 

Cycling to Work Protects the Planet

Currently, almost 87% of Australians commute by car, and in Australia, road-based pollution contributes to a more significant proportion of CO2 emissions than the global average. When deciding whether to change your morning commute to cycling, it doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing choice.  Research has shown that commuting by bike instead of driving just one day a week makes a significant dent in your carbon emissions. If your commute is too long or strenuous to do by bike, consider buying an ebike. You can also use a combination of public transport, carpooling, and cycling to reach your destination.  Just because you can’t commute by bike every day or all the way to your destination doesn’t mean you should scrap the idea altogether! Incremental changes to your lifestyle can make a big difference to the planet.

 

Make Your Commute Easy with an eBike

If your commute is too long or difficult to ride, you’re unfit, or you have a disability, an ebike might be your perfect match.  eBikes have become the go-to bike for commuters who want a functional bike that can get them from A to B without breaking a sweat – literally. A study by RedBull shows that those who commute by ebike sweat 300% less than those who ride a regular bicycle, making it an easy choice for commuters who don’t want to change out of sweaty cycling clothes once they reach the office. Unlike electric cars, ebikes don’t need specialised charging stations. This means you can travel with peace of mind knowing that you can charge your ebike at the office, coffee shop, or home without any additional gadgets.

 

Is Your Bicycle Covered During Your Commute?

As demand for bicycles booms, unfortunately so has theft. According to a study by Bicycle Network, the only LGAs in Victoria where bicycle thefts didn’t increase in 2021 were Wodonga, Ballarat, and Campaspe. With these statistics, it’s not surprising that many people want to ensure that their bicycles are covered. Whether you have a brand new or dearly beloved bicycle, you probably remember that it didn’t come cheap. Specialist bicycle insurance from Velosure covers your bike against many of the dangers it’ll face outside of the home, such as theft, accidental damage, and malicious damage. 

 

Tips for Your First Cycling Commute

 

 

  • Don’t think of cycling to work as simply a New Year’s resolution. It’s a lifestyle change that you ideally want to keep up for the rest of your life. Changing your habits is a marathon, not a race. Go easy on yourself if you miss a day due to bad weather, running late, or simply being tired. Simply try again tomorrow!
  • In all Australian states, it’s mandatory to wear a helmet while cycling. While it isn’t illegal to wear headphones while cycling, you must be able to hear ambient sounds around you for your safety. Unless your route takes you on a motorist-free bike path, you should skip the music or podcast during your commute.
  • Watch your luggage. A backpack is far easier to carry than a shoulder-slung laptop bag. Consider fitting a pannier rack to your bike if you regularly need to bring items to work.
  • Don’t pressure yourself to go from driving to work to completely switching your commute. Start with just one day or one segment per week and build up over time.
  • If your commute is more than 30 minutes or is physically demanding, consider riding to work in cycling gear and changing at the office. If it’s an easy ride that won’t leave you sweaty, you can wear your work clothes for your commute.
  • Wear bright, reflective clothing that makes you visible to motorists. If you don’t want to take a change of clothes to work, you can put on a hi-vis vest or jacket over your outfit.
  • Dry run your route on a day that you aren’t working so you know how long it will take. It’s much better to know this beforehand than deal with the stress of wondering whether you’ll be late for work.
  • Tailor your route to avoid as much traffic as possible. While this might mean you need to take a longer way, it’ll be much more enjoyable than contending with motorists and car fumes.
  • Get your bicycle insured by Velosure so that your bike is covered in the event of theft (from and away from home), accidental damage, malicious damage, and more.

Issued by The Hollard Insurance Company AFSL 241436. Consider the PDS and TMD on Velosure.com.au

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