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Old 27th March 2023, 13:08   #1
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Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

One of my new year resolutions for year 2022 was to start a healthy lifestyle. After pondering over several options, zeroed down on Bicycle commute as the most sustainable one. After pandemic, my office opened in Feb'2022 and that is when I put the resolution to practice. I have been commuting using a bicycle since then and had set a target of completing 4000 kms in FY 2022-23. Just completed the target this week.

Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-final-stat.jpeg

Motivation:
When I mentioned the resolution to my better half, she jokingly commented that "She will give one week to this new resolution before it meets the same fate as other unfulfilled one". This added an extra layer of motivation.

The commute
I live in a housing society very close to Gaimukh on Ghodbunder Road and my office is in Waghle Estate. Total commute distance is 13.3 kms each way. The terrain in way of commute is not exactly flat but there are few undulations. On a everyday basis, commute becomes physically demanding for few stretches.

The Machine
After some research, I decided to go for an Electric bike from Hero. Bike cost me around INR 27,000. Best feature in the bike is pedal assist which gives additional torque on inclined roads. I mostly use the bike in manual mode during my commute and only use pedal assist during steep climbs. With my limited usage, one charge lasts for around 125 kms which gives me 5 days of commute.
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-cycle.jpeg

The Logistics
Our office is located in a co-working facility. During rental negotiation, we had requested for a separate shower room with storage racks etc., which the facility manager complied with. So, every morning, I carry a fresh set of clothes and tiffin box in the saddlebags and carry the soiled clothes back in the evening. Initially I had some reservations on how this will work out but to my surprise, it has worked out excellently.

Route and Safety
Commute route mostly consists of service roads and internal roads which don't have much traffic. I take extra precaution to avoid Ghodbunder Road which is full of high speed and heavy vehicle traffic. On safety side, I wear Helmet and Gloves without fail and have installed fwd and back side safety lights. During evening commute, I also wear a flourescent harness.

Daily Route:
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-route-every-day.jpeg
Service Road during morning commute. A Hanuman temple can be seen by the side:
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-service-road-way.jpeg
Another view of the service Road
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-service-road-way-2.jpeg
This brilliantly lit Yeoor Hill welcomes me every morning:
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-yeoor-hill.jpeg


Benefits

1. Weight loss: Lost around 5 kgs of weight in last one year without any additional effort. I have to admit that loss of weight was less than what I had anticipated but I have also realised that for amateur athletes like us, weight loss is more a function of what we eat than what exercises we do.

2. Better Health: This has been an eye opener. During my annual checkup, discovered that all vitals including BP, Heart functions, Sugar levels have improved by a big factor in last one year. Doctor was also surprised by these improvements. As the stats prove, for same commute my maximum heartbeat has come down by almost 20% in last one year.
Stat for morning commute for 1st week of April'2022
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-stat-later.jpeg
Stat for morning commute for Mar'2023.
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-stat-now.jpeg

3. Time Management: Commute on Bicycle saves me from these deadly traffic jams on Ghodbunder Road and Provides me a better hold on my time. The commute is limited to 50-55 mins each way and doesn't vary much.

4. Cost: An auto or car commute will be minimum 5-6k per month translating to 50k per year. In that respect, the bicycle has already paid for itself.

Summary
It gave me a great sense of achievement that I decided on a resolution and managed to complete it. Also, health benefit is very good. Road Safety is still a bit of concern, which I try to mitigate by avoiding high traffic areas and by being extra vigilant.

Me in morning after commute:
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-individual.jpeg
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Old 28th March 2023, 08:31   #2
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re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Your post is the living proof for " Why are cyclists a disaster for the economy? " Link

I believe your ability to sustain it is the greatest takeaway for me. I use cycle for almost all my shopping needs in a radius of 5 kms. I will take inspiration from this post to push it further !
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Old 28th March 2023, 08:56   #3
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re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Great writeup

Very soon and inadvertently cycling will get into your blood, what is tool to effective Time management will become something more and that's when the fun starts.

Lectro is a good deal immaterial to growing debate on effectiveness and need for electric cycles, its a smart option to two wheelers and should be considered likewise

Wish you the very best of miles cycling
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Old 28th March 2023, 10:06   #4
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Another cyclist from Thane here..Very inspiring indeed

I cycle generally on weekends from Majiwada to Yeoor or Navi Mumbai.. I work from home , so commuting to office is not an option but I tend to use my cycle if i am traveling alone in the city for shopping around or meeting friends..

Thane/Mumbai roads are the worst for a cyclist to survive..I have seen bikers almost hit me even when I am cycling on the extreme left..I try to always take the internal roads instead
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Old 28th March 2023, 10:07   #5
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Fantastic work! Kudos to doing this for over 150+ days, especially across the varying Mumbai weather conditions over the year. Keep it up and all the best for even higher targets!
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Old 28th March 2023, 10:36   #6
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Excellent to see this. You have done the right thing by using internal roads to commute and this form of exercise is great for health and the wallet. More power to you. Keep updating us on your future milestones whenever you reach them. Ride safe!
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Old 28th March 2023, 10:47   #7
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

This is inspiring! Good job and hope you are fitter now.

I once tried cycling from home to office and felt that even though the experience was rewarding, I had to do a lot after reaching office. Taking a shower and then changing into work formals was the one reason that pushed me away from being a person who commutes to office on a cycle.

After reading your experience, I am motivated to cycle again to work. Any tips on keeping yourself fresh after cycling for an hour in a traffic & heavy on pollution place like Gurgaon.

Keep pedalling and be safe!

Thanks,
Slushmaster
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Old 28th March 2023, 12:26   #8
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Thank you for this post. I hope I can find some inspiration from you. I used to work 8-5 few years back and used to cycle in the evening after work. Helped me reduce a few kgs. After switching jobs the cycle is just lying around and have been thinking of using it for office commute.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slushmaster View Post
I had to do a lot after reaching office. Taking a shower and then changing into work formals was the one reason that pushed me away from being a person who commutes to office on a cycle.
+1 This is exactly what's keeping me away too. My office building doesn't offer shower facility, so after a ride in Chennai climate, there is no way I can sit in the office without taking a shower.
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Old 28th March 2023, 12:50   #9
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Hey another cyclist from Thane here. I just wrote about how a started a few weeks back in Arun's post here Link (One Pedal at a time | My Cycling Journey with Firefox Road Runner Pro)

Since I am a newbie I have started with early morning or late evening cycling of 6-7Kms everyday in and around my society complex. Your post is definitely an inspiration for me.
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Old 28th March 2023, 14:22   #10
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

A very motivating post.

The Netherlands (and of course the rest of Europe) had made significant investments in the necessary bike infrastructure. Their population has increased to 27% cyclists.

I had a virtual meeting with the well-known Melissa & Chris (http://www.modacitylife.com/about) and asked them how they deal with the harsh winters and the hot, humid weather in India. They urged that in order to encourage cyclists, India should begin constructing covered bike lanes.
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Old 28th March 2023, 14:23   #11
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slushmaster View Post
After reading your experience, I am motivated to cycle again to work. Any tips on keeping yourself fresh after cycling for an hour in a traffic & heavy on pollution place like Gurgaon.

Keep pedalling and be safe!

Thanks,
Slushmaster
In Mumbai, weather is generally very good in morning or evening due to sea breezes. So, I haven't had any issues with pollution.

Offcourse, I get sweaty and all after cycling. For that I have arranged a shower room. It feels great to shower and head to work after a sweaty commute.

I commuted for a month when shower room was in maintenance. During that time, I used to carry some wet wipes and used to clean myself in WC before changing clothes. I understand it's a compromise and may not work for everyone
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Old 28th March 2023, 15:54   #12
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

This is something that I too started. I too still have a Hero Lectro that I now spin inside campus only . The shower hurdle can be overcome, but the biggest issue in my place is the unruly traffic, constant jams and narrow roads.

Cycling in densely populated and extremely congested places like Guwahati and Patna is not a task for the faint hearted. And cycling in some non-metro cities is a hazard for your own life. I gave up after a motorised two wheeler almost killed me :(


Quote:
Originally Posted by RGK View Post
Their population has increased to 27% cyclists.
Indian population, on the other hand, is ditching the bicycles and buying motorcycles at the first chance that they get. Specially rural India, where traditionally people cycled, now aspires for motorbikes. Great.
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Old 29th March 2023, 18:17   #13
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

This is so inspiring. I wish I had the will power to use bicycles for commuting to nearby places
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Old 2nd April 2023, 18:29   #14
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

How cycling for commute used to have very negative impact on my life: Every time i was riding my bicycle, the cycle wheels used to get bent because I'm a little chubby and i started losing money trying to get it repaired again and again. Then i sold my cycle.

But all jokes aside, good for you. If cycling to the workplace is feasible in someone's case. I think they should absolutely do it.
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Old 2nd April 2023, 20:45   #15
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Re: Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year

Lovely. Electric assist, I never thought of. Is it heavy? Can we go across medians?
I too take my cycle once in a while (like once in a month)
That’s the fastest by quite a margin. Even faster than my bike. I am always first in a signal as my bike sneaks in between most kind of traffic. And when at the junction, I am then a pedestrian.

This is my office route.
Office commuting on my bicycle | 4000 kms in a year-cc2d9f0f53a24f36a52d86914d9acee5.png

But I usually am trying to better my previous time, or racing against someone who honked loudly. And end up drenched after I reach office.
And the worst part is that there is no bathroom. Imagine changing in a toilet and washing in a sink, Leaving the Cycling shorts to dry in the sun on the Balcony, trying to be as light as possible on the back, carrying a 15in Mac and some clothes. Mine is an adventure. You have mastered it
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