Hi All!

LoftusRoadie

Well-Known Member
Location
Herts
Hi All

I’ve been browsing here for a little while but thought it was time to sign up and get started!

Bit of background: I’ve been cycling for the past 25 years: pretty much Monday – Friday 5 days p.w., either commuting to work or at the very least to the local train station to get to work. Lived in Nuremberg for 7 years and besides cycling to work, I cycled pretty much all the time in the city limits. Also lived in Taiwan for 5 years, still cycled to work but not much besides that as didn’t feel it was safe cycling around Taipei streets especially with a young kid. Been living back in Herts for 9 years and mainly been cycling to the train station.

Present Time: Which is where the story changes really. My train Season Ticket is just over £2000 p.a. (and that’s just for a 25-30 min train journey!) so I was thinking about how to reduce those costs. Decided to see if I could cycle to work (I work near Cannon Street station) as a theoretical £2000 annual saving (I know! I know!) would come in quite handy. So since October I have been doing practice runs to work on the weekend (fastest time 85 mins for 19 miles one way) or going out in the countryside round where we live. The route to work is pretty nice – towpath along the River Lea for a large part and probably only 15-20 mins actual cycling in London roads.

I intend to start commuting to work by bike at the end of March (once the clocks go forward) so that it will still be light along the towpath going home. Plan is to do it for 6 months, and then see how I feel (if I’m still doing it!) – i.e. whether to take the train for the next 6 months or perhaps 9 months cycle/3 months train, or cycle all year round.

I feel quite confident that cycling to work will be fine (assuming I can sleep well!): currently it takes me 60 mins door to door in the morning and I will only have to wake up about 30 mins earlier to cycle to work. But cycling home will be harder – currently only takes 55 mins door to door going home so instead of getting home at 6.55pm I won’t be home until about 7.40 pm once I start cycling. I can see that psychologically being hard. And the physical effort of doing 19 miles x 10 runs each week whereas I’ve probably never cycled more than 6 or 7 miles even in my younger days when I was commuting by bike.

Equipment: Giant Iguana (which I’ve had for a few years) + I am going to buy CarraDura Rack Bag which I think will be big enough to carry my stuff on a daily basis (we have showers at work and I’ll be leaving stuff at work as well).

Sorry for the long introduction but actually it’s quite therapeutic writing it all down!
 

paul04

Über Member
Welcome to the website :hello:

You could start off by doing a couple of commutes a week, remember when you have a backpack or panniers on the bike it does make it a little harder(more weight)
 
OP
LoftusRoadie

LoftusRoadie

Well-Known Member
Location
Herts
Thanks for the welcomes.

I thought about starting by commuting twice or 3 times a week but as I am doing this primarily to save money taking the train 2 or 3 times won't help me in that direction. I really feel it has to be all or nothing - sink or swim kind of thing!
Will be using a rack bag as it's not easy to take panniers though the gates by the river and I don't fancy cycling a long way with a back pack. Plus as the rack bag is relatively small it should encourage me to take only the neccessaries.

Only had 5 hours sleep last night - not sure how I would have managed if I had cycled to work today!
 

Rickshaw Phil

Overconfidentii Vulgaris
Moderator
Hi and :welcome: @LoftusRoadie

I hope you like it round here.:okay:

Ironic that you didn't feel safe cycling in Taiwan considering that's now pretty much the centre of world bicycle production.:rolleyes:

Good luck with the commute and let us know how you get on.
 

Pat "5mph"

A kilogrammicaly challenged woman
Moderator
Location
Glasgow
Welcome to CC!
Good on you on tackling such a long commute!
However, in the first year you won't save money, specially if you carry on reading on here :laugh:
Many are the accessories you find you will need, not least another bike :whistle: in case your main one has mechanicals.
I find it hard functioning on little sleep, but I also find the commute wakes me up. Mine is only 5 miles though, you might feel different.
Good luck!
 
OP
LoftusRoadie

LoftusRoadie

Well-Known Member
Location
Herts
I agree that cycling wakes me up - but I think cycling 19 miles when I've had less than 6 hours sleep might possible be the end of me!

Luckily I do have a second bike - Globe Sport - that a friend gave (gave!) to me as he didn't use it. It's pretty much "as new" so I lucked out there. But I'm sure I will end up buying more things anyway.
 
OP
LoftusRoadie

LoftusRoadie

Well-Known Member
Location
Herts
Hi and :welcome: @LoftusRoadie

Ironic that you didn't feel safe cycling in Taiwan considering that's now pretty much the centre of world bicycle production.:rolleyes:
Since we left Taiwan the government has done a good job of promoting cycling so now you'll see a lot more people riding around on really nice bikes dressed in expensive kit. But in the city, I still wouldn't fancy riding around with a kid.
 
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