A LONG time ago, there was a fleeting thought that crossed my mind to start riding my bike to work. It was when I was in better shape and worked downtown. Doing that from my place on Meredith Drive would not have been that much of a stretch. Although it would have sucked on the way back since it was mostly uphill. I never did follow through with the idea.
With gas now approaching the $1,000/gallon mark. I had been thinking about it again. Unfortunately, now it's more unrealistic than ever before. Work is a good 10 miles away. More importantly, I probably weigh twice as much now as I did then. After reading the story about this guy from Bakersfield, CA, I feel like a chump for not doing it.
Louie Buentiempo also got tired of the escalating gas prices. With May being bike-to-work month, he decided to put his feet to the peddling instead of the pedal to the metal. Dude works in downtown Bakersfield but lives in the middle of Techachapi. That ends up being a 42-mile trip one way for him. That didn't matter. He still hits the road with his bike and makes the journey to work.
In order to make this happen, he has to leave at 5am every workday. The trip one way takes him three hours. That's some dedication for you right there. And I thought I was doing good to get up at 5am just so I can get to work by 6:15. By driving.
I did test my limits just the other day to see if I could pull off something similar. The fam and I went bike riding on a local bike trail here. I didn't know it at the time, but the entire trail is approximately 35 miles round trip. I was able to do approximately 15. Not too shabby if I must say so myself. So maybe I could do the bike to work thing?
The problem is a bike trail is primarily flat for most of the way. There are a few inclines here and there but they are nothing compared to the normal hills run from here to work. Not to mention that I would be dog tired after getting to work from the long bike commute. That job is challenging enough without having to combat weariness.
Nevertheless, hats off to this Louis cat. 42 miles one way regardless of the elements is no joke. So far he has saved $400 that would have normally went into his gas tank. I'd be a Lance Armstrong biking fool for that kind of money.