Piedmont Neighborhood News

What's happening in Piedmont, CA

Bike-to-Work Day Follow-up

Posted by Len Gilbert on May 18, 2008

The Raleigh Steed, loaded, ready to go.I wanted to let you know I ended up riding about 37 miles on bike to work day. The ~4 mile trip to Emeryville was a cinch. I got there 40+ minutes before my co-workers and had a nice chat with the people at the Energizer Station at Powell while I waited.

You can see more pictures in my flickr Bike-to-Work set

Bike Power - Team Inovis arrives at the Richmond Marina6 of my coworkers met me in Emeryville and we headed up the Bay Trail toward Richmond for another 9+ miles. The pace was a bit slower than I’m used to because of the wide range of bike experience, but it was a beautiful morning and a fun ride. We met two more co-workers on the trail and the 9 of us made our way to the Richmond marina.

We had a work event at Albany bowl at lunch that day, so 4 of us biked there. It was very hot at this point and one biker hitched a ride back for herself and her bike in someone’s car. This was the record-breaking heat day. On the evening commute back to Emeryville, 5 of the 9 made the trip back, the others opting out because of the heat.

Overall, my bike mileage was about 37 miles including the Albany Bowl lunch trip. It was fun and I was not terribly physically affected the next day except for my right arm, which was sore from bowling! Remember that a typical ride for me is 5-12 miles, so this was a big step up.

One of our co-workers rides to work every day. One rides 3 times a week using a drive-bike combo. Another does a train-bike combo. As a result of the great experience, two or three of us who have typically been “car- only” decided to try to bike to work at least once or twice a month. Should be a fun challenge to see if we can do it.

Did anyone else bike to work? Are you riding for National Bike Month?

–L

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3 Responses to “Bike-to-Work Day Follow-up”

  1. trood said

    wtg Len! I ride to Downtown Oakland pretty much every day–a flat 3 miles…the worst part is the inconsiderate drivers who are absolutely convinced that it’s illegal to ride a bicycle in the street…

  2. raidrunner said

    That’s great. Sounds like a fun ride. I wish more Americans would bike to work, shopping, and visiting friends. I work in Pleasanton, so about once a week, usually Fridays, I ride to work and back. Sometimes I take the longer route to the office, which is about 50 miles, while other times I’ll take the out and back route, which is 37 miles each way. As a competitive multi-sport athlete, these are great training rides. To try and keep the load down, I’ll usually try and plan on leaving work clothes, etc., at work Thursday. I’ll leave them until Monday or the next time I am in the office. We have a gym at work as showers are a must after hammering into work. We also have an excellent cafeteria, another must. For a double day session, it’s really important to eat and recover between the sessions. This can be challenging if your day is full of meetings, so make sure once you’re showered to get your food, recovery drink, and water set up for the next few hours. My usual route home takes me over Dublin Canyon pass. In the afternoon, the headwind can be brutal. There have been times where I was feeling worked by the time I rolled into Castro Valley. Going through town Friday afternoon is a little hairball, so once I get to Lake Chabot Rd I am stoked. From there, one can concentrate on setting a hard pace back to Piedmont. Since I live at the top of Piedmont, I always have a climb waiting for me at the end of all rides or runs. It takes about 3 hours for the body to calm itself after training pretty hard, so I always want to be home at dinner time, start the recovery process, have time with the kids, and have time with my wife. So departing work at 5PM can make the ride very challenging. For those who might try a commute that is longer and more challenging, split it into two time trials. Go hard for the first half. Take about 5-10 min to “recover” thus spin and take in the sights. Then go hard for your last half of the ride, leaving about 5-10 min to cool down before you put your bike away and walk into the house. Remember within 30 minutes after working out is your WOO (window of opportunity), to begin recovery. This is when you want to replenish with recovery drink, supplements, protein, and carb. So before you let your pet, spouse/SO, or pet jump you and your time, take a few minutes to drink/eat and stretch. Your work day will be just a lame figment of your imagination by then.
    This Summer I plan on a few run to work days. However, instead of running back home, I’ll take BART. I don’t think “run to work” will catch on. We loved Forrest Gump as a movie, not enough to live it out.
    If anyone has questions about “training while commuting”, I can be reached at:
    jukka.valkonen@comcast.net

  3. Whew! That’s much more of a “workout ride” than mine, which can be done easily in street clothes. I’m doing it for alternative commuting and fun rather than exercise. We have a shower at work, but no need for it, even though the temp was 92 that day. Once you get to the bay trail, the breeze keeps it nice. Also, the biggest “hills” were the climb from Grand Ave over Linda to Piedmont Ave, then the climb behind Golden Gate Fields. Not much climb there! Maybe 60 or 75 feet of elevation gain…

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