I used to have a simple answer whenever someone asked me why I’m a bicycle commuter: I don’t have a car. But since I married into car-ownership this succinct albeit incomplete reply has become inaccurate, which has caused me to reflect on why I still prefer cycling to driving. I’ve come up with 7 reasons so far.
1. Riding a bicycle is fun. I know some people really enjoy driving, but I find it an arduous means to an end. Somes days cycling is the best part about going to work.
2. Riding a bicycle is good exercise. The typical American lifestyle inevitably leads to obesity and other health problems. Commuting by bicycle is a great way to stay healthy, especially for people who don’t have time or money for a gym membership.
3. Riding a bicycle is cheap… comparatively. You can buy a great bicycle for the price of a really awful car. Factor in gas, insurance, and title and registration fees and the annual savings of bike commuting can reach four figures easily.
4. Riding a bicycle is good for the environment. Human-powered transportation has a renewable, sustainable energy source.
5. I feel connected to my surrounding on a bicycle. Inside of a car it’s easy to feel like an isolated individual. On a bicycle you have no barriers between you, nature, pedestrians, and other cyclists, leading to an increased awareness of community.
6. I can do bike maintenance. In a day and age when cars are being increasingly computerized home maintenance is not a viable option. Bicycles are still wonderfully simple and entirely home fixable.
7. Bicycles are cool. And who doesn’t want to be cool?