Many of those who have made the lifestyle change to bicycle commuting made the choice in an effort to break from the daily rat race of traffic congestion within their commute. Have these individuals also helped to break the cycle for the rest of us? The jury is still out on whether bicycle commuters have much impact on overall congestion, but one thing is clear: mixed-use roads, those designed for both cars and bicycles, seem worth the investment in our future.
Bicycle commuting offers not only an escape from sitting stuck in a car, but also helps aid the fight to lessen car pollution. Although you can't keep cars off the road altogether, one less vehicle on the roads is, most assuredly, one less vehicle on the road. Ridesharing and carpooling, of course contribute to this end as well.
Studies show that those who commute by bicycle are healthier than even the most active of those who do not. Of course, in considering this average, there are certain outliers, but overall, the average result is clear: Those who commute by bike gain less weight on average than whose who do not, even when they are physically active. For more on this, continue reading at PlanetSave.com.
In considering biking as a viable commute alternative, it's important to note also the economic factors. Within our economy of late, there has been an increase in bike commuters out of sheer need. According to the La Crosse Tribune, "National trends show that bicycle commuting took off again during the recession." Between difficult economic times and extremely high gas prices, bikers have begun to get practical and save where they can. Fortunately, this increase in bike ridership seems to have brought about greater awareness and acceptance, both in the general public and in policymakers. Hopefully, this trend will continue, and lawmakers will recognize the value in planning mixed-use roads.
Lastly, let's consider the impact that biking has on a personal level as well. As is lessening congestion and pollution, gaining health benefits, and saving money weren't enough of an impetus to take us bicycle commuting, perhaps your mental health and self esteem will benefit from making the switch! Phillip Schwartz, a bicycle commuter, reflects on how biking brought an entirely new dimension into his life, including competitive bike racing, "Bike commuting has done a lot for me—from getting me in shape to helping me save gas money. Now it has led me to racing, a place I never thought I’d be. Who knows what’s next?"