It’s Cycle to Work Day on September 14, 2016. Perhaps you have cycled to work today and it’s something you do routinely. If not, why not take a look at all the benefits of cycling to work?
Not everyone lives close enough to their place of work to commute by bike but you could work out ways to cycle part of the route and use your car or public transport the rest of the way.
According to the statistics, 741,000 people in the UK cycle to work regularly – and this number is growing steadily, but Cycle to Work Day’s aim is to see these numbers skyrocket this year and beyond. By 2021, the goal is to see one million people regularly commuting to work by bike.
It’s been proven so many times that being outdoors, even when the weather is rubbish, will make you happier. Daylight, whether it’s sunny or overcast, boosts levels of the feel-good hormone serotonin – and it’s far, far better than sitting indoors all day long.
You won’t want to fall asleep at your desk but cycling will aid your sleep at bedtime. The more daylight there is in your life, the better and longer you will sleep for.
Driving to the office can easily make you feel stressed but if you find a good off-road or fairly traffic free route to cycle you’ll arrive feeling a lot more relaxed. If you can cycle through countryside or a park then all the better.
The body’s metabolic rate – this is what burns calories and fat – is raised while you ride your bike and for several hours after, which means you can eat more but still stay in good shape if you regularly commute by bike.
Being fitter means you are likely to live a longer and healthier life. The British Heart Foundation reveals that 10,000 fatal heart attacks could be avoided each year if people were fitter.
Indeed, another study, in America, found that regular cycling – even as little as 20 miles a week – can cut your risk of heart disease by up to 50%.
The average cost of owning a car per year is around £6,000. Then you need to add petrol or diesel and parking. Think how much you could save if you owned a bike instead of a car or used your bike a lot more than the car.
At commuter times cyclists can often beat cars over short distances. Riders can use cycle lanes or traffic free routes and many will find they reach the office far quicker than if they travelled by car.
There are so many ways in which cycling is better for the environment. For a start, there are far less materials and energy use is less when making a bike as compared to a car.
Cycling produces zero pollution. With around a quarter of the UK’s CO2 emissions coming from road transport, cyclists will help to significantly reduce pollution.
No one enjoys driving a car in busy traffic or sitting on a packed bus or train. Cycling can feel like a total breath of fresh air, which means you’ll get to work smiling. And if colleagues arrive in a bad mood you can secretly gloat about why you are smiling more than them!
See Cycle to Work Day and pledge to ride your bike more.