Marin's 5 Top Tips for Commuting By Bike
Thinking of switching from four wheels to two? We've prepared our top tips for commuting by bike to help you get started on your pedal-powered commute.
Ready to Switch to Pedal Power?
Commuting by bike can be one of the most positive changes you can make, it’s great for the environment, great for your health, and great for your wallet.
As huge fans of the daily ride to work, we’ve created a list of our top tips for commuting by bike to help you on your journey to freewheeling through the working week.
For less experienced riders, it’s great to stick to traffic-free bike paths and quiet streets where you can set your own pace away from traffic. This might add time to your commute by bike but will make the experience far more enjoyable. If you’re just starting out, it’s always worth a dry run of your new route before you need to use it to get to your 9AM meeting.
Proper clothing and equipment are also a big help. A well-maintained bike is a must. A decent set of bike lights are worth their weight in gold. A brightly colored, reflective jacket will keep you comfy and visible. Wearing a helmet is always a good idea and there are plenty of stylish, and affordable options available.
Last but not least, there’s plenty of cycle training available for kids and adults alike. Don’t be afraid to sign up and boost your skills.
It’s easy to be put off a two-wheeled commute by the prospect of arriving hot and sweaty, but don’t let that deter you.
While you rarely need specialized clothing for a bicycle commute, lightweight and technical fabrics can help keep you cool when you’re working hard. Many lightweight jackets come with vents to keep the air flowing and a decent pair of shorts, a wicking base layer, and a well-vented helmet will all help. Frame-mounted bags are also a great help in keeping you fresh.
Many employers provide shower and changing facilities and if you’re one of the lucky ones, it’s as simple as adding a bit of time to your journey to freshen up when you arrive. For everyone else, there’s the gym, pool or sports center near the office.
If It Aint Broke...
Before you ride each day, perform a quick ‘M Check’ on your bike - start at the back wheel, up to the saddle, down to the gears, up to the handlebars, and down to your front wheel. See why it's called an 'M Check'?
Learn how to fix a puncture, how to put your chain back on when it falls off, how to adjust your gears and replace worn brake pads and you’ll rarely be left stranded.
We’d recommend that you carry a bicycle multitool, a bike pump, tire levers, an inner tube, and a chain tool on every ride... just in case.
Pack It Up, Pack It In
Start by thinking about what you actually need. Can your laptop stay in the office? Can you commute in cycling kit and leave your work clothes at work? Less is more on your daily commute!
For many, pannier bags are perfect and offer loads of storage and the ability to carry bulkier items. The simple bike basket is also a great option and is as suited to riding to work as it is grabbing groceries on the way home.
If your route is a bit more off-road, you might need to consider bike packing style frame bags or a traditional backpack.
Whatever you do, we'd suggest just starting with whatever gear you currently own and getting used to your new route before spending a fortune on new kit.
New Bike Day?
The best bike for you will depend on what you need it to do. Is your commute a short spin through quiet streets or a long ride, head-down on busy roads? Are there plenty of chunky ups and downs between home and the office?
Here are three of our favorite bikes from the Marin range that we think are perfect for commuting by bike:
Built with Shimano’s Steps ebike system, the Sausalito will give you a helping hand with a quick and efficient motor and wide, sturdy tires that work on all but the toughest of terrains.
You should get about 40 miles of electric-assisted riding from a single charge and, when you arrive at work, you can either lock your ebike battery on your frame to keep it safe or easily remove it and charge it up indoors.
Disc brakes and wide tires keep it fun and comfy on all terrains while room for fenders, luggage, lights, and baskets keep it on task for the working week.
And, of course, it looks great right?!
Built to be fun and safe, the Lombard has a reflective frame to keep you visible in traffic and powerful disc brakes and high-volume tires for bags of confidence.
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