How far do you live from your work? How far do you live from the closest grocery store? If you’re in the city, suburbs, or a small town, you should consider walking and biking as a mode of transportation. You’ll save money and get in shape.
I live about two miles from my work. When the weather is right, I ride my bike to work. There’s a grocery store about a half mile from my house. When I just need a few things, I walk. I’ve been incorporating walking and biking into my lifestyle since I was a teenager.
Through most of my 20s, I chose to opt out of owning a car. I got around by walking, biking, and using public transportation. Now that I have a kid in school, that’s not as easy, but I still walk and bike as a mode of transportation when I can. In the future, I hope to live a lifestyle where I’ll rarely use my car.
Why Make Walking And Biking Part Of Your Lifestyle?
- Consider the savings: Gas costs money. I have a fuel efficient vehicle, but I still spend $30 to $50 per month on fuel. There have been times in my life where I had to spend up to $200 a month on gas. Walking and biking can cut down on those costs. You can use that money to pay off debt.
- Consider the Earth: I like to do my part to leave a smaller footprint. When you walk or ride a bike, you contribute less to pollution. Think of how much less pollution we’d create if we all did half of our short trips by foot or bike.
- Consider the health benefits: One reason I don’t do long workouts at a gym is because I’m always moving. Walking and biking are both great forms of exercise. When you incorporate them into your lifestyle, you’re always getting exercise. Some studies say walking is the best exercise you can possibly do. That’s a win-win scenario.
Here’s What Others Are Saying…
So, how can you get started walking and biking more often? Ask yourself these simple questions:
- Do I live close enough to work to walk or bike? For some, walking or biking to work would be impractical. But if you live within 5 miles of your work, biking is a good option. I have a colleague who lives 10 miles from work. He commutes by bicycle.
- Do I have what I need? You’ll need to be prepared. You need a decent road or commuter bicycle for biking. The right shoes and clothing are also important. Consider the weather. Rain gear is a must in some regions.
- Can I take the extra time? In some cases, biking can be faster than driving. If you live in a major city, this could easily be the case. But often walking and biking take extra time. Make sure it fits your schedule. It usually will if you get creative.
Try Walking Or Biking For One Week
Do an experiment. Try walking and biking to places that are within a reasonable distance from your home. If you live where there’s public transportation, you can incorporate that into your routine, too. Some cities offer bike racks on their busses. Give it a try for a week and see what happens.