A series of events conspired to lead me to purchase a bicycle, in the hopes of commuting to work with it.

  • I’m surrounded by hundreds of miles of bike trails
  • I’ve recently moved closer to work, now approximately 4 miles away
  • The path to work is almost exclusively along a nicely maintained bike trail, reducing the concern of riding with traffic
  • Microsoft generously provides reimbursement for a good chunk of fitness/exercise-related purchases each year (I never took advantage of the ProClub membership)

So a week ago, I test rode a couple bikes at REI and picked up a Novara Express road-ish bike. I’ve never had any experience with road bikes, with my childhood riding all done on mountain bikes (I remember wanting a bike with ever longer-travel shocks, for the raucous rides through the forest near the family home on PEI). My first go on one was a shock (pun intended) of a firm ride and very squirrely handling. With thin and full tires, the experience was very different.

It’ll take a while to get used to it, but I could already feel how (relatively) effortless it was to get up to speed. Perhaps too much speed for not having ridden in 10+ years.

So, before I try to ride into work on a real workday, I’m going to try to beat the heat tomorrow morning, get up early and take the proposed path to work. There’s a steep hill, ~350ft ascent on the way, which I’m a bit intimidated by. Fellow co-workers have retold their walk of shame: getting off the bike and walking it up that steep slope. It’s going to be a challenge, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to bike!


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