Ever wondered how your commuting experience differs to others? Each month we share the story of a real Cyclescheme cycle commuter and ask them questions to sum up their experience from their two-wheeled commute. This month, it's Kate.
Each month we feature one Cyclescheme participant and share their commuting story. From John O'Groats to Lands End, we scour the country for the real cycle commuters who take to their bike each morning. If you'd like to feature on our website, just drop us a line on: firstname.lastname@example.org with "I'm in' in the subject line.
This month we caught up with Kate to see how her commute has changed her life.
Where in the UK are you?
What was your main motivation for getting a bike through Cyclescheme?
To treat myself after meeting my fitness goals through cycling to work.
What bike did you get and why?
I got an Eastway FB3.0. I needed a hybrid, but closer to a road bike set up than a mountain bike. It needed to be sturdy as I tow sometimes.
How much did you spend on your Cyclescheme request?
I spent £750. I already had other accessories for cycling to hand.
How often do you commute to work by bike?
I cycle to work 4 days a week, but I also use it on other days for grocery shopping, trips to the centre of Glasgow so I don't have to worry about parking, and for longer trips at weekends.
Where do you commute formand to?
I initially had a double Croozer bike trailer which I would take the kids to nursery in. When my older child started primary school he was able to cycle himself. I continued to pull the younger one until he was 4 and learned to ride his bike too. I have a WeeHoo for longer trips as the youngest hasn't got the stamina for those. So it's a mile to school, then another 2 to work. Not long, but it's enough to keep a base level of fitness so that if I have a meeting 10 miles away I can tackle that without feeling over-faced. Women are usually the ones who do the nursery/school run. It would be good to raise the profile of options to cart kids about using a bike for that. I had to do a lot of research to find out what suited me..
How has cycling affected your daily life - do you feel healthier? Have you saved money?
10 years ago I was a lot heavier, weaker, and rather miserable. Now I feel I can tackle more and have more confidence. It was daunting working out ways of using a bike for the school run with small children, but I'm so glad we did. My kids are fitter than most their age, and it transfers to other activities like hillwalking. I feel it is setting them up for a fitter life in the long run, and making them more independent as they get older. If our government get more organised with safer cycle ways, it'll mean that my kids can get about without having to rely on the parental taxi service as so many do. I see what people spend on gyms memberships, and it often seems like a waste when they don't go. I arrive home after work and I know that my fitness for the day is taken care of. It's a good feeling. Cyclescheme was easy to set up, and I'm thinking of using it to get a folding bike next for more flexibility with work if I have to go further afield.
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