Ever wondered how your commuting experience differs to others? Each month we share the story of a real Cyclescheme cycle commuter and ask them seven questions to sum up their experience from their two-wheeled commute. This month, it's Judith from Edinburgh
It's not often we get to hear, first-hand, how cycling to work can make a difference to your lifestyle. We all know that it's good for you and that it's environmentally responsible, but it’s always encouraging to hear a personal account from someone who has made the change from four wheels to two.
Each month we'll be featuring one Cyclescheme participant and hearing their story. We’ll ask the same seven questions (hence the name, The Cyclescheme Seven) in a bid to build up a picture of cycle commuters across the UK. From John O'Groats to Lands End we're scouring the country for the real cycle commuters who take to their bike each morning. We want to share the inspiring and, sometimes funny, stories that people have. 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 Judith from Edinburgh.
CS: Where in the UK are you?
Judith: I live on the outskirts of Edinburgh, surrounded by perfect biking territory (although a bit hilly).
CS: What was your main motivation for getting a bike through Cyclescheme?
Judith: My main motivation for getting a bike through Cyclescheme, was to allow me to obtain a good quality road bike, which I could use not only for journeying to work, but for training for and taking part in novice triathlons with my children.
CS: What bike did you get and why?
Judith: I got my bike from my local bike shop Herbie’s Bikes in Broxburn, West Lothian. I went with Herbie as he is a small local business and he is very passionate and knowledgeable about bikes and was able to recommend the perfect bike for my requirements. After much discussion Herbie recommended the Merida Speeder T3, which is a light weight road bike with a smaller frame, perfect for a 5ft 3” lady and is suitable for both journeys to work and the bike leg on the triathlons.
CS: How much did you spend with your Cyclescheme certificate?
Judith: In total I spent £900 with my certificate, this included the bike, helmet, shoes, bike chain and a few other bits and pieces of safety equipment.
CS: How often do you commute to work by bike?
Judith: I now commute to work by bike three time a week.
CS: Where do you commute from and to?
Judith: I currently drive to my children’s school in Newbridge, Edinburgh with my bike on the bike rack. I then leave my car at the school and cycle the 6 ½ miles to work in Livingston, West Lothian. On the other two days, I work from home, so I again leave my car at the school and cycle the lovely 5 mile journey home along the Union Canal. I also try to do a longer ride, approximately 20-25miles on a Saturday morning.
CS: How has cycling affected your daily life - do you feel healthier? Have you saved money?
Judith: Cycling to work has really improved my health and wellbeing, I feel fitter and healthier and my cycle times on the triathlons are definitely improving. I also feel that I am setting a good example to my children and I have used the money I have saved on fuel to buy a second bike, this time a mountain bike, and we now have regular trips with friends to Glentress Forest, near Peebles to spend the day hurtling through the woods on our bikes.