Half of all trips taken in cars are under two miles.  Do you drive your car to class? While in some instances cars may be necessary, most people drive out of habit rather than necessity.
What would happen if we put more thought into our transportation?
If you started bike commuting this year you’d lose around 12 pounds, save over $10,000, and lower greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 3,000 pounds. [1-3]
Unfortunately, we don’t see a lot of people biking; what’s holding them back?
- Habit - Driving is a ritual – it’s the default when we need to get somewhere.
- Convenience - You don’t have to plan as far out as car commuting.
- Speed - In a car, you can speed if you lose track of time (speaking from experience).
- Storage - Cars can hold more than bicycles.
- Distance - Biking is trickier when you have a super long commute (you could try moving closer to your job).
- Weather - If it’s -30 degrees out, I understand if you don’t want to bike commute – it’s okay. (Consider moving somewhere warmer where you can bike)
Don’t worry, though. Even if all these factors apply to you, there’s still hope! You can build your life around whatever you focus on. And with a little planning, anything is possible.
Here Are Seven Reasons You’ll Want To Start Bike Commuting:
- Save money - The annual cost of owning a car in 2022 is $10,728.  (This includes maintenance, insurance, gas, and other miscellaneous expenses.)
- Exercise - Exercise and sunlight are two out of five of Andrew Huberman’s pillars of physical and mental health, both of which result in better health and better quality of life. 
- Save the environment - Biking to work lowers greenhouse gas emissions by 3,000 pounds a year, benefitting the health of you, your community, and the environment. 
- Reduce anxiety and depression - Exercise and nature improve mental health while reducing anxiety and depression. [4 & 5] Get outside, and ride to class.
- Built-in reflection time - Increased commute time allows time for reflection.
- Build friendships - The biking community is very friendly and Walla Walla has an amazing bike culture. You can always commute to class with friends or ride with a local group for longer rides!
- It’s fun - Seriously – just commit to riding every day for one week and you’ll see how much fun it is!
So if you want to save money, stay active, and make a positive impact, start bike commuting!
Your future self will thank you.
- TedxTalks. (November 22, 2016). The Amazing Way Bicycles Change You| Anthony Desnick | TEDxZumbroRiver [Video]. Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTT7i3SKpMQ
- Sleight, M. (2022, December 2). The cost of owning a car. Bankrate. https://www.bankrate.com/insurance/car/cost-of-car-ownership/
- 5 ways commuting by bike benefits the environment: Momentum Bikes Us. 5 ways commuting by bike benefits the environment. (n.d.). Momentum Bikes US. https://www.momentum-biking.com/us/5-ways-commuting-by-bike-benefits-the-environment
- How nature benefits mental health. (n.d.). Mind. https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/tips-for-everyday-living/nature-and-mental-health/how-nature-benefits-mental-health/
- Depression and anxiety: Exercise eases symptoms. (2017, September 27). Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/in-depth/depression-and-exercise/art-20046495
- Andrew Huberman, AH [@hubermanlab]. (2023, January 22). Pillars of mental & physical health & “performance”: 1) Sleep 2) Sunlight 3) Movement, 4) Nutrients 5) Relationships (all kinds, incl. w/self). Amplifiers: Cold exposure (1-5 min, circa-waking [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/hubermanlab/status/1617218306934722564?lang=en