Monthly Archives: June 2013

Long Term Bicycle Storage For Next Winter

With the weather being so great this time of the year, it makes me think of a time in the winter months that riding my bicycle was pretty much impossible. In the winter, when the roads are wet or icy and the weather is freezing, I tend to prefer commuting by car or public transportation. That is why I appreciate this time of the year so much. Since you are not riding much in the winter, it is a good idea to look into long term bicycle storage so you can cut down on wasted space in your home.Long Term Bicycle Storage

Long term bicycle storage is just that – a bike rack that you can keep your bike on for weeks or months at a time. These racks are unlike most bike racks, which are not incredibly space efficient but make it easy to access your bike at any time. Instead, it is pretty difficult to get your bicycle down from the racks, but store them in a very space-efficient manner. So much so, you may forget you own a bicycle come spring!

There are some who may call me out for not being tough enough to bicycle during the inclement months. However I just value my bones and personal infrastructure too much to risk having it shattered or worse in an icy bicycle collision. I do see folks powering through and getting their commute done on two wheels, and I applaud them. Winter riding is simply not my bag.

You may be asking yourself why I bring this topic up in the middle of summer, the best season for riding. And that is because often during the summer these sorts of bicycle storage accessories go on sale. So instead of purchasing a long term bicycle storage rack during the winter months when demand is at its peak, look ahead and save some dough by getting your rack during the summer.

The Garage Gator Motorized Storage System is the perfect choice for long term bicycle storage. It places your bikes up and away in the garage, where they do not take up valuable storage or floor space. The storage system is easy to use and install, and works great!

 

Bike Share Programs Revolutionize Cities

A new trend many large cities across the country are seeing are the adoption of bike share programs. This is a new concept for most United States cities. The idea behind bike sharing is that members pay a monthly fee in order to use bicycles  located at kiosks across the city. This is a great idea for many reasons. Many people are unable to afford their own car, or even afford the fees that are involved with car-share programs. This makes a great alternative.

Additionally, apartments just do not have enough room to store an entire bicycle. Other buildings do not provide convenient bicycle parking. If you find yourself in such a situation, I would highly recommend checking to see if your city currently offers any bike share programs.

Does my city offer bike share programs?

Bike Share Programs

Image Via inhabitat.com

Right now the list of cities in the United States is quite impressive, and continually growing. Boston, Washington DC, Denver and Minneapolis are some early-adopter cities, installing bike share programs as early as 2009. Many other cities have jumped on board, most notably New York City which just installed its much-publicized Citibike program.  Chicago and Los Angeles also have bike share programs that are in the works.

I can say that these systems are a great convenience after using the system in Boston while I lived there. Most of the kiosks are located in prominent areas throughout the city – in Back Bay, the North End, the Boston Common. Since they are so easy to find and quite ubiquitous, they are very user friendly.

Instead of worrying about renting a car or figuring out the mass transit system of a city you have never been to before, simply hop on a bike and you are ready to go! The bikes are designed to be relatively maintenance-free, with puncture-proof tires and gear that do not use chains.

So next time you are on vacation in a city with bike share, or if your own city has it – I would definitely recommend taking a look at these unique and useful programs!

Bicycle Commuting for Mental and Physical Health

One of the biggest crises facing the United States is the obesity epidemic. Popular food items seem to just get worse and worse, and people are exercising less and less. This is leading to all sorts of problems for our nation, including rising health-care costs and a lowered life-expectancy. Bicycle commuting is a great way to get some built-in exercise while avoiding the frustration of the morning commute.

Many people do not realize that riding a bike to work can often be more time-efficient than driving. While you definitely sacrifice the comfort of an air-conditioner and cushioned seats, in return you will get a free work-out (no gym membership required!) and perhaps shorter commute times.

My father in law recently started to make a point of using his car as little as possible. Instead of driving the 3 miles to work every single day, he has begun to walk or use his bicycle. Not only does he feel better about his carbon footprint and mark on our environment, but he has started to shed some weight as well!

And unlike publBicycle Commutingic transportation where you are at the mercy of the bus driver or rely on the train coming on time, bicycle commuting allows you to be in charge of where and when you go. And instead of being stuck on a fixed route like a bus or train, a bicycle provides just as much freedom as a passenger vehicle (okay, maybe you should not try to ride on the freeway).

If you are working a full time job, it can be pretty difficult to find time to make it to the gym. But if you are bicycle commuting, there is no need to worry about getting to the gym every day. Instead, every single day you will have at least two free work-outs!

Bicycle commuting can be a pretty strenuous activity. If you are like me and tend to get sweaty really easily, I would recommend bringing a change of clothes for your ride.

After you are done bicycle commuting, get an appropriate bike rack!

If you don’t have a reliable bicycle rack at home, I would recommend something simple like the Grandstand Single Bike Rack. This rack takes up very little space in the home, and is perfect for keeping your bicycle upright and in good condition.

Bicycle Storage Rack After a Big City Ride

One of the best ways to get in shape is to use your bicycle to get around. This two wheel transportation mode provides an excellent work out for your legs and core. Not only that, riding your bicycle is a great way to get around and avoid traffic. When you are done with the ride, be sure to have the proper bicycle storage rack to keep it in tip top shape.

I know that I have found the benefits of cycling since moving to traffic-choked Southern California. Driving my car simply became too tedious and infuriating, and I would come home in a terrible mood every day. There is nothing more frustrating than sitting in your car for an hour on the dirty 101 freeway only to go 7 miles. I could have jogged that fast!

However, there are lots of great reasons to bicycle in Los Angeles (and your city too) other than soul-crushing traffic.

For one, you get an up-close look at all the interesting neighborhoods that make up the city. Instead of seeing the neighborhoods whiz by at 45 miles per hour, you get to see everyday interactions by your fellow denizens. Perhaps you notice some street art you never saw before, or find a new restaurant that is tucked away, out of sight from automobile traffic.

Once you get home, it is important to keep your bicycle in great shape. That means putting it in a bicycle storage rack so it stays off the ground and does not get any damage. The bicycle storage rack that best fits your needs is not a universal thing.

Which bicycle storage rack is right for me?

Bicycle Storage Rack

Some people have lots of floor space or even a garage, and in that case I would recommend a freestanding bicycle rack. Others have cramped space in the garage, or perhaps live in an apartment. For those folks, I would recommend a hanging bicycle storage rack like the Gravity Bike Rack. This saves floor space and allows you to store multiple bicycles in one place.

Hopefully you can use this advice and begin your own bicycle commuting adventures in your town!