I have long speculated the idea of riding a bicycle to work. Not only it saves money, it is also an excellent way to force yourself to exercise in the morning. I can’t stand the boredom of a treadmill and morning ride to work looks like an appealing alternative.
Some of my friends do use bikes but I have not done so for several reasons. One of them is the distance. My office is around 14 miles from my house which is a little too far for a bike ride. At some point I considered driving half way, dropping the car, and then riding the second half, but that never worked out. I didn’t feel comfortable leaving my car on a shopping parking lot, and there was no other alternatives.
I recently stumbled upon this inexpensive hybrid electric bike which seem to address some of my concerns. It looks like a regular bike but has a 450Watt rear rack mounted electric motor powered by a rechargeable battery which gives it a boost as you ride. The battery can be detached so you can charge it in the office, or you can get a spare one to swap batteries between home and work.
The guys at TreeHugger have recently reviewed this model and the only significant complain was the weight of the lead-acid battery (yeah, it is an entry level bike) and the fact that it will only last a year (this fact was mentioned in the manual).
If you use this bike for a commute that is 20 miles or less, you could definitely arrive at the office without breaking a sweat. I was pleased by the power of the motor. It was easy to achieve speeds of 25 mph while pedaling lightly.
I hope at this speed I can get to work in about half an hour and still not need a shower to recover from the ride. What do you think, should I get it? Also, if you have a “sit whole day at the desk” kind of work like myself, tell me how you manage to balance it with exercise and stay fit?