A First-Time Bike to Work Rider’s Experience + Resources

A First-Time Bike to Work Rider’s Experience + Resources

A new SVBC employee and bike rider; Stevens Creek Trail; a King along Monterey Road (photo credit: Lost San Jose) Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition and National Bike Month have transformed me from a reluctant, nervous rider of bikes in urban streets to a bike lover, rider, and advocate. I am proud to have recently joined the staff here at SVBC, and ironically, am also eager to learn more about bicycling. Yes, I owned a bike for years, a nice vintage Schwinn cruiser, but I only used it in rare occasions. I was afraid of riding out on the streets and getting hit, that I’d get a flat tire and not know what to do, or was nervous I wouldn’t know the rules of the road and get laughed at by other bicyclists. Would I sweat in my work clothes and smell all day? I wasn’t the only one; many people feel the same way. Only 7% of the population rides their bike more than once a month. In just four weeks, I have had a total transformation. The first day going to work, yeesh was it both terrifying and thrilling! Riding along a buffered bike lane along Monterey Road in San Jose, I still felt like I’d get clipped from a car’s side window, but with every quarter-mile I rode the less I worried about it. Riding along Third Street, a street that is without a bike lane for what seemed like miles, was tough the first day, and still is. I can see how many potential riders get discouraged the minute they encounter a street without bike lanes....